Eiland's English 101S Online

art courtesy of
Janet Preslar, FrActivity


The journal requirement for this course is important in that it allows you to get credit for writing anything you want...and it happens to be good practice for writing. See the GRADING POLICY for specific page count required for each grade.

The philosophy of the journal is relatively simple; the more you write, the better you write. By writing without rules -- no constrained topics, no grades for grammar or syntax, just getting your ideas out -- most students will find writing is possible; for some, enjoyable; for a few, therapeutic. Topics for journal entries are listed at the end of the CALENDAR, but these are merely suggestions...those and a few more may be suggested by your ENGL 101 readings. You may write on any topic you like. There is no limit. Just work on your use of examples and stay focussed on whatever topic you decide. Fill up the pages, adhering to the following criteria:

  • Use a 9 x 5 spiral notebook (any smaller will require more pages).

  • Do not skip lines.

  • Although I do not read the journal entries, I do count the pages, so number both sides of each page...each side is a different page.

  • I also scan for content...no history notes or math equations...this should be your thoughts and even rough drafts of your essays.

  • Journal must be handed in or delivered to my office (DE students) by the last day of regular classes (before finals).

Some words of advice:

  • Write regularly; there are few things more pathetic than the last minute scribbling of 60 pages worth of entries 10 minutes before the journal is due.

  • Carry the journal with you. Record experiences when you have time...waiting in line, between classes, breaks at work and the like. These little bits will add up.

  • Use what you've written in your journal as starting points for essays. When you get the assignment, scan your journal looking for suitable topics. As most of the essays for this class are based on personal experience, the journal may be a valuable resource for idea generation.

  • Do your journal regularly and it will help you become a better writer...and fulfill 20% of your grade.

    Grading of Journals is as follows:

    • 60 full pages = A
    • 50-59 full pages = B
    • 45-49 full pages = C
    • Less than 45 full pages = D
    • No Journal submission = F

Any page less than a full page and more than 1/2 page will count as half a page. Any page half a page or less will not count at all.

© T. T. Eiland, January 1998-2019
Last modified: August 20, 2018