How to Succeed in English 100

Person writing in a book.
Rebecca A. Eckland

We’re sure you’ve heard the rumors: taking English classes at any Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE) Institution is going to be a new experience starting... right now because we’ve moved to a co-requisite model. What does that mean for you? We caught up with one faculty member of the TMCC English Department who’s been working hard making sure that this new class actually works for you. 

“The English Department at TMCC is putting a lot of expertise, creative energy, and resources into making English 100 a success,” said English Instructor Emily King. “We’re excited about implementing the course in our composition program and finding ways to support English 100 students across campus.”

English 100 includes work that students would expect to find in any introductory college composition class: major writing assignments like essays and reading responses, as well as group activities, discussions, and quizzes. These activities will be supplemented by additional activities intended to develop students’ foundational writing and critical reading skills—both of which are crucial for developing skills as a college-level thinker and writer. 

One exciting perk about English 100 is that this semester-long, five-credit course will offer you additional support so you can move right into English 102 after completing English 100, so you can gain those essential skill sets as you work toward your degree. 

“As far as the class itself, students seem to appreciate the extra support that’s built into the course,” King said, explaining that English 100 instructors at TMCC are especially adept at supporting students who are just beginning their college careers or returning to higher education after taking a break. “We offer a lot of opportunities for communicating with us and their classmates, as well as connecting them to resources on campus. It’s a great course to take in your very first semester,” she said.

Not sure? Here are a few tips and tricks to keep in mind as you get ready to register for English 100. Trust us, this new, enhanced course is worth every credit hour.  

  1. Take advantage of all the extra support and resources that are built into the course.  English 100 is a five-credit course that’s taught by one instructor that meets the objectives of English 101, but that provides students with additional activities and assistance that can enable them to be successful in the class. “The additional instruction and support is often in the form of more frequent and in-depth feedback from the instructor as well as reading and writing assignments designed to help students build the writing skills they need to develop,” said King.  Our advice? Take advantage of these resources; they will not only pay off in English 100 but in every college class you’ll take moving forward. 
  2. Keep a visual calendar of your weekly tasks to keep yourself on track. While there are supports and resources built into English 100, it’s important to keep in mind that it’s a 5-credit class for a reason: it will require more time and effort than a 3-credit class. King advises calendaring your schedule to make sure you allow yourself enough time to complete the required coursework. “A busy course like English 100 can feel overwhelming, especially at first,” she said. “It’s important that students look at the bigger picture by reviewing the syllabus and introductory course materials. After they have an understanding of the course plan and objectives, students should focus on one week at a time. I always suggest that students use an actual paper calendar rather than the calendar on their phone, especially if they are taking multiple classes. Each week, they should plan out when they will work on assignments according to specific due dates,” said King. Having a written reminder in a spot where you can see it--pinned to a bulletin board next to your desk where you do your homework--is a great way to keep yourself on track and not to let any homework or other important deadlines slip through the cracks. 
  3. Hone your communication skills to connect with your classmates and instructor.  Composition classes are unique in that, alongside learning writing and critical thinking skills, they also offer wonderful opportunities for learning interpersonal skills as you get to know your classmates and instructor. “It’s important that you communicate with your instructor and with classmates,” said King. “Take advantage of opportunities to share your personal interests and experiences. That makes the class fun and more interesting for everyone. You should also make contact with your peers. If your instructor doesn’t have you in a specific group, find someone you can communicate with about assignments.” In addition to connecting with your classmates, reaching out to your instructor is equally important, and can be instrumental in your success in the class. “If you have a question and can’t find the answer, email the instructor,” King said. “Chances are, you’ll be asking a question that other students are wondering about, too.” 

Although we can’t guarantee that English 100 will be easy, we can definitely promise that it will be worth it. Just remember our tips: use all the available support and resources, keep yourself accountable with a calendar and communicate with your classmates and instructor, and prepare yourself for a 5-credit class that will set the standard for your success in higher education in the semesters and years to come. 

For more information about English 100, contact TMCC’s English Department at 775-673-7092.