Self Assessment

           Before the first assignment was given, I was frustrated and annoyed that I had to enroll in this English class. I said to myself, “I already took two semesters of English composition, why do I have to take another course that is just going to be the same except for engineering. I just want to take courses for my major already.” Looking back at that moment now, I realize how naïve I was thinking that I would not benefit and improve my writing from this course.

           The first course learning outcome I saw myself improve on was engaging in genre analysis and multimodal composing to explore effective writing across disciplinary contexts and beyond. This can be seen in the Discussion Post ‘Reflections on Lab Report and Podcast’ where I had to reflect on the role of writing in engineering from the perspective of an engineer in the field. This presented a new media and genre for me to reflect and respond to which was the podcast. This assignment allowed me the chance to visualize myself in the future of what I would be doing and from this task, it completely changed my viewpoint of the role of writing in engineering. I stated, “Writing is a critical role in engineering because it is the basis of communicating properly especially with your team and others in non-engineering fields such as how Jones needs to deal with suppliers on a daily basis.” Through this podcast and reflection, I realized how important the ability to write effectively is going to be in the work field especially when working with multiple people and teams. Another assignment that contributed to this learning outcome was the Discussion Post ‘Squirrel Proof Bird Feeder’. This assignment helped advanced the learning outcome because I was able to analyze another form of content which was a video. Using the video, I not only gained more knowledge on the subject at hand, but also how to convey my writing in a friendlier tone while still being formal. Although I still struggle, I have gotten better at not sounding overly formal or too informal in my writing. In the sentence, “Additionally, similar to the launching pad, which was pressure activated, I would try to integrate that onto a bird feeder so that instead of launching the squirrel, it would sound a dog bark or growl to scare off the squirrels.” With the increased use of the first-person point of view used to describe actions, I felt more comfortable in being able to convey expressions and other feelings clearly through writing.

           An additional course learning outcome that both Discussion Posts and the Baffling Description assignment help promote is the acknowledgement of my own and others’ range of linguistic differences as resources and draw on those resources to develop rhetorical sensibility. Due to us having to respond to other classmates, I was able to read and learn from other students’ writing styles. For instance, in the Baffling Description assignment, I was able to learn about their specialized knowledge and terminology over a description. From reading the posts, I learned descriptions of welding to stringing a guitar in highly creative ways which gave me the inspiration to write my post about a video game action. This exchange of ideas, information, and writing abilities was constantly seen throughout the semester which influenced me on each assignment given.

           In continuation, my skills of organization and structure have been enhanced over the course of this class. This can be seen in the transition from my Technical Description Template to the final draft. With the use of the template, it made both brainstorming and organization much easier compared to without it. I first experienced this conflict of structure while drafting the Lab Report assignment because I was unsure of how I can connect the information together. Also, noting the level of freedom that was given provided another struggle for myself because it was completely different from previous English assignments, I had written that were straightforward; it became challenging and exciting. Similar to the Lab Report, the Technical Description also carried this degree of freedom in choosing what to write about. The technique of using the template gave me a clearer method of writing because it allowed me to bullet certain pieces of information and questions I wanted to expand upon such as how I would show the visuals of the essential oil diffuser or if I would explain in detail the different oils available. If I had learned to create a template for the Lab Report assignment, it would have been much easier to finalize my thoughts and ideas. Due to this, I will try to make templates for all future assignments in order to better structure and organize my ideas and content.

            Lastly, the Engineering Proposal Project helped me achieve the outcomes of better practice and use of library resources and online databases and also strengthen my source use methods. Once our group decided to base the proposal around continuous glucose monitoring systems, I became more acquainted with using CUNY’s Academic OneFile and Search Complete databases to find research. Through these databases, I was able to find useful papers such as Guido Freckmann’s ‘Continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) in diabetes therapy’ to solidify the product description for the proposal. With these resources, my use of paraphrasing, summarizing, and citing sources was strengthened as seen throughout our group’s proposal.

            All in all, this course has brought more attention to what writing means for engineers and how much more I can improve on my writing abilities learning from my peers. As I continue my studies, I will remember the skills strengthened and learned from this class and apply them to other classes and future career opportunities.

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