Wednesday, November 05, 2003
My professor lectured the class for over 30 minutes on the papers he has read thus far. He was very unhappy with the incorrect use of ellipsis marks, italics/quotation marks, and works cited. I am very anxious and nervous about getting my paper back on Friday. I worked so hard on this paper, and I tell myself that whatever grade I get doesn't reflect my hard work or how much I learned, but I know it will greatly affect me. I used ellipsis marks incorrectly. I looked through all of my old papers from the seven years I've been a student, and not once did one professor comment on my incorrect use of ellipsis marks. This prescriptive rule should have been common knowledge to me, however, I thought I was using these marks correctly. What's done is done-at least I now know for the future. I think a lot of people in the class did this, because he lectured us for 30 minutes (way too long in my opinion), and made it clear he was very unhappy.

So, today I have to study very hard for my Art History exam tomorrow. IT is going to be very difficult, and I am dreading it. I just can't wait until this week is over.

I have a phonetics test on Monday-which requires me to memorize the IPA symbols. I also have a big homework assignment due on Monday, as well as a paper for Art History. This weekend (like last weekend) is down the drain so far as entertainment goes.


P.S. Things have now been put into perspective for me by my professor. Here is a copy of the letter I wrote him, with his response.

Professor Iwillnotusehisnamehere:

I am one of your students in Literary Criticism who used the ellipsis marks incorrectly in my mid-term exam. I don't know what upsets me more-the fact that I have never been corrected for using them incorrectly in over four years of college, or that I didn't realize myself that I had been using them incorrectly all this time (I honestly thought I was using them correctly). I just finished going back through all of my papers from MHCC and PSU, and not once (unfortunately) did any professor or TA comment on my incorrect use of ellipsis marks. However, as I open up my copy of Rules for Writers by Diana Hacker, the rules for the ellipsis marks are clearly there.

Anyway, obviously, I'm not going to be using them incorrectly in the future, as I now know! It just makes me angry that a rule as obvious (or apparently as unobvious) as the rule regarding the old ellipsis mark has somehow slipped by me all this time, so that I have now ended up using it incorrectly in one of my senior English classes.


Here is his response:

If it is any consolation, I got nailed on this in my MA thesis.


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