Portfolio Letter

Dear Professor Hayes,

    I look forward to you grading my portfolio because I think the assignments really show my progress as a writer. The three artifacts I chose to include in my portfolio are the ones I feel met the overall requirements for your class. Prior to taking this course, I knew my writing wasn't the strongest, but I didn't have a clear understanding on ways to improve it. Through the essays assigned, I realized I wasn't establishing a relationship with the reader. I wasn't taking into consideration their knowledge on the topic I was writing about, which resulted in lack of explanation.
   For this specific reason, I chose to include my "Where Credit is Due" essay. This was the first time I'd been assigned an essay dedicated solely to writing for the reader. For the first time, I was forced to take the time to put myself in the audience's shoes and present ideas I thought would be best suited to them. This essay helped me really understand the importance in understanding the audience perspective.
   I also chose to include my poster presentation. With each new step in the process, my group and I really considered the audience. We chose information that we felt would back up our claims the most, while still trying to keep it interesting and make it something our audience would find interesting. I also chose this assignment because it was one of the funner tasks given to us. Although it was a challenge producing something our audience would enjoy while still accomplishing every aspect of the assignment, it was fun and I'm really proud of the finished product.
   The last assignment I chose to include was the Rhetorical Analysis essay. In our other assignments, we were given the task of writing for the reader, but for this one, we had to expand on the difference in writing in the change of audience, all while being aware of our own audience. I struggled with this one but I'm really proud of the finished essay. Looking back to the beginning of the semester, I don' t think I would have had the same ideas or explanations I included in this essay. I think this essay, out of all the ones we were assigned throughout the course, really covered all the learning goals in this course.
   For each assignment, discussing and reviewing the essay in a peer group was what helped the most. I never realized how having outside opinions and a new set of eyes could be such a help in writing a paper. Having other people read my paper was nerve-wrecking at first, but after getting over it, I anticipated their criticisms, both good and bad.
   All four essays helped me become a better writer. Audience awareness is something I could consider in any other courses I take in my college career. I'm really excited to use these new tools and knowledge in any writing task that may be given to me in the future. I think it'll make me a more prepared writer as well as making the writing process less painful. Thank you for taking the time to view my work and evaluating my portfolio.

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