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Work for this Course (and how it will be evaluated)

Page history last edited by Cyrus Mulready 13 years, 11 months ago

As the semester progresses, I will post links to detailed descriptions for these assignments on this page, as well as a Rubric for each written assignment that shows you how exactly your work will be evaluated for the assignment.


I maintain an open gradebook policy, and encourage you to talk to me about your progress in the class and how your work is being evaluated.


Seminar Work (20%)


Participation Although I will give brief informational lectures, I plan on operating this class as a seminar the vast majority of the time.  “Seminar” comes from the Latin word meaning “seed bed,” as in, a place for scholars and their ideas to grow.  The success of this class is heavily dependent, therefore, on the contributions you make to our weekly meetings.  You should come prepared to each class to speak and share interpretations, criticisms, ask questions, and respond to your classmates’ commentary.


Seminar Presentations You will work in pairs to give three presentations over the course of the term: one on a piece of critical or theoretical writing, one on a close reading of a poem, and one on your Literature Reference Guide (see below). You should of these as pedagogical exercises, and I will be evaluating you on how effectively you teach the class and lead discussion of the materials for the seminar. You will have 15 minutes of class time, a limit I will strictly enforce. I encourage you to use techniques (audio/visual materials, handouts, and other supporting materials) that you think will make your presentation engaging and effective.


Written Work (60%)


Blogging (20%) Seminar members will contribute to the course blog  weekly with responses based on our readings (please refer to the Schedule of Weekly Readings and Assignment Deadlines for specific prompts). If you are unfamiliar with blogging, don't worry--we will spend time in class getting you set up with the technology.


Literature Reference Guide (10%) Working in pairs, you will be responsible for researching and preparing a reference guide to share with the class. These guides are due the week before the reading(s) you are preparing, so that participants can use the guide in preparation for the seminar. Please plan accordingly. You and your partner will also begin class by giving a brief overview of your work.


Final Essay (30%) Your final project for the course will culminate in an essay of roughly 10-15 pages.  I will give you some general guidelines for the assignment, but my expectation is that this will be a research project that grows  out of the collaborative work (blogging and seminar discussions) we do in the class.  Prior to the final deadline, you will submit an abstract and an annotated bibliography for your project, which will give us the opportunity to discuss directions, difficulties, and possibilities for your final essay.


Final Exam and Midterm (20%)


The two exams in this class will be one-hour essay exams designed to help you hone your skills of close reading and prepare for the format of the comprehensive exam.


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