Friday, December 11, 2009

Public Essay Submission Guidance

To submit to The Coloradoan:

You should register for membership at Coloradoan.com. Once you've logged into the main page, look for the section titled "Your Voices and Views" and the link "Share stories from your community." That link should bring you to the "Submit Your Article & Photo" page (uploaded to drop.io as a PDF).

  • Fill out your contact information
  • Briefly summarize your article in 3-4 sentences
  • Fill out the "Your Article" box with your Public Essay text (roughly 1000 words, using line breaks between paragraphs instead of indentations since the box does not allow you to format the text in MLA style)
  • Select which category and neighborhood your article fits
  • Attach your Visual Rhetoric file (it could be one photo, but consider adding text or combining two or more images, as appropriate)
  • Recalling our discussion in class, compose a caption for the visual rhetoric and a byline (your name)

You should submit a printout of the submission confirmation page as proof of submission, along with a hard copy of the essay in MLA style. Again, note that you won't have a Works Cited page, since you'll be making (appropriately brief) in-text references to sources, as we did in our Open Letter assignment.

To submit to The Fort Collins Rabbit:

Follow guidance in the latest Rabbit issue, which includes the e-mail address fortcollinsrabbit@gmail.com. That's where you should send your Public Essay and Visual Rhetoric as attachments, along with an e-mail pitching your text to the journal (the essay itself should not include references to CO150). Submit a printout of the e-mail as proof of submission, along with a hard copy of the essay in MLA style. Again, note that you won't have a Works Cited page, since you'll be making (appropriately brief) in-text references to sources, as we did in our Open Letter assignment.

To submit to Wolf Boy:

Follow guidance at WolfBoy.org, which includes the e-mail address octabeck@yahoo.com. That's where you should send your Public Essay and Visual Rhetoric as attachments, along with an e-mail pitching your text to the journal (the essay itself should not include references to CO150). Submit a printout of the e-mail as proof of submission, along with a hard copy of the essay in MLA style. Again, note that you won't have a Works Cited page, since you'll be making (appropriately brief) in-text references to sources, as we did in our Open Letter assignment.

To submit to A:



Click on the above handout that provides submission guidance and the e-mail address aliteraryjournal@gmail.com. That's where you should send your Public Essay and Visual Rhetoric as attachments, along with an e-mail pitching your text to the journal (the essay itself should not include references to CO150). Submit a hard copy of the e-mail as proof of submission, along with a hard copy in MLA style. Again, note that you won't have a Works Cited page, since you'll be making (appropriately brief) in-text references to sources, as we did in our Open Letter assignment.

Image Resources for Visual Rhetoric

To use an image created by an outside source in your Visual Rhetoric, you need permission or a license from that source. SXC is one of a few databases that provide an exception to this rule: you must register as a member but most of the images available for download come free of license restrictions. iStockPhoto is a similar resource that provides images for a small fee. Note that captions for images from databases such as SXC and iStockPhoto still need to credit sources--yourself, if you alter the original image artistically, another artist or photographer, or the name of the database.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Calendar Post for December 11

  • Please meet in Morgan Library Classroom Two on Friday for our last class session before our final period. We'll discuss options for submitting the Public Essay online or via e-mail, and obtaining proof of submission to include with your portfolio.
  • Meanwhile, you should be able to offer comments on two collaborators' second drafts via Google Docs. Check this post for the names of your collaborators and guidance on offering feedback, which we'll work on in class tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Final Period Times

According to the Colorado State Registrar's Office, final periods for sections 37 and 44 will both be held Tuesday, December 15. Section 37 will meet 3:40-5:40 PM. Section 44 will meet 9:10-11:10 AM. Beforehand, please review a handout on analyzing and presenting the Local Inquiry/Public Essay, whose presentation and portfolio is due the same day.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Office Hours Update

Tuesday's office hours will take place in the Morgan Library, instead of Aylesworth 268. Raul will be available at one of the wooden tables near the MAPS and TAX collections on the first floor of the library. See our syllabus for more details.

Local Inquiry/Public Essay Assignment FAQ

Question on Mon, Dec 14, 2009 at 12:50 PM:

I still have not gotten any invitations from my group members, and I don't want to be counted off for not editing theirs. I've checked everyday for the past week for their invitations. This is a bummer for me because I'd really like some feedback so I can get a decent grade.

Response:

You won't lose points for not commenting on drafts that don't exist. It's unfortunate that your collaborators haven't offered you comments or posted their own drafts, and they will lose points for not participating. It's a little late to seek outside help on your draft now, but the Writing Center's online service may be a possibility. I know that the Center's walk-in hours have been reduced this week: 10 AM to 2 PM, Monday, December 14th through Wednesday, December 16th. Everyone feels understandably busy this week, but as a last resort you might ask a friend you know to be a good writer to give your draft a quick read and offer some oral comments.


Question on Mon, Dec 14, 2009 at 12:41 PM:

I've searched the blog and drop.io and haven't figured out how and/or when to turn in each individual part. Can you send out a blog post with the answer to this because I feel like I'm not the only one confused.

