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ENGL 105: Valenzuela: Welcome

Welcome English 105 students!

This guide will help you write your Essay #2 for this class. We will use it for the sessions with a Librarian October 20 & 21, but it is designed to assist you at any time with this assignment (and with any other research projects you may have - these skills and tips are part of your research toolkit).

The parts of this guide will walk you through the steps for the research for this essay.

  • Help With Crafting a Research Question = getting started with pre-research.
  • Search Skills - Finding Articles from Library Databases = how to phrase your research question into a search phrase that a computer can understand, broadening or narrowing your search when the results aren't satisfactory.
  • Sources for Articles and eBooks = where to search for online materials for this essay.
  • Evaluating Sources = critical analysis of the items found in your searches (includes analyzing webpages, too).
  • MLA Format for Citations = putting the citations to the sources you are using for your essay into MLA style.

Research Essay Requirements

Professor Valenzuela' description of Essay #2, How to Be an Anti-Racist :

Background:  As a class we have read and discussed pages 1-106 of Ibram X. Kendi’s book titled How to Be an Antiracist.  This essay will require that you identify one of Kendi’s opinion that you either agree or disagree with.  You will need to explain why you agree or disagree with his opinion.  Your position and explanation will become your thesis.  Everyone will need to defend their thesis with supporting details provided by two credible authors.  If you agree with Kendi’s opinion, you can use supporting details from his book, and he will be one of these two authors.  If you disagree with Kendi’s opinion, you will need to use two other authors to defend your position.  During one of our required Zoom class meetings, a Cañada College librarian will give our class a lesson on how to research and find credible authors in our library’s databases and in the larger Internet for this essay.  I also recommend that you sign up for a one-on-one appointment with our librarians to receive more assistance with research.    

Writing Task (Essay Question): What is one of Kendi’s opinions found within pages 1-106 of How to Be an Antiracist that you either agree or disagree with?  Explain why you agree or disagree with his opinion.


  • Type a double-spaced 3-5-page essay that has an introduction, body and conclusion.
  • Give your essay an original title.
  • At the beginning of the introduction of your essay, you will need to introduce the overall topic related to your thesis with an opening hook, an explanation of the hook, and a broad explanation of the overall topic.
  • In the middle of your introduction, after you introduce and explain your overall topic, you will need to introduce author Kendi X. Ibram and his book titled How to Become an Antiracist by giving some brief background information about both.  Be sure to relate the book’s background information to the overall topic.
  • Write an original thesis at the end of your introduction that answers the essay question under “Writing Task.”
  • Support your thesis in the body paragraphs with at least four supporting details (four passages/four quotations).  If you agree with one of Kendi’s opinion’s, two of your supporting details should be from his book titled How to Be an Antiracist and the other two supporting details should be from one other author.  If you disagree with Kendi’s opinion, your four supporting details should be from two different authors.  You do not need to include your personal examples.
  • Surround your supporting details from the book and articles with quotation marks and include an MLA in-text citation next to each quotation.
  • Properly introduce and interpret the quotations from the book and articles by paraphrasing them after the MLA in-text citations.  Then explain how these quotations (supporting details) support your main ideas.  In other words, sandwich your quotations.
  • Use MLA style to format your entire essay, which includes the first page, header and Works Cited page.
  • Please do not use contractions in your own writing.  If a quotation from the book or articles has a contraction, then it is fine to have it in your essay.