Personal Philosophy, Public Policy, and the Transmission of Ideology
Instructor: Aaron D. Graham
Meeting Time and Place: 13:00-13:50 M, W, F— Callaway, N- 203
Office Hours: M: 14:00-15:50 or by appointment— Barns and Noble Starbucks
This course takes up the argument that in the current moment at which both ISIS and #BlackLivesMatter lay foremost in the American consciousness, ignoring matters of ideology is simply no longer an option for any engaged citizen. Students will use writing to understand and interrogate how ideologies are constructed and transmitted. Through weekly in class writing that examines the modes of transmission, rhetorical techniques, desired audience, and desired outcome of numerous textual materials. Next, students will deploy these conventions to create an research source packet/bibliography to explore ideas of public policy that specifically interest them. This will culminate in the drafting of an in-depth, researched policy proposal in an area of the student’s’ choosing. Finally, students will develop a final portfolio replete with a 3-4 page introductory letter. This course will begin with the study of the background, morphology, and transmission of ideology as it relates to ISIS to provide students with the essential tools to discuss how ideologies are born and spread. This course will then allow students to consider topics of individual interest to them while they read important speeches, policy briefs, and memoirs by writers including Ayn Rand, Alexander Solzhenitsyn, Ta-Nehsi Coates, and Albert Camus.
Course Learning Outcomes
The trajectory of this course will take you through numerous activities and assignments designed to provide practice and afford insight in order to help you master the following essential writing/reading/critical thinking skills divided in to three distinct outcome areas:
Outcome 1: Rhetorical Composition. You will compose texts in multiple genres and employing using multiple modes of communication and learn to do so in relation to various rhetorical situations.
Through composing a variety texts throughout the semester you will demonstrate your understanding of audience, purpose, and constraints, use and adapt generic conventions, as well as hone your voice as an author using organization, development, style, and tone.
Outcome 2: Critical Thinking and Reading Resulting in Writing. As you undertake scholarly inquiry and produce your own arguments, you will learn to summarize, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate the ideas and arguments of others.
During this semester you will be bombarded by the ideas of others. You will encounter these ideas in a variety of texts both inside and outside the classroom and across a various swaths mediums–print, visual, aural, oral, etc. You will learn proper ways to ethically integrate texts written by other individuals into your own work by correctly citing and adapting. Through this you will learn how to employ writing as a tool to engage and think critically about a myriad of issues.
Outcome 3: Writing as Process. Students understand and practice writing as a process, recursively-implementing strategies of research, drafting, revision, editing, and reflection.
In learning about your own writing process and doing guided reflective writing about that process, you will learn to critique your work and apply those principles to works created by peers. You will also become aware that creating a successful text requires multiple drafts and intentionality concerning the deployment of your arguments’ specific efficacies.
These outcomes have been adapted for Emory first-year writing courses from a set developed by the Council of Writing Program Administrators (http://wpacouncil.org/positions/outcomes.html).
McCants, William The ISIS Apocalypse: The History, Strategy, and Doomsday Vision of the Islamic State.
Rand,Ayn; Philosophy, Who Needs It?·
Modern Language Association; MLA Style Manual and Guide to Scholarly Publishing, 3rd Edition
Camus, Albert; Algerian Chronicles
Coates, Ta-Nehisi; Between the World and Me.
The Terrorism Reader (Routledge Readers in History) Routledge Readers in History; Routledge; 4th ed.
Attendance is essential. Aside from documented absences for school-related activities, you may miss 3 (three) classes without incident. For every class you miss after the fourth, I’ll lower your grade by one-third of a letter. Meet with me if you feel your situation warrants an exception to this rule. Bring appropriate documentation to our meeting.
All assignments are due by the time and date specified. I will not accept late work without granting advance permission via email, and permission is not guaranteed. Even with advance arrangement, late work will cause your grade for the assignment to decrease by one letter for each class period the assignment is late. Meet with me if you feel your situation warrants an exception to this rule. Bring appropriate documentation to this meeting.
Email is the best way to contact me if you have questions or concerns. Generally, I will respond to all student email within 24 hours (although on weekends and holidays, it may take a little longer). Likewise, there may be instances when I will need to contact you by email. It is your responsibility to check your Emory-based email account at least once every 24 hours.
The Honor Code (http://catalog.college.emory.edu/academic/policy/honor_code.html) is in effect throughout the semester. By taking this course, you affirm that it is a violation of the code to cheat on exams, to plagiarize, to deviate from the teacher’s instructions about collaboration on work that is submitted for grades, to give false information to a faculty member, and to undertake any other form of academic misconduct. You agree that the instructor is entitled to move you to another seat during examinations, without explanation. You also affirm that if you witness others violating the code you have a duty to report them to the honor council.
I take plagiarism and other forms of academic dishonesty seriously. Should I suspect that you engage in academic dishonesty in this course, I will refer the case to Emory’s Honor Council. You may also receive an F on the assignment(s) in question.
Assignment #1: “That Ol’ Reflect’n Connect’n” (10%) DUE: Friday 1/15/26
This is a reflection/process essay and thus: I WANT YOU TO BE IN 1st PERSON & USE YOUR OWN AUTHORIAL VOICE
“I am concerned about the absence policy because I am here on a water polo scholarship and the team travels almost every week for nationally televised matches and even if the absence is excused, missing the instruction on most Fridays could impact my understanding of important concepts.”
