Swamped with your writing assignments? Take the weight off your shoulder!
a) 2 paragraphs of “reading” responses on assigned reading(s) for that week. Your notes should respond to one or two of the following aspects of the reading: a. Experience: What issues does this text give an account of? How does the text mark its perspective? Further, what if anything does this reading conjure up for you? What connections can you build to the contemporary moment? i. Concept: How does this text define explicitly or implicitly the issue that the author is writing about? What are (if any) the theoretical underpinning of the article? ii. Methodology: How and from which disciplinary perspectives is being presented in the piece? What methods, if any were used to make an argument in this text? What are the benefits or shortcomings of this method outlined in the text? What do you think about the results? b. Critique: What – if any – are the points of criticism the author makes? How does this reading or set of readings “talk back” to previous reading? b) Impressions and questions: What are your thoughts or questions about the text? Do you think an important example, perspective, (counter) argument is missing? Must write a reading question. a. How to write a good discussion question: The goal of your discussion question is to stimulate discussion of the most important ideas contained in the book or readings that we have read. Writing a good discussion question is similar to writing a good response paper. In both cases, try to engage with some of the book or readings’ key arguments, so that we can better focus on the authors insights. Avoid narrow questions about specific facts, or any questions that elicit “yes or no” answers. Avoid questions that are overly general in nature. Avoid questions that the book’s content or argument could not possibly answer (ones that focus on the future, for example). The best discussion questions highlight a major theme of the book or reading. I will work with you to strengthen your questions over the course of the semester, so expect emails from me with suggestions on how to rethink or rephrase your class questions. I will consider the quality of your questions when the final participation grade is tabulated, taking improvements into account.