Overall, I felt that I learned a decent amount of material in English Composition 102. I personally don’t consider myself to be much of a writer and honestly had no expectations in the beginning of the semester. I did fine in English Composition 101, but it wasn’t that great of an experience. English has always been one of those subjects that I neither hated nor liked. However, this semester made me change my mind just a little bit about writing and I found that I became invested in each assignment. Before, I tended to procrastinate many writing assignments and became overwhelmed when the deadline approached. This semester helped me become better at planning and thinking critically about my writing. I also feel more confident in formulating stronger arguments and hopefully that will translate well into my future classes that require papers. There are other areas that I believe I should improve in, such as crafting my sentences better in a way that supports my arguments. I need to work more on my micro-level skills which I know will be beneficial in strengthening my writing. I also need to learn to organize and structure my paragraphs better.
The first assignment, the literacy narrative, was not that hard and I actually thought it was a fun assignment because I can use a more casual tone in explaining my experience. I was able to show off my creativity, which is at least one aspect of English that I appreciate. I felt that I did the best I could on that assignment and there really isn’t much I think I can revise since I said what I wanted to say. I enjoy doing these type of assignments and that’s why the ethnography was another interesting project for me. I picked Sephora, a community that I like very much and visit frequently. I was dreading doing the interviews when I first heard about it since I don’t consider myself to be a sociable person. Sephora is one of my favorite places in the world, so interviewing some ‘cast members’ was very engaging and a lot of the things they mentioned helped me to form my overall opinion of Sephora and the makeup community. I felt that I did a decent job on my assignment, but I felt that I could have worked on my micro-level skills and added more analyses.
Now, the annotated bibliography and final paper were heavily research based and this was probably my least favorite part of the semester. I didn’t find anything exciting about finding a bunch of sources to use for my final paper. It became quite frustrating because not many papers were written about my topic. I chose to focus my final paper on gender stereotypes and whiteness in White Chicks. Many papers are written about gender, stereotypes, and whiteness so it was rather simple looking for those. But there was a lack of research on the actual movie. After searching for ages, I finally came across a source that looked at whiteness in White Chicks. Then I was able to synthesize my other research on gender with the whiteness source. Writing this paper seemed daunting at first because I wondered if I was even able to write 8-10 pages on this topic, but my finished product ended up at a page count of 14. I became extremely invested in this assignment, writing a little bit each day to reduce my stress and it worked out well for the most part. I feel satisfied with my paper since I really took time to find good sources to back up my claims. If I could revise my paper, I would probably try and incorporate more secondary sources in certain paragraphs since I felt that it was too much of my voice and analysis. Other than that, I thought that this assignment improved my skills for finding good research.