Higher Education

The College Writer's Handbook, 1st Edition

  • includes 2009 MLA Update Card
  • Randall VanderMey Westmont College
  • Verne Meyer Write Source, UpWrite Press, and Thoughtful Learning
  • John Van Rys Redeemer University College
  • Patrick Sebranek Write Source, UpWrite Press, and Thoughtful Learning
  • ISBN-10: 0495899704  |  ISBN-13: 9780495899709
  • 608 Pages
  • Previous Editions: 2007
  • © 2007 | Published
  • College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $102.00



Continuing in the tradition of The College Writer, The College Writer's Handbook offers a proven at-a-glance page format, practical writing instruction, and an inviting design--everything today's students need for college and career writing. In addition, the authors' established use of humor as a pedagogical tool and their entertaining visuals, quotations, anecdotes, and models enhance learning and humanize the rich content, setting this handbook apart.The compact handbook balances clear and concise explanations with an abundance of useful hints and compelling examples. It also includes extended coverage of critical topics such as the writing process as well as critical-reading and critical-thinking skills. An easy-to-use CD and companion web site enrich the handbook's instruction, providing useful learning tools for the modern writer. Students receive the most up-to-date information on MLA documentation with the enclosed tri-fold card providing NEW 2009 MLA Handbook formats.

Features and Benefits

  • Exceptional coverage of writing across the curriculum and writing in other contexts includes chapters on writing personal, analytical, and persuasive essays, along with models of common writing forms such as literary analyses, lab reports, field reports, and research papers.
  • A thorough introduction to critical thinking, reading, and viewing helps students analyze texts and images more closely and apply these principles to their own writing.
  • Three full chapters on design include high-interest material on creating and using visuals and on writing and designing for the Web.
  • Superior integrated ESL guidance--combined with an easy-to-follow format--make this handbook appropriate for classes with nonnative speakers of English.
  • The comprehensive research section provides in-depth coverage of using sources appropriately, integrating sources, and avoiding plagiarism. Students can refer to detailed coverage of four documentation formats: MLA, APA, Chicago, and CSE (CBE).
  • Students receive the most up-to-date information on MLA documentation with the enclosed tri-fold card providing NEW 2009 MLA Handbook formats.

Table of Contents

Tab 1: Critical Thinking
Critical Thinking Through Reading
Critical Thinking in Writing
Critical Thinking Through Visual Images
Understanding Argument and Persuasion
Assessing Writing
Tab 2: The Writing Process
Getting Started
Editing and Proofreading
Submitting, Publishing, and Portfolios
Tab 3: Style Issues
Writing Strong Paragraphs
Writing Effective Sentences
Strengthening Word Choice
A Glossary of Word Usage
Tab 4: Design Issues
Designing Documents
Designing and Using Visuals
Writing and Designing for the Web
Tab 5: Grammar
Nouns and Pronouns
Other Parts of Sppech
Tab 6: Sentences
Sentence Basics
Using Phrases
Using Clauses
Solving Sentence Prob.
Agreement Errors
Sentence Problems
Tab 7: Punctuation and Mechanics
Using End Punctuation
Other Punctuation
Spelling and Plurals
Numbers and Abbreviations
Tab 8: Multilingual and ESL Guidelines
Surviving College
Understanding Words[
Understanding Sentences
Understanding Idioms and Mixed Pairs
WAC & Research
Tab 9: Writing Across the Curriculum
Forms of College Writing: An Overview
Personal Essays
Analytical Essays
Persuasive Essays
Literary Analyses
Business and Application Writing
Oral Presentations
Objective and Essay Tests
Tab 10: Research Writing
Planning Your Research Project
Note-Taking Strategies
Doing Primary Research
Doing Library Research
Doing Internet Research
Drafting Papers with Documented Research
Tab 11: MLA
The MLA System and Sample Paper
MLA In-Text Citations
MLA Works Cited
Tab 12: APA, Chicago, and CSE
The APA System and Sample Paper
APA In-Text Citations
APA References
Chicago (CMS) and Turabian Format and Documentation
CSE (CBE) Format and Documentation

What's New

  • Lively, user-friendly design elements such as bulleted lists, one- and two-page spreads, twelve tabs to organize topics, and color to highlight key information, facilitate reading and enable students to find information quickly.


