Approved by the English Department
Below are the skills we expect students to have a basic understanding of when they enter Composition I.
- Know the difference between fact and opinion.
- Read a text and summarize it.
- Read a paragraph and identify the main idea.
- Use correct and appropriate diction.
- Know the difference between objective and subjective.
- Use examples and other supporting details to support ideas.
- Write an introduction that introduces the topic and leads to the thesis.
- Write a thesis statement that addresses the writing prompt.
- Organize a paragraph using a main idea/topic sentence, explanations, and examples.
- Write sentences that connect ideas with transitions and are ordered logically.
- Write a conclusion that reinforces the thesis.
- Construct complete sentences—avoid run-ons, splices, and fragments. Sentences should make sense.
- Demonstrate subject-verb agreement.
- Keep verb tense consistent.
- Keep sentences parallel.
- Use correct verb endings.
- Use correct punctuation, including commas, periods, question marks, exclamation marks, quotation marks, and apostrophes.
- Follow capitalization rules.
- Use pronouns correctly (case, agreement, and reference).
- Choose correct prepositions.
- Use the correct form of commonly confused English words and idioms.
- Use correct verb forms.
- Have awareness that one needs to document sources.
- Understand the definition and examples of plagiarism.