Tomas Torres- Garcia
University Writing Program 001 018
In high school and the beginning of the quarter I defined good writing to be something that was long and interesting. Since my high school instructors did not really help me develop as a writer, my perception of good writing was that as long as a paper is long and interesting to the audience then it was considered a good paper. However, this all changed as soon as came to college and had more experience with college writing. This is the first writing class I take in college and it has made a major impact in my development as a writer. I feel like everything that my high school instructors did not do was done in this class which helped me become a better writer. In the beginning my vocabulary, grammar, sentence structure and my organization was terrible, but this class helped me improve. This is still something I need to focus and work more on, but overall I am a better writer now then I was before taking this class.
The skills that I obtained from this course will definitely help me in my future courses and in my career. I am perusing a career in the field of Aerospace Engineering. There is a stereotype saying that Engineers are usually not very good writers and I want to change that. I know I am not the best writer but I enjoy writing. The skills that I learned here will help me express my ideas to my colleagues, will help me writer reports on different projects that we are working on and will help me explain Engineering problems or innovations to other audiences who are not from the same filed and may require a more detailed explanation. In reading tasks, I will be at an advantage because the Language Development Project. This assignment helped me extend my vocabulary knowledge, meaning that I will not struggle as I used to before taking this helpful course. The two writing assignments that I chose show the growth of my improvement as a writer.
Furthermore, I had trouble choosing between my problem letter and my literacy narrative. I chose the problem letter because I felt like I assessed a problem that is important not only to my high school but to many others. Also, because in this particular assignment I felt like a better writer than I was before. I felt like my skills had improved. I talked about a very important problem that my peers and I had with our high school and the way they prepared us for the SATs. Compared to other writing assignments I have written before this one was different and helped me to be more comfortable writing letters to a specific audience. This writing assignment really helped me improve my writing and my sentence structure. My drafts included a large amount of errors, mainly sentence structure and tone. Professor Sibbald advised me to restructure my essay and slowly comb through it so that I could fix the sentence structure and some parts where my tone was not adequate for my audience. I examined my final draft and tried picking out the mistakes that I could find. I feel like this final draft is a very strong letter with a strong argument that I will consider sending to the President of the School Board.
In high school believed that I was very good at writing research papers. In high school I wrote a 17 page research paper about the themes and setting in the novel The Stranger in which I managed to get a very high grade. Therefore I expected to do the same in Assignment 4. When we first started to write our research papers and started revising them, I learned that my skills were really not up to what I expected them to be. I was shocked when I obtained my revised draft from Professor Zugnoni. I found out that the integration of my research in my paper was not the best and that the structure was not very well organized. In the past I usually just grabbed quotations and implemented them in my writing but what I learned from this course that you can paraphrase them as long as you cite them. This was a very useful skill that I will definitely use in the future. I learned to structure the papers in a way in which it flows. The research paper also taught me the APA format which I had never used before, but now not I can say that I know the basics of it. Overall this class was very helpful, I can honestly say that I feel like a better writer now than before.