The paper should be in proper MLA format with regards to stylistic conventions: margins, heading, page numbers, etc. It should be typed, double-spaced, and in a standard font. It is due in hard copy at the beginning of class Friday, 1/15/16.
Assignment #2: “Into the Fray!!!” (10%) DUE: 2/8/16
Assignment #2: “Into the Fray!!!”
DUE: WEDNESDAY 2/17/16
Background to Drafting Your own Policy: Identify a Problem & Get it on the Public Agenda
You want to bring public attention to a problem of concern to you. It might be known to others, but only recently familiar to you. Or you might be aware of a problem of which others are unaware. In any case, you must understand the problematic conditions well. To develop your understanding, follow an approach of observation and inquiry.
***Do the tasks below in sequence. Results of one task will help you perform the next one***
Task #1: Describe the Problem and Identify the Stakeholders
The first step is to describe the problem and name the interested parties, or stakeholders. This involves:
recognizing problematic conditions,
identifying the problem that those conditions create,
specifying individuals as well as collectives that have a stake in the problem or its solution.
To increase your awareness of the problem and to recognize public interests in it, you can proceed in any of the following ways:
Work from observation of experiences, practices, effects: (Note likes/dislikes)
~List good/bad aspects of your current or past job(s) or a family member’s or a friend’s job(s)
~Sit for an hour in the office of a service provider to observe people affected by the problem and to observe the practices of policy implementipon.
~Visit locales affected by the conditions or the policy to observe impacts on physical environments
Work from subjective constructions::
Listen to or read stories (actual or imagined) that refer to the problem
Work from unfinished business:.
Reexamine a neglected need Revive a former interest
Return to an incomplete project
Work from anticipation:
Imagine the consequences if particular things continue as they are
Work from ignorance:
Choose a matter that concerns others (but is unfamiliar to you) that you want to know more about
Work from knowledge:
Consider the concern technically, informed by your (or others’) expertise
Work from values::
Consider the concern ethically or legally, informed by your (or others’) ideals or commitments
Task #2. Specify the Issues
When a problem has been identified, it is not yet a policy matter until its issues for policy are specified. Issues refer to stakeholders’ concerns, political disagreements, and value conflicts.
To recognize issues, you might: Think about impacts of the problem:
Who or what is affected by it?
Conceive the problem narrowly and then broadly. Is it individual and local or more widespread?
Conceive it broadly and then narrowly. Is it widely distributed or concentrated?
Think about attitudes.:
How do different stakeholders perceive the problem?
What values (ideals, beliefs, assumptions) are expressed in their definitions?
Think about authority.
How do stakeholders want to address the problem?
Do they see government action as a solution?
Do they agree or disagree on government’s role?
Task #3 : Plan Links to Solvency
Solutions typically rely on policy instruments that government can use. These include actions such as spending more or spending less and starting or ending programs.
—Identifying a Problem and then Proposing solutions gets more attention—
If you want to counter a proposal, or if you want to create fresh alternatives, stimulate your thinking with any of these approaches:
Review the problematic conditions with a fresh eye, looking for unnoticed solutions:
Reconsider a tried-but-failed or a known-but-ignored solution to find new potential
Look at the problem from a different perspective (a different stakeholder’s: Assign it to a different governmental level or jurisdiction if government already addresses the problem
Consult with nonprofit groups and nongovernmental organizations that are concerned about the problem
Consider doing nothing i.e. STATUS QUO
Task #4. Write the Document:
Before you write, use the Method to make yourself aware of the rhetorical framework (audience, purpose, context, situation) for your communication. Write with that framework in mind. choose one that fits your audience, purpose, context, and situation.
Here are two options:
A: memorandum, or report describing problematic conditions, possibly identifying causes of the conditions
B: memorandum, or report conveying informed opinion, possibly advocating an approach to the problem.
Note: Policy Papers of all types are expected to answer the following questions:
What are the problematic conditions? What problem do they cause?
What are the issues for policy? What is your concern? What is your intended reader’s concern?
Who else is concerned (on all sides)?
What are the key disagreements and agreements among those concerned?
What plausible and realistic solution can you offer?
***You must cite the sources to which your problem description refers. Use the MLA style (described at http://www.mla.org/style*****
REAL LIFE EXAMPLE #1:
You are a graduate studying policy writing & also serving as the Chief of Patient Information in the Surgeon General’s Office, US Reserve Armed Forces. Professionally, in your government workplace, you are the resident expert on clinical policy questions concerning:
Healthcare eligibility, benefits, records administration, and medical readiness and are in charge of answering questions regarding US Army policies and procedures by conducting analyses and reviewing / re-drafting policy documents.
Yesterday, a serious problem concerning healthcare eligibility caught your eye.
While doing routine research into the eligibility of Army National Guard members, you discovered that these soldiers are not eligible for many medical and dental benefits that are provided to active duty service members.
You inquire into the matter and find that senior administrative officials have been aware of this fact and have previously expressed deep concerns that the increase in deployments by reserve unity are deepening the problem.. Senior administrators define the benefits gap as a failure of policy. The General in Command recommended legislative action to amend the Department of Defense’s policy governing healthcare benefits and eligibility. However, the current administration has blocked the officer’s request/recommendation form reaching congress.
This Policy issue—known to others but not, until recently, to you—becomes the focus of your graduate coursework. You write, Memo #1—a preliminary description of the problem as an informal memo, and turn it in for a class assignment.
You use another assignment to draft Memo# 2—a memo to the Congressional subcommittee Chairperson who would have jurisdiction—were it brought before congress.
At this point, the memos you’ve written only gave you a chance to gather information on the background, scope, harms, inherency, and history of the problem. Later, they will become more useful for other purposes.
Version A “Memo #1: Healthcare Benefits”
TO: (Primary Audience–Still being determined)
CC: (Secondary Audience–Still being determined)
DATE: (Date of publication)
SUBJECT: Expansion of Healthcare Benefits for Reserve Component Service Members
BACKGROUND/HISTORY/OVERVIEW/POLICY BRIEF RE STATUS QUO:
Three hundred thousand American citizens serve in the Reserve Armed
Force(RAF), with the number increasing daily. Even though the Reserved
Armed Force has devoted over 60 million man days to the Global War on
Terror, these Soldiers do not receive the same medical or dental
benefits as their Active Component (AC) counterparts. Due to the
different lifestyle of a Reserve Component (RC) Soldier compared to an
AC Soldier and the varying benefits, Reserve Armed Force units are
struggling to meet medical readiness goals for worldwide deployments
Current Operations Tempo: The current operational tempo of the United States military requires both AC and RC units to deploy on regular and frequent rotations. The RAF was established with a 5:1 ratio of training to operational years of service. Currently, most RAF units are barely meeting a 2:1 ratio. The lack of dwell time between deployments requires Soldiers to maintain a much higher level of constant medical readiness.
Lack of Outside Health Insurance / Financial Hardship: While the majority of RAF Soldiers have civilian employment, the percentage with personal health insurance drops to less than 30% of the force. Even though enlistment contracts require Soldiers to maintain their medical readiness, many do not have personal insurance or the financial means to procure healthcare. Socioeconomic Status: RAF Soldiers have an average annual income that is 50% less than the average Air National Guard service member. While the Hometown Recruiting program has reached small communities and rural areas previously untapped for military service, the majority of the resulting force consists of blue-collar or farm-dependent citizens with a lower than average socioeconomic status.
Harms (And Ultimate Impacts of Keeping Status Quo)
With the RAF quickly developing into an operational force, the United States depends on its service members to maintain a high state of medical readiness in preparation for worldwide deployments and missions. The lack of consistent healthcare benefits for RC Soldiers Discourse and Public Policy Purpose A Example Memo: Healthcare Benefits results in a national average of 23% Fully Medically Ready (FMR) Soldiers across the RAF. As a result, units are deploying to combat theaters with 10-15% fewer Soldiers than missions require. The resulting holes in coverage in security forces, logistics support, and medical providers in combat theaters are devastating the war fight and endangering the Soldiers that are able to fight, as they do not have the support they require.
Potential Plans (and internal links to Solvency if research bears out)
Maintain Current System:
1: Maintaining the current policy of 90 days of healthcare benefits prior to arrival at mobilization station will
alleviate a small portion of the medical and dental issues preventing Soldiers from deploying. The current system balances the cost of healthcare with the cost of “fixing” a Soldier. This system does not
allow for the deployment of Soldiers with issues that are treatable, yet require more than 60-90 days for optimum medical care.
2: Full Coverage for Alert: Soldiers currently receive full healthcare benefits 90 days prior to their arrival at the mobilization station. While this allows for them to receive care for minor illnesses and annual appointments, it does not allow enough time for Soldiers to receive treatment for more serious, yet treatable illnesses, such as hypertension, gum disease, or dental issues requiring dentures. Extending full healthcare coverage to Soldiers immediately upon alert of the unit will allow for the treatment of 95% of all dental issues, and the majority of illnesses which do not otherwise disqualify for worldwide deployment.
3: Full Coverage throughout Period of Service: Extending full healthcare benefits to RC Soldiers (which would mirror the full Tricare coverage AC Soldiers receive) would allow Soldiers to maintain a healthier lifestyle through regular medical and dental appointments. The potential gains of preventive medicine would, over time, reduce the cost of reactionary medicine for RC Soldiers, resulting in higher readiness rates. Additionally, if healthcare costs were covered, Soldiers could be held accountable for their individual medical readiness under statutes of the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
Memo#2: “Defense Health Program”
To: Chair, Senate Armed Services Personnel Subcommittee
From: Military Healthcare Advocates Association
Date: March 25, 2008
Re: Expansion of Defense Health Program and Applicable Legislation
The United States Reserve Armed Forces have limited healthcare
benefits under the current Defense Health Program. Unless serving
in a mobilized status for more than thirty days, Soldiers are not
provided with any medical or dental care at military expense. As
a result of their lack of healthcare coverage, many Soldiers are
not meeting medical readiness standards, which is directly
impacting unit readiness and deployability. Due to the frequency
with which Reserve Component units are deploying, it is critical
the Defense Health Program be updated to better support this
population of the Armed Forces. The purpose of this document is
to inform you of the need for increased benefits for Reserve
Component Soldiers. We respectfully request that your committee
consider the impact of these findings and amend the current
Defense Health Program to accommodate these new requirements for
Reserve Component forces.
