Journal Information

A Word About Journals

You will be required to keep a journal throughout the semester. Keep your journal on your hard drive and back it up with a disk or thumb drive. Then submit it by email. Doing so has advantages. Since I do not accept journals late under any circumstances, keeping a journal on disk allows you to submit it on time--even if you are laid low with the flu or decide to elope with your loved one. If you need help e-mailing, I'll assist you.

The journals will be due at varying intervals. I will give you plenty of advance notice of when they are due. I will typically assign two or three journal entries at a time. (A "journal entry" equals one double spaced typed page--12 pt font). I have provided you with topics at the end of this page. You may write about those or topics of your choice. Occasionally, I will ask you to write about a specific subject.

This need not be an intimate journal. Don't write anything you feel uncomfortable writing. If you prefer not to talk about personal affairs, talk about your classes, what you are doing and what you are learning. Read the newspapers; watch the news on television; write about what's going on in the community or the world and what you think about it. Avoid saying, "This is a boring day, nothing is happening." Something is always happening if you look about.

Most importantly, each set of journal entries must be written as a single Word file. Thus, when you submit each set of entries, you will only have one attachment. Do not make each journal entry a separate Word file. If you do, you will have ten attachments every time you submit your journals. That is time consuming. If you have questions about the proper way to submit your journal, please see me. I will help you.

The central grading criterion will be consistency, not mechanics, organization or development. I want you to feel free to write without feeling that what you write will be scrutinized by a fault-finding grammarian. If your journal is complete and turned in on time, you will receive full credit.

Journal Topics

Below are some ideas for journal topics. Feel free to use any of them. Also feel free to ignore them.

Write about:

a favorite movie

a favorite book

a favorite season

a favorite restaurant

a teacher

something you learned in a class

something you wanted to learn in a class but didn't




your family

a friend

a pet

a news story

an event from your childhood

your grandparents

a hobby

a favorite place



a university policy you approve of

a university policy you don't approve of

a city ordinance you approve of

a city ordinance you don't approve of


a bad habit

a good habit

a memorable holiday



summer orientation

this list

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