End-of-term Letter

This is a formal, typed letter, beginning with “Dear Dr. Laville,” or “Dear Claire,” in which you reflect on your performance in the class. In what areas has your writing improved? What areas could still use some work? How do you plan to improve your writing and/or critical thinking skills beyond this class?

In particular, you may wish to discuss:

  • grammar, spelling, punctuation, idiomatic phrases
  • essay or paragraph organization
  • claims/theses: precision, persuasiveness
  • reading skills
  • understanding the genres and discourse communities of university writing
  • creativity and intellectual risk-taking
  • responding to classmates’ work

Support your claims with examples from your own work, treating them just like source texts in a research paper. Refer to at least 2 writing samples (at least one should be from this class). Maybe the first one represents an old weakness or bad habit, and the second one shows your efforts to correct it. Or maybe one represents you playing it safe, and the other shows you taking a risk.

This is also a space to share your thoughts on the class in general. What exercises and readings were the most helpful? The least? I take these comments seriously, because I’m always thinking about ways to improve my teaching.

Length: at least 250 words.
Due by midnight on Sunday, August 2.

5 = Honest and careful self-reflection with specific examples from your own writing, in proper letter format, with grammar and style to the best of your abilities
4 = Honest reflection, but weak use of examples or vague descriptions (e.g., just “good” or “bad”)
2.5 = No specific examples and/or very sloppily written
1 = Personal attacks on me or your classmates
0 = Did not do the assignment



  • Yu-Chen Liu

    I think making a group is helpful for me. This part helped me revise my essay from my group giving the free back for me.

  • Shuyue Li

    Hi, Dr. Laville. I think you can have more communicate with ESL student. Because sometimes they can not understand your mean clearly and they are so shy. I know this is our problem but if you can have more communication is better.

  • Shanshan Chen

    June 16, 2015

    Dear Claire:
    Hi, time passes very quickly, I feel just adapt to this kind of study way, this semester is over. English 1100 is totally different with ESL. When I studied at ESL, teacher let us to read article, and I just probably read. Even if I do not understand, the teacher will teaches us in class, so it does not matter. However, your classes is different, you will let us to discussions in group in the class. First time, I did not say anything in my group, I looked at my team members on the discussion, I did not know what they are saying, and I felt shame. After that, I do not palter reading. Although I spoke a little in my group, but I can understand and learn all different views. It was a great help to improve your English. Furthermore, I learn about essay. Essay is not only a five paragraph format. How can I write interesting, and how to attract readers. You use wiki keyword to let us understanding. In the beginning, I did not understand. When I saw them explain the key words, and for example, I gradually understand. For example, “context “, I think I have totally understood, and I also know how to use it. Thank you for your help with my English writing, it is very useful in my future study on the road.
    I will go back China for two months of summer vacation, I am excited if you let me pass this course, I will have a good vacation. Wish you the best of health and success!

    Your student,

  • admin

    Hi, everyone. Thank you for your honest feedback! But please send it privately by email or Moodle.

    Shuyue, I am always thinking about ways I can help ESL students more. One idea is holding a “preview” session at the beginning of each week, where we can go over the important words and ideas in the readings. It’s a challenge with such a large class over such a short period of time!

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