What is this course about?

In this course, we are investigating the rhetoric of the built environment in Atlanta from historical, cultural, and political perspectives. Places–parks, classrooms, social media sites–are rhetorical. That is, they are created for purposes, audiences, and contexts. Through rhetorical analysis, we can learn about their functions, who is welcome (and not welcome) within them, who built them and why. Rhetorical analysis also gives us a means to explore how the rhetoric of the built environment expresses and influences history, politics, and social relations–such as class, gender, race, age, and disability.

Throughout the semester, in the reading responses, multimedia annotated bibliographies, built environment descriptions, and built environment analysis, students will explore the built environment of Atlanta. You will learn to analyze how the built environment employs the five rhetorical modes–linguistic, aural, visual, spatial, and gestural–to communicate information about its purposes, its creators, its users, and the social and historical context from which it emerges and with which it engages. You will also learn how to use these five modes in your own academic research and composition process. Think of everything we do in this course–reading, research, writing, documenting, note-taking, etc.–as the multiple stages and processes in a single, semester-long project, culminating in the built environment analysis and contributing to a collaborative archive of information about the rhetoric of space and place in Atlanta.

This course builds on writing proficiencies, reading skills, and critical thinking skills developed in your previous English and writing courses. It incorporates several research methods in addition to persuasive and argumentative techniques. A passing grade is C. Projects will integrate a focus on academic writing with multimodal composition strategies designed to prepare students for working with and creating multimedia texts.

By the end of this course, students will be able to: Analyze, evaluate, document, and draw inferences from various sources; identify, select, and analyze appropriate research methods, research questions, and evidence for a specific rhetorical situation; use argumentative strategies and genres in order to engage various audiences; integrate others’ ideas with their own; use grammatical, stylistic, and mechanical formats and conventions appropriate for a variety of audiences; critique their own and others’ work in written and oral formats; produce well-reasoned, argumentative essays demonstrating rhetorical engagement; and reflect on what contributed to their writing process and evaluate their own work.

Image Credit: “Signage” by Derek Bruff

Image of multiple lighted Coca Cola Signs, dominant colors are red, white, and black

What will we be doing?

This course has four major projects, each of which is a stage in a course-long project to document and analyze a built environment in or associated with Atlanta:

  • Reading Responses (2, 50-250 points each, 100-500 points total)
  • Annotated Bibliographies (2, 5 entries=100-500 points, 10 entries=200-1000 points, 300-1500 points total)
  • Built Environment Descriptions (2, 250-500 points each, 500-1000 points total)
  • Built Environment Analysis (3 stages, Complete draft=500-1500 points, Presentation=250-1000 points, Revised final draft=250-1000, 1000-3500 points total)

You will earn points for each major project. In addition, you will also earn points for class preparation and participation (300-??? points). In general, this course is designed to reward the quality and quantity of work you do. The more you put into the course, the more you will get out of it–with regard to both your learning and your grade.

The Built Environment Descriptions and Built Environment Analysis are modeled on a project sequence Cydney Alexis developed for an introductory college composition class.

Reading Responses (2)| 50-250 Points Each | 100-500 Points Total

For this project you will complete at least two reading responses, one for Unit 1 and one for Unit 2. At the beginning of each unit, you will read all of the primary course readings for that unit, but will create a response for the one reading assigned to your group. The groups are just so you know which primary course reading you’re responding to; your reading response will be completed individually. Your responses will draw out questions and applications from the primary course reading and put it into conversation with at least one other supplemental text, which you will select from this list or choose in consultation with me.

You can respond to additional primary course readings in Units 1 and 2, and any of the course readings in Unit 3 for more points (up to 125 points per submission).

Your reading responses will be created using Hypothes.is, using the hashtag #atlsprs17 and the hashtag associated with the primary course reading you have annotated. You will submit links to your reading responses using the submission form and according to instructions that we’ll go over in class.

Reading responses are due on the following dates:

  • Unit 1 Reading Response, 11:59 pm on February 3
  • Unit 2 Reading Response, 11:59 pm on February 24
  • Unit 3 Reading Response (optional), 11:59 pm on March 24

Once a unit has ended, no more points will be awarded for annotations of that unit’s readings. Late annotations can be submitted for completion credit (but not for points, see late work policy below) until midnight on April 24.

Project Purpose and Goals

 

Reading responses emerge in the process of a reader’s coming to understand a text, and in the case of this particular project, putting one text into conversation with another. Ultimately a strong reading response will reflect your understanding of main ideas from both texts, raise questions that arise from differences/convergences/comparisons between them, and explain difficult concepts/terms/passages.

This project is designed as an opportunity to practice gathering, summarizing, synthesizing, and explaining information from various sources.

Guidelines

  • Use Hypothes.is to annotate the primary course reading for this class
  • Begin with one annotation that summarizes, in two or three paragraphs the supplemental text you have chosen
  • In this first annotation, include the complete bibliographic information for the supplemental text (see FYG MLA guide for end citation)
  • Continue with annotations that discuss, in specific detail, where you see tensions between the supplemental text and the primary course reading, where the supplemental text may help to explain the primary course reading, where the supplemental text and the primary course reading seem to be exploring and applying similar concepts
  • Use the literary present tense
  • Cite paraphrased details and quotations from the supplemental text (see FYG MLA guide for in-text citation)
  • Consider multiple modes when composing your annotations: spatial, visual, linguistic

Evaluation Categories and Criteria

Below is the detailed rubric I will follow when evaluating this project. Use this rubric to guide you as you complete your reading responses, and to help you understand the score you receive for each reading response on the comparative evaluation rubric in your feedback document on Google drive.

In order to receive minimum possible points, a project must be “Good” or “Superior” on all of the criteria outlined in the “Competent, Credible, Complete” section. Generally, speaking, this means your submitted draft must be a good faith effort to respond to the prompt and follow the project guidelines.

