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Academic Writing Pedagogy

How much time, if any, do first-year writing instructors spend in class discussing the importance of titles on their students’ papers? Without looking at a mountain of lesson plans or interviewing a plethora of instructors from across the country, it is impossible to know what is and what isn’t commonly taught in first-year composition courses. Admittedly, introductory writing and research classes can vary greatly from institution to institution and even from instructor to instructor within the same department.

Throughout your time in school, most of your classes have probably been graded. If you met certain criteria, you received an “A,” a “B,” a “C,” and so on. Maybe your school used numbers, grades, or GPA-style grading, but whatever the grades looked like, the mechanism was pretty similar. Your teachers probably used a combination of tests, quizzes, essays, presentations, attendance, and participation to determine your grade. This system is familiar to nearly everyone who goes through the educational system in the United States, and many international students as well.