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English Language & Composition for Experienced Instructors

Course Description: 

This session for experienced teachers will focus on close-reading strategies, rhetorical analysis, argumentation, and synthesis. Participants will leave with an understanding of a practical approach to the AP* English Language and Composition course and exam, and its relevancy to its college level counterpart. Participants can expect to spend one session reviewing the recent scoring of the 2015 AP* English Language and Composition Exam. Also, participants learn strategies for teaching elements of rhetoric and techniques for teaching prose analysis, argumentation, and synthesis using essays from a wide spectrum of writers. Participants are welcome to bring a unit or lesson to share.


Phone: 253-535-8790
Fax: 253-535-7184
Email: profdev@plu.edu.

Over the course of the week AP English Language teachers will learn strategies that will allow their students to:

  • Discuss intelligently and civilly what they’ve read in large and small groups
  • Understand the format of the AP* Language Exam
  • Use AP * scoring rubrics for self-evaluation and peer-evaluation of writing
  • Understand the rhetorical purposes of documentation and citation
  • Analyze text for author’s purpose, use of language, and effect on audience
  • Craft effective arguments through an understanding of rhetoric
  • Systematically acquire new vocabulary
  • Become better spellers
  • Acquire the language of language (rhetorical terms, literary devices, etc.)
  • Appreciate reading both fiction and non-fiction with greater insight
  • Write with a command of the English language
  • Understand the conventions of analytical writing
  • Read and Think critically
  • Effectively answer synthesis, analysis, and argument questions
  • Cope with the time constraints of the AP* Exam
  • Feel confident in their preparation for the AP* Language Exam and future college classes

Before the class begins, please do the following:

Buy a copy of Dead Man Walking (Prejean) and spend three hours with it—reading, annotating, generally familiarizing yourself with this book as a possible informational text for your class. (Or—just read the whole thing.) Bring the book with you. Pay attention to what’s going on in Washington state with the death penalty—you might want to start assembling a vertical file (electronic or hard copy) of articles, letters, editorials, political cartoons, and any other texts addressing the death penalty.

Items Participants Should Bring: 

paper and pen for daily writing, your computer (optional) with a flash drive, small sticky notes, highlighters in three different colors

Course Schedule
Available as institute nears

Instructor Biography: 

Elizabeth Duffey is a renewed National Board Certified English teacher who has taught high school and community college for thirty-seven years. At a time when most teachers retire, she took a job as Instructional Facilitator of Language Arts and Social Studies for the Tacoma School District. Her focus now is in professional development that allows teachers to collaborate in order to provide quality inquiry instruction to all students.  She has been a College Board Consultant and reader for the Advanced Placement English Language and Composition Examination since 2002. Outside of her several PLC’s she enjoys reading, quilting, knitting, hiking, and cooking.

Elizabeth Duffey