This is our catalog of courses. We will occasionally adjust the course listing to reflect the addition of new courses and the retirement of others. 

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Essay Test Mastery for College-Bound Students (COLL-1)

Headed to college? Take this must-have course to master the skills of essay writing for tests in a timed setting– and be completely prepared for college-level essay tests.

Total classes: 8

Prerequisite: Required: High School Essential Writing 1-4 (HS 9-1, 9-2, 9-3, & 9-4).

Because this is an advanced course that assumes your student has key writing foundations and the advanced writing how-to’s in place that are specifically taught at Aquinas Writing Advantage (AWA), 9-1 through 9-4 writing courses are required prerequisites.

Alternative Prerequisite: A passing assessment from the Aquinas Writing Advantage Assessment service. Please contact h[email protected] for any questions on permissions.

Suggested grade level: 9th to 12th grade

Suggested credit: One full semester Writing or English


Master in-class essay tests with this how-to course with practical, prescriptive, clear direction on how to decipher a prompt, think and process the instructions clearly, quickly brainstorm an answer, and write an essay in a linear narrative format with few errors – to “show the teacher what you know” with style. Learn essay writing secrets from Professor Brown’s 20 years of college-level teaching and college writing course curriculum development at three universities. Come prepared to write– and to enjoy writing!


Class 1: The Timed Essay Writing Process: The Goal of an Essay, Types of Essays, and What’s So Special About Timed Essays?

Class 2: Analyzing and Using the Prompt: The Set-Up, Question, and Action

Class 3: Analyzing and Using the Prompt: Using Keywords and “Diamond Words”

Class 4: The Writing Process: Brainstorming with “The Big 10” When You Have to Work Fast (How to Brainstorm Quality Content)

Class 5: The Writing Process: Arranging and Ordering Content for Clarity and Power

Class 6: Writing Essays about Course Content (texts, readings, class materials, and experiences); Tips on Studying and Remembering Content for Essay Questions

Class 7: Writing Essays About (and With) New Ideas: Synthesis

Class 8: Must-Do Essay Tips for Success

Materials and Homework

Course Materials: All materials are provided FREE by the instructor. Students must have the ability to turn in assignments in Microsoft Word format (either through purchasing Word or using Google Docs or another format, then downloading the document into Word format before uploading it into the grading system).

Homework: Written assignments are given each week. The average weekly time estimate for homework (including both brainstorming and writing time) is two (2) to five (5) hours, depending on the student’s abilities.

Important Dates

Class Dates: Thursdays, January 18 to March 14, 2024. No class Feb. 15 (mid-semester break)

Starting Time: 2:30 PM Eastern (1:30 PM Central, 12:30 PM Mountain, 11:30 AM Pacific)

Duration per class: 55 minutes

Registration link
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