For higher points, the draft must must be “Good” or “Superior” on all of the criteria outlined in the “Competent, Credible, Complete” section and one or more of the criteria outlined in the “Skillful/Persuasive” section. The “Skillful/Persuasive” criteria focus on use of evidence, organization, conventions, and integration of rhetorical modes.

To receive highest points, the draft must must be “Good” or “Superior” on all of the criteria in “Competent, Credible, Complete” and “Skillful/Persuasive” and one or more of the criteria described in the “Distinctive” section. The “Distinctive” criteria focus on maturity of rhetorical awareness, persuasiveness and originality of argument, creative use of rhetorical modes, and polish in presentation and design.

Competent, Credible, Complete (50-125 points)

Complete?

The reading response was submitted on time; it comprises at least 10 Hypothes.is annotations; and it is tagged with the appropriate course, reading, and individual hashtags.

Rhetorically Aware?
The reading response offers a summary of the supplemental text; it offers substantive discussion of important points, questions, terms, or problems in  the primary course reading; and it attempts to bring the primary course reading and the supplemental text into conversation
Credible?

It is apparent from the reading response that the student has read and considered both the primary course reading and the supplemental text.

Skillful, Persuasive (125-200 points)

Evidence?

The reading response makes a clear connection between the highlighted passages being annotated and the student’s comments and explanation.

Organization?

The reading response attempts or succeeds in connecting the annotations into a cohesive, coherent summary, interpretation, and explanation of the primary course reading and the supplemental text

Modes?

The reading annotation makes use of multimodal evidence and uses links, images, and other multimodal content to connect resources or create more effective summary, interpretation, and explanation of the primary course reading and the supplemental text.

Text Conventions?

While some errors in spelling, grammar, and usage may be present, they do not significantly detract from the student author’s credibility.

Revision?

Drafts/reflection show evidence of revision to improve clarity and rhetorical appeal.

Distinctive (200-250 points)

Mature?

Student author uses the primary course reading and supplemental text to draw out claims, explanations, evidence, and counter-arguments regarding debated or complicated terms, theories, and questions important to both pieces; the reading response acknowledges multiple points of view, or demonstrates awareness of multiple stakeholders affected by the policies or issues under discussion in the primary course reading and supplemental text.

Persuasive or Original?

Reading response offers a particularly cohesive and persuasive interpretation, explanation,  and summary of both the primary text and supplemental reading, drawing on particularly relevant and credible evidence from both pieces.

Creative/Well-designed?

Author makes creative use of multiple modes; or layout and design are aesthetically pleasing, rhetorically effective, and well-executed.

Polished?

Project drafts/reflection provide evidence of multiple revisions to improve clarity and rhetorical appeal, and text is virtually free of grammar/punctuation/usage errors.

Annotated Bibliography (2) | 5 Entries=100-500 points, 10 Entries=200-1000 points | 300-1500 points total

For this project, you will compose an annotated bibliography. Your first annotated bibliography will comprise five complete bibliographic entries and five annotations. Your second annotated bibliography will comprise revisions of your first five entries/annotations and five additional entries/annotations, for a total of ten entries/annotations.

An annotated bibliography is a list of sources. It provides a complete bibliographic entry for each source in MLA format, and then for each bibliographic entry, gives a brief annotation (150-200 words) that evaluates the source and identifies why it is relevant to our ongoing study of the rhetoric of built environments.

Compose more bibliography annotations for more points (up to 50 points per submission). I recommend using Zotero to help you create your bibliographies, which you will submit as posts on your site.

Link to annotated bibliography examples from Spring 2016.

The annotated bibliographies are due by the following dates:

 

 

  • Annotated Bibliography 1, 5 entries due on March 10 at 11:59 pm
  • Annotated Bibliography 2, 10 entries, 5 revised and 5 new due on March 27 at 11:59 pm

As long as you submit each of the required annotated bibliographies by the due date, you can submit extra bibliography annotations at any time until April 7 (for up to 50 points per extra bibliography annotation). Late annotated bibliographies can be submitted for completion credit (but not for points, see late work policy below) until 11:59 pm on April 24.

Project Purpose and Goals

 

 

 

This project is designed to continue to develop your skills of summary and description. It will also help you to develop academic research skills, and learn how to evaluate the credibility and relevance of different sources. You will practice MLA citation style. You will compose rhetorical analyses of multimodal artifacts. Finally, you will begin to synthesize information from your research and develop evidence-based conclusions about the rhetoric of the built environment.

Instructional Readings and Models

  • G2W: Ch. 5 (Research and Documentation), see especially pp. 189-190 “Taking Notes: The Annotated Bibliography”
  • Cornell University Library Guide “How to Prepare an Annotated Bibliography
  • Link to annotated bibliography examples from Spring 2016

Guidelines

When complete, your multimodal annotated bibliography should contain annotations of 150-250 words each for each source. You should have a balance of academic and non-academic sources, and text sources (articles, books, blog posts) should be balanced by multimedia sources (video, images, podcasts, etc.).

As described on the University of Cornell Library website on “How to Prepare an Annotated Bibliography,” “the purpose of the annotation is to inform the reader of the relevance, accuracy, and quality of the sources cited.” In addition to MLA citations and annotations, your multimedia annotated bibliography will include links to your sources or to web references that identify where your sources can be located (e.g., in the library, on Amazon.com, on Netflix, etc.).

