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The University of Oklahoma
Expository Writing
THE UNIVERSITY OF OKLAHOMA

Expository Writing FAQ

What is Expository Writing?

Expository writing means putting ideas in context.  Exposition is the information a writer gives his or her readers so that they can understand the meaning and significance of the writer’s conclusions.  So, writing in an expository mode means figuring out what facts and ideas you need to convince your reader that what you have to say really matters. 

 

By teaching students how to do this, we show them how to take the mass of information and ideas that they encounter in their college classes, figure out how those ideas should matter to them, and express that understanding to someone else.  Basically, we teach students to be active participants in their own educations.

 

How is Expo 1213 different from English 1213?

Both Expo 1213 and Engl 1213 will satisfy the Composition II requirement of the General Education Curriculum.  However, only Expo courses focus on a specific theme or topic that students explore over the entire semester.

Expo courses also feature one-on-one conferences between the students and the lecturers for every major essay, which means our students receive extensive guidance and feedback on their writing throughout the semester.

 

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Can Expo courses satisfy any requirements other than Composition II?

Yes.  Expo 1223 will satisfy the Western Civilization requirement.  This is essentially the same course as Expo 1213, just under a different number.  It allows students who are interested in a particular course topic to take an Expo class, even if they’ve already met their Composition II requirement.

 

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Do I need to be an advanced writer or an Honors student to pass an Expo course?

No.  Less than 25% of Expo students are in the Honors College, and many of our students don’t describe themselves as “strong writers” when they enroll in our courses.  The only requirement is that you must be willing to become a stronger writer over the course of the term.  If you’re interested in improving your writing skills and willing to challenge yourself to do it, then you’re ready to take an Expo class.

 

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How do I find out more about a specific Expo course?

You can read descriptions of our current courses here.  Each course description also links to a recent syllabus for the course and page about the Lecturer who teaches it, where you can find the Lecturer’s email address.  If you have any questions, feel free to email the Lecturer—we’re always happy to talk to interested students!

 

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What opportunities will an Expo course offer me to publish my writing?

All Expo students are encouraged to submit essays to Brainstorm, the Expo program’s journal of student writing.  For more information about Brainstorm, click here.

Expo lecturers also keep an eye out for journals and essay contests that might interest their students.  If you’re particularly interested in publishing your work, tell your lecturer, and he or she will help you find opportunities to do it!

 

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