English 1012 Brooklyn College course description:
English 1012 is a writing intensive seminar focusing on a topic chosen by the instructor.
Provides students with an opportunity to explore a particular subject in depth and further explore
skills of critical thinking, research techniques, and clear expression necessary for academic
- Interpreting text
- Constructing an adequate thesis
- Constructing a well organized argument
- Using MLA documentation to incorporate text
- Using correct grammar and sentence structure
- Using the Library to find appropriate sources
- Summarizing and synthesizing information from a variety of sources
- Producing a research paper
Theme of the class, “The literature of climate change”: In recent history we have seen the
terrifying and devastating effects of climate change. We have seen regions demolished by 1000
year floods and wildfires that solidify climate change as one of the great existential threats to
humanity. Our task for this course will be investigating how writers of different disciplines
interact with this threat. We will be reading essays, short stories, and poems that are concerned
with climate change, and your research project will culminate around the ideas that are presented
through the readings.
1. OER Material (Available on the course website)
2. College Dictionary (Recommended)
3. College Thesaurus (Recommended)
Attendance: Since this class will be largely taught through discussion, your attendance and
participation are mandatory. If you are going to be absent for any reason you must email me
beforehand and provide documentation as to why you are absent. Since this is a STAR class,
You are allowed THREE unexcused absences. After three absences you will be withdrawn
from the course. I also reserve the right to withdraw you from the course if you are consistently
Grades: According to Brooklyn College English Department you must receive at least a C- in
this class to continue on to the next level. If a student’s work is not at the failing level, but they
have good attendance and classroom participation the instructor reserves the right to give the
student an NC (no credit). Excessive absences and unfinished work will result in failing this
class. Students that fail 1012 or receive an NC must retake the course. Students can attempt 1012
Possible Assignment Grades:
B+ B B-
88-89 83-87 80-82
C+ C C-
78-79 73-77 70-72
D+ D D-
68-69 63-67 60-62
Plagiarism: The following information may be found at:
Plagiarism is the act of presenting another person’s ideas, research or writings as your own. The
following are some examples of plagiarism, but by no means is it an exhaustive list:
● Copying another person’s actual words without the use of quotation marks and footnotes
attributed the words to their source.
● Presenting another person’s ideas or theories in your own words without acknowledging
● Using information that is not common knowledge without acknowledging the source.
● Failing to acknowledge collaborators on homework and laboratory assignments.
Internet plagiarism includes submitting downloaded term papers or parts of term papers,
paraphrasing or copying information from the Internet without citing the source, and “cutting and
pasting” from various sources without proper attribution.
Note: I will not tolerate any form of plagiarism. If you plagiarize you will fail the class with
Students With Disabilities: If you have a disability that I should be aware of please register
with the Director of the Center for Student Disability Services, Ms. Valerie Stewart-Lovell at
718-951-5538. After you have registered please provide the correct documentation to me.
Religious Holidays: Please read the information in the Brooklyn College Bulletin
15_Undergraduate_Bulletin.pdf) regarding non attendance because of religious beliefs.
Cell Phones and Devices: Please keep all cell phones and devices put away and turned off
during class (unless I say you may use them for research purposes). Failure to follow this rule
will result in an unexcused absence for the day.
Daily Readings: You will be expected to come to class prepared with the daily readings done
and ready to discuss. You will be graded on how well you contribute to class discussion.
Peer Review: You will be assigned peer review exercises throughout the semester. Attendance is
mandatory on these days for you to receive credit. If you have an excused absence on a peer
review day you may make arrangements with one of your classmates outside of class to complete
the assignment; however, I must approve this.
Writing Assignments: You are required to write a 7-10 page research paper which will be due
at the end of the semester along with an in-class presentation on your topic. I will have
assignments throughout the semester that will work towards this. A more in depth description
will be provided later in the semester.
In addition to the research paper, you will have three response papers (125-250 words) due
throughout the semester. All take home essays and writing assignments must be handed in as
hard copies the day they are due. If you get a low grade on an assignment and would like to
continue to revise it for a better grade, you must meet with me outside of class to discuss how
you plan to revise your essay.
Note: If you are absent on a day that a paper is due, you must email me your paper AND
bring in a hard copy next class. If you turn in a paper late, I will deduct half of the paper’s points
per class it is late. I will not accept a paper that is a week late.
Course Requirements and Grading Breakdown:
Research Paper: 70%
-Topic Proposal: 10 %
-Annotated Bibliography: 10 %
-First Draft: 10 %
-Second Draft: 10 %
-Introduction & Conclusion: 5 %
-Final Draft: 20 %
Response Papers: 15%
-This includes take-home assignments, in-class writing, and quizzes.
Attendance & Participation:
-This includes attendance, promptness, participation in class discussions and group work, etc.
Semester Weekly Breakdown
(*Readings and assignments are subject to change*)
Introduction to the class
Discussion of a research paper: What is it?
Discussion of where to find support: (Learning Center, Personal Counseling, office hours)
Rachel Carson, “A Fable for Tomorrow”
Assign first reading response (125-250 words)
Reading Response due
Practice integrating quotes.
Somini Sengupta, Bleak’ U.N. Report on a Planet in Peril Looms Over New Climate Talks & Margaret Atwood, Time Capsule Found on the Dead Planet
Day 2: Brooke Bolander, Op-Ed From the Future: Who Should Live in Flooded Old New York
Reading Response 2 assigned
Amitav Ghosh, Where is the Fiction About Climate Change?
Reading Response 2 due.
Vajra Chandrasekera, Half-Eaten Cities
Discuss the research paper and review important dates for research paper
Brainstorming strategies and group discussion
Topic Proposal Assigned
Reading: Pitchaya Sudbanthad, Floating
Discuss how to narrow down research topics
Topic proposal due
Peer review proposal
Reading response 3 assigned
Omar El Akkad, Factory Air
Reading Response 3 due
Evidence discussion, in class exercise
Annotated bibliography assigned
Reading: Elizabeth Rush, As the Seas Rise
Annotated Bibliography due
Thesis statement discussion/in-class thesis statement workshop
Reading: Lauren Groff, Eyewall
Tentative thesis statement and outline due
Student presentations begin
Katy Waldman, The Civilizing Power of Disaster
Assign first draft (1-3 pages)
Camille Dungy “Characteristics of Life”
Craig Santos Perez, Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Glacier (After Wallace Stevens)
First draft part 1 (pages 1-3, not including introduction)
Student presentations continued
04/07 No class, follow Wednesday schedule
04/08-04/16 Spring Recess
Discuss the current state of the research paper and how to dig further
First draft part 2 assigned (full paper without conclusion)
Zadie Smith, Elegy for a Country’s Seasons
Lacy Johnson, How to Mourn a Glacier”
Student presentations continued
First draft part 2 due
Continue student presentations
Reading: Rebecca Solnit, Don’t Despair: The climate fight is only over if you think it is
Introduction and conclusion discussions
Continue student presentations
Assign introduction and conclusion
Introduction and conclusion due
Joanne Rixon,What Lasts
05/19: Final research paper due