Ideally each annotation should briefly and concisely answer the following five questions about each source:

  1. What is this source about? When summarizing, keep in mind for whom the source was intended and why this source is relevant to your project.
  2. What information or evidence have you drawn from this source that helps you to understand better the rhetoric of the built environment and how it has taken shape within the city of Atlanta?
  3. Why did you choose this source? Your reasons might include one or more of the following: It is more comprehensive or detailed than other available sources. It specifically mentions or responds to one of our other readings for class. It is the only available source on the particular topic for which you are using it. The author seems to have views sympathetic to those of some of the other readings, or he/she offers an alternative viewpoint from those we have considered in our class discussions.
  4. Does this source have any flaws or weaknesses that you have had to take into consideration while using it? When answering this question, you should consider when and in what venue this source was published, and whether it shows the influence of bias or outdated/disfavored ideas, political views, research methods, etc.
  5. What is the relationship between this source and the other sources you’ve uncovered in your research? For example, does it offer an alternative viewpoint? Is the author in conversation with or does he/she draw upon the work of another author relevant to your project?

 

Evaluation Categories and Criteria

Below is the detailed rubric I will follow when evaluating this project. Use this rubric to guide you as you complete your annotated bibliographies, and to help you understand the score you receive for each annotated bibliography on the comparative evaluation rubric in your feedback document on Google drive.

In order to receive minimum possible points, a project must be “Good” or “Superior” on all of the criteria outlined in the “Competent, Credible, Complete” section. Generally, speaking, this means your submitted draft must be a good faith effort to respond to the prompt and follow the project guidelines.

For higher points, the draft must must be “Good” or “Superior” on all of the criteria outlined in the “Competent, Credible, Complete” section and one or more of the criteria outlined in the “Skillful/Persuasive” section. The “Skillful/Persuasive” criteria focus on use of evidence, organization, conventions, and integration of rhetorical modes.

To receive highest points, the draft must must be “Good” or “Superior” on all of the criteria in “Competent, Credible, Complete” and “Skillful/Persuasive” and one or more of the criteria described in the “Distinctive” section. The “Distinctive” criteria focus on maturity of rhetorical awareness, persuasiveness and originality of argument, creative use of rhetorical modes, and polish in presentation and design.

 

Competent, Credible, Complete 100-250 points (AB1) or 200-500 points (AB2) (Key: Needs Work, Good, Superior)

Complete?

The annotated bibliography was submitted on time; it comprises at least five (AB1) or ten (AB2) citations with annotations; and the annotated bibliography post is filed in the “AnnotatedBibs” category.

Rhetorically Aware?

The annotated bibliography is generally organized around a central research topic or question. Each annotation offers a summary of the cited source and some discussion of how the source is relevant to the central research topic or question.

Credible?

It is apparent from the annotated bibliography that the student has read and understood the cited sources.

Skillful, Persuasive 250-400 points (AB1) or 500-800 points (AB2) (Key: Needs Work, Good, Superior)

Evidence?

The annotations go beyond describing at a general level the kind of information provided in each source. Each annotation describes in specific detail the evidence, claims, findings, and conclusions offered in the source, using quotations and paraphrase with in text parenthetical documentation where appropriate.

Organization?

Individual annotations are logically organized, with a beginning (overview or main takeaway of the source), middle (detailed description of evidence/claims/findings/conclusions, and discussion of any potential issues or problems of the source), and conclusion (discussion of how the source is related to the general research topic or question).

Modes?

The annotations use links, images, and other multimodal content to connect resources or create more effective summary, interpretation, and explanation of the cited sources.

Text Conventions?

While some errors in spelling, grammar, and usage may be present, they do not significantly detract from the student author’s credibility.

Revision?

Drafts/reflection show evidence of revision to improve clarity and rhetorical appeal.

Distinctive 400-500 points (AB1) or 800-1000 points (AB2) (Key: Needs Work, Good, Superior)

Mature?

Annotated bibliography as a whole demonstrates student took care to select particularly relevant and credible sources from among those available in the library or online. Annotations collectively represent multiple points of view, help to identify important questions on which experts disagree, or provide an overview of the field or research area covered in the AB.

Persuasive or Original?

Annotations offer particularly detailed and descriptive summaries of the cited sources. The annotated bibliography as a whole demonstrates the student author’s emerging familiarity with the important issues, methods, and theories in their chose area of research.

Creative/Well-designed?

Author makes creative use of multiple modes; or layout and design are aesthetically pleasing, rhetorically effective, and well-executed.

Polished?

Project drafts/reflection provide evidence of multiple revisions to improve clarity and rhetorical appeal, and text is virtually free of grammar/punctuation/usage errors.

Built Environment Descriptions (2) | 250-500 Points Each | 500-1000 Points Total

For this project you will complete at least two, two-part site descriptions, one for Unit 1 and one for Unit 2. At the beginning of each unit, you will choose a site to visit in Atlanta from the list your instructor will provide you. Your site visit will require an hour of your time, as you move within the space, stopping to take detailed notes on your observations. We will discuss and practice note taking in the spirit of ethnographic research (see supplemental reading from Primary Research & Writing), separating objective, “thick description”–writing that records in great detail what the senses observe–from subjective interpretations, impressions, thoughts, ideas about observations.

After visiting your site you will compose two different blog posts from the copious notes you took while there.

Post one we will call the Focused Built Environment Description:

*For this post, describe in objective detail, one aspect of the site you visited. Your writing will be assessed in part in terms of the focus and the level of detail. You might choose to write detailed descriptions of the people in the space, the traffic in the space, the signs, smells, colors, materials, businesses, walkways, etc.

Notice you’re not writing about the space; you’re confining your composition, in this post, to descriptions of the space.

Post two we will call the Personal Site Response:

*For this post, compose a subjective narrative of your personal experience of the space. What thoughts, ideas, memories, emotions, conclusions, interpretations came to mind during your site visit? Compose an organized, coherent, focused report of your personal experience with the space.

