An activity that helps students explore their handbook and learn to find the writing advice they need.
Work in pairs to explore the handbook for your composition
course. Explore key ways into the book. Find the advice you’ll
need as you write this semester.
1. ____I found the book’s main index. It starts on page ____.
2. ____I found the brief contents. Looking at the brief contents, I see that there’s a chapter on managing information and avoiding plagiarism that starts on page ____. I know that I’ll need section ___ to document sources in MLA style. Sections ___ and ___ will help me with commas and quotation marks.
3. If my teacher uses number-letter codes to respond to my draft, I’ll know that 12b means I should check that I’m using correct _________________ in my paper.
4. On the top of each right-hand page, there are keywords describing what appears on the page. For “Varying sentence openings” on page 14, the keywords are
ADVICE, MODELS, & PRACTICE List section numbers or page numbers for the following:
5. An explanation of synthesis ______________
6. Advice about reading with an open mind ______________
7. Examples of good research questions __________________
8. Suggestions for forming and supporting a thesis _______________
9. How to document an article from a database in MLA style ________________
10. You should always avoid using clichés in your writing. There’s a list of common clichés on page ________.
11. If I go to section 11a on irregular verbs, I see a reference to online exercises for practice with verbs at the bottom of page _____.
12. Section _____ covers how to find and fix run-on sentences.
13. Section _____ covers how to find and fix problems with apostrophes.
14. Page _____ includes a list of proper versus common nouns.
15. The checklist for global revision appears at the back of the book. Another helpful checklist at the back of the book is about ________________.
16. My instructor wants me to use sources that are scholarly. A two-page feature on scholarly vs. popular sources appears on pages ________.
17. Section ____ covers how to evaluate another writer’s argument.
18. Bonus: I found more model papers online. The Web address for my book’s companion site is ________________________________________. I clicked on
_______________ from the home page to get to additional sample student papers.