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Writing Across the Curriculum


Holloway Hall

Informal Writing Assignments for English

Why don’t poets just say what they mean?
Developed by Gail Samis

The purpose of this assignment is to ease students into the poetry section of English 102. The assignment addresses many of the typical objections we hear each semester about the difficulty they experience with the analysis of poetry and their objections to its lack of directness. The exercise gives students a glimpse into some appreciation for the value of the idea that poets can say more by saying less and that the engagement that is required of the reader is precisely what makes poetry wonderful. The discussion that follows gives them experience of using what they know to unpack a poem and of using other student’s contributions in the same way -the experience of synthesis which deepens the understanding for each of them. 
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Analysis of an Advertisement
Developed by Kelli Randall

From a print medium choose an advertisement that you find rhetorically interesting. The ad can be one for which you consider yourself part of the target audience or not. This in-class writing assignment will give you an opportunity to demonstrate your ability to “think rhetorically.” Be prepared to write a brief analysis of your ad that will demonstrate how the ad works to influence its audience, both through its images and its text.
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