Student Testimonials

English 2300: Advanced Composition (Honors)

"Without taking this course, I don't think my writing skills would have improved as much or as quickly. Thank you for guiding me to realize that there is no perfect way to write a paper, by giving me the tools to succeed in writing the best way I can.” – Amanda Burke

"I have confirmed that I really enjoy learning about and using rhetorical skills. I am surprised that I have really taken to this thing that I didn't know anything about a year ago." – Andrea Hamler

"I never really learned about composition theory in this way before, actually studying the theory intensively rather than just having teachers mention a technique when we're preparing to write a paper. I think I prefer this method.” – Katherine Odell

"I've noticed so many great strides in my writing abilities, just from a semester's worth of time. This is why I took your course. I knew that I loved having you as a professor previously, and I knew, regardless of the challenge, I'd come out a better writer, and thinker, particularly.” – Lina Gebhardt

“By far, the most meaningful aspect of this class was learning how to contribute my own ideas to academic discourse. This was the first time entering the parlor conversation and writing to scholars at eye-level. Although I was initially nervous about whether or not my ideas would hold water, I’ve gained a lot of confidence in my abilities as a rhetor. I’ve always liked writing, but this semester I discovered how much I enjoy arguing and persuading.” – Meghna Israni

“Before this course, I did not really consider composition theory as a topic in general. I just viewed composition as writing; I didn’t think about the theories that surround it. However, I believe that one of the main ideas that we learned about composition theory is how to distinguish composition from rhetoric.” – Ariana Bylykbashi

“Looking back, I don’t think of this class as what we read or what we wrote, but I view it as what we discussed. That is where I think the importance of the class shines. It is not a place where we just sit and are told what conclusions other people got to and who did it and what year it was in and what was going on at the time. Instead we take our readings as a jumping off point and talk about it to come to conclusions that, sure other people already got to, but we got to on our own, as a class.” – Jake Fondel

“I understand writing very differently now as it includes far more than I first believed it to. I personally am a creative writer and plan to write works of fiction so I never really put a lot of thought into how rhetoric can impact one's writing. Now however, I can look and pick out countless historical documents alone that are loaded with rhetoric.” – Jenna Pederson

English 2200: Argumentative Writing

“I think one of the best things I gathered while taking this course was applying the technique that Rogers discussed. He really helped me figure out how to have conversations with other people, especially people who do not share my same views, and taught me the importance of understanding the perspectives of others and having respect for those perspectives. […] I would like to be, in my own small way, a force of change in the way I communicate with those around me.”  – Abdulrahman Abu Isha

“Among all of the classes I’ve taken at College of DuPage, I’ve found this one to be the most useful (by far). I feel that I’ve picked up life skills that many others won’t have the chance to. This class has made me into a better writer, and an exponentially better arguer.” – Ryan Hasa

“This class transformed not only my skills at arguing, but my writing skills as a whole. I can now identify and use the rhetorical practices we learned about, and they only strengthen the arguments I will make in the future. I am sure my dad will not be happy with my newfound powers of persuasion.” – Sean Morrison

“I’ve learned enough about argumentative writing to know that I can see myself having a rewarding career using skills I learned this semester. I will be exploring what that looks like next semester [in Advanced Composition] and what additional education would be most beneficial for me in pursuing that career.” – Andrea Hamler

English 2115: Writing in the Community

“Before this class, I had never collaborated with anyone to write, and I had hardly given rhetoric or arguments a second thought. With our projects and discussions on audience, interviews, and rhetoric, I feel much more prepared to write professionally. I believe this class has taught me how to be more effective with both my writing and arguments.” – Joshua Reed

“I think I learned a lot from this class this semester, especially in terms of working with other people. There were some things that were difficult, like the success stories, purely because timing was extremely difficult. Fundraising, too, because it was hard to come up with something fitting that would work, and I didn’t know fully what I was doing. But I think my technical/professional writing skills improved a lot, and I know a lot more about how to write things for/with different audiences. It was a good and challenging experience, overall.” – Emily Sinn

English 2105: Writing in the Professions

“When I signed up for this course I expected to learn about how to write more professionally. […] Never would I have thought that I would get to experience researching the writing taking place firsthand in my future profession. Through writing multiple research papers, I can confidently say that I grew as a writer and researcher. Being able to design my own research project was very eye-opening. I gained many insights through interviewing professionals as well as observing and collecting written artifacts that I will someday be writing when I am a teacher.” - Haley Kalchik

“This is my final course in the Professional Writing Certificate. Throughout the program, I have learned invaluable information that I will continue to use in any career that I choose. In fact, the professional writing courses have inspired me to enroll in additional courses at the College of DuPage. I will then transfer to Western University to complete a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Anthropology.” – Robyn Eib 

“Before I enrolled in this course, I expected that I would learn about the different types of documentation that different professionals have to create in their respective fields. I did not expect that I would learn about how professionals in a specific field communicated and prepared their documentation. I also expected that I would be able to create some writing samples for my [professional] writing portfolio. Overall, I am glad that I learned more about the Volunteer Services department, its staff, and its communication practices. This course met my expectations because it allowed me to create writing samples for my portfolio.” – Shanna Taylor  

“For every type of writing that I undertook this semester, simplicity and clarity were emphasized over excess and complexity. Oftentimes I would spend all this time writing a sentence and then go back later during the revision process and change it to something much shorter and more basic. I think this is especially true for the type of professional writing I was observing in the company I studied. When writing is for a specific purpose, adding anything else that doesn’t relate to the subject is simply a distraction from more valuable information contained within. Whatever I end up doing professionally, I need to remember to keep my writing simple, clear, and to the point.” – Zachary Pearson

English 1115: Digital Writing

“Through this class I have a better understanding of how to be conscious of my purpose while composing work for the digital world and to be mindful of the message I am trying to convey while keeping my audience in mind. Rhetoric was a word that I had heard in previous English classes but I never gave it much thought or understood its use. After doing multiple reviews involving rhetoric and using it for my own podcast, I finally have a better understanding of what rhetoric is.” – Giana Mingilino

English 1110: Technical Writing

“When I signed up for this course, I expected it to be helpful in regard to my future career field which is in the computer science industry. This field requires a lot of explaining of how the code you create works; there are times where you have to explain it to someone that does not know much about computer science and this class has made me more comfortable explaining code to someone that knows nothing about it. The different discussion boards and projects each gave me more insight on how to correctly explain something to an audience.” – Lazar Marinkovich

I was required to take this course as one of my prerequisites to completing my undergraduate degree. I dreaded taking this class because I have never been a fan of writing and always dreaded the prompts I was given in school. It is safe to say that coming into this course I was not looking forward to it and was expecting to procrastinate every paper as long as possible. To my surprise, I genuinely enjoyed what I had learned in this course. Technical writing is actually interesting and I enjoyed it.” – Annie Bielinski  

 “The reason I took this course was because it is a prerequisite for some occupational therapy schools that I am applying to this fall. Technical writing is a necessary skill that I would need to know for my future career in occupational therapy especially when I work on case studies or research projects. Before taking this course, I was not an effective writer. Now, I feel that my technical writing style has improved due to all the feedback I received from my peers and professor. Technical Writing with Dr. Accardi is an excellent English course, and I would recommend it to all new students.” – Ken T.

“I am not planning to take any further technical writing classes in near future but will definitely use learning from this class for various work projects like preparing process documentation, step by step guide for reports and preparing training material for new employees. At first, the class schedule seemed overwhelming but it was very well structured. I liked that many of the project steps were broken out and had separate deadlines, which helped me to meet all the deadlines without trying to finish all at once.” – Anisa Laliwala

“[In this course], I learned a lot of fundamentals of technical writing. […] I think that audience analysis and usability will both help me a great deal in my career. I am going into public accounting and so I will often have to explain certain processes, theories or regulations to clients. Recognizing that clients do not have the same understanding of these topics that I do will help me break down the topics more. Also realizing that the clients will not need to have the same understanding of these topics will help me be concise and to the point. […] I recently encountered a situation at work where the person I was working with had significantly less technical knowledge than I assumed they had. Once I was able to analyze their level of expertise and knowledge I discovered that it was much easier for me to explain the concept to them.” – Abigail Fischer

English 1105: Workplace Writing

“Overall, this course was very fun and also very interesting. I had the chance to interview a real-life cybersecurity analyst and get a sneak peak of what it's really like working as one. I would 100% recommend this class to my friends who are doubltful of taking it, and I would most absolutely recommend Dr. Accardi as the teacher. He has been really understanding and helpful the entire course." – Nuwaira Noor-Ul Ameen

“I am glad that this course was part of the 3+1 program that I am currently completing. It has allowed me to shape and enhance my skills in workplace writing and see how important it is in the field that I want to work in after I graduate." – Salvador Guillen Jr.

"My expectations going into this course was to only be in it long enough to drop it, boy was I surprised. I could tell the class was very well organized which laid the kind of groundwork I appreciate most as a student. Although, I expected to learn some things, I learned much more." – Erica Jenkins

"I knew that the course was an 8-week course, so I figured that this course was going to involve a lot of fast-paced writing assignments. In some other 8-week courses that I have taken, there were a lot of assignments piled on top of each other, so that was somewhat of an expectation for this class. Once I began the class, the class was definiately at a much better pace than expected. We were able to work at a good pace, and I believe that allowed us to put out the best work as possible. This was a great benefit to my writing experience– Dominick Aiello

“This course met my expectations of a business writing course, helped grow my communication skill set, intensified my writing, taught me the importance of professionalism, and overall, just helped me as a writer. This is all thanks to Dr. Accardi, for being a positive professor, who taught me well, and if I ever had any questions or concerns, was very understanding, and there to help me out." – Talha Ahmed

“The ultimate question most students ask is 'When am I going to use this information?' I asked myself that a lot throughout my education at College of DuPage and after taking English 1105 I can truly say I will use the information taught for the rest of my business career. Professor Accardi, you have exceeded my expectations as a professor. Your class was organized, clear and concise. The information taught was relevant and interesting. Every class I have taken before I have wanted to pull my hair out...they were so boring. I came into your class having little workplace writing experience; the only experience I had was exchanging emails for work. After this class, I can apply for jobs now that I have a resume and exchange emails in a more concise manner. I found our final paper to be the most helpful. I have never written a resume or cover letter before. This assignment allowed me to see why each are done in a way to appeal to potential employers; again, a topic relevant for myself in the future. My parents told me they have never heard me speak so much about a class in such a positive way. I learned a lot about myself during this class and I even changed my major along the way, because of the assignments. This class made me branch out and actually think unlike many of my previous classes. Professor Accardi, you have been a treat to work with. Professors like you inspire students to chase their dreams and reach goals they thought were impossible. I have my head on my shoulders as I attend DePaul University in January and I owe you for that.” – Kimberly Posadzy 

“I was really impressed with the excessively straightforward, clear, and easy to understand instructions for every homework and writing project that are designed to walk you through every step of the assignment and it made the course really easy to follow. It is really hard to say which assignment I found the most helpful because I enjoyed doing them all. […] This course became one of those courses with the solid standards that I was missing for so long but now have found.” – Andrey Romanovich

“As someone who writes every day for work, I never considered genre and rhetoric to be a part of workplace writing. I’ve always considered these as qualities of creative writing or persuasive papers. I see now that cover letters and resumes are a form of persuasive writing. No matter where I end up, I think I will keep genre and rhetoric in mind whenever I write.” – Kevin Donovan

“In the digital era, in which we live in, it is increasingly important for a person to be able to write professional documents for the workplace. In the multitude of classes offered at College of DuPage, Workplace Writing is at the top of the list a professional should take to improve his or her writing skills. In this class, a student’s expectations will be met by learning how to compose professional documents and how to think critically, all the while gaining confidence.” – Mike Liszewski

“Overall, I think this class was a good experience. I learned more in this class than I was expecting to. This class was not like the other useless English class I took in my freshman year of college, but instead in this class we actually did something that will help me in the future.” – Sunny Vasty 

“Before I took English 1105 I thought of myself as a below average writer, but now I feel that I am a very well-rounded writer. I plan to keep applying the key skills I learned from this course to all my other courses. Even while in this class I always noticed myself applying things I learned from English 1105 to my other classes and since then I have seen a boost in my grades on all my papers.” – Maharshee Patel

