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Unit 1: Academic Paragraph Development

Emphasis on Writing Effective Topic Sentences

Prof Johnson

on 11 September 2018

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Transcript of Unit 1: Academic Paragraph Development

Unit 1: Academic Paragraph Development
Today's Objectives
Focus Question Review

Topic Sentences... and what can go wrong!
2 Activities
Topic Sentences...
Focus Question: What makes a strong (generic) academic paragraph?
According to the authors of
Everyone's An Author
, a topic sentence usually appears at the beginning of an academic paragraph and serves to "[announce] what the paragraph is about" (Lunsford et al. 544). Topic sentences do this by introducing the "topic" and asserting a single "claim."

Topic + Claim = Topic Sentence
Topic sentences are NOT thesis statements, although they do have one thing in common:
What is the topic/claim?
Investing in a
college education (topic)
has rewarded me in many ways; however, in order to attend college,
I have had to give up many things (claim)

My writing process is unique and tends to have positive outcomes; however, despite my process’s general effectiveness, Andrea Lundsford et al., authors of
Everyone’s An Author
, provide helpful recommendations for improvement.

There are many qualities I look for in a friend.

There are many different kinds of Italian food: spaghetti, ravioli, pasta salads, manicotti, linguine, soups, and many more. However, pizza is my favorite.

Over the span of my life I have had several dogs, but the one I remember most is Bosco.

In the restaurant business, cooks and servers have the main positions, and some people say that cooks have a difficult job. However, cooks have several advantages over servers.
A good topic sentence makes a SINGLE claim that often supports a thesis statement. The rest of the paragraph serves to PROVE the claim made within the topic sentence.
Topic Sentence Examples
Class Portal >
In-Class Activity: Topic Sentences & Common Errors
Next, let's chat about what can go wrong with topic sentences...
Freewrite Journal Prompt:
My Course Grade & Cartoon
When summarizing an essay, remember to let readers know three things (jot this down...):

Article Title
The Purpose of the Article (your claim)
In a
Wall Street Journal
article titled "The Way Trump Talks," author Daniel Henniger argues that there a number of reasons why the language Hillary Clinton uses in her speeches is no match for the language Donald Trump uses in his.

In an RSA Animate video titled "Changing Education Paradigms," speaker Sir Ken Robinson argues that public education needs reform.
Next, let's go over this homework assignment:
If you chose to write by hand, please turn in your homework now. Thanks.
Recognizing Aca. Para.
Prompt Part I: Log into Moodle. What is your current grade? If it's good, how can you keep it that way? If it's bad... SEND AN EMAIL TO ME TO SET UP A MEETING. :)

Prompt Part II: Cartoon
Full transcript