Course Syllabus

ENGL 201: The Research Paper Item# 1060 2018/Summer A-240,
9:30 AM to 11:20 AM M-TH

Instructor Ron Holland
Phone: 425-564-4186
Office: R230N
Office hours: By appointment

Course Outcomes

After completing this class, students should be able to:

  • Locate and evaluate different types of evidence for logic, credibility, reliability, and bias (i.e. primary sources, online and written secondary sources).
  • Compose humanities style research papers that include an evaluation of different types of evidence to support an original thesis and language appropriate for the audience and purpose.
  • Synthesize their own writing with a breadth of primary and secondary sources with proper in-text citations and a list of citations to avoid plagiarism.
  • Develop an original and effectively supported thesis that is appropriately complex and significant.

Outcomes Completion

Students learn research techniques, source analysis, thesis development, argumentation styles, and summarizing. Fulfills a written communication course requirement at BC.


The Process of Research Writing
Steven D. Krause, Eastern Michigan University Version 1.0, Spring 2007
Free Source:

Canvas Learning Management System

Course materials, assignments, quizzes, grades, and email are all on the Canvas LMS here at Bellevue College.   As such, it is essential for success in the class to observe the following:

  • Know your system requirements and your software capabilities, such as your word program and your browser
  • Log on to Canvas regularly to check due dates for upcoming assignments and
  • Make contingency plans for computer use if your computer and/or Internet service is
  • Plan ahead to print documents for in-class See the N Building Open Computing Lab for printing.
  • Ask for help in a timely manner, so that you will be able to successfully participate in both the online and the classroom portions of the

-          Canvas.

-          Technology Help Desk.


Assignments and Points Possible

  • (5) Checkpoint Assignments 260 points
  • (8) Quizzes 176 points
  • (1) Final Research Essay 400 points
  • (weekly) Attendance points 70 points

    Total: 916 points

Assignment Policies

Because each assignment builds on the skills developed in the previous assignment, it is important to complete work on time.


Most weeks, you will be assigned a piece of writing or a video to discuss. These are skill building assignments meant to strengthen your ability to generate ideas, understand and engage complex material, follow directions for formatting and citations, and analyze academic writing.


There will be two small aassignments to introduce your topic and organzie your data.


Checkpoints are the steps you will take toward your Final Research Essay.


Most of the weeks, you will take quizzes on Canvas.

  • Most quizzes are based on one or two chapters in our
  • All quizzes can be accessed via CANVAS and are open notes/text.


Your final project is an 8-10 page research paper. This paper is going to be on a topic of your choosing. We will practice how to identify issues from topics and create a strong working thesis.

  • You will draft this essay in stages. We spend a lot of time discussing ideas and reviewing structure and
  • For each draft, you will come to class prepared for either a peer review or a You will earn points for these based on your preparation and participation.


As of today, there will be a change to the syllabus regarding grading.  Attendance will now be a component of your grade.  Each day you attend a face to face session (and are on time) worth 2 points.  This means that each week there is a possibility for 10 points for attendance.  If you are late, you can only receive 1 point.  The only exception to this grading criteria is documented illness.  I will update the syllabus to reflect this change.

Attendance expectations for hybrid and in-person classes:

Students are expected to attend all scheduled class meetings whenever possible. While attendance requirements are up to individual faculty members in the Arts & Humanities Division, active participation and regular attendance are essential to students’ success.

Unless students have accommodations regarding attendance that have been approved through the Disability Resource Center, they should not be absent more than 20% of the total class time scheduled. When absences go beyond 20%, instructors’ policies may result in one of the following:

  • Students may earn a grade of "F" for the course.
  • Students may earn a lower final grade.

In cases of legitimate hardship, students may also request that instructors grant a “HW” (hardship withdrawal), which is a non-credit grade.

Students with accommodations regarding attendance must actively communicate with the instructor (and consult with the DRC) about each absence to determine if the accommodation applies.

All papers and other assignments are due at the dates and times specified in the course calendar.  Any papers turned in late will result in a 10% deduction of grade for each day.  

The readings will introduce or familiarize you with ongoing issues. In order to become an active reader, you must engage in active vs. passive reading; think critically and analyze ideas, arguments, and techniques, author’s reasoning and main points. Think of it as you having a conversation with the texts. Use a dictionary if needed; take notes in the margins/your notebook. This is a good chance for you to practice making a strong point and support it with textual evidence and interpretation rather than just personal beliefs. Remember to have an open mind when listening to your classmates; there are a lot of different perspectives. Contribute to the discussion.

Grading Procedure

A:            100 – 95%

A-:          94-90%

B+:         89-87%

B:            86-85%

B-:          84-80%

C+:         79-77%

C:            76-75%

C-:          74-70%

D:            69-60%

F:            59% or fewer

Help with Canvas

The following places are helpful

Plagiarism, or academic dishonesty, is the act of using another writer’s words or ideas as your own. According to the BCC Arts & Humanities website, plagiarism “may take many forms, including, but not limited to, using a paper written by someone else, using printed sources word-for-word without proper documentation, and paraphrasing or summarizing the ideas of others without acknowledging the source.  Plagiarism can also occur when non-written ideas are taken without documentation--using someone else's design or performance idea, for example.  In short, plagiarism is passing off someone else's ideas, words, or images as your own; it amounts to intellectual theft--whether or not it was your intention to steal.” Plagiarism in this course may result in a paper’s failing grade, or further disciplinary action from the Dean of Student Success. Consecutive acts of plagiarism may result in a failing grade for the class.

