This course assumes you have a strong command of the English language. If you do not, you should consider taking our English as a Second Language (ESL) courses first.
Welcome to ENGL000: Pre-College English
Specific information about this course and its requirements can be found below. For more general information about taking Saylor Academy courses, including information about Community and Academic Codes of Conduct, please read the Student Handbook.
Improve your writing ability in this introductory course by learning how to read actively and how to apply the core components of effective writing.
Effective writing skills are necessary for success in college and in your future career. This course is designed to improve your writing ability. Pre-College English coursework focuses on active reading and analytic writing, with an emphasis on organization, unity, coherence, and development. It also includes an introduction to the expository essay and a review of the rules and conventions of standard written English.
In Unit 1, you will learn the basics of active reading and how active reading is paramount in your success as a student and beyond. You will also learn how to identify the main idea in a piece of writing and how to create a topic sentence that conveys the main idea in your own writing. You will discover the benefits of prewriting and will learn prewriting techniques that can be used at the onset of any writing project. In Unit 2, you will delve deeper into the main idea by learning the basics of thesis statements, while developing strong thesis statements of your own. You will also learn the value of outlines in writing, and some techniques to help you outline effectively. Units 3 and 4 continue to explore active reading by focusing on making inferences and paraphrasing material for use in your own writing. Unit 5 wraps up the writing process by providing strategies for writing introductions and conclusions. You will explore various types of essays, and you will apply skills and strategies from across the course to craft an essay of your own. All of the units include grammar basics to facilitate your continued growth as a writer. Each unit will also include active reading practice, allowing you to apply learned skills throughout the course.
This course includes the following units:
- Unit 1: Active Reading
- Unit 2: Combining Ideas
- Unit 3: Making Inferences
- Unit 4: Transitions and Summarization
- Unit 5: Introductions and Conclusions
Course Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:
- demonstrate principles of active reading;
- outline relationships between main ideas and subordinate ideas;
- apply prewriting strategies to narrow a topic and develop a piece of writing;
- write well-organized analytical paragraphs in response to writing prompts;
- use punctuation effectively;
- write a clear and focused thesis statement supported by appropriate evidence and examples;
- proofread to ensure spelling and usage appropriate to different writing contexts;
- define plagiarism and implement strategies for avoiding plagiarism;
- use transitional words and expressions to signal relationships between ideas;
- employ a variety of sentence patterns to improve coherence;
- craft effective introductions and conclusions; and
- craft short essays employing a variety of organizational patterns.
Throughout this course, you will also see learning outcomes in each unit. You can use those learning outcomes to help organize your studies and gauge your progress.
The primary learning materials for this course are articles, lectures, and videos.
All course materials are free to access and can be found in each unit of the course. Pay close attention to the notes that accompany these course materials, as they will tell you what to focus on in each resource, and will help you to understand how the learning materials fit into the course as a whole. You can also see a list of all the learning materials in this course by clicking on Resources in the navigation bar.
Evaluation and Minimum Passing Score
Only the final exam is considered when awarding you a grade for this course. In order to pass this course, you will need to earn a 70% or higher on the final exam. Your score on the exam will be calculated as soon as you complete it. If you do not pass the exam on your first try, you may take it again as many times as you want, with a 7-day waiting period between each attempt. Once you have successfully passed the final exam you will be awarded a free Course Completion Certificate.
There are also end-of-unit assessments and other quizzes in this course. These are designed to help you study, and do not factor into your final course grade. You can take these as many times as you want until you understand the concepts and material covered. You can see all of these assessments by clicking on Quizzes in the course's navigation bar.
Tips for Success
ENGL000: Pre-College English is a self-paced course, which means that you can decide when you will start and when you will complete the course. There is no instructor or an assigned schedule to follow. We estimate that the "average" student will take 62 hours to complete this course. We recommend that you work through the course at a pace that is comfortable for you and allows you to make regular progress. It's a good idea to also schedule your study time in advance and try as best as you can to stick to that schedule.
Learning new material can be challenging, so we've compiled a few study strategies to help you succeed:
- Take notes on the various terms, practices, and theories that you come across. This can help you put each concept into context, and will create a refresher that you can use as you study later on.
- As you work through the materials, take some time to test yourself on what you remember and how well you understand the concepts. Reflecting on what you've learned is important for your long-term memory, and will make you more likely to retain information over time.
This course is delivered entirely online. You will be required to have access to a computer or web-capable mobile device and have consistent access to the internet to either view or download the necessary course resources and to attempt any auto-graded course assessments and the final exam.
- To access the full course including assessments and the final exam, you will need to be logged into your Saylor Academy account and enrolled in the course. If you do not already have an account, you may create one for free here. Although you can access some of the course without logging in to your account, you should log in to maximize your course experience. For example, you cannot take assessments or track your progress unless you are logged in.
For additional guidance, check out Saylor Academy's FAQ.
This course is entirely free to enroll in and to access. Everything linked in the course, including textbooks, videos, webpages, and activities, is available for no charge. This course also contains a free final exam and course completion certificate.