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Student Guide: How to Use This Textbook

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    How to Use This Textbook

    Dear student,

    Congratulations on enrolling in a first year composition class!

    This book is designed to be:

    • Free
    • Convenient
    • Accessible
    • Easy to use
    • Reasonably easy to understand
    • Interesting
    • Thought provoking

    How to Read and Annotate this Textbook

    You can read and watch the information in this textbook in a number of ways, partly depending on how your instructor assigned the information. Your instructor may just assign certain pages, in which case, they may simply give you a link to the page. If that's the case, you can read it online and annotate the page by highlighting the text, signing into, and taking your notes. You can find your notes again by signing into Please see below.

    Screenshot (66)_LI.jpg


    Figure created by authors.

    Screenshot (67)_LI.jpg

    Figure created by authors.

    Screenshot (68).png

    Figure created by authors.

    You can also print out the page by pressing the .pdf icon at the top right of the page (please see image, below). You can then download the .pdf file to your computer or print it out on paper. Please note that the links to the videos can only be accessed from the electronic version of the book.

    Screenshot (61)_LI.jpg

    Figure created by authors. 

    You can then annotate as shown above, or you can print out the pages you need. It's possible that your college's bookstore can also print out the textbook for you at cost. In any case, please check with your instructor about how they would like you to use the textbook, as they likely have reasons for their preferences.

    How to Do the Exercises in this Textbook

    You can do the textbook exercises your instructor assigned you by copying and pasting the exercise onto your computer and then typing in the answers. In some cases, the exercises may also be available in a file attached to the page, which you can download. The exercises are not hooked up with Canvas, as that option isn't currently technically feasible. Please check with your instructor to see if they have a preferred way for you to work on and turn in the exercises.

    How to Search this Book

    The best way to search this book is to go to the Table of Contents, choose the chapter title for what you think you are looking for, and then click on the subtitle of the item you need.

    Textbook Sections

    This textbook has twelve chapters for students to use:

    1. Writing and College Success (College reading and writing expectations, as well as time management)

    2. Writing and the Art of Rhetoric (Writing as conversation, critical thinking, logical fallacies, rhetorical analysis)

    3. The Reading and Writing Connection (Reading and questioning strategies, vocabulary, and spelling)

    4. Prewriting (The reading-writing process and strategies for preparing to write)

    5. Thesis Statements, Topic Sentences, and the First Draft

    6. Body Paragraphs (Development and working with sources)

    7. Revising and Editing

    8. Argumentation (Paragraph types, types of argumentation)

    9. Creating Presentations and Sharing Ideas

    10. Adding to the Conversation with Research Papers

    11. Clarity, Conciseness, and Style

    12. Grammar

    Mistakes and Suggestions

    If you notice any errors or you have any suggestions for improving the textbook, please send your thoughts and suggestions to or Just like you seek to learn and grow as a writer and scholar, so do we wish to continuously improve this textbook. It is a work in progress! Thank you for reading, and we hope this resource allows you a deepened understanding of and appreciation for the reading-writing process.


    Athena Kashyap, Erika Dyquisto, and the entire Writing, Reading & College Success team

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