This 2-part assignment is a very challenging one. For many of us, our inclinations are to judge, to draw conclusions, to form opinions, to feel and remember and narrate; to write as objectively as possible is quite a challenge. Others of us are inclined to report and summarize; to generate ideas about what we observe is quite a challenge. Expect this work to take time, attention, and practice.

Due Dates

  • Unit 1 Built Environment Descriptions — Friday, February 10 at 11:59 pm
  • Unit 2 Built Environment Descriptions — Friday, March 3 at 11:59 pm

As long as you submit each of the required descriptions by the due date, you can submit extra built environment descriptions at any time until April 7 (for up to 250 points per extra pair of descriptions). Late BEDs can be submitted for completion credit (but not for points, see late work policy below) until 11:59 pm on April 24.

Project Purpose and Goals

 

 

One of the fundamental skills of research writing is the ability to distinguish and produce writing that is objective (as objective as possible)–such as description, explanation, summary–and writing that is subjective, such as narrative or opinion pieces, or arguments.

This project is designed as an opportunity to practice observing and recording data objectively, separating objective and subjective writing, and compose focused texts from notes.

Guidelines

  1. Give yourself at least an hour at your site
  2. Take a friend, particularly if you choose to spend time with your eyes closed (recommended for focusing on sounds/smells)
  3. Focus your note taking on describing as much detail as possible
  4. Note your subjective thoughts about what you experience in a separate space
  5. Take photographs, video, audio recordings (when appropriate)
  6. If you talk with people in the space, tell them who you are and what you’re doing; get their permission for any images or interviews you might capture involving them

 

Evaluation Categories and Criteria

 

Below is the detailed rubric I will follow when evaluating this project. Use this rubric to guide you as you complete your Built Environment Descriptions, and to help you understand the score you receive for each pair of posts on the comparative evaluation rubric in your feedback document on Google drive.

In order to receive minimum possible points, a project must be “Good” or “Superior” on all of the criteria outlined in the “Competent, Credible, Complete” section. Generally, speaking, this means your submitted draft must be a good faith effort to respond to the prompt and follow the project guidelines.

For higher points, the draft must must be “Good” or “Superior” on all of the criteria outlined in the “Competent, Credible, Complete” section and one or more of the criteria outlined in the “Skillful/Persuasive” section. The “Skillful/Persuasive” criteria focus on use of evidence, organization, conventions, and integration of rhetorical modes.

To receive highest points, the draft must must be “Good” or “Superior” on all of the criteria in “Competent, Credible, Complete” and “Skillful/Persuasive” and one or more of the criteria described in the “Distinctive” section. The “Distinctive” criteria focus on maturity of rhetorical awareness, persuasiveness and originality of argument, creative use of rhetorical modes, and polish in presentation and design.

Competent, Credible, Complete 250-325 points (Key: Needs Work, Good, Superior)

Complete?

The BED posts were both submitted on time; they include substantial, cogent writing focused on one site

Rhetorically Aware?

The BED posts reflect an attempt to integrate visuals or sound and take into account readability (is the post one long paragraph?);

Credible?

It is apparent from the posts that the student has actually visited the site and spent some substantial time there

Skillful, Persuasive 325-450 points (Key: Needs Work, Good, Superior)

Evidence?

Both posts include specific, appropriate details from the site

Organization?

The posts are organized around clear focus points (FBED) or a thesis (PSR), developed via multiple paragraphs. There is a distinction between the objective/expository writing of the FBED and the subjective/personal narrative writing of the PSR.

Modes?

The posts make use of multimodal evidence and use links, images, and other multimodal content to connect resources or create more effective communication of a sense of place for the reader.

Text Conventions?

While some errors in spelling, grammar, and usage may be present, they do not significantly detract from the student author’s credibility. Metadata is effectively employed.

Revision?

Drafts/reflection show evidence of revision to improve clarity and rhetorical appeal.

Distinctive 450-500 points (Key: Needs Work, Good, Superior)

Mature?

The distinction between the FBED and PSR is clear and consistent. The level of detail and the appropriateness of the details chosen are impressive.

Persuasive or Original?

The descriptions and narratives reflect particularly observant researchers and contribute to the archive projects in unique ways.

Creative/Well-designed?

Author makes creative use of multiple modes; or layout and design are aesthetically pleasing, rhetorically effective, and well-executed. Metadata is particularly effectively employed.

Polished?

Project drafts/reflection provide evidence of multiple revisions to improve clarity and rhetorical appeal, and text is virtually free of grammar/punctuation/usage errors.

Built Environment Analysis | Complete Draft=500-1500 points, Presentation=250-1000 points, Revision=250-1000 points | 1000-3500 Points Total

Overview
For this project, you will make a detailed and evidence-based analysis of the built environment in Atlanta, focusing on one of the sites on our list. Your analysis should be at least 1,500 words (think 6-8 digital pages), and should integrate images, sounds, graphs and other media as necessary and relevant to make an appealing, effective multimodal argument.

In this analysis, you make one argument that you support with evidence. For example, you might argue that the rhetoric of the built environment suggests that a particular neighborhood in Atlanta is becoming racially segregated as it undergoes gentrification. Or you might argue that the rhetoric of the built environment in a museum makes it unwelcoming to children, even though it is a space that its history and advertising suggest has been created for a young audience.

  • This writing will take the entire second half of the semester and will be required in 3 deliverables:
  • A formal, complete, excellent draft due April 7th
  • An online presentation due April 17th
  • A revised final, complete draft due April 24th

Notice that the “formal, complete, excellent draft” is worth more points than the final draft. This means that you’ll need to do most of your research and writing for the final project before the end of the semester. This will take some planning, but having an excellent draft will enable you to dedicate time and attention to revising for clarity and rhetorical effectiveness.

