English Language and Writing Skills (ENGL) 155

Developing Writing Skills (Revision 13)

ENGL 155

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Delivery Mode: Individualized study online (with eTextbook)

Credits: 3

Area of Study: No area of study

Prerequisite: None

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

English Language & Writing Skills Studies home page

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ENGL 155 is designed for students who require a preparatory course in writing skills. The major objective of the course is to improve students’ reading and writing abilities so they can succeed at the postsecondary level. Students will expand their vocabulary, increase their ability to analyze complex text, and improve their writing skills. The course includes paragraph and essay structure and a systematic grammar review.


The course consists of the following eight units, each of which includes three lessons (grammar and mechanics; word study; and writing):

  • Unit 1 - (introduction)
  • Unit 2 - (paragraph writing)
  • Unit 3 - (summary writing)
  • Unit 4 - (process essay)
  • Unit 5 - (comparison/contrast essay)
  • Unit 6 - (cause-effect essay)
  • Unit 7 - (argumentative/persuasive essay)
  • Unit 8 - (personal essay and review)


To receive credit for ENGL 155, you must complete all the assignments, achieve a minimum grade of D (50 percent) on the final examination, and achieve a composite course grade of at least C– (60 percent). The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Activity Weighting
Assignment 1: Diagnostic Essay/Review Complete/Incomplete
Assignment 2: Paragraph Writing 7.5%
Assignment 3: Summary Writing 7.5%
Assignment 4: Process Essay 10%
Assignment 5: Comparison/Contrast Essay 10%
Assignment 6: Cause-Effect Essay 15%
Assignment 7: Argumentative/Persuasive Essay 15%
Assignment 8: Personal Essay (includes Reflective Journal Assignment) 15%
Online Quizzes Complete/Incomplete
Final Exam 20%
Total 100%

The final examination for this course must be taken online with an AU-approved exam invigilator at an approved invigilation centre. It is your responsibility to ensure your chosen invigilation centre can accommodate online exams. For a list of invigilators who can accommodate online exams, visit the Exam Invigilation Network.

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


Registration in this course includes an electronic textbook. For more information on electronic textbooks, please refer to our eText Initiative site.

Lipschutz, Gary, Sandra Scarry, and John Scarry. The Canadian Writer’s Workplace. 8th ed. Toronto: Nelson Education, 2017.

Friend, Carol E., Laura D. Knight, and Teresa Ferster Glazier. The Least You Should Know about Vocabulary Building: Word Roots. 8th ed. Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning, 2015.

A print version of the eText may be available for purchase from the publisher through a direct-to-student link provided on the course website; you can also acquire the textbook on your own if you wish.

Other Materials

All other materials are available online through the course home page. English Language Support materials are available online.

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 13, September 7, 2016.

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