Dear UWP1 Portfolio Reviewers,
My name is Ruihan Zhang and I am writing this cover letter as a reflection of my study in UWP 1 class this quarter. By finishing all the assignments and attending class activities I have learned a lot in this class about reading and writing.
My portfolio shows that I have rhetorical flexibility in my own personal writing. I have the ability to think of interesting topics to write of any prompts most of the time. Although I suffered a lot about what to write my three major assignments in this class, fortunately I came up with some good ideas in the end with the help of my professor. I chose the literacy narrative paper and the research paper to complete my portfolio. In the literacy narrative paper I included a great amount of personal experiences as examples because the paper was basically about myself. In the research paper, I did both primary and secondary researches and put the results in my paper so it has a more professional tone comparing to another one.
One of the major topics of this class is revision. So in this class I finally got the point that revision is different from editing. My professor mentioned it a few times during lecture and she offered some articles that related to this are helpful. Those articles gave specific advices on how to revise papers. Also we did peer workshop in class. In my literacy narrative paper, one of my peers pointed out that I should reorder everything chronically to make it suitable for the storytelling tone and I think that was a brilliant suggestion. My professor encouraged me to take advantages of diagrams for results presenting in my research paper and I found it looked clearer after I inserted diagrams and revised the paragraphs.
It was my first time did research all by myself and wrote a research paper about it. So this gave me some experiences about writing research paper including how it works, what the process should be and how to conduct a survey. I used to be afraid of writing long articles and now I feel confident because I learned some skills that help me write more. During this quarter I thought more about how to improve my drafts instead of just finish writing my first drafts. So I noticed more developments in the paragraphs I wrote. Also my introductions and conclusions are stronger after revisions.
My strength of my portfolio is my ideas in the two papers. I believe those are two interesting topic for my readers. In my literacy narrative paper, I talked about how much I love reading maps and how this map reading literacy helped me in many aspects in my life. In the research paper, I did research about how social media influence people’s reading skills. I made my survey really fun to do and it was also fun to see the results coming.
To be honest, if I had more time, I would put another paper that I wrote into my portfolio. However, that one still needs more revision and editing so it was unfortunately that I had to give up on it to be in my final portfolio. Also for my research paper, I would like to include some interviews responses in it. Because when people respond to a survey, they usually do not pay as much attention as they are in those one-on-one interviews. Those short answers and long answers questions need more words in it but some people just gave you yes no answers. However, interviews are different. People tend to offer more information when they are being interviewed. So I would really like to do some interviews and see what people would say about my topic.
Throughout the quarter, my professor gave us bunch of great articles to read. In the articles the authors talked much about strategies. Out of everything, I found free writing helped me the most. I usually generates more ideas when I am doing free writes. It works better than brainstorming for me and I did not know before I took the class. My professor also offered a few opportunities for us to do free writing in class. Now I have a tiny notebook with me to record my ideas at anytime and anywhere.
In conclusion, UWP 1 is not what I thought at the begining of the quarter. This class contained many basic useful reading and writing strategies for college students and I have learned a lot in this class.
Thank you for your time reading this letter.