Frequently, we don’t have time to explore the various ideas and connections each text offers us during class time. In order to extend our engagement with the material, and in order for me to better assess your ability to think about and understand the texts we read, we will conduct an online discussion blog for the course.
The format is as follows:
Step 1: By 12 am the night before we begin a new reading you are to post a reflection on the material that we will discuss the next day. This reflection should not simply summarize the reading, though you may wish to review a central point in order to orient the rest of our class to the material on which you plan to focus. You can pose a question (which you should also try to answer), make a connection between the new reading and material we have already discussed in class, draw our attention to a new connection between the reading and something you have encountered in your studies, the news, or everyday life. No late posts will be accepted!
Each reflection should be about 50-100 words in length, although I won’t actually count every word. You should proofread, and always have a mini-thesis or point you are trying to make, with evidence and supporting analysis.
Step 2: By 12 am the morning AFTER we complete a text (aka our last discussion day), you should select one of your classmate’s blog reflections and respond to that. You can add to the insights you find there, challenge them (respectfully) or use the post as a jumping off point to make a new connection. This response post should also be well written, supported with detailed evidence from the text under discussion, and be about 30-50 words minimum. No late posts will be accepted!
Step 3: Blog self-assessment. Twice this semester, you will read back through your posts and comment on how they develop and grow. What do you notice about your reflections and responses? Do they tend to focus on similar themes or ideas? Is there one of which you are particularly proud? On 10/28 and 11/25 you will print out a sample post of yours and write up a (typed) self-evaluation that allows you to think critically about your own thinking. These self-evaluations are due at the beginning of class and must be stapled, with your name, IH section, my name and date on the top left of the page. I will return these assessments with comments on and an evaluation of your blog posts. No late self-evaluations will be accepted!
This assignment is worth 15% of your final grade