What is this course about?

In this course, we are investigating the rhetoric of the built environment–interior, exterior, and digital. 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 social relations such as class, gender, race, age, and disability.

Throughout the semester, in the reading summaries, multimedia annotated bibliography, 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 ENGL 1101. It incorporates several research methods in addition to persuasive and argumentative techniques. A passing grade is C. Prerequisite: C or above in ENGL 1101. 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.

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 Summaries (6, 300-600 points)
  • Annotated Bibliography (10 annotations, 250-500 points)
  • Built Environment Descriptions (3, one each for exterior, interior, and digital, 300-600 points)
  • Built Environment Analysis (1, 300-600 points)

You will earn points for each major project. In addition, you will also earn points for general class participation (400-??? 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 Summaries | 300-600 Points

For this project you will read all of the assigned readings for each unit, but choose only two per unit to summarize (50-100 points each).  Compose 500-750 words max per summary. Compose more summaries for more points (up to 50 points per submission, for a max total of 600 points).

Your reading summaries will be created as blog posts on your WordPress site, in the category “Reading Summaries,” and tagged appropriately with the title of the reading you have summarized. You will submit links to your reading summaries using the form on your WordPress site.

Due Dates:

Summaries 1 & 2 are due on January 25th by 11:59 pm; summaries 3-6 are due the first day of the relevant unit of study, by midnight:

  1. Summaries 1 & 2: 11:59 pm on January 25th
  2. Summaries 3 & 4: 11:59 pm on February 15th
  3. Summaries 5 & 6: 11:59 pm on February 29th

Once a unit has ended, no more points will be awarded for summaries of that unit’s readings. Late summaries can be submitted for completion credit (but not for points, see late work policy below) until midnight on March 7th.

How to compose a summary:

Project Purpose and Goals: A summary emerges in the process of a reader’s coming to understand a text. This process might take very little time, or it might take several read-throughs and other steps, like looking up unknown words and annotating thoughts and ideas in the margins. Ultimately strong summaries for this course will reflect your understanding of the articles’ main ideas, quoting one or two passages you deem particularly important. A summary is not the practice of replacing words with synonyms.

We recommend reading through the article once, annotating it, then putting it away and composing an answer to these question: What is the article? Who wrote it? What is it about? What are its main ideas? Then go back to the article. Adjust your answers as needed to most accurately reflect the articles’ content, and insert any paraphrases or quotations you feel are important; perhaps they are passages you feel you might reference in your own analytical writing later on.

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

Instructional Readings for writing summaries:

First Year Guide to Writing chapters XXXXX

Writer’s Help 2.0 XXXXX

Guidelines

*Use the literary present tense

*Cite paraphrased details and quotations (see Writer’s Help MLA guide for in-text citation)

*Limit quotations (1-3, brief, and only if the original language is very important)

*Include the bibliographic information (see Writer’s Help MLA guide for end citation)

*Consider multi-modes when composing in the blog post: spatial, visual, linguistic

Click here to see a copy of the evaluation rubric.

Annotated Bibliography | 250-500 points

For this project, you will compose an annotated bibliography using Zotero. Your annotated bibliography will comprise ten complete bibliographic entries and ten 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.

Each bibliography annotation (bibliographic entry + annotation) is worth 25-50 points. Compose more bibliography annotations for more points (up to 25 points per submission, for a max total of 500 points on this project). You will use Zotero to create your bibliography and submit links to each bibliography annotation using the form on your WordPress site.

The ten required bibliography annotations are due by the following dates:

  • Bibliography Annotations 1, 2, & 3: 11:59 pm, February 5th
  • Bibliography Annotations 4, 5, & 6: 11:59 pm, February 22nd
  • Bibliography Annotations 7, 8, & 9: 11:59 pm, March 25th

As long as you submit each of the required bibliography annotations by the due date, you can submit extra bibliography annotations at any time until April 1st (for up to 25 points per extra bibliography annotation, up to a max total of 500 points for this project). Late bibliography annotations can be submitted for completion credit (but not for points, see late work policy below) until 11:59 pm on April 1st.

How to compose an annotated bibliography:

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 for the annotated bibliography:

G2W: Ch. 10 (Research and Writing Beyond the Classroom), pp. 197-207 (Research basics), pp. 218-222 (Annotated Bibliography, Summary)

2.0: Ch. 13 (Analyzing Arguments), Ch. 16 (Doing Research), Ch. 17 (Evaluating Sources, and Taking Notes)

Guidelines:

When complete, your multimedia annotated bibliography should contain annotations of 150-250 words each for at least 10 sources. 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?

Rubric

Click here to see the Annotated Bibliography rubric.

Built Environment Descriptions | 300-600 Points

For this project, you will write 3 detailed built environment descriptions (100-200 points each):

  • Description of an interior site
  • Description of an exterior site
  • Description of a digital site

Compose more descriptions for more points (up to 100 points per submission, for a max total of 600 points for this project).

