ETAP 530: Reading and Writing Across the Curriculum
Spring, 2011
Guidelines for the Final Reflective Essay












Submission Guidelines


Overview. For this assignment you will write an essay in which you discuss what you learned about adolescent literacy learning and the uses of writing and reading to support content-area learning in secondary schools. In your essay you should discuss specific ideas, concepts, and information that you encountered in this course that have influenced your understanding of adolescent literacy and its role in classroom instruction. You should refer to specific course assignments, activities, and readings as well as your own research in discussing these issues.

This essay should not be a self-evaluation of your performance in the class; rather, it should be a critical reflection on your own inquiry into adolescent literacy and literacy instruction in secondary schools as well as on your own development as a writer, reader, learner, and teacher; it should also address the implications of your learning in this course for your own work as a content-area teacher.

Submission Guidelines. Please follow these guidelines when completing and submitting this assignment:

  • Your essay should be about 800-1000 words in length but no longer than 1000 words.

  • You should follow the basic conventions of academic writing in your report, but there is no need to be overly formal in your writing style for this assignment.

  • Please submit your essay as a Microsoft Word file or, if you are using a different word processing program, as a rich text file. (Let the course instructor know if you have questions about format.)

  • Submit your essay as an attachment to an email message sent directly to the instructor (

  • This assignment is due by midnight on Friday, May 7th.

Grading. This assignment is worth 15 (out of 100) points. Points will be awarded on the basis of the following two main criteria:

  • Thoughtfulness. Your essay should reflect your own careful reflection about the work of this course and its impact on your thinking about adolescent literacy and literacy instruction. Your essay should demonstrate that you engaged thoughtfully with the questions and problems discussed in the course, even when you might have disagreed with the views expressed in the readings or by your classmates or instructors. The essay should provide evidence of your genuine inquiry into the issues and questions addressed in the course.

  • Clarity. Your essay should be well written: organized, clear, and readable. It should have few errors and conform to appropriate academic conventions (including conventions for citing sources).