The Key to Good Writing is Good Revising

John Kenneth Galbraith

Easy Reading is Damned Hard Writing

Nathaniel Hawthorne

Introduction to College Composition

General Information
Fall 2019


Phil Atteberry
Office: 305 McKinney Hall
Phone: 827-4458

Office Hours:
MWF: 8:30-9:00, frequently 10:00-12:00
TuTh: frequently 10:00-11:00
I will also be available as needed for appointments in the afternoons. Office hours will usually be held in the Learning Center.


1) To learn and practice correct use of basic sentence elements
2) To learn to construct effective topic sentences and paragraphs
3) To learn and practice effective paragraph development
4) To build vocabulary
5) To learn to recognize and appreciate good writing

Attendance Policy

Attendance is important. Almost always a direct relationship exists between grades and class attendance. Students with more than three unexcused absences may have their final grades lowered.  Students with more than six unexcused absences will have their final grade lowered.  Students with more than nine unexcused absences will not pass.  If you arrive after I have taken attendance, remind me to mark you present. I reserve the right, however, to mark absent anyone who is habitually late or extremely late. Missing an individual appointment is the same as missing a class.

Also, please understand that attendance is not just physical but intellectual. If you sleep in class, catch up on your math homework, read Sports Illustrated (or even your history lesson), you will be marked absent. I will also mark you absent if you text message your friends during class or otherwise use your phones for non-classroom purposes. Turn off your phones or put them on "Do Not Disturb." The same applies to students who surf the web during class, message or email friends. Be serious about class. Be mature. Be professional.

Sometimes students take "bathroom breaks" during class. Obviously, if you need to use the restroom, do so. It's fine. However, don't use a "bathroom break" as a pretext to walk out, stretch your legs, send a text, etc. Unnecessary leaving and entering the room is a distraction for everyone. Excessive leaving the classroom during class may result in being marked absent.


Your final grade will consist of two elements: writing assignments 75%; everything else (quizzes, in-class writing, journals) 25%. Quizzes must be taken on time. All papers must be done in Microsoft Word and submitted via e-mail. Papers not submitted properly will not be accepted.

Rewrite Policy

I do not allow rewrites. Rewriting will occur before the paper is turned in, not after. You will bring me drafts of your papers before they are due, and I will help you with them. I do not accept emailed drafts. Remember, however, that I don't look at drafts (for the first time, at least) the day before a paper is due, so keep your appointments. Remember also that the more you work on a draft before submitting it, the more helpful I can be in making comments.

Late Policy

Papers are due on time. Normally assignments will not be accepted late. If you absolutely cannot get a paper in on time, see me and explain the circumstances before the paper is due. I will then decide whether or not to accept the paper. Do not simply send me a late paper. Late papers without explanations will not be graded. Also, I reserve the right not to accept papers by students who have not attended class regularly. In other words, if you are not in class to receive the assignment or hear subsequent discussions and explanations of the assignment, I will likely not accept the paper. If you don't keep your individual appointment for me to look at your draft, I will not accept the paper.


Remember: Teaching is my job; learning is yours. You will get as much out of this course as you put into it. View this and other classes as opportunities. Work hard and make the most of them.

Office Hours

My office hours are listed at the top of the page and on courseweb. Please feel free to come by and see me anytime I can help you.

Note: The syllabus which follows is tentative. Alterations may occur as the semester progresses. Those will be announced in class, and you are responsible for knowing about them, even if you are not in class when they are made.