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ENGL 101 - English Composition - Mike Edwards

Course:English Composition
Professor:Mike Edwards
  • Online
  • Hybrid
Course Length:
  • Applies to All Course Lengths


Photograph of instructor Mike Edwards

Greetings. My name is Mike Edwards and I am an instructor for ENGL 101 at College of the Canyons. Please read this Orientation Letter carefully, as it contains important information about the course, its requirements, how the course will operate, and links to valuable student resources.

If the course roster is full and there are students listed on the waitlist, please do not email me before the semester starts to see if you can be added to the course. The best way to be added to the course is from the waitlist; COC automatically adds you to the roster from the waitlist when a spot on the roster opens up.

Course Description

Here is the official course description: Builds critical reading and expository writing skills through the analysis and evaluation of college-level texts and the composition of well-organized, full-length essays containing properly documented evidence.

In plain English, we will spend the semester reading our textbook, a number of non-fiction argumentative texts, and a novel, and writing about these things in discussion board posts and formal essays.

What to Expect in this Course

You can expect to do lots of reading and writing in this course. You will be asked to do assigned readings and then summarize them in discussion board posts. You will compose four formal essays over the course of the semester on a variety of topics, such as how advertisers persuade people to buy their products or services, our relationships with digital technology and with food, and a critical analysis of a novel about an epidemic that is similar to the pandemic we’ve lived through the last few years.

Types of Assessments

Discussion board posts, formal essays, final examination.

Textbook Information

English Composition: An Open Educational Resources Publication by College of the Canyons, Compiled by Jennifer Brezina. (Free PDF download)

The Plague by Albert Camus. Published by Vintage International. ISBN: 978-0-679-72021-8

Both of these texts are required and should be acquired as soon as possible. You will need to download English Composition immediately; we will read The Plague in the second half of the semester.

Other Relevant Course Information

In this course, you are expected to complete the same amount of work that is required in a face-to-face class. Because this is a four-unit class, you should plan to spend about 12 hours a week working on this course. (Please note that the estimate of 12 hours a week is for a 16 week course. For late start courses, which run 8 or 12 weeks, you should plan on working on the course more than 12 hours a week.)

You will need access to word processing software, such as Microsoft Word, Google Docs, or OpenOffice. You will be expected to be able to either save or export your documents in PDF format.

You will need to have an up-to-date version of a web browser, or the Canvas app. For a list of compatible browsers, please visit this link:

You will need to be computer literate and skilled in basic document creation and handling. You should know how to copy and paste from one document to another, how to attach documents to emails, and how to upload files to Canvas. You should also have a reliable internet connection and a laptop, desktop, or tablet computer. I do not recommend you use a phone for assigned readings or working on assignments.

In order to successfully complete this course, you must log into our class Canvas site several times a week to check for messages and submit assignments. Assignments have strict deadlines, and late work is not accepted, except in the case of a documented emergency, such as a death in the family, hospitalization, jury duty, or legal issues. If you will not be able to participate in this manner, this is not the course for you.

This is not a class where you can do work far ahead of your classmates, or make up work late work. Our class discussion boards are asynchronous, meaning that you can post when it is convenient to you, as long as you meet deadlines. Regular participation and meeting deadlines are expected.

I will be online at times during the week to make announcements, and provide you with reminders about assignments. However, I will not be available to you 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so planning ahead to get your questions answered is essential. If you would like to have a one-on-one meeting with me via Zoom video conferencing, email me with some days and time you are availabile and we can figure out a time that works for both of us.

I will evaluate your performance based on instructions provided in assignments. Assignments will include discussion board posts (including responses to classmate posts), formal essays (which will be submitted through Canvas to, an online database that detects plagiarism and writing produced by AI bots), and a final examination. Our course syllabus contains a detailed description of plagiarism and the COC procedure for dealing with plagiarism. Any cases of plagiarism will be forwarded to the Dean of Student Services for investigation in accordance with COC policy.

Students who do well in online courses tend to share the following qualities:

They are good at motivating themselves to complete work by deadlines.
They are strong readers and communicate well in writing.
They have well-developed time management skills.
They enjoy active, cooperative learning.
They have reliable access to the internet and a tablet, laptop, or desktop computer.
They have basic computer skills, including the ability to copy and paste between documents, send and receive email attachments, and most importantly, save documents in the appropriate requested file format.

Additional Resources


This course can be accessed on the first day of class via Canvas at Log into Canvas using your CanyonsID single sign-on:

  • CanyonsID Username is your COC student email address (Ex:
  • CanyonsID Password is your COC student email password

Please visit the Get to Know Your Online Classroom page for help logging into Canvas and for tips on using Canvas and Zoom. Canvas Chat Support is also available 24/7 for any Canvas related issues.

Online Education

Check out the Online Education website for more information on a variety of topics that can help you be a successful online student such as: exam proctoring, learning styles, computer skills, and tips for student success. If this is your first online course, feel free to take our online learning readiness assessment to assess your skills.

The Learning Center (TLC)

The TLC provides FREE online tutoring resources to COC students!

Academic Accommodation Center (AAC)

College of the Canyons AAC provides educational services and access for eligible students with documented disabilities who intend to pursue coursework at COC. A variety of programs and services are available which afford eligible students with disabilities the opportunity to participate fully in all aspects of the college programs and activities through appropriate and reasonable accommodations. For more information on their services visit the Academic Accomodation Center website.

Online Counseling

The Counseling Department offers appointments online. You can schedule an appointment by visiting the Online Counseling website. Counselors can help you map out a plan to reach your educational goals as well as advise you on course selection and registration.

Management of Stress and Mental Health

Often the pressure on our students is very strong, involving academic commitments, relationships, outside jobs and family pressure to name a few. The staff and faculty of College of the Canyons are here to see you succeed academically and care about your emotional and physical health. You can learn more about the broad range of confidential student services, including counseling and mental health services available on campus by visiting the Student Health & Wellness Center in the Student Services Building (across from the bookstore). The phone number is 661-362-3259 that you can call 24/7. You can also e mail for an appointment at At the Canyon Country Campus the Health Center will be in the new Student Services Building.

Also, the National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline number is now 988. All students at COC are encouraged to enter that phone number in their cells. You can call it when you, or someone you know, is having thoughts of suicide or is in severe distress.

You can also now use the Crisis Text Line: Just text "Courage" to 741741. Someone will get back to you immediately. Its free, 24/7, and confidential.

Veterans Resource Center

The College of the Canyons Veterans Resource Center is a department within the Student Services Division at the college, created to help veterans and veteran dependents with applying to College of the Canyons, enrolling in classes, and requesting VA Education or Vocational Benefits. For more information please visit the Veterans Resource Center website, email or phone (661) 362-3469.


The Library provides live online and in-person research help, access to a full range of e-resources and physical materials that support the curriculum, individual and group study areas, and much more!

Last updated: 07/25/2023 Sub#: 1593