Built Environment Analysis examples from previous semesters:

 

Complete draft: 11:59 pm, April 7

Presentation: 11:59 pm, April 17th

Revision: 11:59 pm, April 24th

Project Purpose and Goals
This project builds on skills practiced early in the semester. Skills in observation, close reading, note taking, summarizing and drawing conclusions come into play now as you seek secondary source information to support a particular idea you have (or develop) about how a the built environment of Atlanta is affecting a particular community of people. We will turn our attention to invention, coming up with ideas and research questions, forming lists of research terms, and finding, assessing, and using secondary sources in convincing ways within an academic setting.
Guidelines
Your built environment analysis, like most of the other work you’ve completed so far, will be posted on your blog. You will need a menu or other aid for navigating through the different parts of your multi-page analysis.

You should draw on your research for the annotated bibliography in making your argument about the built environment in Atlanta. Cite and document all sources using MLA/APA parenthetical documentation and a works cited list. If you draw on the work of your peers, you should cite and document those sources as well. In addition to using MLA/APA citation style, you can also link to sources of information that are available digitally, including the work of your peers.

Your built environment analysis will be composed in stages. We will aid each other via workshops in class, but I encourage you to organize extra peer review groups outside of class for extra points.
Due Dates
Initial Complete Draft — Friday, April 7 at 11:59 pm
Online Presentation — Monday, April 17th by 11:59 pm
Final, Revised Draft — Monday, April 24, by 11:59 pm

Rubric

Below is the detailed rubric I will follow when evaluating all three deliverables. Use this rubric to guide you as you complete all aspects of this assignment, and to help you understand the score you receive for each part on the comparative evaluation rubric in your feedback document on Google drive.

In order to receive minimum possible points, a project must be “Good” or “Superior” on all of the criteria outlined in the “Competent, Credible, Complete” section. Generally, speaking, this means your submitted draft must be a good faith effort to respond to the prompt and follow the project guidelines.

For higher points, the draft must must be “Good” or “Superior” on all of the criteria outlined in the “Competent, Credible, Complete” section and one or more of the criteria outlined in the “Skillful/Persuasive” section. The “Skillful/Persuasive” criteria focus on use of evidence, organization, conventions, and integration of rhetorical modes.

To receive highest points, the draft must must be “Good” or “Superior” on all of the criteria in “Competent, Credible, Complete” and “Skillful/Persuasive” and one or more of the criteria described in the “Distinctive” section. The “Distinctive” criteria focus on maturity of rhetorical awareness, persuasiveness and originality of argument, creative use of rhetorical modes, and polish in presentation and design.

 

Competent, Credible, Complete (Key: Needs Work, Good, Superior)

Complete?

The project was submitted on time; it comprises 1500 words at least (6-8 substantial, digital pages); it includes a works cited

Rhetorically Aware?

The project demonstrates an awareness of the rhetorical situation, particularly an academic audience, and adheres to basic conventions of the blog genre.

Credible?

The text offers evidence to support claims; most of the evidence comes from quality, scholarly sources and is cited.

Skillful, Persuasive (Key: Needs Work, Good, Superior)

Evidence?

The evidence stems from credible, scholarly sources and reflects a variety of perspectives; the evidence is explained within the context of the author’s argument.

Organization?

The project is organized in a clear and compelling way; navigation is clear and easy

Modes?

The project makes use of multimodal evidence and uses links, images, and other multimodal content to connect resources or create a more effective argument.

Text Conventions?

While some errors in spelling, grammar, and usage may be present, they do not significantly detract from the student author’s credibility.

Revision?

Drafts/reflection show evidence of revision to improve clarity and rhetorical appeal.

Distinctive (Key: Needs Work, Good, Superior)

Mature?

Student author uses quotations and paraphrases strategically, particularly visualizing data and explicating evidence; the author acknowledges and addresses other viewpoints.

Persuasive or Original?

Project offers a particularly cohesive and persuasive argument that goes beyond the obvious or expected, perhaps employing both primary and secondary research to achieve persuasiveness.

Creative/Well-designed?

Author makes creative use of multiple modes; or layout and design are aesthetically pleasing, rhetorically effective, and well-executed.

Polished?

Project drafts/reflection provide evidence of multiple revisions to improve clarity and rhetorical appeal, and text is virtually free of grammar/punctuation/usage errors.

 Participation | 300-??? Points

Check your points in your doc on Google Drive.

~Ask not what you can do to earn credit for this course; ask what you will do to earn as many points as you possibly can.

This course is designed to give you as many choices as possible for achieving the progress, learning, and final grade you feel is possible and desirable given your current situation (in terms of time, attention, and motivation) and the learning outcomes for the course.

Some students enter 1102 having experienced much practice writing and researching for academic audiences. Some even have much experience working with digital media. These students might be able to achieve high quality work without investing much time and attention in the required assignments. This course is designed to reward high quality work with high grades.

Other students, however, enter 1102 without much experience with concepts related to rhetoric, research, and composing with digital media. The quality of the work they produce might not achieve the highest standards, even at the end of the semester, and even though they make substantial progress and acquire knowledge and skills that will be useful when the course is over. It’s not possible to become an expert in academic research and writing in one semester. This course is designed to encourage students to do as much work as they feel they need to or can do in order to see progress. The course is designed to reward quality and purposeful extra work with extra points so that high grades can be achieved by everyone.

Each week, you will earn points for required class preparation. You can earn general participation points by keeping up with class preparation. Class preparation work will also ensure you stay on track with reading and the research and composition process, and that everyone is prepared for class discussions, workshops, and peer review. Further, at any time during the course of the semester, you are invited to complete and submit work for extra participation points

 

If you complete and earn the minimum points for all of the major projects, complete all of the class prep, and attend every class, you will earn at least 2,200 points and a grade of “C.” If you complete all of the major projects and class prep, and accrue at least 5,355 points you will automatically receive a “B.” Once you complete all of the major projects and class prep, and accrue 5,985 points, you will automatically receive an A in the course!!!

