As I stress over finals and as I complete my portfolio, I can’t help but reflect on all the work I have done this semester. I have never been a strong academic writer so going into a college level writing course intimidated me, but I didn’t get discouraged. I have always excelled under pressure and enjoy facing a challenge. I took every assignment in stride and I have finally made it through. I know that in the future I will need to write academic papers to pass my courses. This class helped me establish a foundation so that I will be able to achieve my goals in the future and has given me skills I will use the rest of my days. The class focused on giving students the ability to review and edit their own work, as well as change the way students approach reading. Over the course of this semester I have improved as a reader, writer, and researcher.

This portfolio has five sections; Process, Rhetoric, Collaboration, Craft, and Ethics. Each section contains work I have completed this semester. With these pieces of work I am showing that I took the time to review, edit, and improve my work, as well showing the research, teamwork, and reflections of how significantly I have improved. I have improved on many aspects, but I feel the biggest and most valuable improvement I have made is in my confidence. After reviewing all of the work I have done and after seeing how far I have come, I am much more confident writing academically. This will help me excel in the future.

We were required to do group presentations in this course. We did two total presentations that this course refers to as “Group Led Discussions,” In the collaboration section I included some of the notes, PowerPoint slides, and handouts from the presentations. These presentations helped not only to broaden my ability to work with others to reach a common goal but helped me gain valuable insight to analyzing texts. Working with others helped me broaden my view and think using a new perspective; two skills I will bring with me to other courses in my academic career.

Since the beginning of the semester I have grown a lot as a reader and writer. This course was intended to help me “develop ability to synthesize and express complex ideas as well as integrate peer and faculty feedback through the planning and drafting process” (Course Syllabus) which I have done. Every time I read a text now I am analyzing, annotating, and noticing new details I would not have noticed if I had not taken this course. I have always struggled with finding these types of details in the past and I feel that this experience has given me enough practice and taught me enough new techniques that I am comfortable when faced with similar challenges in the future. “This course trains you to think for yourself. It challenges you to understand why everyone’s opinion is not equally valid, and it forces you to ask questions that have no simple answers,” (Course Syllabus) skills that I have definitely achieved. I believe I deserve a B in this course for this reason. I have come a long way this semester and I can say without hesitation or question that I have met the requirements for this course to receive at least this letter grade.

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