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WRA 150-004 MW 10:20-12:10 109 Olds Hall Ms. Erin Beard email@example.com Office: Morrill 107 Office Hours: W 2:00-4:00, or by appointment Course Description The Evolution of American Thought is an exploration of literacy that involves drafting, revising, and editing compositions derived from American historical, social, and cultural texts to develop skills in narration, persuasion, analysis, and documentation. We will spend a lot of time examining American culture, including aspects of pop culture like music, movies, fashion, and the internet as a text, and will then examine the texts (both written and material) that you create as individual expressions of a collective moment in American society, and how these texts make for a kind of literacy. This is a writing class, and you will write something each day, with the goal of broadening your understanding of writing, reading practices, and researching; of American culture, of your role in that culture, and of a broadly conceived idea of literacy. Course Objectives As part of the general education requirement, First-Year Writing contributes to the Michigan State University mission by focusing on inquiry-based teaching and learning that encourages students to begin to understand themselves as: • contributing members of MSU’s community of scholars • committed to asking important questions and to seeking rich responses to those questions • developing skills, knowledge, and attitudes that improve the quality of life for self and others through scholarly, social, and professional activities. In pursuit of these goals, First-Year Writing courses engage students in writing and reflection activities that make overt the ways that invention, arrangement, and revision activities: • can be engaged across inquiry situations (scholarly, social, and professional) • require the development of knowledge about the importance of contextual factors that affect the application of these methods of inquiry The First-year shared learning outcomes support inquiry-based learning that transfers across writing situations in relation to three major issues: writing, reading, and
researching. The First-year Shared Learning Outcomes appear on the last page of this document. Required Texts & Materials The Brief McGraw-Hill Handbook. Maimon, Peritz, and Yancey. 2010. The Curious Researcher. Bruce Ballenger. 2009. All essays that we read for class will be posted on ANGEL; you are expected to print out those texts and bring them with you to class on the day for which they are assigned.
*Please note that The Brief McGraw-Hill Handbook and The Curious Researcher include the 2009 MLA updates. If you choose to purchase an older version, you are still responsible for incorporating the updates in your writing.
Other Materials: • A folder or binder for class materials (You will need to keep everything you produce this semester, including drafts and in-class assignments.) • Internet access to ANGEL and your MSU e-mail account • A notebook/loose leaf paper for in-class writing • A flash drive • A software program which will produce .doc or .docx documents Major Assignments Paper #1 Paper #2 Paper #3 Remix Final Paper Participation Total 10% 15% 30% 10% 20% 15% 100%
Paper #1: Lived Literacies will reflect upon your personal literacy history. You will relate the significance of the literacy issues implied by your narrative. 3-5 pages and a cover letter. Paper #2: Cultural Literacies will analyze a cultural artifact and its meaning to a particular culture. You will choose the artifact and the periodical in which it will be published; audience is key. 1500 words and a visual. Paper #3: Disciplinary Literacies will be a research essay. We will spend an extensive amount of time preparing for this assignment. 7-8 pages plus a works cited page.
Paper #4: Remix will take a previous paper you have written and translate its purpose into a different form. On the day of the exhibition, you will display your project to the class, who will collectively grade you. I will grade the written portion, a memo. We will decide on the specifics of the grading process as a class. Paper #5: Final Paper will be a reflection on what you have learned over the course of the semester. There is no page minimum for this assignment. Participation: This portion of your grade will include all written assignments (in-class writing, proposals, SQuIPs, etc.). I will also observe how much you participate in class discussions over the course of the semester, so be prepared to contribute at all times. Excessive sleeping, texting, or being unprepared to contribute when called upon will negatively affect your participation grade. SQuIP: This stands for “Surprise, question, intriguing passage.” A major component of this class is developing sophisticated reading skills, and this assignment will be completed for every essay that I assign to you to read outside of class. Not only will they help to facilitate fun class discussions, but they will also help you to get the most out of your reading. These must be typed. *You will receive more detailed descriptions of these assignments on each paper’s introduction day. They will also be posted on ANGEL. Grading Scale This course uses MSU’s 4.0 grading scale. The final grade will be calculated with a weighted average formula and then rounded to the nearest half point. Course Policies Attendance: In order to succeed in this class, you will need to be on time and ready to contribute to the class in a meaningful way. This course also heavily relies on in-class participation and collaboration. Because of that, attendance is mandatory. I will allow 2 excused absences. It is in your best interest to reserve these days for illness, unexpected circumstances such as family events, and accidentally sleeping through your alarm clock. Each absence after the 2 excused absences will result in the removal of 0.3 points off your final grade. While I understand that this class starts early in the morning, you may be no more than 10 minutes late. Each instance of tardiness will count as half of an absence. If you’re not a morning person, feel free to bring some coffee. I will take attendance each day before class starts. Please see your student handbook for procedures for obtaining an excused absence at MSU. Style Feedback: Grammar and language use are important parts of writing, but they are not what I will concentrate on teaching in this class. Instead, grammar improvement is up to you. Your McGraw-Hill Handbook has everything you need to improve on specific
