Cover Letter Assignment
The final portfolio requires a cover letter that describes how your work in the class meets three of the course learning outcomes, found below (and in the syllabus). A "draft" cover letter will be submitted with Essays One and Two add midterm and a revised cover letter that addresses the two essays included in the final portfolio is due with that portfolio. A sample letter can be found below the list of learning outcomes. This cover letter does NOT receive a letter grade in the way the essays doe, but in the end, it will help me and other readers determine whether or not your portfolio meets departmental standards. In short, it matters.
- Brainstorm varied ideas to support a claim of manageable scope for a given assignment.
- Annotate a text in order to effectively analyze and evaluate the ideas in that text.
- Research, analyze, use, and document information and ideas to develop a position.
- Analyze, select, and record relevant, valid details in light of particular rhetorical purposes to support claims
- Respond thoughtfully, precisely, and ethically to texts
- Communicate with an academic audience to illustrate, analyze, or persuade
- Organize ideas in a purposeful and coherent manner
- Demonstrate writing that is a systematic process requiring thoughtful reconsideration and revision.
- Improve prose through instructor, self, and peer feedback
- Generate clear, grammatically correct prose
- Apply conventions of a particular documentation style
- Independently create original work meeting assignment requirements
Click "read more" for a sample cover letter. Click the attachment link to see the sample paragraph.
Cover Letter Sample
Course Prefix and Student ID Number
March 11, 2013
This cover letter addresses three of the course learning outcomes for English 101and provides explanations for each as pertained to my essay The Real Political Powers. The first point I will present is on my use of specific details to support my claims. Then I will give an examination as to how I gathered, used, and documented information to develop my argument. Finally, I will be describing how I used instructor and peer feedback to improve the prose within my paper. It is my hope that by observing these topics, my revisions will be completely apparent throughout my paper.
There were many areas within my paper where I used specific details to help support my claim. I utilized eight different sources to gain information on the manipulation used by people that hold power. One of my primary examples came from a periodical titled Why the Terrorism Scare is a Moral Panic by Jeffrey Victor. He quoted that terrorism played a key role in the reelection of George W. Bush (Victor 10). That one statement was my first concrete piece towards the development of the rest of my paper. By using that I was able to gather further information, providing concrete examples to each point I was trying to make. In each paragraph I explored new points that each related to my main argument. I was able to do this by linking each point back to my thesis.
In order for me to have concrete examples to use, I had to gather information. I did this by creating a springboard passage from the novel Three Kingdoms by Luo Guanzhong and translated by Moss Roberts. I used my chosen passage and the quote from Jeffrey Victor to develop my thesis and main argument. Once I knew what I wanted to write about, I had to do the research to back up my points. I did this by utilizing the database Academic Search Complete in the library section of the Spokane Falls webpage. I was able to find an abundant amount of information which I included within my essay. By documenting these findings within my paper, I was able to give solid examples to my own argument.
In my opinion, my paper traveled a road of success in its development. The revisions that took place in order to finalize my essay were in great thanks to my instructor. The feedback that I received gave me the ability to improve prose within my essay and develop my own thoughts to their full potential. At the beginning of my writing process I was able to draft a solid structure for my paper; however there were a few holes left to be filled and citations that needed corrected. With the assistance of my instructor, I feel that I was able to structure a great essay that focused on the points I was trying to make and followed the assignment process as expected.
While reading my paper and keeping the course learning objectives in mind, it is with greatest hope that it will be seen that I have utilized my resources and documented my arguments in the proper format. I feel that I have followed the assignment guidelines and incorporated examples and explanations that show completed points towards my thesis. Happy reading!
Your final assignment for this semester will be the cover letter that will introduce the pieces in your portfolio and allow you to reflect on your development as a writer over the course of this semester. This letter should be typed as a single-spaced letter in block format (paragraphs aligned at the left margin, with an extra line between paragraphs) that is addressed to the members of the Portfolio Committee who will be reading your portfolio.
You may want to begin the essay with an introduction to who you were as a writer as you came into this class, maybe something brief about your background and how you assessed your strengths and weaknesses, maybe something about what your assumptions had been about the class or about college writing in general.
The body of your letter should discuss the three essays you’ve included in the portfolio (the logical way to set this up would be one paragraph per essay). Explain why you chose each essay and how each illustrates your abilities as a writer. In essence, the letter should at least in part be an argument that you’ve achieved the course objectives of English 11. (You may want to check the syllabus here.) Be sure to consider and discuss the applicable criteria of focus, development, organization, mechanics, and research skills that the committee will be evaluating. Be sure to refer to specific parts/places in each essay. For at least one of the essays (perhaps the one that gave you the most difficulties), trace the essay’s evolution through the stages of generating topic and details, drafting, revision, and proofreading.
Your conclusion (a final attempt to sway your readers) might include any recognitions you’ve made about yourself as a writer and any changes you’ve made (or plan to make) in your writing process.
An important reminder: Your letter itself should also serve as evidence of your writing competence in its focus, development, and organization.
Length guidelines: I expect that a well-developed letter would be at least 500 words or so.
Student samples from previous semester: