Syllabus Analysis Project Fall 2019

As a Graduate Teaching Assistants at Kennesaw State University we are required to take the class “Understanding Writing as a Process”. The very class where we have been learning about the threshold concepts from the book Naming What We Know: Threshold Concepts of Writing Studies, Classroom Edition. Reading and blogging about the threshold concepts was one thing, but seeing them in action was something else entirely.

Out first major project in the class was the Syllabus Analysis Project. The project asked us to take the concepts that we had learnt from Naming What We Know and analyse a syllabus and course material from a first year composition class. We would not only look over this material, but interview a first year composition teacher and sit in on one of their classes. My first year composition teacher was Dr. Sarah Creel.

Dr. Creel has been teaching in higher education for twelve years after receiving her Doctorate from Simon Fraser University in 18th Century British Literature. It was an absolute pleasure interviewing Dr. Creel and taking a peek into her syllabus, assignments, and class. The class I sat in one was a hybrid class that meets physically twice a week and once online. The same type I believe I’ll be teaching in one years’ time.

I was honestly shocked just how many threshold concepts were prevalent in her class. Some of them almost LITERALLY jumping right off the book word for word. It was insane! But insane in a very good way! I created a PowerPoint all about Dr. Creel and the threshold concepts in action in her class. I also annotated her syllabus and added that into my analysis. Both can be viewed below at your leisure!

Here is my Syllabus Analysis from Dr. Creel’s class!

If you’d like a closer look then the annotated syllabus can be found here:

We presented our findings to our group members and then as a group created a synthesised version of our findings. That you can also view below at your leisure!

Here is our synthesis of the Analysis Project!

All in all it was a useful and eye opening project, and I look forward to incorporating the threshold concepts into my own teaching. Thanks for stopping by!


Adler-Kassner, Linda, and Elizabeth A. Wardle. Naming What We Know: Threshold Concepts of Writing Studies. Classroom ed., Utah State University Press, 2016.

Creel, Sarah. Syllabus for English 1101: Composition One. Department of English, Kennesaw State University, Kennesaw, Georgia, Fall 2019.

Creel, Sarah. Personal Interview, 21 October 2019.

“Naming What We Know, Classroom Edition: Threshold Concepts of Writing Studies Classroom Edition.” Amazon, 2019,

“PRWR 6300 – Understanding Writing as Process.” Kennesaw State University, 2019,

“Sarah Creel.” Linkedin, 2019,

Featured Image can be found here.