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Our first class was very stereotypical: the usual syllabus review and introduction of classmates. Mr. Blom also discussed the course overview and expectations for the upcoming semester. Attendance is very important. Since we only have this class twice a week we will move fast across content, and it is essential that we are on top of our drafts and feeders. Unlike most classes at Carolina, English 105 is centered around the students, as opposed to Professors speaking in front of a large class. As our group is a majority of first-years this is new for all of us. Speaking from experience, almost all of my other classes are large lecture styles, so I look forward to getting to know and building relationships with my professor and classmates. Working in small groups allows for our colleagues to give us feedback on our work so that we can improve as writers.

Throughout high school, I was always more science and math-oriented. Therefore, English was never one of my strong suits; it was always something I had to work harder at. This semester I expect to learn a variety of new writing techniques and styles. One aspect that I also look forward to is conducting a range of research through various methods. Carolina is filled with so many research opportunities. After this course, I believe I will be more acclimated to the campus and all that they offer. For example, this semester we will have time to interact with excellent library resources, museums, and Media resources.

Some of the big takeaways from the syllabus are the Tarheel Writing Guide and the Adobe Creative Cloud, which we will use more towards the end of the semester. These are both imperative resources needed to succeed in this course. Writing and revising is a big component of this class, but there are many resources offered at Carolina to help. The UNC Writing Center is a great place to start, and it is free to students. All you have to do is make an appointment, and they have so much to offer. On their website, there is an endless list of services offered. Specific things they can help with are creating thesis statements, revising drafts, creating citations, and grammar.

The readings for this week were very interesting. “Shitty First Drafts” by Anne Lamott was a fascinating way to introduce us to writing. This passage communicated that first drafts are meant to be rough. This provides opportunities to improve and get better at writing. A common theme conveyed is that no one is perfect the first time; it takes practice and effort. In this way, I think our peer evaluators will be very crucial to this process. I find it very helpful to create outlines and drafts, and then proceed to advance specific points to make my paper stronger.

Overall, I look forward to this semester in English 105. After this class, I hope to be able to develop writing strategies and use a variety of media to convey my thoughts and ideas. I’m excited for every Tuesday and Thursday at 8:00 am!


Elizabeth Smithy

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