ESSAY #2 (In-Class)
WR 121, Prof. C. Agatucci - Winter 2003
In-Class essays are scored using Final Exam Essay evaluation criteria, and letter graded.
Worth: 20% of course grade if one of two highest grades earned
on the three timed, In-Class Essays (#2, #3, & Final Exam Essay) this term.
(See also WR 121 Syllabus & WR 121 Final Exam Essay Policy )
Essays are allowed
(See WR 121 Syllabus Course Grading & Late Work Policies)
DEADLINES: See WR 121 Course Plan, Weeks #6 & #7, for relevant deadlines.
This assignment will help you achieve these WR 121 learning outcomes (Course Competencies, as stated in WR 121 Syllabus):
In addition, preparatory & follow-up assignments & activities--e.g. preliminary drafts & author's directions, writer's workshops--will help you achieve these WR 121 Learning Outcomes:
(IN-CLASS) ESSAY #2 Directions & Topic Choices
For deadlines, preparation, & materials needed, see WR 121 Course Plan.
Come to class Week #6 prepared to write your in-class Essay #2:
(1) Preliminary Drafts/Prep copies (to be turned in at the beginning of class)
(2) Bring bluebook(s), black or blue ink pens, topics handout, Muller textbook;
optional dictionary &/or thesaurus OK.
Note Well: No Notes, Outlines, Drafts, etc., may be used when writing In-Class Essays.
(3) EXTRA CREDIT will be given for augmenting your required Preliminary Draft preparation by doing at least one "practice timed writing" at home, labeling it as such, and turning it in at the beginning of the first In-Class Essay #2 writing period.
Assigned Topic Choice. Prepare your essay in response to one of the assigned topics given below.
NOTE WELL: Essays that do not address an assigned topic choice, and/or fail to address all parts of the chosen assigned topic will receive failing scores & grades!!)
Advice: Make sure your essay is unified by a clearly stated thesis and narrowed focus.
Your essay should be logically organized, coherent, and well developed with supporting explanation, specific examples and detail drawn from observation, experience, and reading. See In-Class Essay #2 Evaluation Checklist below for additional guidance in preparing your essay.
Avoid Plagiarism: Cite Your Source/s. Note that you should bring Muller textbook to in-class writing periods to assist you in quoting, paraphrasing, summarizing, and citing from Muller reading source/s.
In-Text Citation: In first reference to relevant Muller reading source(s) you bring into your essay, introduce the author’s full name and title of the article; author tags should accompany any summary from the Muller reading, and MLA-style in-text parenthetical citation [be sure to give page numbers!!] should follow all quotations and/or paraphrases. Review Directions for Essay #1 for general Advice on "incorporating" in-text citations into your essay.
Works Cited: You also need to devote a bluebook page at the end of your essay to Works Cited, wherein you give complete bibliographic entry on each outside source (i.e. Muller reading) that you have cited in-text of your essay. You are allowed--and encouraged--to write out Works Cited bibliographical entries in advance, on this Essay #2 Topics handout.
To help you, see MLA-style Works Cited examples for Muller readings given in online FAS&RA#1 directions: http://www.cocc.edu/cagatucci/classes/wr121/fas_ra1.htm
Essay Length: In-Class Essays should be 750 to 1000 words--not counting the separate Works Cited page at the end of your essay. Warning: the perceived length of handwritten essays in bluebook pages can be misleading, and come to very different word counts than word-processed, double spaced pages.
Tip: Prepare your Preliminary Draft on wordprocessor and use the word count feature to judge the length of your essay.
Essay #2 Topic Choices drawn from
Muller Readings previously assigned in 10:00 & 11:00 WR 121 sections this term
Topic #1. Reading and/or Writing Effectively
Mortimer Adler's "How to Mark a Book," Peter Elbow's "Freewriting," and Donald Murray's "The Maker's Eye: Revising Your Own Manuscripts" discuss the authors’ attitudes toward and advice about effective processes for reading or writing.
Write an essay in which you characterize your attitude toward reading and/or writing, supported by analyzing aspect(s) of your reading and/or writing process. Integrate at least one point made in one (or more) of these Muller articles relevant to your own discussion.
Topic #2. Ethnic Identification and Its Consequences
In "The Cult of Ethnicity," Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., concedes that there are some "healthy consequences," but emphasizes his concerns about the "unhealthy" consequences, of "promoting, celebrating, and perpetuating separate ethnic origins and identities" (48, 8) in the U.S.A. today. In response to Schlesinger's concerns, Jamie Taylor proposes that "strong identification" with one's ethnicity is more often healthy, rather than divisive and unhealthy (38-39).
