Allen’s personal comments

What I assume about a beginning 101 student


We all differ in our physical abilities; however, some of us face more challenges than others do. If you have problems with such things as vision, hearing, dyslexia, or ADD, you need to contact the Student Accessibility Center to see about any accommodations that may be possible. By law, any such accommodations are a private matter between you and the instructor.

I assume you will take the initiative to deal with your issues.

In many cases, simply finding a seat near the front of the room will help with vision or hearing problems; the instructor will not move you if he suspects you have trouble seeing things, so it is your responsibility to find a better seat.

Academic achievement

I assume you have mastered the material typical of an American student who has graduated from high school. This means that we will not spend a great deal of time on spelling, punctuation, or basic sentence grammar. You should be able to detect and fix errors in sentences such as these:

If you are not up to speed on basic grammar, the University Writing Center and the websites listed on our Resources for Writers page will be helpful.


This course meets three times weekly for 50 minutes per session. If that schedule is too rigorous for you—if you feel you must show up late, duck out in the middle, or leave early—your grade will suffer.

The business of this course is English composition. If you feel you must spend the hour doing your homework for another class or wasting your time texting your friends, your grade will suffer. You may be asked to leave the room.

Most educators agree that an undergraduate college student should expect to spend two hours on homework outside of class for every hour in class. This means that your weekly homework load for English 101 should be about six hours.


I assume you are familiar with the Ashland University Academic Integrity Policy. Essentially this policy says that:


Every athletic team has someone who is just uncoachable—perhaps a lot of natural ability, but nothing the coach says or does will change this expert’s mind. English class is much the same—we have our share of students who cannot be coached:

And of course, there are the students who arrived here with the aim of completely rebuilding the university to their specifications—political or religious—and anyone who disagrees is worthy of scorn and contempt.

Fortunately, you won’t hear nearly as much of this after your sophomore year. These people will all be gone—flunked out. (And if these are your scripts, you owe it to yourself to adjust your attitude!) A bit of humility is a great addition to your psychological life.

Respect for one another

This statement, from a recent copy of the AU Graduate Catalog, is a good summary of what we are aiming at here:

The University promotes liberal arts and professional programs for undergraduate and graduate students. Rooted in Christian faith and an unwavering commitment toward accent on the individual, the University provides students an environment that promotes Ashland University’s values and respect toward each person.

What this means for our course: Whether in writing or in conversation, you will not demean, humiliate, or dishonor others on account of their religion, race, sexual orientation or physical disabilities.

Classroom behavior

The other members of the class are young adults who have come here—and paid a substantial fee—to gain an education. You do not have a right to deprive them of this education by disruptive behavior. In this context, “disruptive behavior” can include chattering with your friends, playing the class clown, or loud political rants. The instructor reserves the right to ask disruptive students to leave the room or be removed from the course.

The views and opinions expressed in this page are strictly those of the page author.

The contents of this page have not been reviewed or approved by Ashland University.

Revised 7/25/22 • Page author: Curtis Allen • e-mail: