Writing@CSU: Composition Teaching Resources

Week 10: Monday, October 28th - Friday, November 1st

Goals for this Week

  • Discuss Issue Analysis Grids and HyperFolio worksheets
  • Address introductions, organization and development
  • Read/review a sample Issue Analysis essay (in the appendix)
  • Workshop Issue Analysis essays in class

Connection to Course Goals

If you decide to model your own sample essay in class, you might also show students earlier drafts to illustrate the point that effective writing involves a process of revision. You can also meet this goal using the sample in the appendix if you discuss ways that the "sample" student could make their paper stronger with revision. The workshop reinforces students’ understanding of writing as a process and contributes to the sense of community that writers need.

Required Reading and Assignments

·        Finish the Issue Analysis Grids and HyperFolio worksheet

·        Bring two polished drafts of your Issue Analysis Report to class for workshop

·        Read and comment on at least one other students' Issue Analysis draft

·        Make revisions to your Issue Analysis Report and prepare to turn in Portfolio 2

Potential Activities for this Week

*      Discuss Issue Analysis Grids and HyperFolio worksheets (5 minutes): Briefly address any concerns with these assignments and tell students that you won't collect these until the portfolio is due because they will need them to write their Issue Analysis essays.

*      Address introductions, organization and development (10 min): By this point, students are probably asking, "What should my report look like?" In CO150, we generally try to avoid prescribing forms for writing. We tell students that purpose and audience should guide the choices they make; and that they should focus on questions like, "What am I trying to accomplish in writing this? Who are my readers? What are their needs and interests? How can I best reach them?" Yet, many students have only been taught to write using forms, so they feel lost at sea when writing for a purpose. Here are a few points to address for those who need more direction. Explain that this is only one way to approach this assignment. Creative individuals with a strong sense of purpose may develop variations and still write a successful essay.

In your Introduction:

-         Address your target readers

-         Briefly introduce the issue

-         Address the purpose for writing and explain why this purpose should interest readers (this will serve as your claim or essay map)


-         When writing about approaches describe each approach and who takes this approach; then explain what their purpose is, who their readers are, and what social, historical and cultural factors have shaped their views on the issue.

-         Overall, your goal is to attempt to describe the situation as whole, rather than to focus on the particular situations shaping each approach. You may distinguish among approaches and use specific positions as examples to illustrate the differences, but the goal is to look at the conversation as a whole. Use the details of your analysis to serve this larger purpose, rather than getting caught up in the analysis (and losing sight of the purpose).

*      Read/review the sample Issue Analysis Report (25 - 30 minutes): Use the sample in the appendix or create your own sample Issue Analysis Report. Have students read the report and write down what was effective and what needs improvement. Then review the sample in class. For further assistance with this activity, see the section on "Planning to Model or Critique Student Samples" in the Planning a Class teaching guide, located on Writing@CSU and in your appendix.

*      Workshop Issue Analysis Reports (you decide): If you have time, consider giving students a full class period to exchange and read drafts in groups of three or four. Then, use the following class to have students discuss the comments they wrote for homework. If you are short on time, have students exchange drafts in pairs and complete the workshop in one class period. Use the sample workshop guide in the appendix or create your own. For assistance with this activity, read the guide on Planning Workshops and Peer Review located in your appendix.