skills, and to that end, my comments on grammar and style issues will refer to specific areas in the handbook. When you get your paper back, you will be expected to read the handbook on your own to learn how to improve on these areas. I will be keeping a record of the grammar and style comments I have made on your paper and looking to see if you have improved upon them in the next paper. To make this process easier for you, I have posted a key on ANGEL which lists all possible comments I could put on your paper and the page on which each of them are found in the handbook. Paper Formatting: Each paper is required to meet the following formatting standards. The final version of your paper should have 1” margins (Word defaults to 1.25”, so you’ll need to change this manually) and be double spaced in 12-pt Times New Roman font. Additionally, the heading should be in the left-hand corner and your last name and page number should be in the top right-hand corner as a heading. There should be no extra space between the heading, title, and each paragraph, so you’ll need to change those settings by taking the following steps: 1) highlight the entire document by hitting ctrl+A (command+A for Macs); 2) for Macs, click format, paragraph to bring up the paragraph formatting dialog box; for PCs, click the page layout tab and then the paragraph button; 3) under the “indents and spacing” tab, there will be a section called “spacing.” Make sure that each number in both the “before” and “after” boxes are zeroes. I will penalize you if these spacing issues are not fixed. Turning in Assignments: Each of the major assignments and proposals will be submitted to me via e-mail no later than 10 AM on the day they are due. You must submit them as a SINGLE .doc or .docx Word document. Even though you are turning in your papers via e-mail, your presence in class on the day they are due is still required. If you are absent on that day, I WILL NOT accept your paper. I will return your papers to you as a PDF with markups and comments, and your grade sheet will be given back to you as a hard copy, which you are expected to keep on file. All other assignments, including SQuIPs and in-class writing, will be handed in as a hard copy. SQuIPs should be typed. Peer review worksheets will be turned in at the beginning of the class of the day its corresponding paper is due for participation points. Assignment Completion: You must complete all five major assignments to receive a passing grade for this course. A final grade lower than 2.0 will require you to repeat a 100-level writing course. Late Assignments: For every major assignment, each weekday it is late will incur a 0.5 deduction off the final grade. The weekday clock starts ticking on the day they are due. In other words, if you hand in your final paper on the evening of the day they are due, there will still be a 0.5 point deduction. I WILL NOT accept late assignments for anything else unless you have a doctor’s note that you produce the day your turn in the assignment. For draft/peer review day, you MUST bring two hard copies of your draft, which should be 75% of the final required length in order to count for credit. If you do
not meet these requirements, I will deduct 0.3 of a point off the final grade on the relevant paper. Additionally, if you fail to bring in a draft, you will be required to complete peer review on your own time in order to gain back these lost points. You must meet with a class member who will read your paper and fill in the worksheet, which you will then turn in with your paper. If you think this is going to be a problem talk to me well ahead of the due date. E-mail correspondence: If you have questions, the best way to reach me is by e-mail or during my office hours. I typically respond pretty quickly to e-mail, but please allow 24 hours for me to respond, especially right before an assignment is due. If you e-mail me after 7 PM, I might not respond the same night. For small questions, check the syllabus or your handbook first. Office Hours: My office is in 107 Morrill Hall. Please use my office hours to your advantage, as this is when I am most available to you. If you have questions or concerns about this course or my expectations ask them early in the semester! Feel free to drop by my office during hours even without an appointment. We will be conferencing throughout the semester, but you are welcome to stop by at other times. Sometimes I will have office hours or meetings at the library. If that happens, I will let you know ahead of time via e-mail. If my office hours conflict with a class, we can arrange to meet at other times. Electronic Devices: Cell phones must be silenced and must remain in your bookbag. They should not be out on the desk or on your person. Laptops must also be put away unless we are doing an activity requiring the use of a laptop. Egregious misuse of electronic devices, such as texting or facebooking, will result in a lowered participation grade. Respect: In this course, you will be learning about different literacies from your own, and you will be hearing from peers who have different opinions and experiences from your own. During discussions and group activities, I expect that you will show respect to your fellow students. The practice of respect also extends to other interactions outside the classroom, such as e-mails. Academic Integrity: One of the most important principles in higher education is academic integrity. In this class, we will learn how to cite other people’s ideas and texts. You are expected to use the skills you learn in this class to cite properly. I take plagiarism very seriously. If you plagiarize, you will fail the assignment or the course, depending on its severity.