Your points will be recorded on a Google doc, which will be shared with you and available for you to view at any time.

Your instructor may give you ideas each week about extra credit opportunities that might be useful to you that week. You can also choose ideas from this list, which comprises ideas for extra work you may complete at any time during the course of the semester and submit for points:

  • Compose a blog post in response to an Activity in the First Year Guide to Writing
  • Visit the Writing Studio to work on specific writing or research skills and write a reflection post about the experience
  • Contribute to the SOS archive
  • Contribute to the Tech Tutorial archive
  • Contribute to the Class Notes archive
  • Contribute to the Glossary archive
  • Compose blog posts relating other course work or interests to the issues we discuss in class
  • Come in for an office hour visit to work on something specific with your instructor
  • Set up a study group and write a post contributing your notes from the session
  • Complete extra readings, built environment descriptions
  • Suggest something….

Each submission will receive 20 points (instructors reserve the right to assign more points for impressively substantial, quality entries). Be sure to fill out a “submission form” for each item you complete for extra points.

There is no limit to the number of extra points you can earn.

**Be sure to let me know when you have completed points-potential work that doesn’t automatically get counted. Generally, you will do this by writing up your work as a blog post and submitting the link to your post via the submission form, or submitting a link to the exercises in Writer’s Help. This gives me opportunity to discuss the work with you and give you general feedback you can take to your work as a whole.

 

 

While participation is ongoing, you can earn rewards by accruing points early, and some opportunities for earning extra points expire when the major project with which they are associated expire.

 

Expiration Dates

While points will be awarded for class attendance and participation, study groups, group conferences, office hours meetings, and other forms of participation throughout the semester, opportunities for earning points associated with major projects will expire according to the following schedule:

  • Unit 1 Reading Responses, February 24
  • Unit 2 Reading Responses, March 24
  • Unit 1 BEDs, March 3
  • Unit 2 BEDs, April 3
  • Annotated Bibliography 1, March 27
  • Annotated Bibliography 2, April 7
  • BEA Draft, April 10
  • BEA Presentation, April 21

Late work can be submitted for completion credit, but you will not be able to earn points for submissions made after these deadlines.

Submitting your work . . .

Use this form to submit pretty much everything for which you’d like to earn points–study group reflections, major project drafts, contributions to our Atlanta built environment archive, etc. I will keep track of when you come to see me during office hours for individual or group conferences. For everything else, however, you will need to submit a link to evidence of your work on your own site, in Hypothes.is, or elsewhere on the web.

If you ever have questions about what kind of evidence you need to provide to document your participation and how to submit it, stop by during office hours or ask the question before or after class. You’ll earn points for the office hours visit, asking the question, and for finding a way to make the information available to the rest of your classmates.

What is the general plan for the course, and when are things due?

The detailed course calendar and a week-by-week overview are available below. Here is the general plan for the course; keep in mind that this general plan is subject to change:

Getting Started

  • Introduction to the course
  • Individual website set-up (create.gsu.edu)

Unit 1 | History

  • Unit 1 Reading Response (11:59 pm, February 3)
  • Unit 1 Built Environment Descriptions (11:59 pm, February 12)

 

  • Thomas Carter and Elizabeth Collins Cromley, “Introduction,” from Invitation to Vernacular Architecture. (group 1)
  • James Deetz, “Parting Ways,” from In Small Things Forgotten: An Archaeology of Early American Life. (group 2)

 

Unit 2 | Culture

  • Unit 2 Reading Response (11:59 pm, February 24)
  • Unit 2 Built Environment Descriptions (11:59 pm, March 3)

 

 

Unit 3 | Politics

  • Annotated Bibliography 1 (5 entries, 11:59 pm, March 10)
  • Optional Unit 3 Reading Response (11:59 pm, March 24)
  • Annotated Bibliography 2 (10 entries, 5 revised, 5 new, 11:59 pm, March 27)
  • By the end of Week 12 these major projects should be complete: Reading Responses, Built Environment Descriptions, and Annotated Bibliographies. After Week 12, submissions related to these major projects will only be accepted for completion credit; no points will be awarded for them.

 

 

Unit 4 | Text as Built Environment

  • Built Environment Analysis Complete Draft (11:59 pm, April 7)
  • Built Environment Analysis Presentation (11:59 pm, April 17)
  • Built Environment Analysis Revised Draft (11:59 pm, April 24)
  • Course evaluations and conclusions

 

Weekly Overview

To open the weekly overview in a new window, click here. This is an overview of the readings and deliverables for the week of:

Course Calendar

Click on the entry for a particular date for more details. You can also use Google to view and subscribe to your class calendar. Copy and paste this link into your browser to view the calendar in a new window: https://calendar.google.com/calendar/embed?showCalendars=0&mode=AGENDA&height=600&wkst=1&bgcolor=%23FFFFFF&src=cna5hq41pkvhhltegj8fq7l1eo%40group.calendar.google.com&color=%23875509&ctz=America%2FNew_York.

Copy and paste this code into the text editor view of your WordPress post to embed it:

<iframe src=”https://calendar.google.com/calendar/embed?showCalendars=0&amp;mode=AGENDA&amp;height=600&amp;wkst=1&amp;bgcolor=%23FFFFFF&amp;src=cna5hq41pkvhhltegj8fq7l1eo%40group.calendar.google.com&amp;color=%23875509&amp;ctz=America%2FNew_York” style=”border-width:0″ width=”100%” height=”750″ frameborder=”0″ scrolling=”no”></iframe>

Monday Hybrid Section

Wednesday Hybrid Section

Image Credit: “Neko Case 92/365” by Robert Occhialini

How will my grade be calculated?

