English Composition 1

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Welcome to English Composition 1 (ENG 1001) Online at Illinois Valley Community College. I hope that this page will give you a good overview of what to expect if you decide to enroll in English Composition 1 Online. Please feel free to contact me if you would like more information about the course or if you have any questions about it. My telephone number 815-224-0338, and my e-mail address is randy_rambo@ivcc.edu.

Brief Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Is attendance on campus required? No
  2. Is the credit earned for this course the same as the credit earned for ENG 1001 courses on campus? Yes
  3. Does the credit earned by successfully completing this course transfer and apply toward a degree? Yes
  4. What is the Illinois Articulation Initiative (IAI) equivalent for this course? C1 900
  5. Are special computer skills required? No
  6. Are special software purchases required for this course? No
  7. Is there a required textbook for the course? No
  8. What is the required time commitment? At least 6 to 9 hours every week
  9. Is there a prerequisite for this course? Yes, see "prerequisites" below
  10. Are there due dates for assignments? Yes
  11. Are there specific times when students must be working on assignments online? No
  12. Where is the course home page? At http://www2.ivcc.edu/eng1001.

Course Description

English Composition 1 Online is designed to help students strengthen their abilities to write formal and analytical essays. The content and course work is essentially the same for students in English Composition 1 Online as for students who take English Composition 1 on campus. Simply put, we do a lot of reading and writing, and students should gain a better understanding of the principles of effective expository prose and should gain the ability to apply these principles to their own writing. You will write at least six essays, focusing on supporting and developing ideas effectively, expressing meaning concisely and clearly, and mastering the basics of Standard English.

English Composition 1 Online is not a correspondence course, an independent study course, or a self-paced course. All students contribute to the class and interact with the instructor and other students at least every few days, and there are due dates for all assignments.


Students are expected to begin the course with a basic understanding of how to write essays and how to avoid errors in punctuation, grammar, and word choice.

Writing Placement
Prior to enrolling in an ENG 1001 course, Illinois Valley Community College students must

Reading Placement
Prior to enrolling in an ENG 1001 course, Illinois Valley Community College students must

For more information about the placement exams, contact the college's Assessment Center.

A student enrolling in this course from another college must meet that college's requirement for enrolling in ENG 1001 or its equivalent. 


There is no required textbook for the course. All assigned readings are freely available online.


The course requires students to write formal and expository essays totaling 16 to 24 pages, so most of our time will be spent writing essays that fulfill this requirement. Other course work includes reading assignments; exercises over punctuation, style, and other elements of writing; interactive discussions in Blackboard, and peer critiques of essay drafts. All assignments are submitted online, and there is no requirement for students to come to campus for any assignments.

Assignments are organized into units, and each unit covers course work for about a three-week period. Once a unit is posted, all assignments for about a three-week period will be available. Every assignment has a specified due date, and assignments must be submitted by the due dates.

Accessing the Course Material

All assignments are presented in the course Blackboard. The course also includes Web pages, including the Writing Resources pages, which present information about writing that should be helpful as students complete assignments.

What is Expected of Students?

There are no required meetings on campus and no specific times when students must work and interact online. Instead, students will have at least a few days to complete all assignments (more time for longer assignments). This feature of the course makes it especially convenient for students whose busy schedules prevent them from attending classes during regular times on campus. The class meets whenever and wherever you sit down in front of a computer.

Because intense and ongoing interaction through the Internet replaces traditional classroom meetings, students should expect to interact frequently with the instructor and with other members of the class. In general, students must devote at least six to nine hours a week to completing course work and must check into the course Blackboard every few days. The time commitment that English Composition 1 Online requires of students is about the same as, or a little more than, the time commitment required of students taking the course on campus. Please do not misinterpret the flexibility and convenience of the course as an indication that this online version of the course is any "easier" than completing an English Composition 1 course on campus.

Students likely to succeed in the course tend to be highly responsible, self-motivated, and self-disciplined, the kind of students who have no problem devoting plenty of time to completing assignments and who use their time effectively, even when the instructor is not there to remind them of the due dates. Successful students also tend not to have had problems with writing courses in the past. Please think carefully about your own learning style before enrolling in the course.

There is no conventional attendance policy for this course, but students may be withdrawn from the course without warning if they do not complete assignments or do not enter the course Blackboard for an extended period of time.

The Technology

You do not need extensive computer skills to complete the course work, but students enrolling in English Composition 1 Online should enter the course with basic computer skills, including the ability to use a Web browser and a word-processing program. You do not need to purchase any software for the course. Any word processor is fine, along with any Web browser. The course is most convenient for students who have a home computer with Internet access, but college computers can also be used to complete assignments.

We use Blackboard frequently in this course. Links to Blackboard appear on the course home page and on IVCC's home page.

Getting Started

As soon as the semester begins, you should visit the course home page and log in to the course Blackboard. The first assignments are due shortly after the course begins, so it's important that you get started right away. Of course, please contact me as soon as possible if you have any problems getting started.

The Instructor

My name is Randy Rambo. Please feel free to contact me if you would like more information about the course. My telephone number is 815-224-0338, and my e-mail address is randy_rambo@ivcc.edu.

Copyright Randy Rambo, 2017.