Values Conflicts

Essential to a liberal arts education is an open-minded tolerance for ideas and modes of expression that might conflict with one’s personal values. By being exposed to such ideas or expressions, students are not expected to endorse or adopt them but rather to understand that they are part of the free flow of information upon which higher education depends.

To this end, you may find that class requirements may include engaging certain materials, such as books, films, and art work, which may, in whole or in part, offend you. These materials are equivalent to required texts and are essential to the course content. If you decline to engage the required material by not reading, viewing, or performing material you consider offensive, you will still be required to meet class requirements in order to earn credit. This may require responding to the content of the material, and you may not be able to fully participate in required class discussions, exams, or assignments.

College Anti-Discrimination Statement
Bellevue College does not discriminate on the basis of race or ethnicity; creed; color; national origin; sex; marital status; sexual orientation; age; religion; genetic information; the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability; or veteran status in educational programs and activities which it operates. Bellevue College is prohibited from discriminating in such a manner by college policy and by state and federal law. All college personnel and persons, vendors, and organizations with whom the college does business are required to comply with applicable federal and state statutes and regulations designed to promote affirmative action and equal opportunity. Equal Opportunity (

Religious Holidays

Students who expect to miss classes, examinations, or any other assignments because of their religious observance should be provided with a reasonable alternative opportunity to complete such academic responsibilities. It is the obligation of students to provide faculty with reasonable notice of the dates of religious holidays on which they will be absent, preferably at the beginning of the term. Students who are absent on days of examinations or class assignments should be offered an opportunity to make up the work without penalty (if they have previously arranged to be absent), unless it can be demonstrated that a makeup opportunity would constitute an unreasonable burden on a member of the faculty. Should disagreement arise over what constitutes an unreasonable burden or any element of this policy, parties involved should consult the department chair, or Dean. Policy 2950 Accommodations for Reasons of Faith or Conscience (


The online elements of this course are designed to be welcoming to, accessible to, and usable by everyone, including students who are English-language learners, have a variety of learning styles, have disabilities, or are new to online learning. Be sure to let me know immediately if you encounter a required element or resource in the course that is not accessible to you. Also, let me know of changes I can make to the course so that it is more welcoming to, accessible to, or usable by students who take this course in the future.

What follows is the Arts & Humanities Division’s policy on classroom behavior:

The college's ‘Affirmation of Inclusion’ is posted in each classroom and sets forth the expectation that we will all treat one another with respect and dignity regardless of whether or not we agree philosophically.  This expectation is in line with the principle of free speech in a free society:  we have the right to express unpopular ideas as long as we don't show disrespect for reasonable people who might believe otherwise.  In an on-line course, you will be expressing ideas through the medium of the course site rather than face to face in the classroom.  In that case, these expectations refer to the courtesy with which you communicate with one another through e-mails and e-discussions.

Part of this respect involves professional behavior toward the instructor, colleagues, and the class itself.  Disruptive behavior is disrespectful behavior.  The Arts and Humanities Division honors the right of its faculty to define "disruptive behavior," which often involves such things as arriving late, leaving early, leaving class and then returning, talking while others are trying to hear the instructor or their group members, doing other homework in class, wearing earphones in class, bringing activated beepers, alarm watches, or cellular phones into class, inappropriate comments or gestures, etc.  In on-line courses, “flaming’ anyone in the class is also considered disruptive behavior.  Such behavior interrupts the educational process.  When you are in doubt about any behavior, consult your instructor during office hours:  we recognize the judgment of the instructor as the final authority in these matters.

When disruptive behavior occurs, instructors will speak to or e-mail the students concerned.  Those students are then responsible for ending the disruptions at once.  Failure to do so may result in removal of the students from class.”

Cell phones or other electronic communication devices:

During class time, please turn off your cell phones.


Confidentiality and Mandatory Reporting

As an instructor, one of my responsibilities is to help create a safe learning environment on our campus. It is my goal that you feel able to share information related to your life experiences in classroom discussions, in your written work, and in our one-on-one meetings. I will seek to keep information you share private to the greatest extent possible. However, I am required to share with the Title IX Coordinator any and all information regarding sexual assault and other forms of sexual misconduct (e.g. dating violence, domestic violence, stalking) that may have occurred on campus or that impacts someone on campus. Students may speak to someone confidentially by contacting the BC Counseling Center at (425) 564-2212. The Title IX Office can be contacted at 425-564-2641 and more information can be found at Title IX ( If you have any concerns, you may report to: Report Concerns (


Important Links
See "Important Links” page online for more information about BC E-mail, access to MyBC, the Disability Resource Center (DRC), Public Safety, the Academic Calendar, the Academic Success Center, and more.

Assignment Schedule





Course Summary:

Date Details Due