Check your points in your doc on Google Drive.

You will earn points for just about everything you do in this course–attending class, completing in-class work, studying, major projects, contributing material to our collaborative archive about the built environment in Atlanta, etc., etc. You can earn points on major projects as follows:

  • Reading Responses (2, 50-250 points each, 100-500 points total)
  • Annotated Bibliographies (2, 5 entries=100-500 points, 10 entries=200-1000 points, 300-1500 points total)
  • Built Environment Descriptions (2, 250-500 points each, 500-1000 points total)
  • Built Environment Analysis (3 stages, Complete draft=500-1500 points, Presentation=250-1000 points, Revised final draft=250-1000, 1000-3500 points total)
  • General Participation: 300-???

You can also lose points for missing class, failing to turn in a project on time, coming to class unprepared, etc., etc. At the end of the course, if you have completed all four of the major projects (reading responses, annotated bibliographies, built environment descriptions, and built environment analysis), your letter grade will be assigned based on the points you’ve earned. In order to pass the course, you must complete all four of the major projects. FAILURE TO COMPLETE ANY OF THE MAJOR PROJECTS WILL RESULT IN AN AUTOMATIC GRADE OF “D” or lower MEANING THAT YOU WILL HAVE TO RE-TAKE THE CLASS.

If you complete and earn the minimum points for all of the major projects, complete all of the class prep, and attend every class, you will earn at least 2,200 points and a grade of “C.” If you complete all of the major projects and class prep, and accrue at least 5,355 points you will automatically receive a “B.” Once you complete all of the major projects and class prep, and accrue 5,985 points, you will automatically receive an A in the course!!!

Your points will be recorded on a Google doc, which will be shared with you and available for you to view at any time.

Image Credit: “Oakland Cemetery” by Todd Martin

What texts and other resources will I need?

In all of my classes, I make every effort to keep text and materials costs under $75. Unless otherwise noted below, I expect students will have access to all required texts and resources from the first day of class. Students should not expect to “get by” without reading assigned texts. Unlike some lecture classes, where the lecture is a review of assigned reading, this is a seminar course in which the assigned reading is preparation for a discussion or application of the information and ideas presented in the text. To put it another way, by completing assigned readings before class, we establish a basic shared knowledge base upon which we can build thoughtful conversations and productive work sessions. It’s OK if the reading sometimes raises more questions than it answers; I expect that to happen often, in fact. Make a note of your questions. Let them circulate in your thoughts in the hours before class, and then bring them up in your blog posts and our class discussions.

Required Reading

  • Gaillet, Lynée, et al. Guide to First-Year Writing. 5th Edition. Southlake, Texas: Fountainhead P, 2016. Print.
  • Additional readings linked to the course calendar or posted to the course folder on Google Drive

Recommended Reference

  • Arola, Kristin L., Jennifer Sheppard, Cheryl E. Ball. Writer/Designer: A Guide to Making Multimodal Projects. (Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2014) — http://bit.ly/1tbI2aI

Required Materials and Tools

  • Access to a laptop or desktop computer for daily use.
  • Access to email on a daily basis.
  • An active student account on create.gsu.edu.
  • A Zotero account (You may use an existing account, or you may create an account just for use in this course), the appropriate Zotero plugins and desktop client for your browser, operating system, and word processing software.
  • An account on Hypothes.is.
  • Access to computer software and programs used for digital composition and editing (I am always able to recommend free or very low-cost open source alternatives to more expensive proprietary software such as Microsoft Office, InDesign, Photoshop, etc.)

On Campus Learning and Tech Support

General

ENGL1102: The Rhetoric of Space and Place in Atlanta

Spring 2017 | Urban Life 302C

Monday 1:30-2:45 pm

Our class is part of a community of three classes. Mrs. Paige Arrington, Ms. Jessica Rose, and I have collaborated on the course design, and we are teaching the same projects and general course content. This means that you have extra peer and instructor support to help you outside of class.

When you need extra assistance outside of class, you can come and see me during office hours or make an appointment. You can also see one of the other instructors who are teaching the same projects and content in their classes.

In addition, if you miss class, you can make up the missed class by attending one of the community course sessions in the same week; just make sure you let the instructor of that session know you are there to make up a class so that they can let me know. Finally, you can earn 50 extra points for attending a supplemental class meeting in any given week in addition to our usual class meeting on Mondays.

Instructor of record:

Dr. Robin Wharton

  • Office: 25 Park Place #2434
  • Office Hours: T/Th 9-11 am, W 9-10 am, and by appointment; I am able to meet during office hours or by appointment via Skype or Google Hangout if that works better than an in-person conference
  • Contact: rwharton3{at}gsu{the dot goes here}edu

Community instructors:

Mrs. Paige Arrington

  • Office: 25 Park Place, 22d floor
  • Office Hours: M/W 1-3 pm
  • Contact: parrington2{at}gsu{the dot goes here}edu
  • Class meeting times: 12:00-12-50, MWF, ClSo 303

Ms. Jessica Rose

  • Office: 25 Park Place, 22d floor
  • Office Hours: M/W 10:30 am-12:30 pm
  • Contact: jrose18{at}gsu{the dot goes here}edu
  • Class meeting times: 9:00-9:50, MWF, ClSo 506

All work must be submitted by the scheduled due date and in accordance with project guidelines. As a general rule, you will not receive any points for late work, or work that does not meet formatting and submission guidelines outlined in the project description.

I reserve the right to change the policies, schedule, and syllabus at any time during the semester.

Attendance

Come to class. We meet in person only once a week. Every class is important. If you miss class you will miss something essential, and you should make an appointment or drop by during office hours to catch up. You will lose 100 points for unexcused absences. Arriving to class late may result in a deduction of 50-100 points.

