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Matthew Avecilla

Dr. Guenzel
ENC 1102-0205
May 3, 2016
Self Assessment on My Accomplishments in ENC 1102-H
I have learned and developed a variety of techniques and rhetorical strategies for
academic writing this semester. As a result of this course I have learned new writing and
rhetorical strategies; as well as improved my critical reading and thinking, research, and writing
skills. However, learning is a continuous process and there are still things for me to learn.
Writing and Rhetorical Strategies
Over the course of this semester I have learned a quite a few writing strategies. Two of
these are intertextuality and the Rogerian mode of argumentation. Both of these were new
concepts I learned in this class. The idea that texts are interconnected was first addressed in
Stuart Greenes "Argument as Conversation" (WAW 28-38). I learned that texts can and should
reference past and future texts on the same subject. This was reinforced by James Porters
"Intertextuality and the Discourse Community" (WAW 396-408). Porter asserts good texts should
borrow from other texts, as well provide new insight into a topic. The effects of these writing
theories can be seen in my argumentative research paper. In my research paper I included outside
sources, and used them to synthesize a new argument. I referenced past reports on the F-35 JSF

to support a novel argument about its effectiveness. Thus, I created a new and unique argument
using past texts, which is what James Porter advocates. Another strategy that was new to me was
the Rogerian mode of argumentation. According to Barnets and Bedaus A Psychologists
View: Rogerian Argument, the Rogerian mode of argumentation advocates understanding the
opposing view and restating it, rather than immediately trying to refute it (357-366). This can
also be seen in my research paper. I explored both the positive and negatives of several issues,
and then used them to rate the F-35 on a spectrum, rather than making an all-or-nothing
argument. I believe that learning and using these strategies I will become a better writer.
Critical Reading, Thinking, and Writing Skills
Another thing I accomplished is improving reading, thinking, and writing skills.
Throughout this course I have developed techniques for analyzing texts and using the Toulmin
model. While none of this was new to me, I definitely improved my ability in these areas. One
way I bettered my critical thinking and reading skills is by learning ways to analyze texts and
practicing these methods. An example of this was in reading response 16 when using Barnets
and Bedaus "A Rhetorician's View: Rhetorical Analysis of Nontraditional Texts" (CTA 371388). Not only did I get a list of factors to consider when analyzing a text, but I had a bit of fun
analyzing a Super Bowl commercial. While I may not remember all the specifics in the future, I
will definitely pay more attention to things like commercials in the future, keeping in mind
purpose, audience, and exigence. Another skill I developed was my ability to use the Toulmin
model. I was first introduced to the Toulmin model in high school, but really developed my
ability to use it while in this course. I feel that I definitely sharpened some of my skills reading,
thinking, and writing this semester.

Areas to Work on
While I definitely have accomplished a lot this semester, I will continue learning. One
area where I did not develop much this semester is my ability to write the microstructure of
papers. I learned a few things, such as the correct way to format an in text citation in a direct
quote, but apart from that I dont feel like I learned a lot about writing good microstructure, and
local problems may persist in my writing. I assume that as a college student I am expected to
already be proficient in these areas, which is reasonable. However, as I explore new writing
techniques occasionally situations I have never been in arise and I would like to how to correctly
and eloquently write in these situations.
I hope that the techniques I have learned will help me write in my future career. After I
graduate I plan to join the Marine Corps, and to prepare I will be attending a training session this
summer. In preparation I have been learning about Marine Corps conventions and technical
reading and writing I may do. The writing strategies and skills Ive developed will definitely help
me to write the formal reports that will be required in my future career.