An addition to the Defense Health Program that allows for full
healthcare benefits for Reserve Component Soldiers would result
in higher rates of medical readiness, produce a more ready and
deployable force, and ultimately serve as a retention tool.
Army medical readiness standards require all Soldiers to
have a current physical exam, dental exam, vision screening, and
applicable age or gender appropriate wellness exams. Together,
these build a Soldier’s “Individual Medical Readiness (IMR)”
rate. Soldiers who are offered healthcare coverage are more
likely to have regular wellness exams. Additionally, regular
exams and care will result in a higher state of medical
readiness, as unresolved issues are less likely to exist. Certain
medical issues, such as high blood pressure, are easily remedied
with medication, but require time to ensure accurate dosage and
response to medication. Units could be unable to deploy a Soldier
due to a simple illness, which could be avoided if the condition
was receiving regular monitoring and treatment. Full healthcare
benefits would allow Soldiers to approach healthcare from a
preventive standpoint, rather than simply reacting to sudden illnesses or injuries.
Discourse and Public Policy Purpose
Example #1: Defense Health Program
Additionally, as the rate of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder increases, full healthcare benefits
will serve as a safety net to our Reserve Component Soldiers by
giving them the means and ability to seek mental health
assistance on their own terms. This preventive approach will
decrease the rate of adjustment disorders following deployments,
while offering support to families and communities upon their
In addition to increasing IMR rates, full healthcare
benefits would serve to increase unit readiness rates. Current
policies do not provide leadership with the authority to hold
Reserve Component Soldiers accountable for IMR failures, which is
evident in the less than 20% IMR rate maintained by the average
Reserve Component Soldier and which results in unit averages of
10-12% medically ready Soldiers (Sproat). If Soldiers are
provided with healthcare coverage at government expense,
commanders will have the legal authority to require Soldiers to
maintain appropriate IMR rates. By empowering leaders to hold
their Soldiers accountable, we are ensuring a more medically
ready force through command emphasis and support.
As units maintain higher levels of medical readiness,
leaders can reduce readiness exercises and minimize the time
required to prepare for mobilization. Shorter mobilizations are
healthier for families, and result in happier Soldiers and family
members. As we reduce the Soldier’s time away from his family,
full healthcare benefits simultaneously allow a Soldier to better
utilize his personal finances for family needs by removing the
burden of paying for healthcare. This ultimately helps retain our
Soldiers, who will be receiving quality care while providing for
their families more completely.
In 2006 alone, seven units were extended in combat due to
the failure of medical readiness standards on the part of their
replacement unit, while the average 3,000-man unit returned 5% of
their Soldiers from the mobilization station for failure to meet
medical readiness standards (Sproat). Not only does this amount
to countless hours of lost training, funding, and man-hours for
each returned Soldier, but it also constitutes a Soldier who will
receive a last minute alert to report for duty as a replacement
for the returned Soldier. The Reserve Components account for a
mere 0.9% of the current Defense Health Program (H.R. 4986).
Anamendment to the plan to include full healthcare benefits for the
Reserve Components would increase the overall cost of the program
by approximately 5%, or $17 million (Sproat).
This cost would be minimal compared to the cost of retaining a unit in a deployed
theater due to last minute medical readiness failures or to conducting last minute
training for a replacement Soldier.
Discourse and Public Policy Purpose Example #2:
Defense Health Program RESERVE
While Reserve Component Soldiers are not serving in the
military in a full-time capacity, all serve tours of Active Duty
for combat deployments, homeland defense, or state emergencies.
Their contribution to the nation’s safety cannot be minimized
because of their Reserve status. They make sacrifices in the same
selfless manner as Active Duty Soldiers, and their sacrifices can
often include extended time away from their family, combat tours
or sustaining tragic injuries. Increased benefits would show our
Reserve Component Soldiers our appreciation for their time,
sacrifice, and service.
Regardless of the variety of opinions about the Global War
on Terror, our Reserve Component servicemen and women deserve the
support of their nation. Their sacrifices both overseas and in
their hometowns make them heroes of the greatest caliber.
Increasing the Defense Health Program to include full healthcare
coverage for Reserve Component Soldiers would be an expression of
gratitude for their continued service to our country. I urge you
to consider the message you would send to the nation through this
gesture of support for our troops.
10 USCS § 1076d: Medical and Dental Care.” (Current through 1/8/08). Text from Code of Federal Regulations. Available from Lexis Nexis® Congressional; Accessed 9 February 2008. Chu, David S.C. Quote from: United States. Cong. Hearing of Senate Armed Services Personnel Subcommittee.
“Military Personnel and Readiness; Reserve and Health Affairs.” (Date 3/28/2007). Text from Tricare Management Activity.
History of TRICARE. 4 January 2007 Sproat, David B. Personal Interview. 23 January 2008.
United States. Cong. House of Representatives, 110th Congress, 2nd Session. H.R. 4986. National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008 [introduced in the U.S. House of iscourse and Public Policy Purpose A Example: Defense Health Program.
United States. Cong. House of Representatives, 109th Congress, 1st Session. H.R. 1815. National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2006 [introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives; 26 April 2005]. 109th Congress. Congressional Bills, GPO Access. 9 February 2008.
What These Examples Show:
Example 1 and Example 2 answer some, but not all, of the substantive questions for a “Version A” Pape.r.
Both examples specify problematic conditions and they identify the problem those conditions present, along with associated issues.
~Example 1 offers several solution options. This is appropriate for the genre, problem description with proposed solutions but no recommendation.
~Example 2 argues for a single solution, again appropriately for its genre, memo advocating a solution and addressed to a reader with the power to decide.
The unanswered questions are the main weakness in both documents. Neither says who else is interested in the problem and what their likely disagreements or agreements might be. This weakness makes both descriptions less helpful to the writer for developing argumentation and finding a feasible solution.
This professional in a government job chose a written memorandum or memo as the medium of presentation. (General Method). It is a well-established genre of professional communications in the United States, derived from the inverted pyramid of news writing.
A memo is designed to be quickly read, easily understood, and easily referenced in discussion. Its compact form fits the time, attention, and accountability demands of governmental workplaces.
At the document’s beginning, a stacked list identifies the communication’s who (sender and addressed recipient), what (subject), why (purpose), and when (transmittal date). Other intended recipients might be specified in a “cc” (“copied on this communication”) list placed either in the heading or at the document’s end. The memo’s text needs no title because its subject is identified in the heading by “re” (“regarding”). Text content is divided into sections with sub-headings that cue readers as to the particulars covered in each section. In settings of policy work, this kind of organized, efficient expression is preferred.
***After you write, check your document’s quality against appropriate checklists.***
Next Step: Arguing Policy with Warrants and Evidence:
A: Make appeals to your Audience by presenting the case’s narrative:
As the country continues to call upon our Reserve Component forces, it
is critical that we establish a more thorough and dependable system of
providing healthcare to RAF Soldiers.
The discrepancy between benefits
received by the AC and RC is monumental, despite the valiant service
of both components on the battlefield. I challenge concerned citizens,
leaders, and politicians to recognize the time and money being lost on
professionally trained Soldiers who are unable to deploy due to
preventable medical and dental issues.
B: Ethos: I.D. Positions lacking objectivity / Biased by Politically Partisan Views
Disagreement with our country’s position in the current war is unrelated to the benefits our Soldiers
deserve for their service. Let us take care of the very men and women who are risking their lives for our country on the dangerous front-lines of the Global War on Terror by improving healthcare benefits regardless of duty status or military components.
Assignments #: 3-7 “Mr. and Ms. Smith go to Washington” Public Policy Proposition: (50%)
Your Policy Proposal Assignment will have 5 steps & total 50% of your grade
Step 1: Find a proposition (5%) DUE 2/19/16
Step 2: Complete the Policy Brainstorming worksheet (5%) DUE 2/24/16
Step 3: Research and complete 6 Evidence Shell Sheets (2.5% Each) ALL DUE by 3/4/16
Step 4: Compose your Persuasive Policy Outline (5%) DUE 3/4/16
Step 5: Write your paper (20%) DUE 4/8/16
Your proposition must be a change in current United States or Global Policy. Also, you cannot have the same proposition as another student in this class. However, similar topics are FINE so long as your Policy Proposal is not the same.
You will draft a policy proposal using one or more of Emory’s library databases to extensively research your proposed topic.
You should begin by reading about your topic so that you have a solid understanding of the issues involved. You should be able to answer in detail the following questions:
What is the current situation?
What policies currently govern the situation?
What problems are there currently?
What role do current policies play in these problems?
What aspects of the current policies are positive and need to be retained?
How will the change I am proposing improve the situation?
Assignment #8: Reflective Portfolio Letter/E-Portfolio: (30%)
This assignment will ask you to curate the experiences you have had this semester to provide an answer to the question you are asked at the beginning of the semester “What does writing about literature/poetry mean to you?” By writing a 3-5-page introductory letter—to serve as a guide to direct your readers through the portfolio—and selecting ten artifacts you have created over the course of the semester—which must include two major assignments and any corresponding revisions, drafts, or reflection essays—you will craft a portfolio. This will provide your well considered, reflections on the answer to that initial question.
Reflective Portfolio Letter
Develop a letter addressed to the Portfolio Assessment Committee that shows how you’ve achieved the learning outcomes for your first-year composition course. This letter should exhibit and discuss in detail concrete examples from your portfolio. You should write between 3-5 double-spaced pages, not including the exhibits from your portfolio that you reference in the letter.
The Assessment Committee is composed of a number of first-year writing instructors as well as graduate students from across the university who serve as fellows in the Writing Program. Several of these individuals helped create the program learning outcomes and they’re excited to see how students have achieved the outcomes.
Feel free to use first person and write a narrative of your experience, rather than writing an argumentative essay. You can document your learning for the committee by
- Telling a story in which exhibits from your portfolio play major roles.
- Exploring each piece of your writing process and the part it plays in producing a final product.
- Discussing your failures and how they turned into successes.
- Describing your successes and then discussing how you intend to improve in other areas needing further developing.
Artifacts as exhibits within the letter
Back up assertions you make about your learning by including exhibits from your portfolio. Depending on how your instructor has asked you to develop your portfolio, an exhibit might be.
(In every case, you should embed your exhibit in a discussion about its significance for your learning.)
- A reference to the part of a document that you discuss in your reflection letter.
- An image in which you show and talk about one or more artifacts.
- Quoted or block quoted material from an artifact.
- Reported or quoted feedback from others.
- A series of illustrations (or quotations) that show how a particular artifact or part of an artifact evolved.
Explanation of Letter Grades
A: An excellent response to the assignment. Demonstrates a sophisticated use of rhetorical knowledge, writing, and design techniques.
B: A good response to the assignment. Demonstrates an effective use of rhetorical knowledge, writing, and design techniques. May have minor problems that distract reader.
C: An average response to the assignment. Demonstrates acceptable use of rhetorical knowledge, writing, and design technique. May have problems that distract reader.
D: A poor response to the assignment. Demonstrates a lack of rhetorical knowledge and writing and design technique. May have significant problems that distract reader.
F: A failure to respond to the assignment appropriately.
Student Success Resources
Access and Disability Resources
I strive to create an inclusive learning environment for all. I am invested in your success in this class and at Emory, so please let me know if anything is standing in the way of your doing your best work. This can include your own learning strengths, any classroom dynamics that you find uncomfortable, ESL issues, disability or chronic illness, and/or personal issues that impact your work. I will hold such conversations in strict confidence.
Students with medical/health conditions that might impact academic success should visit Access, Disability Services and Resources (http://www.ods.emory.edu/index.html) to determine eligibility for appropriate accommodations. Students who receive accommodations must present the Accommodation Letter from ADSR to your professor at the beginning of the semester, or when the letter is received.
Emory Writing Center
The Emory Writing Center offers 45-minute individual conferences to Emory College and Laney Graduate School students. It is a great place to bring any project-from traditional papers to websites-at any stage in your composing process. Writing Center tutors take a discussion- and workshop-based approach that enables writers of all levels to see their writing with fresh eyes. Tutors can talk with you about your purpose, organization, audience, design choices, or use of sources. They can also work with you on sentence-level concerns (including grammar and word choice), but they will not proofread for you. Instead, they will discuss strategies and resources you can use to become a better editor of your own work. The Writing Center is located in Callaway N-212. Visit writingcenter.emory.edu for more information and to make appointments.
If English is not your first language, you may benefit from working with specially trained ESL Tutors. The tutors are undergraduates who will support the development of your English language skills. Like Writing Center tutors, ESL tutors will not proofread your work. Language is best learned through interactive dialogue, so when you come to an ESL tutoring session, be ready to collaborate! ESL tutors will meet with you in designated locations across campus (visit the ASST program to view the list), and they will help you at any stage of the process of developing your essay or presentation. You may bring your work on a laptop or on paper. Each regular appointment lasts 50-55 minutes. Please note that you may only schedule two ESL tutoring appointments per week (Sunday-Saturday).
In Spring 2016, additional drop-in tutoring without appointment will be offered on three Sundays at the end of the semester: on April 17 and 24 as well as on May 1 from 4-6pm, near the circulation desk on the second floor of Woodruff Library (by the EPASS sign). During drop-in hours, tutors will be able to help you for a few minutes with your assignment.
For more information and to schedule a regular appointment via ASST, please view our website:http://college.emory.edu/oue/student-support/esl-program/esl-tutoring.html. Tutoring starts this semester on January 19.
Emory Counseling Services
Free and confidential counseling services and support are available from the Emory
Counseling Center (404) 727-7450. This can be an invaluable resource when stress makes your work more challenging than it ought to be. http://studenthealth.emory.edu/cs/http://studenthealth.emory.edu/cs/
We will NOT have a final exam as such in this class. We will, however, be using the final week and the block of time assigned for our final exam for PORTFOLIO PRESENTATIONS AND DEFENCES. Thus, you should plan your end-of –semester travel plans accordingly. Meaning, PLAN TO BE HERE, IN THIS ROOM, FOR THIS CLASS’S ASSIGNED FINAL EXAM BLOCK.
IC=In Class—assignments/activities during section meetings. These will be completed outside if need be. HW=Homework ––What is to be completed outside of section. Due at or before the next section meets.
|W. 13||JAN||IC: “Introduction to the Conversation“||pg. 1-7 (Handout)||HW: Read pg. 16-25 Rick Straub “Responding—Really Responding—to other Students’ Writing”||HW: Mark-up/annotate/write highlight/marginalia-the-hell-out-of our reading: pg 16.-25.||Assignment #1: DUE Friday—1/15/16 FRIDAY||“Doing Some of that Reflect’n Connect’n “:|
|F. 15||JAN||IC: Peer-review/response of mark-ups on pg. 16-25.||HW: Read “What is Argument” pg 1-6 handout.||Assignment #1: DUE||HW: Response to Goldberg’s argument (1st Person-OK)|
|M. 18||JAN||MLK DAY||MLK DAY|
|W.20||JAN||IC: S&W’s “Elementary Principles of Composition” .pdf||HW: Finish S&W handout||HW: Find THREE things you would change in your 1pg||el||response paper after reading S&W. Mark them in the document. Explain how/why you’d change them.|
|F. 22||JAN||IC: Responding—really Responding Peer Review Article.||Against Strunk and White IN class Reading||Peer Editing workshop (on Goldberger article apropos S&W and ~S&W)||HW : READ: “Philosophy, Who Needs it?” Mark&bring it||IC: Peer Review/Response/ Correction incorporation||HW: incorporate peer review comments into new draft –due Monday|
|M. 25||JAN||IC: “Philosophy, Who Needs it?” Read Aloud/Discussion Mark up annotate.||HW: Read Chapter 2 (pg. 16-30) of Philosophy: Who Needs It? The title of this chapter is “ Philosophy Detection” –have it read, marked up, & annotated for Wednesday—What are your impressions/thoughts/issues with/confusions re: Rand?||IC: Mark up and annotated Rand essay Try to ID Specific Arguments. ID Philosophers’ “quotably”||HW: Look up “Genealogy”” of the Permutations to “Old-school” philosophies Rand, quotes & attributes: What the back story? Relevance to Rand’s point? Prevalence in todays society? Harms? Advocacy?|
|W. 27||JAN||IC: Discuss Rand’s philosophy and “ Philosophy Detection”(pg. 16-30) in particular—have it marked up, & annotated—WE will discuss our impressions/issues with/confusions/undying love/hate for w/Rand. thusfsr||IC: ID Arguments, Claims, Warrants, inconsistencies in Rand as well as ID Inherency, policy advocacy, brink, link solvency etc.||HW: The Exhausted West: Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s|
|F. 29||JAN.||IC: : The Exhausted West: Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s 1978 Harvard Address. (The .pdf is available on our Blackboard site.||IC: The Exhausted West: Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s 1978 Harvard Address.|
|M. 1||FEB||IC: : The Exhausted West: Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s 1978 Harvard Address. (The .pdf is available on our Blackboard site.)||IC: The Exhausted West: Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s 1978 Harvard.|
|W. 3||FEB||IC: : The Exhausted West: Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s 1978 Harvard Address. (The .pdf is available on our Blackboard site.)||IC: The Exhausted West: Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s 1978 Harvard Address.||HW: Read and mark up the policy proposal for “Indian Policy”|
|F. 5||FEB||IC: Stock Issues Brief||HW: Assignment #2||IC: Writing a policy shell and using the stock issues|
|W. 10||FEB *|
|F. 12||FEB||IC: Research Topics: Asking What position do Disadvantages (DA’s)||HW: Read Between the World and Me (pg. 1-65)||HW||IC: Distilling Stock Issues from Existing Policy narratives: (Zika Virus and DDT example||HW: Between the World and ME (Pg. 1-30)|
|M. 15||FEB||IC: Between the world and ME (Pg. 1-30)||Stakeholders, The Discursive Situation (Intended Audience, considerations, Rhetorical Appeals, Underlying Assumptions, Values common to stakeholders or underlying opposing positions, ethics, etc.) The Backgrounds/Contexts (Historically, Culturally, Policy-wise, Intellectually, Literarily) The Harms of the Current Situation, How they are Inherent,||HW: Between the World and Me (Pg. 31-63)||IC: Case Attacks and Disadvantages Handout/Q&A||HW: Finish Assignment #2—due next class (02/17.|
|W. 17||FEB||IC: Claims and warrants worksheet/workshop||HW: Between the World and Me (Pg. 64-100)||Assignment #2 Due||IC: Claims and warrants worksheet/workshop||HW: Complete “Policy Proposal Worksheet: Inherency” Part I and bring it to class Friday to get my approval.|
|F. 19||FEB||IC: Approvals on Policy Proposal Worksheet: Inherency”||HW: Between the World and Me (Pg. 101-130)||HW: Once you have my approval move on to part II of that page: “Policy Proposal– RESOLVED:” its||DUE Monday 02/22/16|
