Hoeffner, Common Places:Bridge to College English (c) 2017, 1e

As more new college students find themselves placed into developmental courses, it is increasingly necessary for high schools to provide academic remediation and support that prepares students for college-level English. McGraw-Hill is a trusted source for the tools and programs you’ll need to ensure that your students are prepared for the transition to college. The Common Places program enables struggling students to become college-ready by improving learning and performance.

About the Program

Common Places: Bridge to College English features include:

  • Integrated instructional materials including close reading, writing strategies, vocabulary, and grammar instruction
  • An annotated Teacher Edition with robust teaching tips and answers to in-text questions and exercises
  • Practical guidance to help students prepare for college-level work, including exercises to boost emotional intelligence and metacognition
  • A wealth of digital resources, including leveled assessments, leveled reading and writing exercises, and practice question sets designed to help students excel on various college placement tests

Program Components

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Additional Details & Resources

PART ONE: Planning for Success

  • CHAPTER 1 Critical Thinking Skills and Success Strategies

PART TWO: Reading and Writing as Integrated Processes

  • CHAPTER 2 Annotating Texts and Developing Vocabulary
  • CHAPTER 3 Previewing Texts and Working with Topics
  • CHAPTER 4 Main Ideas
  • CHAPTER 5 Support for Main Ideas
  • CHAPTER 6 Text Purposes and Text Patterns
  • CHAPTER 7 Organizing, Drafting, and Summarizing
  • CHAPTER 8 Titles, Introductions, and Conclusions
  • CHAPTER 9 Inferences and Tone
  • CHAPTER 10 Revising and Editing

PART THREE: Additional Skills

  • CHAPTER 11 Using Sources

PART FOUR: Well-Crafted Sentences

  • UNIT 1 Sentence Combining: Phrases and Clauses
  • UNIT 2 Spelling and Word Choice
  • UNIT 3 Punctuation and Mechanics


  1. Working with Informative Texts
  2. Working with Analysis and Evaluation Texts
  3. Working with Argument Texts


  • Triumphing over Adversity
  • Self-Segregation
  • Is Comedy Central?
  • Planning for the Future

Lisa Hoeffner
Lisa Hoeffner earned a PhD in English with a specialization in rhetoric from the University of Houston. She has taught a wide range of courses over the past twenty-five years, including English composition and rhetoric, reading, critical thinking, American and British literature, world literature, humanities, and business writing. Since 1998, Dr. Hoeffner has served in two positions—professor of English and professor of reading—at McLennan Community College in Waco, Texas.

In addition to her teaching role, Dr. Hoeffner is focusing on curricular redesign in developmental education. She serves as grant director for a Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board grant awarded for work on improvement and innovation in developmental education. With the advent of integrated reading and writing in Texas, she has provided leadership for colleges and universities across the state that are creating integrated reading and writing (INRW) programs. She has designed and led training workshops and webinars to prepare faculty to teach INRW and to help institutions create INRW programs. She has also provided leadership to public school districts implementing INRW programs as college preparatory classes.

Dr. Hoeffner has a passion for teaching and for innovative technologies. She designed and taught her first online freshman composition class in 1999 and has since developed and taught online courses for developmental students. She is thrilled that she is able to bring both passions to bear in her development of Common Places and the Connect IRW: Common Places Master Course.

Dr. Hoeffner is a recipient of several awards, including the National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development (NISOD) Excellence Award. She has written and published scholarly articles and poetry, and she has presented her work in developmental education nationally. A native Texan, Dr. Hoeffner enjoys exploring the flora and fauna of regional ecosystems, cooking, and dreaming about living off the grid.

Kent Hoeffner
Kent Hoeffner earned a BA from Texas A&M University in College Station, an MDiv from Golden Gate Seminary in Mill Valley, California, and a PhD from Southern Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. Before working in higher education, Dr. Hoeffner was employed in the mental health field, working primarily with adolescents with social and emotional difficulties. During that time, he also taught adult basic education and GED preparation classes.

Dr. Hoeffner has served at McLennan Community College since 2001, first as the division director for liberal arts and currently as a professor of philosophy. In addition to teaching introductory courses in philosophy, he has also taught and developed courses in critical thinking and logic. In 2007, he developed McLennan’s first online philosophy course, and since then he has continued to develop and teach various online courses.

Recently, Dr. Hoeffner renewed his long-standing involvement in academic advising by joining a group of faculty in a grant-funded intensive advising program focused on improving the success of developmental students. He regularly mentors students who need help in the areas of successful academic behaviors, self-advocacy, and the development of college-level reading and writing skills.

His background in foreign languages and logic contributed to his talents for creating the sentence-combining and grammar units in Common Places, and his expertise in teaching critical thinking and in student mentoring has helped to shape the text. When he is not teaching, advising, or writing, Dr. Hoeffner enjoys following the Dallas Cowboys, reading, and traveling.