Response:

The Local Inquiry/Public Essay is due as a portfolio during the final period. Our blog talks about that here:
According to the Colorado State Registrar's Office, final periods for sections 37 and 44 will both be held Tuesday, December 15. Section 37 will meet 3:40-5:40 PM. Section 44 will meet 9:10-11:10 AM. Beforehand, please review a handout on analyzing and presenting the Local Inquiry/Public Essay, whose presentation and portfolio is due the same day.
Additionally, our assignment sheet for the Local Inquiry/Public Essay says the following:
11 or 15 December 2009: In a manila folder, please turn in (1) a Public Essay of roughly 1,000 words in the same condition the text was submitted to your chosen publication; (2) some evidence of your submission, be it an online confirmation form or an e-mail showing your submission; and (3) the Visual Rhetoric that accompanied your submission.

15 December 2009: Please turn in an MLA-formatted rhetorical analysis of roughly 500 words. On this date you’ll also deliver a short presentation summarizing your essay and your analysis during our final period.

Question on Mon, Dec 7, 2009 at 4:48 PM:

The assignment handout says the Public Essay is to be around 1,000 words. How far over 1,000 words is too far over? I have a lot of information I've gathered and really want to do my topic justice instead of slim it down and only report the skin and bones of the situation.

Response:

Although it's tempting to write more the upper limit for your essay should be 1,200 words, as was the case with the Academic Argument. Over-writing the essay and then condensing it is actually a great way to improve your writing's quality. Look for ways sentences can shorten as well as parts that distract from the story's core and can be cut altogether.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Calendar Post for December 7 and 9 + Workshop/Visual/Analysis Handouts Posted

  • Meet back in class on Wednesday for a discussion of visual rhetoric and rhetorical analysis. In preparation, please read a handout on analyzing and presenting the Public Essay (at drop.io).
  • By Wednesday evening, as your last Writing Studio forum post, practice analyzing a text rhetorically by applying what you know to one of four essays we read last week. In at least 100 words, propose and analyze just one relationship in the essay you chose to read––writer and audience, purpose and context, text and genre, or a different combination of rhetorical elements. Additional elements and questions to guide your analysis can be found here.
  • For Wednesday and Friday, review PHG chapter six, "Analyzing and Designing Visuals." Pay particular attention to pages 214-222 and 231-235. A handout on designing visual rhetoric has also been uploaded to drop.io.
  • Instead of holding class on Monday, we will continue drafting the Public Essay and participate in the Google Docs workshop discussed elsewhere on our blog and at the library on Friday. At drop.io you'll find a guide to commenting on the Public Essay. Please note that first drafts and invitations to collaborators are due online Monday by noon and that second drafts and invitations are due Thursday evening.
  • Guidance on submitting your Public Essay online or via e-mail will be posted later this week.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Google Docs Handout + Groups for the Public Essay Posted

A handout discussed in class, "Google Docs Workshop: How and When to Post Essay Drafts and Comments," has been uploaded to drop.io. Please take note of steps in the workshop due today, Monday, Thursday, and next Friday. Google Docs can be accessed via Gmail or Google Apps for Colorado State University.

You can find e-mail addresses for collaborators in a class e-mail and on the "Classmates" page of the Writing Studio. If you don't see your name listed below, follow step three in the workshop. And please remember: In order to receive points for participation and preserve access to comments, revisions to the Public Essay should take place on your desktop, not online. See the handout above for more details.

CO150.37:
  • Eric S, Stephen G, Jack H
  • Jason L, Branden K, Amanda D
  • Kayla T, Cyndi H, Kassi M
  • Rachel S, Kelly T, Valerie B
  • Brian R, Alex H, Jesse S
  • Cooper O, Senite T, Mark K
CO150.44:
  • Regan G, Dan P, Chris N
  • Adrienne K, Michael W, Jill H
  • Kaylynn A, Robbie O, Sam S
  • Sean W, Justin S, Derek W
  • Amanda K, Rachael C, Kelsey C
  • Jonny S, Zach H, Sal B
Update: a guide for commenting on the Public Essay has also been uploaded to drop.io. Previously posted handouts on field research and the Local Inquiry/Public Essay can also be found there, along with essay samples.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Grades and Attendance Reports Posted

Two spreadsheets that show grades for sections 37 and 44 through our group inquiry assignment have been posted to drop.io:
You can find the row that displays your grades by way of the last three digits of your nine-digit student ID number.

Update: two similar spreadsheets that show attendance records have also been posted to drop.io:
Look for a column called "Effect on Final Grade" to determine whether attendance will lower your overall percentage, and by how many points. Also note that the deadline for our extra credit assignment has been extended.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Calendar Post for December 2 and 4 + Interview/Survey Forum

  • Meet in Morgan Library Classroom Two on Friday and bring materials to support your Local Inquiry/Public Essay writing process (newspaper articles, books, interview notes, survey findings, et cetera).
  • As a team, be prepared to profile the person you spoke with during a lightening interview on Wednesday. If your team wasn't able to reach someone during class, tell us how and why your interview failed.
  • In preparation for field research this week, based on what you know about your topic, draft a set of interview or survey questions. Then, by Wednesday night, post them to a Writing Studio forum along with a one-paragraph explanation of your specific purpose in conducting this type of inquiry. (Why do you feel you need to talk to this professor, for example, or ask people in Old Town Square these questions?) As you draft your questions, consider our handout on field research, PHG pages 320-322, and the following guidance.
Interviews:

- Are the bread and butter of field research.
- Can be formal or informal, arranged or impromptu.
- Don’t always lend themselves to recording, but recording allows you to be most accurate.
- Provide you with more control because you’re there to guide the discussion.
- Allow you to ask for more elaborate answers.
- Allow you to clarify confusing questions for more accurate responses.
- Allow you to adjust your purpose in light of your interviewee's knowledge.
- Provide a more comfortable atmosphere for raising personal questions.
- Lend themselves to witnessing body language.

