Effective Writing Skills

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The course teaches students to write to their intended readers in a concise and readable style.  It is a good refresher-writing course for those who need to brush up on basic writing skills.  Topics include writing basics, as well as editing, choosing subjects, and organizing documents.



  • Organizing and implementing the appropriate rhetorical patterns for developing an idea in written communication.
  • Identifying the major types of readers and addressing the subject of the document to them.
  • Organizing a unified document into its three component parts: introduction, text, and conclusion.
  • Presenting a statement of purpose developed by means of the major rhetorical strategies of written communication: description, analysis, and persuasion.
  • Writing objective, subjective and thematic descriptive essays.
  • Describing a subject by means of process description.
  • Analyzing a subject by means of comparison and contrast and according to the point-by-point (alternating) or subject-by-subject (dividing) patterns of exposition.
  • Describing a subject showing cause and effect relationships.
  • Analyzing a subject according to strategies of classification and extended definition.
  • Developing a personal vocabulary that precisely expresses the writer’s thinking in written form.
  • Editing the writer’s documents to eliminate grammatical and stylistic errors.
  • Implementing corrective procedures for revising a document for presentation in a professional setting.
  • Designing a document for visual impact and readability.
  • Editing compositions for punctuation, emphasis (style), and low-information content.
  • Transforming expository information into alternative modes of expression.
  • Composing summaries of expository information.
  • Identifying techniques of persuasion in compositions.
  • Identifying the elements of argument.

Distinguishing between stated and implied premises and conclusions in argument

Course Syllabi