Michigan State University has adopted the following statement about academic integrity: 1.00 PROTECTION OF SCHOLARSHIP AND GRADES: The principles of truth and honesty are fundamental to the educational process and the academic integrity of the University; therefore, no student shall: 1.01 claim or submit the academic work of another as one’s own. 1.02 procure, provide, accept or use any materials containing questions or answers to any examination or assignment without proper authorization. 1.03 complete or attempt to complete any assignment or examination for another individual without proper authorization. 1.04 allow any examination or assignment to be completed for oneself, in part or in total, by another without proper authorization. 1.05 alter, tamper with, appropriate, destroy or otherwise interfere with the research, resources, or other academic work of another person. 1.06 fabricate or falsify data or results. Procedures for responding to cases of academic honesty and possible repercussions are outlined in Spartan Life: Student Handbook and Resource Guide. They can also be found on the web at: http://www.msu.edu/unit/ombud/honestylinks.html. Accommodations for Students with Disabilities: Students with disabilities should contact the Resource Center for Persons with Disabilities to establish reasonable accommodations. For an appointment with a disability specialist, call 353-9642 (voice), 355-1293 (TTY), or visit myprofile.rcpd.msu.edu. University Resources for Writers: The following resources are available to you free of charge, and I urge you to make use of these frequently throughout the semester. Their websites will detail the services they offer and how to make appointments, which you should do well in advance of the time you need them. • The Writing Center http://writing.msu.edu • The Learning Resource Center http://lrc.msu.edu • The English Language Center http://elc.msu.edu
*Note: This schedule is subject to change. I will also give you more detailed schedules with each daily assignment as we begin each unit.
Class W1 W2 W3 W4 W5 W6 W7 W8 M Jan 10 W Jan 12 M Jan 17 W Jan 19 M Jan 24 W Jan 26 M Jan 31 W Feb 2 M Feb 7 W Feb 9 M Feb 14 W Feb 16 M Feb 21 W Feb 23 M Feb 28 W Mar 2 M Mar 14 W Mar 16 M Mar 21 W Mar 23 M Mar 28 W Mar 30 M Apr 4 W Apr 6 M Apr 11 W Apr 13 M Apr 18 W Apr 20 M Apr 25 W Apr 27
What’s Happening in Class Introduction Paper #1 introduction MLK, Jr. Day (no class) Peer review Paper #2 introduction
Assignments Due Syllabus questions Formatting assignment Draft of Paper #1 Paper #1 Cultural Analysis
Peer review Paper #3 introduction Library Tour
Draft of Paper #2 Paper #2 Meet in the library- place TBA Proposal for paper #3 Library assignment Sign up for conference times Mar 7-12 Spring Break
W9 W10 W11 W12 W13 W14 W15 FW
Draft of Paper #3
Paper #3 Remix Proposal
Remix Exhibition Day Final Paper introduction
Remix project Proposal for Final Paper
Draft of Final Paper
Final Exam: Wednesday, May 4, 10:00-12:00
First-Year Writing Shared Learning Outcomes Writing
Use writing for purposes of reflection, action and participation in academic inquiry Work within a repertoire of genres and modes to meet appropriate rhetorical purposes
Engage in reading for the purposes of reflection, critical analysis, decisionmaking, and inquiry Understand that various academic disciples and fields employ varied genre, voice, syntactical choices, use of evidence, and citation styles Read in ways that improve writing, especially by demonstrating an ability to analyze invention, arrangement, and revision strategies at work in a variety of texts Demonstrate an understanding of reading as an epistemic and recursive meaning making processes
Apply methods of inquiry and conventions to generate new understanding Demonstrate the ability to locate, critically evaluate, and employ a variety of sources for a range of purposes
Exercise a flexible repertoire of invention, arrangement, and revision strategies
Demonstrate the ability to generate and apply research strategies that are purposeful, ethical, and balanced
Demonstrate an understanding of writing as an epistemic and recursive process and effectively apply a variety of knowledge-making strategies in writing Understand diction, usage, voice, and style, including standard edited English, as conventional and rhetorical features of writing
Demonstrate an understanding of research as epistemic and recursive processes that arise from and respond back to various communities
Understand that academic disciplines and fields employ varied genre, styles, syntactical patterns, uses of evidence, and documentation practices that cal for a variety of reading strategies
Understand the logics and uses of citation systems and documentation styles and display competence with one citation system/documentation style
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