Ms.

Drawbond English 101, Fall 2013 ESSAY 1
In the article “Why Colleges Shower Their Students with A’s,” Brent Staples talks about an issue that is becoming more and more prevalent on college campuses, from Ivy League universities to community colleges like LASC—grade inflation. Many professors and college departments are giving students higher grades than they deserve because they feel pressure to keep students happy in order to keep their jobs and keep enrollment (and therefore money from tuition) high. Furthermore, he claims that students are looking for a less difficult education and says “the consumer appetite for less rigorous education” is fueling grade inflation (936). Prompt: Using specific information from the article as well as your experiences and observations, write a thesis-driven essay that addresses the following questions: Do you agree with Staples that students are more concerned with getting high grades and less concerned with receiving a thorough, demanding education? Based on your experience as a student yourself and your observations of students around you, are students generally more concerned with the grades they receive or actually learning the material in a class and being challenged academically? Should instructors and schools be treating students more as customers who need to be satisfied rather than students who need to be evaluated rigorously? Explain and defend your positions. Guidelines for Writing:       Make sure that you follow the essay format we discussed in class! This should be a full essay with multiple paragraphs, including an introductory paragraph and a concluding paragraph. You should also have at least two body paragraphs. Work on having a specific thesis statement that responds directly to the prompt and states your main idea. Your support for your thesis should be organized into body paragraphs with clear topic sentences. The rough drafts you bring for peer review and your final draft must be typed—no handwritten papers will be accepted for full credit. Your essay should be between 500-750 words. Please write the word count at the end of your paper. The word count can be found at the bottom of the screen when you are typing in Microsoft Word. I will check to see that your composition is between 500-750 words. Your essay should be in correct MLA format, which includes using 12 point, Times New Roman font, double-spacing, one-inch margins all around, and correct MLA format heading and page numbering. There is more information about MLA format on the class website and on the next page. Do the best work you can! If you have questions or feel that you need help, you can see me during my office hours, which are listed on your syllabus. Rough Draft Due: bring 3 TYPED copies for Peer Review Workshop  Tuesday Class: September 17, 2013  Thursday Class: September 19, 2013 Final Draft Due: turn in ALL prewriting, peer reviewed drafts, and rough drafts  Tuesday Class: September 24, 2013

 Thursday Class: September 26, 2013 Characteristics of MLA format for a Word document:  12 point font: Times New Roman  1 inch margins all around  Header with your last name and page number (ex: Smith 1) at the top right corner (go to Insert -> Page Number -> Top of Page -> Option 3. Then, type your last name in front of the page number)  Heading with your name, my name, the class name, and date with the day month and year on the left side. Here’s an example: John Smith Professor Drawbond English 21 1 March 2013  Double spaced everywhere  Your title should be centered and the first letter of each word capitalized (except minor words such as of, the, and, and in) o Your title should NOT be:     All caps In bold Bigger than the rest of the composition Underlined

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