“Overall, this was the most beneficial English class that I have ever taken because I always felt like writing essays on books were a waste in the long run, but this class forced us to learn about the professional writing in the workplace which I think will be very useful for me in the future.” – Travis Bjerga

English 1102: Composition II (Honors)

“A typical English course might look something like this repetitive pattern of a stagnant structure: ‘Here’s a mainstream writing prompt; write a 1,000-word essay about it.’ It deters students to fully express their writing skills and knowledge. However, Dr. Accardi's English 1102 course demonstrated the opposite approach to your typical English course. He provided the opportunity for students to not only learn and build upon their rhetorical knowledge and skills, he utilized the opportunity to drive creativity through a compelling, engaging, inquiry driven research project that students were able to propose and choose.” – Julia Delnero

“I really enjoyed taking this class because it was interactive, and it allowed me to apply what I learned in various ways whether it be in the project we did as a class or to projects I had in different classes. If I had just taken notes from a textbook, I know that I would probably just forget everything I knew about rhetoric the moment the class ended. However, the way Dr. Accardi structured the class has allowed me to be more aware of rhetoric and how it is used in the real world. It also cleared up any misconceptions I had about rhetoric and how the media doesn’t really understand the definition of rhetoric (they should be required to take this class).” – Belem Oseguera

“I was pleasantly surprised to find that we, as individuals, were free from the rudimentary expectations often laid down in English classes - tight rules and restrictions on our expression of ideas - and instead were empowered with rhetorical tools that clearly made our arguments more effective. On top of this progressive approach to learning, the professor created a group-oriented environment intended to model the professional workplace, where individuals collaborate instead of competing as individuals on individual projects. As a result, my class was able to develop a grand final product, engaging all of us in various roles from beginning to end, culminating in two major presentations with the opportunity to make a widespread impact outside class. Needless to say, the level of involvement in this class is undeniable and uniquely impactful.” – Aurora

“Overall, this class really changed the way I view and utilize rhetoric. I can now understand why some political debates are constantly issues in our society, in particular why these arguments are not effective in creating change. For myself, I know now how to persuade others (my parents hopefully) by appealing to their interests to actually make progress in a situation (instead of just yelling at each other all the time). Being able to understand an audience is vital when applying for schools, internships, jobs, etc. While this was only an English class, the things I learned can certainly aid me in being successful in the future.” – Adellin Fernandez

“Going into this class I expected it to be a challenge and it lived up to that. For the most part a lot of the assignments were something I had never done before. And anytime you do something for the first time it can be challenging, not to mention it was graded harder than I was used to. For example, I had no background knowledge on rhetoric before this class. But now I have learned just how influential it can be in persuading someone. Before this class I thought the best way to convince someone was through facts. But, now after taking this class, I found that facts aren’t as factual as you think, and that not everyone can be persuaded by the exact same thing. You really have to understand the audience and who you are talking to and use things that will persuade them.” – Alex Schuchardt

“I expected this class to be a typical English class; reading, analyzing, and synthesizing other authors’ work. I did not expect the class to be so project-based, but in the end, I feel that the class was better because of it. […] As a writer, I will continue to look for ways to apply rhetoric in my arguments. Whether it’s describing a chemical reaction or writing an essay in economics, rhetoric can be applied almost anywhere, and as long as it's not overused or misused it can be effective.” – Matas Lauzadis

English 1102: Composition II

“Going into this course, I expected the same thing I have gotten from every English class in the past. A teacher tells you what to read and do, and you do it. However, having an individual project that was worked on throughout the semester made the class seem less like an English class and more related to the real world. I was happy to find that the assignments felt more like checkpoints and aid to assist with the project, so the class was not what I expected, and that is a good thing.” – Lucas Jackson

“I must admit, I underestimated this class. Feeling that most of it would be a thorn in my side, I expected nothing sort of gratuitous. But, I was wrong, so very, very wrong; and I’m happy I was. You’ve become one of my favorite professors here Dr. Accardi. I don’t think I have ever met an English professor like you. Everything was explained and brought to attention. I enjoyed the class this semester.” – Alex Katona