Surveys and questionnaires:

- Allow you to gauge information from large groups of people.
- Are easier to tabulate numerically.
- May lead to more honest responses since writing is more anonymous than talking.

Effective interview questions will:

- Start with objective or factual questions, or at the beginning of a chronology.
- Gradually approach more subjective or controversial questions.
- Almost always invite more than a yes or no answer.
- Avoid assumptions about what the interviewee will say, but reflect some knowledge of his or her situation.

Effective survey questions will:

- Be clear and focused.
- Avoid confusing or ambiguous language.
- Be shaped for a target audience.
- Be respectful and objective.
- Avoid skewing responses or leading respondents.
- Take into account different uses for open-ended and closed questions.
- Not take more than a few minutes to answer.
Most importantly, effective questions will address the writer’s purpose, which is generally to find out what people know and think about the topic at hand. Interviews and questionnaires, in other words, will give you a sense of the conversation surrounding your essay.
  • There will be no further news quizzes, as you should have an essay topic in mind by now.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Calendar Post for November 30

  • Prepare for our third local news quiz. These in-class writing prompts encourage us to study local news sources for essay ideas. In particular, between now and Monday, browse:
The Coloradoan
The Rocky Mountain Collegian
The Denver Post's coverage of Denver and the West
Our #CO150 Twitter feed
  • Read again one of the essays you were assigned in class on Friday, November 20 (by Orlean, Malone, or Maddocks) and prepare for a group discussion and presentation of the text on Monday by reviewing questions shown in class (now at drop.io). Reading each of these essays will be helpful in understanding the Local Inquiry/Public Essay, but if you weren't in class on November 20, focus on either Orlean or Malone's text.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Enjoy the Holiday, Everyone!

We'll see you back in class on Monday, November 30.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Local Inquiry/Public Essay Assignment + Samples Posted

"Joining the Conversation: Local Inquiry and the Public Essay" has been uploaded to drop.io. In addition, below, six sample essays composed by fellow students and published online by The Coloradoan are available for download. Some appear as two files: one is suitable for printing, the other shows the text displayed alongside visual rhetoric and comments from readers. Note that while these samples generally achieve the purpose of the Local Inquiry/Public Essay, they do have shortcomings and should be read in the context of the assignment handout (above).

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Calendar Post for November 20 + Local Inquiry/Public Essay Forum

  • If you haven't already done so, review "Investigating: The Writing Process" on PHG pages 312-322. A handout at drop.io summarizes four kinds of field research techniques, three of which are covered in the PHG.
  • Prepare for our second local news quiz. These in-class writing prompts encourage us to study local news sources for essay ideas. In particular, between now and Friday, browse:

The Denver Post's coverage of Denver and the West

  • By Saturday night, at our Writing Studio forums page, please post a 200-word overview of the Local Inquiry/Public Essay you're planning to pursue. This plan will be tentative and may change. Still, you can discuss how the inquiry you're considering might incorporate qualities of the Public Essay as well as field research techniques (see handouts at drop.io). You can also describe the kinds of people you plan to interview and audience expectations for the publication to which you will pitch your essay or column.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Academic Argument Assignment FAQ

Question on Tue, Nov 17, 2009 at 3:57 PM:

The final copy does not need to be in Google Docs, does it?

Response:

That's right, it does not. Revisions to the final draft of your Academic Argument should take place in Word and on your desktop, not in the Google Docs draft that you've shared online. This allows us to preserve the comments your collaborators have provided in the context of your rough draft, and award points for participation. This point was reiterated on our blog on Saturday:
You can edit and format your final paper without the comments showing by clicking "File" and "Print settings." Uncheck the "include comments" box, and the click "OK." Now you can select "File" and "Download file as" to save a copy of your draft as a Word document (without the comments).

Question on Tue, Nov 17, 2009 at 1:29 PM:

I was just curious to see what you wanted the title to our Academic Argument to be. Should it just be "Academic Arguement" or do you want it specific to our paper?

Response:

I'm glad you posed this question. Unless you're told otherwise (think "Works Cited," for our annotated bibliographies), most arguments, essays, and research papers in MLA style require a creative title that departs from the name of the assignment. An example of this comes in the paper Diane Hacker includes in her supplement, "Online Monitoring: A Threat to Employee Privacy in the Wired Workplace." Another example comes in the argument we discussed on Monday, Crystal Sabatke's "Welfare Is Still Necessary for Women and Children in the U.S." Note in both cases that titles of academic papers appear longer than titles of short stories, plays, and other fictional works. Sometimes they also involve a colon.


Question on Tue, Nov 10, 2009 at 8:26 AM:

I was wondering would it be appropriate to put a picture into my argument? Mine is on deforestation in Indonesia and it seems my argument would benefit from a visual. If not that is okay too, I just wanted to ask.

Response:

That's a good question. It would be fine to include an illustration, and for formatting guidance you should see pages 50 and 51 of Diane Hacker's MLA supplement, where the writer of a sample text includes a "Dilbert" comic strip. Note that there's a reference in the text to the illustration's figure number, and that the illustration's caption includes this figure number ("Fig. 1") as well as a source. Also, for our purposes, the illustration won't affect the argument's required length. In other words, you should still have at least 1,000 words but no more than (the equivalent of) four pages of written text.


Question on Mon, Nov 2, 2009 at 3:01 PM:

I was not clear on if we should have completed any research before coming to our conference with you? I have written the majority of the outline but I have not done any research; do we need to have that completed by the time we come for our conference? The sample paper had tons of research and a works cited page. Will we need to have all of that prepared as well?

Response:

Here's what our proposal assignment handout asks about research, under "Evidence and Arguments":
What kinds of evidence has your research revealed so far that might support an argument shaped by the tentative thesis statement above? Summarize different key arguments about this issue that you have discovered during your research so far, focusing especially on those that support your claim. (Be sure to cite sources here.)
And here's what our blog says about the sample paper:
please note that the sample proposal runs too long as a text and does not conform to MLA guidelines or our assignment handout's specifications. Still, it does respond to many of the same questions that serve as prompts for your proposal, and it shows a student carefully researching and designing an argument in proposal form.
That last part is important to note: it's hard to write an effective proposal without doing some preliminary research on the evidence to support it. Your question-at-issue, your claim or position on that question, and the factual information to support that claim should all feel tentative at this stage, and that's okay because you're only proposing an argument, not actually drafting it. Still, this proposal needs to be grounded in sources you might rely on, and that is why you see the author of the sample proposal discussing and citing a few potential sources––that kind of source-based discussion is also expected in your proposal.


Question on Sun, Nov 1, 2009 at 10:46 PM:

I was looking at the sample argument proposal and it was talking about a group. Are we supposed to include reflection on a group proposal as well as a new individual proposal?

Response:

No, that's not the case. I think what you're noticing is that the proposal writer references her inquiry group's research question ("The question-at-issue for our group was: What are the effects of global warming on Polar Regions?"). So in this case she has chosen to pursue an argument related to that question. However, as you'll note in the Academic Argument Assignment handout (just posted), you can choose to refine your own group's question, refine another group's question, or invent a new climate-related question entirely. In the proposal you'll discuss just one question, and the important thing is that it becomes narrow, debatable, and significant both to you and an academic audience. The question should prompt you to make a claim of fact or definition, cause and effect, value, or policy/solution, or a combination thereof.


Question on Sun, Nov 1, 2009 at 4:08 PM:

The question I'm interested in pursuing is: How has climate change affected polar bear populations? Is this too narrow or irrelevant? Also, because none of the groups on the wiki looked into this subject, am I required to find my own research for the proposal or do I merely state how I plan to research this topic?

Response:

On its face the question doesn't seem too narrow, but consider the other criteria for questions-at-issue in the Academic Argument: is it debatable and significant? What kind of claim will result? Can you form an interpretive thesis that doesn't just describe a piece of reality? If you can locate a particular debate about the extent to which climate change is affecting the polar bear, then you may have fertile ground for argument, but you may also find overwhelming consensus about the severity of climate change's impact on that species. Now that you have a topic that feels personally significant, how can you tweak your question to generate arguments about the polar bear's ecological worth, or its iconic status as a symbol in climate change rhetoric? Those are just some possible avenues for debate. As to the research query: two groups researched ecology, and I'm noticing sources on those wiki pages that provide a starting point for inquiry, such as:

Berteaux, Dominique, et al. "Keeping Pace with Fast Climate Change: Can Arctic Life Count on Evolution?" Integrative and Comparative Biology 44.2 (April 2004): 140-151. Web of Science. Web. 18 Oct. 2009.

In the end you may not use this source, but at minimum it should provide an interesting works cited list, some names of Arctic scientists, and a journal for further exploration. Plans are great to include, but the proposal also needs to specifically cite potential sources and stakeholders under "Evidence and Arguments" as well as "Rationale and Audience."

Monday, November 16, 2009

Extra Credit Assignment

  • For the extra credit assignment, which will compensate for at least one unexcused absence, please choose to attend a live event featuring a speaker (many are listed online at websites such as CSU's "All University Events" calendar). Then, e-mail Raul a description of the event (see "Contact" in the sidebar), take detailed notes during the event (direct quotations will be valuable), and write a two-page rhetorical analysis.
  • Think of this as a cohesive, miniature essay that utilizes prompts from our rhetorical situation handouts. As a well-organized, MLA-styled text, it shouldn't mimic the order of the prompts on the handouts but rather draw relationships between different aspects of the rhetorical situation––in an introduction, thesis, body paragraphs, a conclusion, and a "Works Cited" list, if necessary. In short, you'll be answering this question: what choices did the speaker make, and how effective were those choices, in context? Assume that your audience is academic but not knowledgeable about the situation you're analyzing.
  • Update: the extra credit assignment is now due to Raul's mailbox on the third floor of Eddy Hall by 4:30 PM on Thursday, December 17.