Your site descriptions will be created as blog posts on your WordPress site, in the category “Built Environment Descriptions,” and tagged appropriately (“Interior,” “Exterior,” or “Digital,” and “[Site Name]”). You will submit links to your built environment descriptions using the form on your WordPress site.

The three required built environment descriptions are due by the following dates:

  • Exterior Built Environment Description: 11:59 pm on February 12th
  • Interior Built Environment Description: 11:59 pm on March 4th
  • Digital Built Environment Description: 11:59 pm on April 1st

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 1st (for up to 100 points per extra description, up to a max total of 600 points for this project). Late summaries can be submitted for completion credit (but not for points, see late work policy below) until 11:59 pm on April 1st.

How to compose a built environment description:

Project Purpose and Goals: This course explores how we can do close, analytical “reading”—which we can phrase alternately as the reading of visual rhetoric and the reading of the rhetoric of artifacts—of the environments and landscapes around us. In order to do this kind of close reading of the built environment, we need to train ourselves to see, and document or describe the details that provide the evidence for our analysis or interpretation of a given site.

This project is designed to help you develop your faculties of observation and multimodal description.

Instructional readings and models of built environment description:

Guidelines:

Choosing, observing, and documenting a site

You are required to spend at least one hour observing each of the three spaces you’re writing about for this project. If you choose a private site (i.e. a business) for the interior or exterior site description, you should get permission from the owner or manager to conduct your observation. You should explain the purpose of the project, and that it is a class project.

You will choose your site from the site list (link to spreadsheet for interior, exterior, digital). First choice of sites will go to the top five points earners from each section. Then, the remaining students in the top earning section will select their sites. Then site selection will open to the remaining students. If a site already has a name next to it in the spreadsheet, then it has been claimed and you need to pick another site.

In an ideal world, you would make many trips to your site. For this project, you are only required to make one trip to your site, spending one hour taking photos or video, and writing or recording notes.

During your visit, you are required to document the site in two ways:

  • Create at least five digital records to document the location you’ve chosen. Post these digital records to your blog–each as a separate blog post–with a brief (50-100 words) description of what they are. You can take pictures, create video, make sound recordings, scan brochures/menus/flyers
  • Take written or recorded voice notes in which you create an inventory or catalog of everything that you see, hear, smell, touch, or taste at the site

Use these questions to guide your process of documenting the site:

  • What artifacts or things are present at the site?
  • How are these artifacts or things arranged/located/stored?
  • What is the layout of your site?
  • Is it open and easy to navigate? Or is it closed, crowded with obstacles, etc.?
  • What colors are present in the space?
  • How does the site make you feel and why?
  • How is the site used? Who uses it?
  • How does the site advertise its uses? How does the site target or signal its intended users?

Other Characteristics to Note

Characteristics to Note

Style Aural Structure
Tone Visual Organization
Mood Oral Graphics
Diction Repetition Colors

You will archive each of your digital records as posts on your WordPress site, in the appropriate category (“Images,” “Sounds,”  “Artifacts & Signage”) tagging them appropriately (“Interior,” “Exterior,” or “Digital,” and “[Site Name]”).

You do not need to archive your notes, but if you do, you can earn points for good notes by creating a blog post of them in the category “Field Notes” and tagging it appropriately (“Interior,” “Exterior,” or “Digital,” and “[Site Name]”). You can also get extra credit for archiving extra digital records (10 per record) from your chosen locations. You submit extra credit posts using the form on your WordPress site. To receive credit, submissions must be properly tagged.

Composing your site description

After you have observed and documented each site, you will create a blog post on your WordPress site in which you compose a 250-500 word description of your site that answers the following questions:

  • What site are you describing?
  • Where is it located?
  • When was it created/built?
  • What artifacts or things are present at the site?
  • How are these artifacts or things arranged/located/stored?
  • What is the layout of your site?
  • Is it open and easy to navigate? Or is it closed, crowded with obstacles, etc.?
  • What colors are present in the space?
  • How does the site make you feel and why?
  • How is the site used? Who uses it?
  • How does the site advertise its uses? How does the site target or signal its intended users?

Rather than answering these questions in order, your site description should be in the form of a narrative that provides this information to interested readers of the general public. The description should integrate your digital records associated with the site.

Built Environment Analysis | 300-600 Points

The final product is a detailed and evidence-based analysis of the built environment in Atlanta. Your analysis should be at least 1,500 words, 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.

Students who submit their required built environment analysis early by April 15 may submit one extra built environment analysis (for up to 300 extra points, for a max total of 600 points for this project).