"I have done a lot of research for a lot of classes over the years, but never where I actually could influence something. I never thought I could. I just thought that it was out of my hands. With this class I have done more research and went more out of my way than with any other class. To my surprise I was able to use my rhetorical knowledge from this class at my work and it not only worked on my office manager when I presented it to him but he created a last minute meeting for the following day for me to present it to the staff managers. The positive feedback and the respect that I have gained in the last two days was just breath taking for my young self in this office, where most people are twice my age. […W]hat I have learned about this is to never underestimate myself again.”– Jessica Fedorowicz, English 1102 

“To be honest the best part about this class was the realization that I can effect social change. I do have the power through words and the practice of rhetoric to make the world a better place (as I see it) and that was truly life changing. I will take that lesson with me everywhere I go.” – Noah Carroll

“Having a real life project to apply the course material made this class all the better. Early on, I decided to do my project on the Christian church’s apathy toward racial injustice in America. This project made me realize that even as a young African American adult, I have the power and ability to speak out against injustices in the world in a professional and articulate way.” - Jewell Allen

“Overall, I cannot express enough how amazing and eye-opening this course was. It was really refreshing to see a teacher that was passionate about our own passions. I really enjoyed how we applied everything that we learned in class to a real-world problem. It was a great experience and a great opportunity to be able to work on something I’ve been so emotional about.” - Claire Simari

“I didn’t think this class was going to be anything like this. I figured it was going to be more like my English 1101 class, do a little bit of different writing styles/types of papers or maybe focus on just a few of them. Obviously this class was way different from that. When we first started talking about rhetoric I thought it would be like high school where we would kind of talk about it for maybe a week and move on. But we talked about it for a week, and the next, and the next.” - Nikki Reinke

“A really significant thing that I realized while taking this class is that it takes a lot to change something in the world, but it is possible. I wasn’t able to achieve any significant progress at all but I see now that there is a way to really make a difference. If you gather the right information and present it to the right people in the right way it can make a change in the way we live. Some problems feel too big for one person to change but one small act can lead to bigger things. I feel like after doing this project writing isn’t just about getting a grade or persuading someone about a rhetorical situation and stopping there; writing has the potential to have people take action.” - Ben McMahon

“All past English courses focused around the class five-paragraph essay format. Each assignment in the past was either an essay composed on giving a response to a book we read in class or a research paper. Same format every time, same monotonous layout. Unlike other English classes, this class was the first time I have ever had to write something that related to real life problems I was experiencing. Connecting my ideas to paper and being told to act on them was a first.” – Rachel Giordano

“I definitely feel that I am able to use my rhetorical knowledge we learned in my day-to-day life. I think I did a very good job using rhetorical skills to get my point across to the mayor. The mayor seemed to be pretty convinced that my plan could be a good idea for the community. The mayor said he would bring up my problem and solutions at the next city council meeting. I am not sure if I made an impact on the community as of now because the city council has not met. I do believe that it is very possible that there could be change made in Wheaton. This project gave me a lot of confidence in the power of rhetoric, and my ability to use it.” – Nick Roskuszka

“Coming into this class when I found out that we have to make this big project and use it in real life, I thought it going to be very hard because I’m used to those easy English courses and I even thought about dropping out and taking it with another teacher. But then I decided to stay because I think it will help me to actually learn something useful that I can use in real life. At the end, I didn’t regret my decision. I really enjoyed the class and I think this class helped me to become a better writer and make good arguments in the future.” – Ming Chen

English 1101: Composition I (Honors)

“I expected to have to read books like in all my previous English classes. Of course, we had some reading, but the English course was so much more focused on the composition process. I did not expect that we would talk a lot about what our writing processes are, and I did not expect to be talking about musicians and artists in an English course.” – Leah Haft

"I have always considered writing to carry a lot of weight. However, I was discouraged through school writing being more concerned with mechanics, the MLA format, and proper citations, rather than the content of the text. This course has taught me how to look at the meaning behind the information, to always be curious, and focus on the process of composition." – Zaira Khan

English 1101: Composition I

“First of all, my expectations for the course were set very low. I didn’t look forward to taking an English class because I have never really had an English teacher that pushed me to get better and work on my writing. My expectations were blown away. I really enjoyed the class and I did not expect that it would become one of my favorite classes. This class changed a lot about the way I write.” – Ben McMahon

