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English Composition Course Guide
A guide for students in ENGL 110, 155, 210, and other composition courses.
Not all resources will be suitable or appropriate for your research. To help you determine whether or not to include a resource consider the following:
Scope. What is the breadth of the book, article, or other material? Is it a general overview or more specific and focused?
Audience. Who is the intended audience for this source? It is too technical? Too elementary?
Timeliness. When was this source published or updated (in the case of a Web site)?
Scholarly vs. Popular. Scholarly resources are written by experts for experts. These sources are peer reviewed*, have extensive bibliographies, and often contain areas for further research.
Authority. What are the academic credentials of the author? What has he/she written?
*Peer review is a process whereby a group of experts in the field review an article for content, scholarly soundness, and academic value before it is accepted for publication. Note that this process is different than in-class peer review, in which students read and critique each other's papers.