Higher Education

Texts and Contexts: A Contemporary Approach to College Writing, 7th Edition

  • William S. Robinson San Francisco State University
  • Stephanie Tucker California State University, Sacramento
  • ISBN-10: 1413033458  |  ISBN-13: 9781413033458
  • 592 Pages
  • Previous Editions: 2006, 2003, 2000
  • © 2009 | Published
  • College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $111.75
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TEXTS AND CONTEXTS: A CONTEMPORARY APPROACH TO COLLEGE WRITING, 7e, is designed to help developmental and freshman composition students write academic essays in response to high-interest readings about contemporary and historical issues. The heart of the book is writing assignments that develop students' reading, writing, and cognitive abilities and that prepare them for what they will be expected to do in college classes.

Features and Benefits

  • The text includes writing assignments that develop students' reading, writing, and cognitive abilities and prepare them for academic work.
  • A Proofreading Skills Workbook at the end of the text allows students to practice and evaluate their improvement in the areas of grammar and proofreading.
  • Readings focus on compelling topics such as analyzing tomorrow's job market, campaign finance reform, college sports, healthcare, and censorship.
  • "Writer's Checklist" features highlight important writing skills and show students how to apply those skills to selected readings.
  • Sentence-combining exercises in each chapter teach students how to vary the length and type of sentences for maximum reader impact.

Table of Contents

Reading Actively and Efficiently. Writing Summaries. Steps in Writing a Summary. An Experienced Writer Writes a Summary. Analyzing and Evaluating Your Information. Organizing and Finding Your Point. Writing a Report. The Idea Draft. Later Drafts. Using Quotations. Paraphrasing. Sentence Combining. Shaping Sentences. Recognizing Verb Forms for Writing and Sentence Combining. Shaping Sentences with Adjectives and Verb Forms. Shaping Sentences with Prepositional Phrases.
Introductions and Thesis Statements. Students at Work: Introductions. Paragraphs: Proving Your Points. Topic Sentences and the Organization Process. Students at Work: Paragraphs. Conclusions.
An Important Thinking Tool: Making Inferences. Inferences and Guesses. Good Inferences and Bad Inferences. Classifying to Discover. Assignments and Readings. Analyzing Television for Children.
Reading Assignment. "What Are TV Ads Selling to Children?" by John J. O''Connor. "Females and Minorities in TV Ads in 1987 Saturday Children''s Programs," by Daniel Riffe, Helene Goldson, Kelly Saxton, and Yang-Chou Yu.
Essay Assignment. Analyzing the Job Market.
Reading Assignment. "U.S. Income Inequality Keeps on Rising," by Robert B. Reich. "Tomorrow''s Jobs," by Bureau of Labor Statistics U.S. Department of Labor. "Benefits Dwindle Along with Wages for the Unskilled," by Peter Passell.
Essay Assignment. Learning What Our Magazines Tell About Us.
Reading Assignment. "Help or Hindrance? Women''s Magazines Offer Readers Little but Fear, Failure," by Mary Kay Blakely. "We''ve Come a Long Way, but Magazines Stayed Behind," by Susan Dudash, student.
Essay Assignment. How Do Advertisers Try to Manipulate Us?
Reading Assignment. "Advertising''s Fifteen Basic Appeals," by Jib Fowles.
Essay Assignment. The Writer''s Checklist. Sentence Combining. Joining Ideas to Show Basic Logical Relationships. Subordinating Conjunctions. Transition Words.
Comparing and Contrasting to Discover. Organizing Essays Based on Comparison and Contrast. Assignments and Readings. Controlling Political Campaign Expenses. Or Not.
Reading Assignment. "Political Reform Issues," by News Batch. "The Current State of Campaign Finance Laws," by Trevor Poetter. "The FEC: Administering and Enforcing Campaign Finance Law," by Thomas E. Mann.
Canada Elections Act and Income Tax Act. "Revitalizing Democracy: Clean Election Reform Shows the Way Forward," by Marc Breslow, Janet Groat, and Paul Saba. "Who''s Buying Whom: How Money in Politics Really Works," by Micah L. Sifry and Nancy Watzman. "Shut Up, They Explained," by David Frum. "Governor Raises $17 Million in 6 Months," by Matier and Ross.
Essay Assignment. Comparing American Families in the Past and Present.
Reading Assignment. "The Social Order in Colonial New England," by Edmund S. Morgan.
"The Role of Men and Women in Colonial New England," by Edmund S. Morgan and Louis B. Wright. "The Role of Children in Colonial New England," by Edmund S. Morgan. "Men Assuming Bigger Share at Home, New Survey Shows," by Tamar Lewin. "For First Time, Nuclear Families Drop Below 25% of Households," by Eric Schmitt.
Essay Assignment. Examining American and Asian Educational Methods.
Reading Assignment. "New Math-Science Study Rates U.S. Students Mediocre at Best," by William S. Robinson. "Why Are U.S. Kids Poor in Math?" by Barbara Vobejda. "Japan''s School System," by James Kilpatrick. "We Should Cherish Our Children''s Freedom to Think," by Kie Ho. "Strengths, Weaknesses, and Lessons of Japanese Education," by James Fallows. "School Here in the United States and There in Vietnam," Student Essay. "Some Public Schools Don''t Make the Grade," by Richard Morin.
Essay Assignment. The Health-Care Crisis: Examining Two Approaches to National Health.
Reading Assignment. "U.S. Spends Most on Health, but France No. 1 in Treatment," by Lauran Neergaard. "The Upward Drift of Health-Care Expenses in France," by Baudouin Bollaert. "The American Health Care Crisis," by Sara Collins. "Name-Brand Drug Costs Soar, Seniors Say," The Washington Post. "The Incredible Shrinking Health Care Debate," by Micah L. Sifry and Nancy Watzman. "Drug Companies Increase Spending on Efforts to Lobby Congress and Governments," by Robert Pear. "Why the U.S. Needs a Single Payer Health System," by David U. Himmelstein, M.D., and Steffie Woolhander, M.D.
The Writer''s Checklist. Sentence Combining. Joining Ideas to Show Contrast and Concession. What Is Concession?
Summary of Comparison/Contrast Words. Using Joining Words to Show Emphasis.
Facts and Opinions. Evaluating Evidence and Shaping Your Argument. Deciding Carmen Herrera''s Future.
Reading Assignment. "Various Comments on Carmen''s Dilemma by her counselor, parents, boyfriend, employer, friend, sister, brother."
Essay Assignment. Should High School Students Work?
Reading Assignment. "Part-Time Work Ethic: Should Teens Go for It?" by Dennis McLellan. "McJobs," by Ben Wildavsky. "Why Fast-Food Joints Don''t Serve Up Good Jobs for Kids," by Amitai Etzioni. "Why Not Ask the Students? Urban Teenagers Make the Case for Working," by Katherine Cress.
Essay Assignment. Should People Keep Handguns at Home?
Reading Assignment. The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. "Firearm-Related Deaths in the United States and 35 Other High- and Upper-Middle-Income Countries," by E. G. Krug, K. E. Powell, and L. L. Dahlberg. "Handgun Regulations, Crime, Assaults, and Homicide: A Tale of Two Cities," by Drs. J. H. Sloan, A. L. Kellermann, D. T. Reay, J. A. Ferris, T. Koepsell, F. P. Rivara, C. Rice, L. Gray, and J. LoGerfo. "Crime Is the Basic Problem, Not Guns," by Wayne LaPierre. "Do Gun Laws Work? Study is Inconclusive," by Kristen Wyatt. "Of Killer Pens and AK-47s," by Micah Sifry and Nancy Watzman. "Why I Bought a Gun," by Gail Buchalter. "Man Shoots Own Son."
Essay Assignment. Censorship of High School Newspapers.
Reading Assignment. "Pregnancy at Hazelwood High," by Christine de Hass. "Divorce''s Impact on Kids May Have Lifelong Effects," by Shari Gordon. "A Limit on the Student Press," by Jean Seligmann and Tessa Namuth. "High School Papers Grow Up," by Jerry Carroll. "High Court Gives a Civics Lesson," by Fred M. Hechinger. "Censorship: A Fact of Life Students Are Forced to Face," by Jonathan Yardley.
Essay Assignment. Should English Be the Official Language of the United States?
Reading Assignment. "Proposition 63." "Argument in Favor of Proposition 63," by S. I. Hayakawa, J. William Orozco, and Stanley Diamond. "Official English and English Plus: An Update." "Liberty and Language for All," by Andy Rooney.
Essay Assignment. The Writer''s Checklist. Sentence Combining. Shaping Sentences to Show Relationships: Appositives.
Punctuating Noun Phrases in Sentences. Shaping Sentences to Show Relationships: Adjective Clauses. Special Rules.
Argument and Discussion in School and on the Job. Writing Discussion Essays. Who Should Care for the Children?
Reading Assignment. "Who''s Taking Care of the Children?" by Michael Ryan. "Home Day Care Providers Face Increasing Demand," by Tammy Hansen. "High Staff Turnover Imperils Child Care, Researcher Says," by Anastasia Hendrix. "An Interview with Mary S." "Canada Takes Steps Toward Universal Child Care," by Colin Nickerson. "Child Care Sacred as France Cuts Back the Welfare State," by Marlise Simons.
Essay Assignment. Rating the Movies.
Reading Assignment. "The Motion Picture Association Movie Rating System," by Jack Valenti. "The Big Chill," by Lois P. Sheinfeld. "The Rating Game," by Paul Attanasio. "Give Movie Raters a PG, for Pigheadedness," by Tom Shales. "A Major Studio Tests the (Sexy) Waters of NC-17," by Joel Topcik.
Essay Assignment. Is Hate Speech Free Speech?
Reading Assignment. The First Amendment to the United States Constitution. "The Debate Over Placing Limits on Racist Speech Must Not Ignore the Damage It Does to Its Victims," by Charles R. Lawrence III. "Free Speech on the Campus," by Nat Hentoff. "Hate Speech on Campus," by Joseph S. Tuman. "Rethinking Campus Speech Codes," by Ben Wildavsky.
Essay Assignment. Should College Athletics Be Reformed?
Reading Assignment. "Helping Top Athletes Meet Minimum Standards," by Kate Zernike.
"Graduation Rates at Top-Tier Football Programs Poor," by Steve Wieberg. "2003 NCAA Tournament: Academics; Study Finds Top Teams Failing in the Classroom," by Frank Litsky. "Big Spenders on Campus Spending Your Money," by Selena Roberts. "NCAA Board of Directors Adopts Landmark Academic Reform Package Plan Creates Loopholes, Not Educated Athletes," by Marc Isenberg. "The Ivy League at 30: A Model for College Athletics or an Outmoded Antique?" by Douglas Lederman.
Essay Assignment. The Writer''s Checklist. Sentence Combining.
Shaping Sentences to Show Relationships: Verbal Phrases. Shaping Sentences to Show Relationships: Parallelism.
The Essay Exam. The Writing Test. Planning Your Time.
Introduction. Proofreading Quiz. Identifying Subjects and Verbs. Agreement Between Subjects and Verbs. Past Tense and Past Participles. The Past-to-Present Tense (Present Perfect). The Past-Before-Past Tense (Past Perfect). Comma-Splice Errors. Sentence Fragments. Pronouns. Using A and An. Noun Plurals. Noncountable Nouns. Dropped Contractions of Is and Are. Forming Direct Questions. Forming Indirect Questions. Apostrophes to Show Possession. Homophones. Capitalization. Credits.
Index of Authors and Titles.