Calendar Post for November 18

  • Continue reading David Boerner's "Following the Poop" in preparation for a discussion of the Local Inquiry and Public Essay on Wednesday. Other texts that can inform our final assignment have been posted to drop.io. We'll be focusing next on examples of essays in the same genre from two professional writers, "Whither Wind" by Charles Komanoff and "Lifelike" by Susan Orlean.
  • Download a three-page handout (also at drop.io) that describes the qualities of the Local Inquiry/Public Essay and the writing process it should entail. The handout includes some tentative due dates.
  • Read a short introduction to field research on PHG pages 320-322.
  • Prepare for our first local news quiz. These in-class writing prompts will encourage us to study local news sources for essay ideas. In particular, between now and Wednesday, browse:
The Coloradoan

The Fort Collins Now


The
Denver Post's coverage of Denver and the West
Our #CO150 Twitter feed will also begin featuring items of local interest. An example of a local news quiz has been posted to dropio.
  • Most process work on the Group Inquiry assignment has been handed back with comments and grades. However, Raul neglected to hand back a few annotated bibliographies today in class. These will be available during tomorrow's office hours (see our syllabus) should you want to take a look before handing in your Academic Argument (as a hard copy) on Wednesday. Expect comments and grades on our wiki pages by the end of the week, and a midterm report on grades and attendance following Thanksgiving break.

Readings Posted

Essays on topics local and otherwise that will foster discussions of our Local Inquiry and Public Essay assignment have been posted to drop.io. Please note that some of these texts contain disturbing content:

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Calendar Post for November 16

  • If you haven't already done so, please provide in-text comments and a thorough summary note in each of your collaborators' Google Docs drafts. An earlier post lists groups of collaborators and handouts to guide this online workshop. As you revise your argument and prepare to submit a final hard copy on Monday or Wednesday, recall the guidance discussed in class about converting Google documents to Word documents. To reiterate, final revisions should take place on your desktop, not online. From our Google Docs handout:
You can edit and format your final paper without the comments showing by clicking "File" and "Print settings." Uncheck the "include comments" box, and the click "OK." Now you can select "File" and "Download file as" to save a copy of your draft as a Word document (without the comments).
  • If you haven't already done so, read about revising arguments and identifying logical fallacies on PHG pages 577-582.
  • You should also read a final example of how an Academic Argument moves through the writing process. Crystal Sabatke's "Welfare Is Still Necessary for Women and Children in the U.S." appears on PHG pages 583-591.
  • Finally, for comparison, read and bring to class David Boerner's "Following the Poop" (at drop.io), which points to the kind of essay we'll be researching and drafting in our final assignment.
  • We meet back in our usual classroom on Monday.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Google Docs Groups for the Academic Argument + Calendar Post for November 13

Meet in Morgan Library's Classroom One on Friday for a final workshop using our peer review, Google Docs workshop, and assignment handouts. You may also find our Academic Argument samples helpful.

As discussed in class, you should update your Google document with the (revised) text of your Academic Argument and send invitations to your collaborators (listed below) by noon on Friday. You can find e-mail addresses for collaborators in a class e-mail and on the "Classmates" page of the Writing Studio. If you don't see your name listed below, follow step three in the Google Docs workshop handout.

CO150.37:
  • Jason L, Stephen G, Alex H
  • Jack H, Jesse S, Rachel S
  • Branden K, Cyndi H, Eric S
  • Kelly T, Mandy D, Kassi M
  • Cooper O, Brian R, Kayla T
  • Valerie B, Senite T, Mark A
CO150.44:
  • Zach H, Derek W, Chris N
  • Justin S, Regan G, Rachael C
  • Dan P, Jonny S, Adrienne K
  • Sam S, Sean W, Eric W
  • Kelsey C, Robbie O, Kaylynn A
  • Jillian H, Michael W, Amanda K

Video Posted

"Weekly Address: Tragedy at Fort Hood" will be discussed today in class. It's a message President Obama delivered Saturday about shootings in Texas last week that killed 12 soldiers and one civilian employee.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Calendar Post for November 11 + Argument Handouts Posted

• Follow steps in our Google Docs workshop handout, especially the part about creating a document and inviting raulmoreno@gmail.com as a collaborator by noon on Wednesday.

• Bring a full rough draft of your Academic Argument to class on Wednesday as a hard copy.

• Read about revising arguments and logical fallacies on PHG pages 577-582.

• Download and bring to class the following handouts (at drop.io):
- argument_appeals.pdf

- argument_fallacies.pdf

- argument_workshop.pdf

Rhetorical Analysis + Google Docs Handouts Posted

  • For those attending a speaking event and drafting a rhetorical analysis that will compensate for an unexcused absence, three additional handouts at drop.io will be useful:


Event Posted

From the Colorado State University School of Global Environmental Sustainability:
"The World Gathers in Copenhagen: What to Expect and Why it is so Critical to Us"
November 11, 2009
Avogadro's Number
5:00pm-6:30pm

Panel of Colorado State University experts on Climate Change, and what to expect at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen that will take place in December 2009.
Participants include:
Dr. Jill Baron- Research Scientist, United States Geological Survey and Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory
Dr. Michele Betsill- Associate Professor, Political Science
Dr. Stephen Ogle- Research Scientist, Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory
Dr. Keith Paustian- Professor, Soil and Crop Sciences

Free and Open to the Public.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Calendar Post for November 9

  • Please read about two nontraditional argument techniques on PHG pages 521-525. (And if you haven't yet debated your partner, be prepared to finish "Staking a Claim" in class.)
  • As discussed on Friday, also read read and bring to class a short series of counter arguments (at drop.io) by the United Kingdom's Royal Society, a scientific body with a history that spans four centuries. Then skim five "personal opinions" on climate change written by members of the Society and choose one to read closely and discuss in class.
  • On Monday and Wednesday we'll continue watching Frontline's 2008 investigation of climate change, "Heat." At Frontline's website on PBS.org, you can also access interviews with sources featured in the program. "Heat" should be useful in providing information to supplement your Academic Argument, but if you do quote from one of its sources, please choose only one.
  • By Monday evening, post a thoughtful response to the following questions on a forum about Frontline's "Heat" at the Writing Studio:
What facts, ideas, or points of controversy covered by the program might become important in your Academic Argument? Does this information support your claim or a counterargument?
If you were to quote one source who appears in the program, who would that be and why?
  • Looking forward, full rough drafts of the Academic Argument will be due at a workshop in class on Wednesday. Then, on Friday, we'll be meeting again in Morgan Library's Classroom One for a workshop using Google Docs. Between now and then, please familiarize yourself with this online word processor by logging into Google Apps for CSU (or Gmail) and clicking on "Documents" at the top of your inbox. The final Academic Argument is due as a hard copy on Monday, November 16.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Video Posted

"Heat," a 2008 program produced by Frontline, an investigative unit of PBS, can be viewed online.  We'll be watching and discussing excerpts in light of the Academic Argument.  Frontline describes the program this way:

Melting glaciers, rising sea levels, fires, floods and droughts. On the eve of a historic election, award-winning producer and correspondent Martin Smith investigates how the world's largest corporations and governments are responding to Earth's looming environmental disaster.

"I have reported on the Cold War, the breakup of the Soviet Union, the rise of Al Qaeda, and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan," says Smith. "But nothing matches climate change in scope and severity."

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Calendar Post for November 6

  • If you haven't yet debated your partner, prepare to finish "Staking a Claim" in class.
  • Now that (most of) you have a proposed an Academic Argument, received feedback on that proposal in a conference, and begun research on behalf of the claim you will put forward, try drafting a "thesis paragraph" and bring a printout to class on Friday.
This paragraph might eventually become an early part of your argument that appears after you have introduced its context. The thesis paragraph it should both state a claim and forecast key points your argument will go on to address. Examine two paragraphs by Edward Koch on the top of PHG page 535 to get a sense for what this part of the argument looks like.
  • Finally, read and bring to class a short series of counter arguments (at drop.io) by the United Kingdom's Royal Society, a scientific body with a history that spans four centuries. Then for Monday, skim five "personal opinions" written by members of the Society and choose one to read and discuss in class. More reputable sources on climate change debates that might inform your own argument can be found at RealClimate.org and Grist.org.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Academic Argument/Proposal Assignment + Samples Posted

"Academic Argument: Adding Your Voice to the Conversation" has been uploaded to drop.io, where you can also find "Proposal: From Inquiry to Argument" (offered in class) and a sample proposal (available as a download only).

As discussed, please note that the sample proposal runs too long as a text and does not conform to MLA guidelines or our assignment handout. Still, it does respond to many of the same questions that serve as prompts for your proposal, and it shows a student carefully researching and designing an argument in proposal form.

Remember that proposal conferences take place in Aylesworth 268 on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday instead of class.

Update: five samples of the Academic Argument are now available (as three files at drop.io). Like the sample proposal, these arguments do have weaknesses and don't always adhere to MLA guidelines or our assignment handout, but they should serve as useful models.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Calendar Post for October 30 + Conferences Rescheduled

  • As you may have heard in class today, due to the university's closure this afternoon amidst snow forecasts, Academic Argument Proposal conferences have been rescheduled for next week. We will hold conferences Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday in lieu of class (see below).
  • Finally, look for your new conference time below and e-mail Raul (see "Contact" in the sidebar) if you don't have a time or have an unavoidable conflict. Conferences take place in Raul's office, Aylesworth 268.
Conferences on Monday, November 2

11:15
11:30 Brian
11:45 Valerie
12:00 Max
12:15 Derek
12:30 Senite
12:45 Cyndi
1:00 Eric S
1:15 Cooper
1:30 Jack
1:45 Branden
2:00 Chris
2:15 Rachel S
2:30 Mark
2:45 Stephen
3:00 Jesse

Conferences on Tuesday, November 3

11:15 Kelly
11:30 Mandy D
11:45 Zach
12:00 Rachael C
12:15
12:30 Regan
12:45 Sean
1:00 Jason

Conferences on Wednesday, November 4

12:45 Alex
1:00 Dan
1:15 Justin
1:30 Kaylynn
1:45 Kelsey
2:00 Sam
2:15 Robbie
2:30 Derek
2:45 Kayla
3:00 Sal
3:15

Conferences on Friday, November 6

11:30 Jonny
11:45 Adrienne
12:00 Jill
12:15 Amanda K
12:30

Conferences on Tuesday, November 10

11:15 Eric W
11:30 Michael

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Office Hours Update

Today's office hours will take place in the Morgan Library, instead of Aylesworth 268. Raul will be available at one of the wooden tables near the MAPS and TAX collections on the first floor of the library. See our syllabus for more details.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Calendar Post for October 28

