Essay #2: Community and Technology: Collaborative Project and Presentation English 102

As we continue to examine technology and media that are important in our lives and society, we will begin to look beyond our own lives. Communities are groups of individuals with shared beliefs and values. We will spend time in class discussing assumptions about communities, the variety of communities that exist, and how people interact in communities. As we do this, you will have the opportunity to observe and develop a deeper understanding of a community of your choosing, examining the role a technology plays in their lives. This will be a two part assignment.

Part I: For this assignment you will work in groups of 2-3 people and find a community of your choosing which interests you all to observe. Locate a community that you are not already a part of such as an organization on campus, a sports team, a business where you are not employed, a building where you do not live, etc. You will begin by visiting the community and observing it. Take good notes, paying attention to how individuals act, what the communities purpose seems to be, how the community acts as a whole, what items seem to be important to the community, including media and technology. After you have developed a good understanding of the community from observation (this may take more than one visit), select a few people to interview that can help you understand the community from a different view point. Test out your own opinions and theories that you developed through your observations. We will discuss interviewing tips in class. After you have completed all your primary research you will write a 3-4 page essay that develops an argument about a piece of media or technology that is important to the community and why it is important. The essay should, of course, introduce this community, explains what is important to it, what its purpose is, what it values/believes, and what individuals make it up. Use your primary research (observations and interviews) as evidence and support for your argument. Although you may work together to research, interview, and gather evidence, each student must write his or her own paper. This is important because each of you, regardless of gathering evidence and research together, will have your own opinion about what you gather. Thesis: As with all arguments, your essay should have a solid thesis statement. In this case it will be about what piece of media or technology you believe is important to the community. We will discuss thesis statements in more detail in class. Audience: As with all writing, you should remember to write for a particular audience. For this assignment I want you to imagine you are a historian and are writing to track communities and artifacts. You want to be detailed and descriptive about your community as well as the media/technology so that it can be archived for future generations to learn about. Part I Brass Tacks: 1. 2. 3. 4. 3-4 pages long, double-spaced, 12 pt font Include at least 2 interviews Include observations of the community Contain a thesis statement that is supported in the essay that argues why a piece of media/technology is important to the community.

Part II: For the second part of this assignment each group will compose a 10 minute presentation about the community they studied. You can decide what is important to share with your classmates based upon

what each of you learned and wrote about in your paper. You may must use PowerPoint but can also use any other tools of your choosing and be as creative as you wish. We will discuss good PowerPoint and presentation skills in class. Part II Brass Tacks: 1. Must be 10 minutes 2. Each group member must speak 3. Must use PowerPoint effectively 4. Introduce and describe the community observed 5. Argue what media/technology is important to this community and why