Literacy Reflection



Writingis an intriguing experience for me as it allows me to put my thoughtsinto writing. Throughout the course, I have had the opportunity toengage my critical thinking and research skills to analyze variousworks and relate them to the course requirements in order to compileeffective essays. This has not been easy for my mastery of grammarand style is not yet fluent, especially in written form. The firstessay I handled in this class had plenty of mistakes, as I struggledto communicate my thoughts through pen and paper. For example one ofsentences read, “Therewas one game I saw there was a teammate on the corner can do a freethrow, and I passed him the ball.”However,as I implemented the course readings over time, my literacy skillsunderwent a dramatic transformation, and I now believe I have abetter mastery of the literacy concepts needed. This paper reflectson my progress throughout this course, drawing comparisons from twoof the essays I wrote for this class.

One’sfirst language has a high influence on the communication ability ofone’s learned language. English is my second language, and this isevident through the quality of my writing. For a long time, I havebeen a shy student because of my fear of rejection due to poormastery of the English language. Most of my writing is a cleartranslation from my first language since I am more comfortable withthe language. This affects the flow of my writing since it reflectscertain elements of my language. For instance, the tense in my firstessay was inconsistent and improper (e.g.forthe first time I played basketball I will never imagine that thissports activity can effect me so much).My sentence structures also suffered the same fate, as I could notrelate my ideas in a flowing manner. I can therefore, understand theplight of students from different cultural backgrounds who havebright ideas but cannot communicate them cohesively due to poormastery of grammar. This will help me advice and encourage suchstudents to keep honing their skills confidently rather than let thisoutcome influence their performance at all times.

Despitethe several grammatical mistakes in my first paper, I was amazed bymy presentation of ideas in the essay. I realize that the paper is well presented, with a logical flow ofideas, regarding my experience with basketball.The paper communicates proper analytical skills, and an in-depthunderstanding of the course instructions. I was able to integratediverse information into the essay, making it a rich source ofinformation regarding my personality, and the advantages of engagingin basketball while in school. This is evident through the sentencethat read “Formy university life, I become more and more social , working withothers ,improve my communications skills from basketball I know howto collaborate with others work in teams/connecting and working withothers to make one plus one bigger than two from basketball I canget more feeling about the severs variety of the people.”Thestructure of my essay was also impressive, containing anintroduction, body paragraphs, and conclusion. However, I now realizethat I need to include a clear thesis statement in my introduction,as well as begin each of my paragraphs with a topic sentence.

Mylater papers built on the mistakes and strengths of my first paper toimprove my writing skills. For instance, in my third essay on‘computer science and computational biology,’ I used my researchskills extensively. Looking back, I realize that although I wrote thepaper from a first person point of view (Besidescomputer science, I am also interested in biology, therefore when Iread something about computational biology, I am very excited for theutilization of computer science in this field),most of the information in the paper is factual. Iam amazed at the improvement in my grammar, since the paper is muchbetter than the first one in this field.This increases my confidence since it motivates me to keep practicingin order to present flawless and fluent papers in future. Iam also less shy as a result, and this allows me interact better withall my colleagues.

Thesyllabus changed progressively from simple writing to complexwriting. A comparison of my first and third essays shows that thefirst essay required me to relate simple information on theadvantages of a sport. However, the third essay is more complex,since it requires technical information on computer science. Itherefore had to use and acknowledge outside sources from crediblesources. As I noted, “InProfessor Lei’s article, he uses simple words to interpretdefinition of computational biology, what the subject studies,instead of terminologies.”Moreover, I compiled a reference list at the end of the paper.Consequently, this paper looks more professional and academic thanthe first one. Anyone reading the two essays can recognize thesedifferences and acknowledge my progress. I owe this to the classinstructions we received, the teacher’s guidance, and help from mypeers and extensive practice on my side. I now understand that myability is dependent on a number of external factors as presented bythis visual:

Althoughthere is marked improvement in my writing this far, I believe I stillhave plenty of room for improvement. I appreciate my Asian cultureand language, but I will not let it hinder my performance. Rather, Iwill embrace the diversity of the Asian and American languages inorder to enjoy the benefits of both cultures. Additionally, I willkeep practicing the skills I have learnt from this course, as thiswill help me maintain or even improve my literacy abilities. I alsorealize that in order to write a credible essay, I need to be anardent reader. This will help me recognize the structure andorganization of other academic materials. I will then mold my ownwriting on these materials in order to achieve excellence over time.I am looking forward to the day I will write a flawless essay ingrammar, structure, and content irrespective of my Asian roots.