Thursday, December 17, 2015

Fish Out of Water By Bobby Spring

An English teacher's job in high school is to prepare a student for writing at a college level. If they are doing that much that, is up for the professor to decide. Stanley Fish says "the most important thing to learn is sentence structure." Sentence structure is not the most important thing to writing I don't think that people should go back and learn proper sentence structures because it is a skill college students should already know. I think college teachers should prioritize teaching how secondary sources should be used in college writing, how to tell if it is a secondary source, and how to properly cite them.

I have done a lot of research on secondary sources and how they are used. I've ask peer writing consultants and college professors about secondary sources. I've also done a survey and an extended definition and gone though multiple lengths to do research on them. The college library of Illinois says,"A secondary source is someone that didn't experience the event firsthand ." This means that they heard about it or read about someone has experienced it first hand and knows enough information to be considered an expert.

I believe secondary sources should be taught in the classroom because going into college I didn't know the difference between sources. Secondary sources can be used in college writing to find information from a primary source would analyzed by a professional and restated for a better understanding of whats going on in the primary source. Secondary sources are mostly used for a research paper on specific topic

This is a secondary source in itself
When reading though research and trying to tell whether or not it is a secondary source or primary source, There are a few big things to look at. The first thing you should look for is there citations. If it is a secondary source, it will cite where they got there information from, which would be the secondary source. This is helpful because if you read though the secondary source and decide you want read where they got there information from and read it yourself you can. Other ways to find out if the document you are reading is a secondary source is by looking at the date, time, and names.

teachers when they get freshman in college
The final thing teachers should teach about secondary sources is how to cite them. Citing is very important to writing in college, but it isn't that important in high school because most people don't think much of high school writing, but when you write in college, if you miss cite something you could get kicked out of the college. The easiest way that I have found how to cite all sources is by using Easybib gives you a place you fill in all the information you need and gives you the citation already in MLA format all you have to do is copy and paste it in your bibliography.

As you can see secondary sources are very important to writing in college. Sentence structure shouldn't be thought at a college level. Instead, they should be teaching things that should be used at a college level like secondary sources. If they started teaching them at a college level early on, I'm sure student's grades would increase dramatically because it will help them with their research, not only in English, but in many other classes where students will need to write a research paper. It is also not a skill only needed in school because you will be doing research and writing papers of sorts for the rest of your life, so this could also be considered a life
long skill.


  1. If secondary sources are made of information that professionals have compiled and recycled, why wouldn't I just go to those primary sources? I get that there are plenty of credible secondary sources out there, provided I look in the right places, but isn't my analysis of the original information important too? Can I use both to my advantage?

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