|M. 22||FEB||IC: Discussion of Coates’s “speaking to” agencies with policy-making power in a lyrical/narrative form.||IC-EX: Narrativize an appeal that would arise from your selected and approved topic:||HW: Between the World and Me (Pg.132-end/158)||DUE: Policy Proposal Paper Worksheet: Inherency||IC: Cull student [policy topics and compose a list of agencies, NGOs, governmental action comities, and other jurisdictional bodies involved in making what you propose, happen.||HW: Narrativize an appeal that would arise from your selected and approved topic: 1pg due|
|W. 24||FEB *||IC: Inductive Fallacies Handout and thinking/articulating their induction’s application within our own readings of Between the World and Me.||HW: The Algerian Chronicles “Crisis in Algeria” 85-113||IC: Inductive Fallacies discussion||& Fallacy I.D. /detection of activity.||HW: Mark up and bring “Crisis in Algeria” 85-113|
|F. 26||FEB||IC: Fill out Evidence Worksheets and Policy Paper outline for sources and research (I will be at an event in NYC)||HW: The Algerian Chronicles “Algeria Torn” 117-149||IC: Evidence worksheets||HW: Mark and annotate : The Algerian Chronicles “Algeria Torn” 117-149|
|M. 29||FEB||IC: Discuss Arguments in “Algeria Torn”
HW: The Algerian Chronicles “Appendix I”175-195
|IC: Evidence Sheet for “Crisis in Algeria” Algeria Torn”||HW: Source Evidence worksheet for “Appendix I” 175-195|
|W. 2||MAR *||IC: Discuss “Appendix I” 175-195||HW: Argument Shell for “Appendix II” 197-204||IC: Evidence Sheet for ”Appendix II”||HW: Policy Plan Text worksheet DUE 2/10/16|
|F. 4||MAR||IC: Go Over / Peer Edit Plan Text worksheet||HW: Post 3 potential topics for research w/ articles for each|
|M. 7||MAR||SPRING BREAK: NO CLASS||HW: Research and Source Worksheets.|
|W. 9||MAR *||SPRING BREAK: NO CLASS||HW: Research and Source Worksheets.|
|F. 11||MAR||SPRING BREAK: NO CLASS||When Y’all Return—It’s Policy Time!||***ALL 6 Evidence worksheets DUE||***OUTLINE OF PAPER DUE|
|M. 14||MAR||SPRING BREAK: NO CLASS|
|W. 17||MAR *||SPRING BREAK: NO CLASS|
|F. 19||MAR||SPRING BREAK: NO CLASS||When Y’all Return—It’s Policy Time!|
|M. 21||MAR||HW: Coates: Between the World and Me: 50-86||HW: Research and Source Worksheets.|
|W. 23||MAR *||HW: Coates: Between the World and Me: 85-110||HW: Research and Source Worksheets.||IC: Peer Workshops|
|F. 25||MAR||HW: Coates: Between the World and Me: 110-end||HW: Research and Source Worksheets.|
|M. 28||MAR||HW: ISIS Apocalypse “Raising Black Flag” 1-15||HW: Research and Source Worksheets.|
|W. 30||MAR *||HW: ISIS Apocalypse 31-47||HW: Research and Source Worksheets.||IC: Peer Workshops|
|F. 1||APRIL||HW: ISIS Apocalypse 48-65||HW: Research and Source Worksheets.|
|M. 4||APRIL||HW: ISIS Apocalypse 66-81||HW: Research and Source Worksheets.|
|W.6||APRIL *||HW: ISIS Apocalypse 81-101||HW: Research and Source Worksheets.||IC: Peer Workshops|
|F. 8||APRIL||HW: ISIS Apocalypse 101-122||HW: Research and Source Worksheets.|
|M. 11||APRIL||HW: ISIS Apocalypse 123-145||HW: Research and Source Worksheets.|
|W. 13||APRIL *||HW: relax!!!!||HW: Research and Source Worksheets.||IC: Peer Workshops|
|F. 15||APRIL||HW: The Exhausted West: Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s 1978 Harvard Address. (The .pdf is available on our Blackboard site.)||FINAL POLICY PAPER DUE|
|M. 18||APRIL||IC/HW “Philosophy: Who needs it” by Rand||IC: Schedule 1on1 conferences for next week HW: Schedule 1on1 conference & prep draft for it|
|W. 20||APRIL *||IC/HW “Philosophy: Who needs it” by Rand||IC/HW “Philosophy: Who needs it” by Rand|
|F. 22||APRIL||IC/HW “Philosophy: Who needs it” by Rand||IC/HW “Philosophy: Who needs it” by Rand|
|M. 25||APRIL||IC: Portfolio /Reflective Letter workshop||IC: Portfolio /Reflective Letters work day.|
|W. 27||APRIL[*]||IC: One on One meetings RE: Portfolio Letter||IC: One on One meetings RE: Portfolio Letter||Everyone else is peer- work shopping|
|F. 29||APRIL||IC: One on One meetings RE: Portfolio Letter||IC: One on One meetings RE: Portfolio Letter|
|M. 2||MAY||IC: One on One meetings RE: Portfolio Letter||IC: One on One meetings RE: Portfolio Letter|
|W. 4||MAY||IC: One on One meetings RE: Portfolio Letter||IC: One on One meetings RE: Portfolio Letter|
|F. 6||MAY||IC: Movie?||IC: Movie?|
|M. 9||MAY||FINAL PORTFOLIO & Introductory Letter DUE||IC: Wrap Up / Course Evaluations||FINAL PORTFOLIO & Introductory Letter DUE||IC: Wrap Up / Course Evaluations|
|OUR CLASS‘S FINAL EXAMINATION PERIOD||MWF-13:00 — W 4 MAY @ 15:00-17:30||OUR CLASS‘S FINAL EXAMINATION PERIOD||MWF-13:00 — W 4 MAY @ 15:00-17:30|
|PORTFOLIO ASSESSMENT: EMORY FYC PROGAM||PORTFOLIO ASSESSMENT: EMORY FYC PROGAM|
|SEMESTER ENDS||SEMESTER ENDS|