The Power of the Personal Essay For Persuading People in Blogs, Columns, and Admission Applications

Duncan Koerber, University Professor

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9 Lessons (47m)
    • 1. Welcome to the Course!

      1:18
    • 2. Introduction to the Personal Essay Genre

      6:49
    • 3. Specificity and Structure

      3:42
    • 4. Writer As Cultural Observer

      5:29
    • 5. Writer As Activist

      7:55
    • 6. Three Rhetorical Elements in Effective Personal Essays

      5:20
    • 7. Personal Essays and the Truth

      5:51
    • 8. Argumentative Fallacies that Make People Look Stupid

      6:12
    • 9. How to Write School Admissions Personal Essay

      4:10

Project Description

The class project is to write a short (300 to 500 word) personal essay on a topic of your choosing.

Go through the lectures on coming up with fresh, new topics. Then review the lessons on making it specific and significant. Don't forget about the structural lessons to avoid sounding like you're writing an academic paper. Also include all three rhetorical elements. Take a final look for any fallacies of logic.  

Upload the project to the course, and I will offer comments on your personal essay. 

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