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

Teacher's Guide with CD-ROM  (ISBN-10: 0618491724 | ISBN-13: 9780618491728)

List Price = $9.95  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $7.00

Student Grammar Exercise Booklet  (ISBN-10: 0618491716 | ISBN-13: 9780618491711)

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

Instructor's Resource Manual  (ISBN-10: 0618491708 | ISBN-13: 9780618491704)

Student Supplements

Student Grammar Exercise Booklet  (ISBN-10: 0618491716 | ISBN-13: 9780618491711)

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

Meet the Author

Author Bio

Randall VanderMey

Randall VanderMey (Ph.D. University of Iowa, M.F.A. Iowa Writers' Workshop, M.A. University of Pennsylvania) is an associate professor in the Department of English at Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California. He also has taught composition, literature, and technical writing at Iowa State University, Dordt College, and the University of Iowa. He is a contributing editor and creative consultant for Write Source. Dr. VanderMey has received numerous fellowships, grants, and awards for his teaching and poetry. He has published two books of poems, GROWING SOUL: A SONG CYCLE, GOD TALK, and CHARM SCHOOL: FIVE WOMEN OF THE ODYSSEY, as well as a commissioned biography, MERIZON: THE GREAT JOURNEY.

Verne Meyer

Dr. Verne Meyer is an educator and a businessperson. For nine years, he taught English in high schools in Michigan and Wisconsin; and for fifteen years, he taught dramatic literature, theatre history, and composition at Dordt College in Iowa. In 1977, with Pat Sebranek, Meyer cofounded Write Source Educational Publishing House, now a subsidiary of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Supplemental. A graduate of Calvin College (B.A.), Marquette University (M.A.), and the University of Minnesota (Ph.D.), Dr. Meyer has coauthored a number of texts for college students, including THE COLLEGE WRITER, THE COLLEGE WRITER'S HANDBOOK, COMP, THE BUSINESS WRITER, and WRITE FOR WORK. For students in grades 8 through 12, he coauthored WRITERS INC, SCHOOL TO WORK, WRITE FOR COLLEGE, and a number of Write Source textbooks. For businesspeople, he coauthored WRITE FOR BUSINESS and EFFECTIVE EMAIL MADE EZ. Dr. Meyer is currently a contributing editor for Write Source and UpWrite Press. He is also a featured speaker in the School Improvement Network's instructional videos, Writing Across the Curriculum.

John Van Rys

John Van Rys (Ph.D. Dalhousie University, M.A./B.A. University of Western Ontario) has taught composition, business writing, creative writing, and literature courses to college students for more than twenty-five years. After spending fifteen years at Dordt College in Sioux Center, Iowa, Dr. Van Rys has been teaching as a full professor in the English Department at Redeemer University College in Hamilton, Ontario, since 2005, where he also pursues scholarly work in Canadian literature. For over twenty years, he has worked on writing-across-the-curriculum theory and practice, on connections between workplace and academic writing, and on strategies for strengthening varied literacies in students (from reading to research to visual literacy). With Write Source Educational Publishing and Cengage Learning, he has coauthored writing handbooks for students from middle school to college. Dr. Van Rys also has coauthored an award-winning business-writing handbook for workplace professionals, WRITE FOR BUSINESS, with UpWrite Press.

Patrick Sebranek

Patrick Sebranek (M.A. University of Wisconsin, LaCrosse) taught English, speech, and multimedia classes for sixteen years at Union Grove High School in Wisconsin. During that time, he served as the English department chair and worked on several district-wide projects, including a writing-across-the-curriculum program and a K-12 writing sequence. He has studied the works of James Moffett, Ken Macrorie, Linda Reif, Nancie Atwell, and many other contemporary educators dealing with writing and learning. Mr. Sebranek is an author and editorial director for the Write Source Educational Publishing House and works closely with teachers and educators on all new and revised handbooks and sourcebooks.