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Information for Students in Joe Lumsden's Classes


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Advanced Composition

Advanced Composition Results

Advanced Composition

Course Outline

This course aims to develop students skills in writing short compositions in English under exam conditions.  The writing of a composition is an integral part of any major English exam and time is usually limited.  Furthermore, during their university lives, students will be writing a large number of lengthy compositions for various courses and therefore, competence in this skill is necessary.  In order to relieve the monotony of constant writing, a vocabulary section will be added to the course in order to provide students with more ways to express their ideas successfully during compositions. 

Student Requirements

Compositions will be written every week during the double lesson.  The length of these compositions will vary from about 100 words to about 350 words depending on the subject.  Consequently, student attendance is compulsory, as these compositions can not under any circumstances be written at a later date or at home.  The subject will not be given before the lesson and the only thing required will be paper and a pen.  Dictionaries are acceptable, although they would not be used during exams.  It is probably best to get used to writing without one.  Every week, students should bring a pad of lined A-4 paper with them, on which they will write their compositions.  For vocabulary lessons, the instructor will provide students with the necessary worksheets. 


(a)    Every written composition counts towards the students final grade.  Therefore, students who miss lessons will suffer.  Every week, the student will hand in the finished composition to the instructor who will then mark it during the week.  Both grammatical errors and style of writing will be taken into account.  Errors will be pointed out but not corrected.  The student will then be able to take his/her composition the following week, correct the errors at home (assistance from friends is acceptable) and return the corrected composition to the instructor as soon as possible.  Students who correct their mistakes (learning from them at the same time) will have their marks improved.  These compositions will account for 60% of the students final mark.

(b)   There will also be a final exam.  This will be a 2-hour exam involving the writing of one composition as well as a vocabulary test based on the words learned during the semester in class.  This exam will account for 40% of the students final mark. 

To find out when classes will be held or cancelled, check the following page.

Information about Classes