Abstract: The self-Assessment essay is where I get to share my experience with the course: the goals that I have wanted to reach. Also, share my process of writing and how I improved my writing over the semester. In this particular essay, I picked out the main writings that I have done over the course using the skills that I have learned. For instance, I learned about rhetorical terms, and then I used rhetorical terms to summarize articles. In addition, I also did a task: A creative project. This is where I had to write my own story and complete summarizing my story using rhetorical terms.
As someone who just took basic English classes in high school and without having experience with college-level English courses, coming into college and starting high-level writing was not something easy to do. Coming into this class, one of my goals was to become a better writer and a better reader. Throughout the whole semester, I got to develop my skills as both reader and writer. Having done all the assignments in this class, I do believe that I have really learned various skills that I can apply to my writings in order to make the content much more detailed and clear.
One of the first essays I wrote in this course was the “language and literary” essay in which I had the opportunity to express myself on how language and literacy have changed my life. This was my first time writing on this topic and I was very nervous about how I should structure my writing in order to make it a strong piece. However, as we completed our first draft it became much easier to structure my writing in a way that was organized and understandable. Doing drafts and peer-reviewing played a huge role in my writing because I got to use the feedback both from my classmates and my instructor in order to make my writing better.
Another skill that I learned in this class was using rhetorical terms to analyze articles. At first, I thought analyzing an article means to just write down what I understood from it. However, when I was assigned to analyze Audre Lorde’s “The Transformation of Silence into Action” using rhetorical terms, it really made me understand the article in a much more effective way. For instance, when reading an article, if I determine who the writer is speaking to or who the audience is I can put myself in that position to really hear the author directly speak to me. This I believe is one of the main rhetorical terms that I have used over the semester to complete my tasks. Analyzing using the rhetorical terms helps me go in-depth with readings and really understand the language that is behind certain writings.
Another writing assignment that I have done in this course is the research essay. This was one of the biggest writing assignments that I have ever done in my life. I started off with finding sources and creating citations for each of the sources using various platforms. For instance, I used the CCNY Library database to research the most reliable and efficient sources for my research. In addition to that, I have also learned how to write an annotated bibliography on the sources that are relevant to my research question: what are the commercial impacts of gentrification and how is gentrification impacting small businesses in Harlem? In the annotated bibliography, I first read through my sources and then summarized them using my research question. In addition to that, I also explained how the source is relevant to my research topic. Thinking it is my first ever research paper and the biggest assignment, it really made me nervous about going into this writing. However, working with my instructor and receiving feedback from classmates and tutors have really helped me to complete the research essay in a very effective way.
Over the course of this semester, I have written multiple reflections on the different kinds of writing that I have done. I believe that this was one of the main reasons for my improvement in my past and future writing because in the reflection I got to reflect on myself and write down in which areas I could improve. Later on, when I was assigned a new writing task, I made sure that I went back to my reflections and used those ideas in order to improve my writing.
Overall, writing is something that is a skill that can always be improved. Writing is a way for me to express myself without being afraid because when I am writing something I feel like I have the power to speak myself and not be controlled by others. Writing is a way to communicate with others around the world. I believe writing is important for many aspects of one’s life. For instance, applying for jobs online means writing emails and applying through the internet where people have to write and communicate without meeting their bosses in person. The boss will picture the individual and judge them based on their writing. Just like any other thing in life, writing is a skill. If I want to be good at it, I have to practice in order to become good at it. I believe that this course has helped me improve at a level that I can carry with me throughout my college career. Writing various essays throughout the semester and revising them in order to make them better has really helped me improve my writing at a level that I did not even expect. Now reading my own writing makes me feel proud and I believe this course helped me to do that.