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Writing Preparation for Incoming First Year Students

On registration day you will be asked to complete a brief writing sample.

  1. We will give you a prompt for your essay.
  2. The prompt is listed below.
  3. Should read you will write a short essay that responds directly to the prompt.
  4. Please prepare ahead of time as discussed below.

Purpose of the brief writing sample:

  1. To determine your individual course placement in English
  2. To calculate a pre-college baseline for freshmen writing ability.

Prompt:
The mission of Thomas More College states, “...we challenge students to examine the ultimate meaning of life, their place in the world, and their responsibility to others...” Tell us how your education up to this point has fostered your understanding of and reflection on this topic.

How to prepare for the essay:

  1. Bring one 3x5 note card with an outline that includes any needed quotes or outside source information
  2. Be prepared to write two full pages
  3. Reflect seriously on the mission statement of Thomas More College as described above.
  4. Think about relevant experiences you have had in high school or other educational settings.
  5. Overall, explain how your education has helped you understand the ultimate meaning of life, your place in the world, and your responsibilities to others.
  6. For example, how did a specific homework assignment such as reading a novel for an English class, help you learn about yourself and others?

Essay scoring system:
Your essay will be evaluated by Thomas More faculty and staff using these guidelines:

  1. Evaluating Information:

“Are you evaluating the quality of the information you are using to support your thoughts/essay?”
In other words, is the information you are using trustworthy/ reputable?

  1. Synthesizing Information from Alternative Points-of-view:

“Are you considering and writing about the various points of view that are applicable?”
In other words, is your essay one-sided or does it consider an issue from multiple points of view?

  1. Development of Reasoned Conclusions:

“Are your conclusions reasonable?”
In other words, is your essay convincing?

  1. Effective Communication Style:

“How well is this message communicated in writing?”
In other words, are you using proper grammar, spelling, and sentence/essay structure?