In this course, students are expected to adhere to the Georgia State University student code of conduct. This includes the university attendance policy. Excused absences are limited to university-sponsored events where you are representing GSU in an official capacity, religious holidays, and legal obligations such as jury duty or military service days. Absences for all other reasons will result in a points deduction as outlined above. In the event of extended illness or family emergency, I will consider requests for individual exemption from the general attendance policy on a case by case basis.

Accommodations for Students With Disabilities

Georgia State University complies with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Students who wish to request accommodation for a disability may do so by registering with the Office of Disability Services. Students may only be accommodated upon issuance by the Office of Disability Services of a signed Accommodation Plan and are responsible for providing a copy of that plan to instructors of all classes in which accommodations are sought. According to the ADA (http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=110_cong_bills&docid=f:s3406enr.txt.pdf): ‘‘SEC. 3. DEFINITION OF DISABILITY. ‘‘As used in this Act: ‘‘(1) DISABILITY.—The term ‘disability’ means, with respect to an individual— ‘‘(A) a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities of such individual…major life activities include, but are not limited to, caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, and working. ‘‘(B) MAJOR BODILY FUNCTIONS.—For purposes of paragraph (1), a major life activity also includes the operation of a major bodily function, including but not limited to, functions of the immune system, normal cell growth, digestive, bowel, bladder, neurological, brain, respiratory, circulatory, endocrine, and reproductive functions.”

Language Conventions

This course presumes that because you were exempt from or passed English 1101, you have a basic knowledge of standard American English, including but not limited to variations in sentence structure, subject-verb agreement, pronoun-antecedent agreement, parallel structure, dangling modifiers, grammatical expletives, possessives and plurals, punctuation, capitalization, word choice, and various other grammatical and mechanical problems. If you are someone for whom this knowledge and practice are a struggle, this course gives you time to improve. If you do not, your grades will be affected. You have resources available at GSU to help you improve your knowledge. In the Writing Studio (http://www.writingstudio.gsu.edu/) you can work one-on-one, in private, with a tutor to improve. Writing Studio tutors can also help you to help you refine already strong competence, moving from good to excellent. The Purdue OWL (https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/) has resources to assist you with identifying and correcting common grammar, punctuation, and usage errors, and to help you with formatting citations and bibliographies.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:

  • Analyze, evaluate, document, and draw inferences from various sources.
  • Identify, select, and analyze appropriate research methods, research questions, and evidence for a specific rhetorical situation.
  • Use argumentative strategies and genres in order to engage various audiences.
  • Integrate others’ ideas with their own.
  • Use grammatical, stylistic, and mechanical formats and conventions appropriate for a variety of audiences.
  • Critique their own and others’ work in written and oral formats.
  • Produce well-reasoned, argumentative essays demonstrating rhetorical engagement.
  • Reflect on what contributed to their writing process and evaluate their own work.
  • Compose in and combine all five representational modes – linguistic, visual, aural, gestural, and spatial.
  • Articulate how multimodal compositions (either their own work, or work authored by others) respond to the rhetorical situations in which they are embedded, and in doing so, demonstrate an understanding of key concepts and vocabulary associated with each of the five representational modes (linguistic, visual, aural, gestural, and spatial).
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how technologies influence rhetorical situations in a variety of ways, and use technologies intentionally to craft more effective academic arguments.

Academic Honesty/Plagiarism

The Department of English expects all students to adhere to the university’s Code of Student Conduct, especially as it pertains to plagiarism, cheating, multiple submissions, and academic honesty. Please refer to the Policy on Academic Honesty (Section 409 of the Faculty Handbook). Penalty for violation of this policy will result in a zero for the assignment, possible failure of the course, and, in some cases, suspension or expulsion. Georgia State University defines plagiarism as . . . “ . . . any paraphrasing or summarizing of the works of another person without acknowledgment, including the submitting of another student’s work as one’s own . . . [It] frequently involves a failure to acknowledge in the text . . . the quotation of paragraphs, sentences, or even phrases written by someone else.” At GSU, “the student is responsible for understanding the legitimate use of sources . . . and the consequences of violating this responsibility.” (For the university’s policies, see in the student catalog, “Academic Honesty,” http://www2.gsu.edu/~catalogs/2010-2011/undergraduate/1300/1380_academic_honesty.htm)

Learning Technology

If you have them, you may bring laptops or mobile computing devices to class for use in in-class activities. Students should use these devices responsibly for class-related work. If they become a distraction for you, me, or other students in the class, I will ask you to put them away. Occasionally I will will request a device-free learning environment for a discussion or learning activity, and students are expected to honor such requests.

Receiving a Grade of Incomplete

In order to receive an incomplete, a student must inform the instructor, either in person or in writing, of his/her inability (non-academic reasons) to complete the requirements of the course. Incompletes will be assigned at the instructor’s discretion and the terms for removal of the “I” are dictated by the instructor. A grade of incomplete will only be considered for students who are a) passing the course with a C or better, b) present a legitimate, non-academic reason to the instructor, and c) have only one major assignment left to finish.

For English Majors

The English department at GSU requires an exit portfolio of all students graduating with a degree in English. Ideally, students should work on this every semester, selecting 1-2 papers from each course and revising them, with direction from faculty members. The portfolio includes revised work and a reflective essay about what you’ve learned. Each concentration (literature, creative writing, rhetoric/composition, and secondary education) within the major may have specific items to place in the portfolio, so be sure to check booklet located next to door of the front office of the English Department. Senior Portfolio due dates are published in the booklets or you may contact an advisor or Dr. Dobranski, Director of Undergraduate Studies. See the English office for additional information.

Student Evaluation of Instructor

Your constructive assessment of this course plays an indispensable role in shaping education at Georgia State. Upon completing the course, please take time to fill out the online course evaluation.

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