  • As in preparing for today's class, download and bring with you on Wednesday a handout on claims and "Proposal: From Inquiry to Argument" (at drop.io), which describes the first of two phases in our upcoming assignment. Note that "purpose" and "audience" in the latter handout refer to the proposal itself, not your Academic Argument, which your proposal should outline and describe.
  • Prepare for our in-class trial run at crafting an argument about climate change, "Staking a Claim" (at drop.io). Review that overhead and confirm with your partner (via e-mail addresses at the Writing Studio) which claim you will be debating. As described in the overhead, one partner (who authored the chosen claim) presents reasons and evidence to support the argument, while the other (playing the devil's advocate) presents a counter-claim as well as reasons and evidence to oppose it. Each pair's oral debate should last less than two minutes.
  • Read about "Appeals for Written Argument" (PHG pages 516-520) as well as Edward Koch's "Death and Justice" (PHG pages 534-540).
  • Begin drafting a proposal for your Academic Argument. As described in the assignment handout (see above), this is a short and preliminary but detailed outline of the argument you plan to write, and it's due during a conference with your instructor. These conferences take place in lieu of class, but they happen very soon: this Thursday (3:45 to 5:15 PM), this Friday (11:15 AM to 3:15 PM) and this Monday (11:15 AM to 3:15 PM). We will assign conference times in class on Wednesday.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Calendar Post for October 26 + Academic Argument Proposal Assignment Posted

  • Browse each of our 14 wikis pages and recollect the readings we have encountered thus far, particularly those that put forward arguments. Then, just for practice, draft two questions-at-issue that might guide your upcoming paper, the Academic Argument. These questions should feel narrow, debatable, and significant both to you and an academic audience interested in climate change. For example, you might rephrase or make more specific questions on political science or foreign policy already researched on our wiki. You might also refine a question addressed by Thomas Friedman, "Why go green?" or Michael Pollan, "Why bother?"
  • Read about argument and claims on pages 509-516 of the PHG. Then, much like we did in class on Friday, practice writing four possible claims in response to the two questions-at-issue you just drafted (use either question-at-issue, or both). These claims should include: a claim of fact or definition, a claim about cause and effect, a claim about value, and a claim about solutions or policies. Type these two questions and four claims, and post them on a Writing Studio forum ("Academic Argument: Two Questions, Four Claims"). You won’t necessarily use any of these claims for your final argument, so don’t worry about perfection.
  • Read “The Argument Culture” by Deborah Tannen on pages 474-480 of the PHG. Be ready to talk about Tannen’s definition of “argument” and how it does or doesn’t coincide with your own ideas about arguments.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Group Inquiry Assignment FAQ

As we delve farther into the writing process surrounding our current assignment, as well as two additional papers we'll be writing this semester, confusion will abound. In response, our blog will collect frequently asked questions (in an anonymous fashion) and provide answers that can probably benefit everyone. See if your question about group inquiry can be answered below, then, before creating a new one via e-mail.

Question on Thu, Oct 22, 2009 at 4:10 PM:

Our group is wondering if the 1,000 word requirement for the introduction is in effect for our group as well, because we only have two people. It seems that we may have trouble reaching that limit, would we be deducted significant points if we had less? What do you think would be an acceptable length for a group of two?

Response:

It's a good question, but I am looking for at least 1,000 words in the introduction (not counting the bibliography) from each group. The harder task will (or should) be for groups of three to condense their "best answers" into less than 1,200 words. Hopefully it shouldn't be too hard for your group to reach 1,000 words, as you have 10 sources to work with. Remember that some sources should get more attention in the introduction than others.


Question on Thu, Oct 22, 2009 at 2:12 PM:

With our wiki's works cited, do we just use the annotations and citations from the individual annotations for the wiki's works cited?

Response:

That's right, although the works cited will need to be alphabetized by the name or title that appears first in each citation. In taking ownership of each member's work, the group may also decide some annotations or citations need to be strengthened. The quality of the annotated bibliography will be reflected in the group's grade.


Question on Sat, Oct 17, 2009 at 12:41 PM:

I need a little help with my citations. This is the first one I really tried to get right, the article is located at this address. If you could let me know if I'm on the right track it would be very helpful. Thank you and hope to hear from you soon.

University of Minnesota. "Cellulosic Ethanol May Benefit Human Health And Help Slow Climate Change." Science Daily. Science Daily, 3 Feb. 2009. Web. 14 Oct. 2009.

Response:

Your rough draft on the citation is almost correct. Here are a couple of revisions. First, even though ScienceDaily suggests including "University of Minnesota" in the citation, it doesn't belong there because the the university didn't author the report. Rather, it provided source material to a writer at ScienceDaily who isn't mentioned. So the citation would simply begin with the article title. Secondly, the organization behind the publication can be found at the bottom of the page, ScienceDaily LLC. Thus the citation would look like this:

"Cellulosic Ethanol May Benefit Human Health And Help Slow Climate Change." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily LLC, 3 Feb. 2009. Web. 14 Oct. 2009.


Question on Tue, Oct 13, 2009 at 5:07 PM:

Are The Anthropological Quarterly and Environmental Science and Technology scholarly sources?

Response:

Both of those sources would likely count as academic or scholarly. If you were to rate them on our scale of popular (1) to academic (4), Anthropological Quarterly (no "The") would probably rate about a four while Environmental Science and Technology, because it contains some "magazine" content, would rate about a three. Again, both would count as scholarly, and here's more information on their credibility:

http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/anthropological_quarterly

http://pubs.acs.org/page/esthag/about.html


Question on Tue, Oct 13, 2009 at 1:38 PM:

Are we allowed to use some of the articles we have already received through our prior activities in the class for our annotations?