What's New

  • A new assignment focuses on one of the most dramatic and famous episodes in American history, the Battle of the Little Big Horn.
  • Several new readings have been added, including "The Other Battle of Little Big Horn," "Women Working More and Parenting More," "Failing Schools Try Longer Days," "Health Care in France and the United States: Learning from Each Other," and "A Teacher Considers Gun Violence on Campus."


All supplements have been updated in coordination with the main title. Select the main title's "About" tab, then select "What's New" for updates specific to title's edition.

For more information about these supplements, or to obtain them, contact your Learning Consultant.

Instructor Supplements

WriteSpace with Personal Tutor for Developmental English Instant Access Code  (ISBN-10: 1423999851 | ISBN-13: 9781423999850)

List Price = $43.00  | CengageBrain Price = $43.00  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $43.00

Instructor's Manual  (ISBN-10: 1428230092 | ISBN-13: 9781428230095)

The manual contains teaching tips, syllabus planning, and lesson organization.

Your Guide to Success: Florida College Basic Skills Exit Test  (ISBN-10: 0547191928 | ISBN-13: 9780547191928)

List Price = $30.95  | CengageBrain Price = $30.95  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $23.25

Student Supplements

WriteSpace with Personal Tutor for Developmental English Instant Access Code  (ISBN-10: 1423999851 | ISBN-13: 9781423999850)

List Price = $43.00  | CengageBrain Price = $43.00  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $43.00

Your Guide to Success: Florida College Basic Skills Exit Test  (ISBN-10: 0547191928 | ISBN-13: 9780547191928)

List Price = $30.95  | CengageBrain Price = $30.95  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $23.25