“I expected this class to be just like the other ones I had before. I didn’t know that there was another way. Dr. Accardi took us outside the box. I could not have hoped for a better way of learning.” – Anna Stelmasiewicz 

“I wholeheartedly believe that this course has really helped me write even more fluidly and helped me look at drafts in a different light. Dr. Accardi’s English class in particular is taught in a way that I love because he expects his students to do it on their own, but the help is there if you choose to take it up. I think all college courses should be taught this way because it shows what people are really there to learn and what people are just there to get the work done and I think that is a very important concept. All in all, by far one of my favorite courses to take during my college career especially with such a great and knowledgeable instructor.” – Ivana Koledin

“The workshop groups were my favorite part of the class. I had never received actual criticism on papers in high school; the teachers would just give you the grade and never talk about it again. The workshop groups gave me a chance to see what other people think of my writing and make revisions based on those critiques. I also enjoyed critiquing other people’s papers because by seeing their mistakes it made me go back to my own paper and see if I made those same mistakes.” – Chris Hasty

“I used to absolutely dread writing papers because all I would do is get criticized on them. So my senior year of high school I kind of gave up on writing. My thought was that if I am going to try my best and have my teachers not see that I am trying then why would I even attempt? But this first semester at College of DuPage has taught me that there is not one right or wrong way to do something. And that I will take with me forever. Now I know that I have improved as a writer. This has been the best experience in an English class by far.” – Dean Driggers

“I look forward to taking another class with Dr. Accardi and becoming a better writer with his help because to put it simply, he’s awesome, and he made an educational requirement class an enjoyable experience, and I learned a lot with him.” – Andreja Mrkajic

“As a recent high school graduate exhausted from prehistoric rubrics and repetitive assignments, the last thing I wanted was another boring English class. However, my expectations were exceeded and then some from the class environment to the assignments. Dr. Accardi created a fun and inviting learning environment, but with this amusement came a good amount of work. This was never really an issue though as Dr. Accardi provided reasonable deadlines, interesting assignments, and extensive help.” – Patrick Anderson

“I definitely learned more about communication, specifically digital communication, which is always something I enjoy learning about. After watching our finished video it was really great knowing that we were able to build our arguments and back them up the best we could, especially after we had struggled with structuring the video for a long time. Viewing the finished project definitely gave use a sense of accomplishment.” – Molly Muriby

“While I enrolled in an English class my first semester of college, I was expecting to learn about literature of a past time and how to properly write an essay with boring repetitive topics. Although we spent the majority of the time on one particular project, and it may seem like we did not cover a lot of material, looking back at the start of class with these ideas, I think it surpassed my expectations. That one project has taught me more about being a writer and about the world around me than what I have been taught in past years. We got the opportunity to expand our knowledge and challenge our opinions on extreme issues that have actual meaning.” – Angelica Panzarino

“When I registered for this course, I was expecting the typical English class where you read a book, write an essay expounding on one of the themes of the book, and how it contributes to the meaning of it as a whole. Along with that, I was expecting excruciating discussions about Shakespeare or The Iliad and I would have to pretend to know what is going on but in reality, I have no clue. Thankfully, those expectations were not met. […] I am glad that my expectations were not met; I actually enjoyed an English course for the first time in 4 years. […] Throughout this course, I learned a lot about myself as a writer and a thinker. I discovered that my style of writing was hindered by previous teachers and I was forced to dial down any creativity and just follow the pattern. This course didn’t set any barriers when it came to my writing and I realized that my writing is a mixture of formulaic and free. […] After this course, I will continue to improve on my writing. I want to completely move on from the traditional 5-paragraph nonsense and try to formulate a well-developed piece that is effective.” – Rosanna Martinelli

“This class is not at all what I expected it would be. First semester in college and I was required to take this English class I automatically thought I was going to get some old guy as a professor and have 100-page readings a day. I thought I was going to be bored out of my mind! I surprisingly wasn’t. This class was actually fun to be in. There was no long lectures or heavy assignments. I liked the group circle talks, and liked how Dr. Accardi talked to us. He didn’t lecture. He conversed with us. He wanted our thoughts, questions, comments; rather than reading slides off a Power Point for the full 50 mins we were in class.” – Natalie Nino