Response:

That's also a good question. Let's limit the use of readings already assigned to one per person. And keep in mind that most of the texts we've read would count as popular (not academic) sources. There are also a number of climate-related texts at drop.io (tagged "text") that have not been assigned as class readings. As long as they're relevant to your inquiry, there's no limit on using those texts.


Question on Tue, Oct 13, 2009 at 11:51 AM:

While finding articles to do my annotations on, the most relevant seem to be those that tend to be more academic than popular. While I have found both, is it OK to have more than two academic sources?

Response:

Good question: yes, it's fine to include more than two academic sources. Try then to include just one quality popular source, if you can.


Question on Sun, Oct 11, 2009 at 8:22 PM:

We are confused on what a "more specific" question means. Are we supposed to break our inquiry question down even further and choose different sub topics of it?

Response:

As for the "more specific" question: yes, you should break down your overall question into smaller aspects, so that one of you tackles, say, gasoline and the other diesel, or car racing and human athletes. First decide exactly what your research should properly cover (think significance, manageability and scope of the question, occasion, exigence), and then decide who will find sources about what.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Calendar Post for October 21 and 23

  • We're meeting back in our usual classroom on Wednesday and Friday.
  • The collaborative portion of the group inquiry assignment is now due Friday night. Again, this entails a wiki page complete with introduction, annotated bibliography, and proper formatting (see our wiki's main page for updated guidance).
  • On Friday we'll be holding a workshop on the wiki, so try to finish editing your page by noon, if possible. Make sure to save electronic versions of your work in more than one location (e-mail, flash drives, the wiki itself) along the way.
  • Please make a point to bring your Prentice Hall Guide textbook to class on Friday.

Office Hours Update

Today's office hours will take place in the Morgan Library, instead of Aylesworth 268. Raul will be available at one of the wooden tables near the MAPS and TAX collections on the first floor of the library. See our syllabus for more details.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Calendar Post for October 16 and 19

  • Using guidance from the annotation workshop handout displayed in class today (and now at drop.io), provide in-line comments as well as notes about opportunities for revision on one of your group's member's annotation drafts. Be prepared to hand back those drafts to your classmate on Friday.
  • Update about formatting: After the citations, within each annotation, mention the source's author as a "second reference," or using last name only. (Our wiki's critical introductions, however, should introduce each author as a "first reference"--using first and last name, affiliation, et cetera.)
  • Using the group inquiry process handout distributed in class today (part of the same file at drop.io), continue finding credible, current, and relevant sources for annotations that will provide the best answers to your group's question-at-issue (and your own aspect of that question). As the process handout suggests, your group may benefit from meeting outside of class ahead of Friday and becoming familiar with your group’s wiki. (Find e-mail addresses at the Writing Studio.) Depending on your group’s plans, you might start drafting a critical introduction.
  • Using comments received on Friday from the annotation workshop as well as a sample annotation––and by leaning on the group inquiry assignment handout like a trusted friend––finish revisions to your individual annotated bibliography. Then on Monday, October 19, in a manila folder, turn in your process work: (1) the individual annotated bibliography, as an MLA-formatted hard copy, (2) the stakeholder matrix, and (3) the research log.
  • Meet in Morgan Library room EIL1 ("Classroom One") on Friday and Monday to continue drafting your group’s introduction.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Careers in Publishing Event

Office Hours Update

Office hours this morning have been postponed. If you would like to meet with Raul this week, please e-mail him to arrange a time. See "Contact" in the sidebar.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Sample Wiki Page Posted

A wiki page much like the ones we're drafting in groups this month has been posted to drop.io. It includes a critical introduction as well as an annotated bibliography, and its structure can largely serve as an example.

You'll notice that the sample's tone and length differ slightly from our objective. Near the beginning of the introduction, for example, the authors include a "personal frame of reference" that's not part of our wiki. The introduction's overall length also exceeds our 1,200-word limit. Finally, watch for missing parenthetical references and occasional first person pronouns––moments when the authors' "collective voice" disappears.

Calendar Post for October 14

  • Locate one more source worthy of including in your annotated bibliography, enter it into your research log and your stakeholder matrix, and draft its annotation.
  • Bring all of your completed annotations to class for an annotation workshop. If your group's research is moving quickly, you should have four annotations by Wednesday. Also bring supporting materials (printed copies of the sources, your research log, and your stakeholder matrix).
  • As of now the individual annotated bibliography, stakeholder matrix, and research log are due this Friday, October 16, when will (hopefully) meet at the Morgan Library for a workshop.

Friday, October 9, 2009

H1N1 Syllabus Addendum

An addendum to our syllabus (see page six) discusses how our absence policy now takes into account suspected cases of H1N1 flu, which should be reported online. The addendum reads:
In mid-September 2009, in light of illnesses likely to result from the H1N1 flu virus, Colorado State University amended its policies to allow students who self-diagnose as having H1N1 ten consecutive, university-excused absences. The attendance policy for CO150.37 and CO150.44 will take this new policy into account, but only if the student has reported having H1N1 on a secure University website (there’s a link on our blog). Under normal circumstances, per our attendance policy, absences due to seasonal flu and other illnesses will not be excused. If you suspect you’ve contracted H1N1 (see a list of symptoms, including high fever, described by the University and also posted to our blog), report your status online and then contact your instructor at raulmoreno@gmail.com. Together we will make arrangements for you to make up in-class work and submit assignments electronically. It is important that you self-isolate and not return to class until you recover.