Write an essay which you identify and analyze at least one "healthy" consequence and at least one "unhealthy" consequence of strong identification and celebration of people's ethnic origins. Integrate into your essay discussion one or more relevant points taken from Schlesinger's and/or Taylor's articles.
Topic #3. Gender Role Expectations and Behaviors
In “Being a Man,” Paul Theroux examines male gender behaviors and expectations to explain why he has “always disliked being a man” (219). In "When Bright Girls Decide that Math Is a 'Waste of Time,'" Susan Jacoby proposes that our society's gender expectations of girls explain "why girls are often deficient in math and science" (Muller 140). In “Sex, Lies and Conversation: Why Is It So Hard for Men and Women to Talk to Each Other?” Deborah Tannen examines communication problems between females and males that result from different gender role expectations and behaviors.
Write an essay in which you identify and analyze one or two problems created by gender roles or expectations of males and/or females in our society. Draw upon your own experiences/observations, as well as one or more points made by Theroux, Tannen, and/or Jacoby relevant to your essay discussion.
Topic #4. Public Education Issues
In "The Cult of Ethnicity," Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., warns that when "our system of education" promotes and celebrates our ethnic identities, it promotes "unhealthy" divisiveness among Americans (48, 8). In "When Bright Girls Decide that Math Is a 'Waste of Time,'" Susan Jacoby identifies U.S. gender expectations as a key reason why females decide to avoid advanced math and science classes in high school and, thus, restrict their "academic and professional choices" (141). In "Unplugged: The Myth of Computers in the Classroom," David Gelernter argues that computer technology is being over-used or misused in today's U.S. classrooms, with the unhealthy result that teachers are teaching less and students are learning less (138).
Write an essay in which you identify, explain and illustrate at least two problems that you have experienced with U.S. public education today, drawing upon your own experience/observations, as well as one or more points made by Schlesinger, Jacoby, and/or Gelernter.
In-Class Essay #2 Evaluation Name___________________________
Wr 121, Winter 2003, Prof. C. Agatucci
Two highest scores/grades on three Grade & Score_______________
class essays count (2 @ 20% of course grade) See WR 121 Syllabus: No Late/Make Up Allowed
These In-Class Essay #2 Requirements are Met:
____Must be written in blank bluebook(s) or it will not be accepted for grading.
____Must avoid plagiarism & integrate required point/s from relevant reading/s, using correct MLA style to cite point/s from reading & any other source/s in-text and in Works Cited at end.
In-Class Essays must
demonstrate at least minimum competency
(score of “3”)
in all 5 of the following categories in order to receive a Passing Score/Grade:
_____1. ASSIGNED TOPIC & TOPIC FOCUS: Clearly addresses (all parts of) assigned topic question and explores relevant issues; topic/thesis is well focused (limited enough) to allow for satisfactory treatment in an essay of 800-1000 words within timed writing period. N.B. Essay must be written in response to one of these assigned topics, or essay automatically fails for being off topic:
____2. CONTENT, THESIS/PURPOSE: Shows depth, complexity of thought (not simplistic) in exploring issues relevant to assigned topic; establishes and maintains a clear "focus" unified by a thesis statement, with clear controlling sentences (e.g. thesis/purpose statements, topic sentences, thesis transitions); engaged writing to communicate with the intended audience. Essay must be written to make a central point--i.e. focused, unified by, organized and developed to support a clear, specific thesis, which responds explicitly to chosen assigned topic.
____3. ORGANIZATION, COHERENCE, ESSAY FORM: Effectively organized by a clear, logical organizational pattern appropriate to assigned topic & thesis; essay structure (e.g., introduction, conclusion, transitions & paragraph breaks) clearly establishes and carries out organizational pattern; effective transitions, logical reasoning, & clear expression maintain strong coherence throughout the essay.
____4. PARAGRAPH DEVELOPMENT: Body paragraphs are well-developed, drawing upon reading, personal experience, observation; with strong supporting detail, and sufficient discussion of detail to establish its relevance to essay focus/thesis; general points (e.g. topic sentences) are developed with strong supporting detail & well-selected examples, with sufficient explanation to establish relevance of body points & specific evidence to the essay topic & thesis.
____5. STYLE & COMMAND OF STANDARD WRITTEN ENGLISH:
Clear, coherent, effective style demonstrates control of diction/word choice & sentence structure, creating tone appropriate to topic/purpose; & pleasing sentence variety; strong Command of standard written English is demonstrated by few flaws in grammar, usage, punctuation, mechanics; no serious patterns of errors (e.g. subject-verb agreement, verb form/tense, persistent misuse of commas) and no more than three (3) major/high distortion errors (errors that hurt clarity)—e.g. fragments; run-on comma splices & fused sentences; unclear pronoun references, unclear word choices, mixed sentence structures.
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Last Updated: 26 July 2003
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