Composition Program: Learning Outcomes

In order to develop your workplace, civic, and personal communication skills, our composition courses prepare you to do the following:

  • Demonstrate basic rhetorical ability by completing texts for at least 3 different rhetorical situations, with each one written appropriately for that context. (E.g., personal essay, literacy narrative, exploratory source-based paper.)

  • Demonstrate awareness of basic proofreading and editing skills by completing finished drafts that follow appropriate conventions of grammar punctuation, usage, and spelling.

  • Revise and reflect on all major projects [at least 3] effectively, based on instructor feedback, peer review, and self-assessment. (E.g., evidence of improvement on global & local issues plus a substatial reflection essay.) Produce at least one final draft that effectively integrates electronic and print sources into the writer’s own text and documents them effectively. (E.g., exploratory paper that uses primary and secondary sources located through library databases to pose and answer a question.)

  • Effectively use different software programs and applications to compose and revise documents in different modes and mediums. (E.g., an e-portfolio site or blog with working links that is eye-friendly, readable, and navigable.)

  • Demonstrate awareness of multiple genres by producing at least one effective text in a professional, public, and non-essay genre. (E.g., portfolio contains a press release, an opinion-editorial essay, and a design for a billboard ad or PSA.)

These outcomes align with the learning outcomes for composition developed by The Writing Program Administrator Outcomes Statement (WPA OS), which are used by universities and colleges across the country. UALR employs the WPA OS for both course and programmatic learning outcomes. In response to the learning outcomes, the types of writing students will be asked to produce in composition courses include multimodal composition. Multimodal composition, according to Cynthia Selfe and Pamela Takayoshi, includes “Texts that exceed the alphabetic and may include still and moving images, animations, color, words, music and sound” (2007, p. 1). Multimodal composition supports the learning outcomes and students’ ability to develop transferrable skills for community and workplace writing. As a capstone project in composition, all students develop a digital course portfolio, or ePortfolio. Students are provided instruction throughout the course for constructing the ePortfolio. In the portfolio, students demonstrate their understanding of the programmatic learning outcomes, the WPA OS.