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John Iannacone

UWRT 1101
December 5, 2016
Dear Reader,
In this letter I will address numerous different topics all of which from this
semester in UWRT 1101. As was stated in the midterm reflection letter, I have always
had to work harder to understand and to learn within English courses as a whole. I
have had both successes and failures within the courses but have never once failed a
class as a whole. The values that were instilled in me at a young age taught me that
work comes before play and that you must always try your best even if the topic does
not interest you. For me, as I am pursuing a career in Engineering, many may believe
that writing is not that important yet what I have come to understand is that it is an
integral part of Engineering that without it, success will be hard to achieve. Now that I
have had time to experience this fact, I understand the value of writing courses as they
expose you to many different genres as well as take you out of your comfort zone for
presentations. All of Which have proved to be beneficial to me. The importance will
become apparent below as I will reference what a portfolio is, essays throughout this
semester, my strengths and weaknesses along with my progress as a thinker and as a
writer.
How I have experienced writing courses has varied from year to year and from
school to school. I attended numerous different schools in my K-12 experience. All
three schools proved to have different teaching styles. My first school of which was
referenced at the midterm was a public school where I live in Highlands, North Carolina.
Here each grade taught the English material differently as the teachers were able to
build their curriculum as they saw fit. Some classes I was more easily able understand

the material while overall I tended to struggle a good bit. At my next school of which I
attended for a year my English teacher used a more visual teaching style rather than
cumbersome amounts of book work. She stressed the use of flashcards to help to
understand and learn the material. Due to this my understanding of grammar and
punctuation began to become more clear. In 2012 when I began high school at Rabun
Gap, my understanding in English was at a much higher level than before 8th grade but
still needed a good bit of work. The teacher that year helped me numerous times by
going over material after class to help me grasp the concepts better. At first the quizzes
that we were given frustrated me because I was failing more than I was passing. Later
as time went on, numerous study sessions with that teacher later, I finally began to pass
quizzes with flying colors. I was proud of myself because for the first time I truly
understood the subject as a whole. High school was when I was able to learn from my
writing mistakes and because of this I was eventually able to write more professional
documents while at the same time become a better writer.
Something new that I had never seen before this year was the use of a journal in
regards to putting down thoughts about a project before beginning the brainstorming
phase. Earlier in my life the use of journals were common but only for minimal writing
assignments such as what you did over Christmas break or comparable topics. This
year that all changed when we began journaling about topics such as current events,
past experiences, fictional situations as well as putting down thoughts about future
projects. Although writing is not my favorite topic, I was able to understand more about
myself, my beliefs, and where I needed to improve grammatically for quick writing
assignments. I have come to understand that for free writing such as this, once you

have an idea of what you want to write about, simply write continuously until time is up
then go back through to edit. This is because if I continuously corrected the errors
along the way I would lose my train of thought and more times than one the final
product of my journal or daybook was lacking.
I have come to understand what my strengths as well as weaknesses are and
how I can come about improving them for the better. For the course UWRT 1101, we
had four significant projects of which had a variety of formats and guidelines. They
included, The Literacy Narrative, Midterm Reflection Letter, Discourse Community
Ethnology, and the final one being the Eportfolio. For all of these my skills were grown
or tested and my strengths as well as weaknesses were made apparent. Group work
has never been something that I have enjoyed, this is simply due to the fact that there is
always at least one person who does not feel their assistance is needed to complete the
project. This has always been an issue for me as I always try to get things done ahead
of schedule to allow for edit time. When people see this, they know that I will complete
what needs to be done which in more times than not means they do not do their
part. This was why the Discourse Community project was a tough one for me as I had
to go outside my comfort zone to work with others for a good final product. In the end
though a successfully completed project was turned in with an equally successful
presentation on the topic of eSports. More information on the topic can be found
online. The other three projects I was much more partial to as I was able to work on my
own. That being said, peer reviews of my projects are greatly useful to me as I am able
to reflect on my weak points of a paper. Typically, the weak points revolve around me
wandering off topic at times or formatting related issues. I was able to show one of my

strengths within the literacy narrative as I was able to speak about topics I enjoy. When
I am able to speak on behalf of something close to my heart, I am able to speak on the
topic for ages with good meaningful information. In the Literacy narrative I was able to
share my knowledge of cars as well as electronics repair as it related to my literacies as
an engineer. The Midterm reflection letter was the same as the topic was a review of
what had gone on so far. Finally, the Eportfolio stands on its own as it is by no means
hard but it has exposed me to website creation and how useful of a tool it really is. Most
importantly as I have written in my journals and daybooks, my issues within them
became apparent and I was able to make changes accordingly.
In conclusion, the progress I have made this semester has far exceeded what I
have in full year long writing courses in the past. Not that certain topics have been
problematic whether it is group work or simply running out of ideas but beside that point
I have pushed myself to succeed and for it have become a better writer. I have been
forced to think outside the box in light of discourse communities as well as writing
fictional daybook entries. My knowledge of writing mechanics of how to structure an
essay to have the best possible flow has grown. Most importantly, throughout the
composition process, through finding what I am good and not so good at, through
challenges faced in group work, I have seen where improvements have been made and
where I need to continue to improve as a writer. As was stated earlier, I do not intend to
pursue a career in writing but I do understand its worth for when I am in a job setting
writing proposals for my engineering related endeavors. I have had to question myself
to see things from my past that have made me who I am today and think to make them
relevant to my work in this course. I hope to continue to grow my knowledge next

semester in UWRT 1102 to further enlighten myself on the topic and to help myself
solidify as job in the future. Thank you for taking the time to evaluate my works from
this course to see what you believe to be my strengths and weaknesses.
Sincerely,
John Iannacone