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ENGL 103 - Critical Reading, Writing, and Thinking - Ann O'Bryan

Course:Critical Reading, Writing, and Thinking
Professor:Ann O'Bryan
  • Online
Course Length:
  • 5 Week


I have been teaching English at the college level since 2012. My career began at California State University, Northridge as a MA student. While working toward my degree, I taught Composition classes, much like this one, under the direction of a professor with decades of valuable experience. Once I graduated, in 2014, I began teaching at the community college level. I have taught a mixture of online, hybrid, remote, and face-to-face classes. I have a particular affinity for teaching at the community college level, which stems from my own experience as a community college student.

Course Description

Course Description: Examines the principles of critical thinking as applied to writing and reading arguments on complex issues. Focuses on close textual analysis, argumentative writing, and logical reasoning. Essay topics may include pop culture, politics, social issues, or moral/ethical issues.

What to Expect in this Course

You will need:

  • Access to Microsoft Word
  • Reliable access to the Internet



Types of Assessments

The course assignments are as follows:

8 Discussion Board Posts & Responses

160 points

Essay 1 (1,300-1,600 words – about 4-5 pages)

80 points

Essay 2 (1,600-1,900 words – about 5-6 pages)

100 points

Essay 3 (1,600-1,900 words – about 5-6 pages)             

100 points

Revision Essay (1,900-2,100 words - about 6-7 pages)  

120 points

4 Essay Reflections (10 points each) 

40 points

1 Critical Reading Assessment

50 points

9 Critical Thinking Activities (10 points each)

90 points

4 First Drafts (10 points each)  

40 points

3 Required TLC visits (20 points each visit) 

60 points

2 Peer Reviews (20 points each)

40 points

12 Quizzes (10 points each)

120 points


1,000 points

Textbook Information

Required Textbook:

  • Current Issues and Enduring Questions: A Guide to Critical Thinking and Argument, with Readings. By Sylvan Barnet, Hugo Bedau, and John O’Hare. 11th Edition. ISBN-13: 978-1319035471

Other Relevant Course Information

Getting Help!  Although this semester will be challenging, it is do-able. If you feel like you’re in over your head (and, let’s be honest, there are times we ALL feel this way!), here are a few places to go for help:

  1. Send me an email on Canvas
  2. Visit the Tutoring/ Learning/ Computer Lab (TLC)
  3. Meet with a librarian
  4. Visit the Student Health & Wellness Center


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: 12/04/2022 Sub#: 1512