Your site analysis will be created on your sites.gsu.edu WordPress site, in the category “Built Environment Analyses,” and tagged appropriately (“Interior,” “Exterior,” or “Digital,” and “[Site Name]”). You will submit links to your built environment analysis using the standard submission form.

Complete first draft: April 12th

Complete revised second draft: April 19th

Complete revised final draft: April 29th

How to compose a built environment analysis:

Over the course of the semester the unit readings on interior, exterior, and digital built environments have provided you with examples of the kinds of arguments you can make about the built environment:

  • Identify and describe a problem and its causes, for example how the built environment contributes to social, political, and economic inequality (Morton, Nersessova, Schindler)
  • Make a proposal for why one approach to designing the built environment is better than another (Scholl and Gulwadi, Bazelon, Brooks, King)
  • Answer the question of how the built environment came to be a certain way, and how it reflects social, political, historical, or aesthetic causes (Schindler, Tick, Hocks)

Your argument will be organized around claims and supporting evidence. It should have a clear, and compelling central thesis. The evidence should come from your data, which is derived from your built environment observations, your own documentation of the built environment in Atlanta, and any observations or documentation submitted by your peers. You can and should include digital images, sounds, video, charts, graphs, maps, etc., in addition to words, making sure to cite the author and source of any records you did not create yourself (including those created by your peers).

Guidelines:

Your built environment analysis, like most of the other work you’ve completed so far, will be posted on your sites.gsu.edu WordPress blog. It might take the form of a single blog post, or you might choose to create a new page or set of pages for your built environment analysis. If the analysis comprises more than a single post or page, you will need a menu or other aid for navigating through the different parts of your 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 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 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 at least three stages, with a first draft, a second revised draft, and a third and final draft. We will complete workshops in class, and I encourage you to organize extra peer review groups outside of class for extra points.

Grading:

Click here to see the evaluation rubric for this project.

Participation | 400-??? Points

Check your points in your class notebook on OneDrive.

~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.

During the course of the semester we invite you to engage with the course material and assignments, with your peers and with your instructors, consistently and in inventive ways. We will assign points to your work reflecting the level of your participation both inside and outside of class. We will also subtract points for failing to participate (e.g., missing class) so as to fairly reflect your level of engagement with the course concepts. Your goal is to accrue as many points as possible during the semester.

 

If you complete all of the major projects, come to class prepared, and miss only four class meetings (two class meetings for hybrid sections), you will earn at least 1,475 points. Once you complete all of the major projects and accrue 2,500 points, you will automatically receive an A in the course!!!

Your points will be recorded on THIS google doc and available for you to view at any time.

Suggestions

We hope to encourage your participation by offering points as follows, but please suggest your own projects and activities for potential points:

Study group organization and participation: up to 25

Individual office hour visit: 20

Group meetings with instructor: 20

Blog posts reflecting practice of course concepts: up to 50

Constructive commentary on blogs: 15

Extra submissions to image, sound, site description repositories: 10/per

Extra reading summaries: up to 50/per

Add an “about me” page to your website: 20

Create Facebook groups around topics, projects or readings: up to 50

Contribute to the glossary of terms: 15 per

Contribute markers to collaborative Google map: 10 per

Complete tutorials from Writer’s Help: 20 per

Complete Lynda.com tutorial on a relevant technology: up to 50

Suggest something!

**Be sure to let us 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. This gives us 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.

Rewards

The top points earners in each section will be rewarded periodically:

  • January 25th: The top five earners from each section will be given first pick of exteriors for the first built environment description
  • February 15th: The top five earners from each section will be given first pick of interiors for the second built environment description
  • February 29th: The top five earners from each section will be given first pick of digital spaces for the third built environment description
  • March 28th: The top two earners from each section will be given first pick of all built environments for the built environment analysis or the option of curating a collaborative website built from a group of their peers’ built environment analyses (This is excellent experience and resume material!)

To make things interesting, small prizes (e.g., Starbucks gift cards, coupons for local businesses, etc.) will also be awarded to points leaders each week.

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 when the course unit with which they are associated end:

  • Reading Summaries for Unit 1 Readings: February 1
  • Reading Summaries for Unit 2 Readings: February 22
  • Reading Summaries for Unit 3 Readings: March 14
  • Exterior Built Environment Descriptions: February 19
  • Interior Built Environment Descriptions: March 11
  • Digital Built Environment Descriptions: April 8
  • Bibliography Annotations: April 1

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. We will keep track of when you come to see us during office hours for individual or group conferences and when you complete exercises in Writer’s Help. For everything else, however, you will need to submit a link to evidence of your work on your own site, on Zotero, on Google Maps, 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.

 

Final Extra, Extra Credit

 

This survey asks you to analyze your site and its organization, taking steps to optimize it where appropriate. This project is optional. It’s an opportunity to earn extra points if you decide to do it, but it won’t have a negative impact on your final grade if you don’t complete it. To access this form in a new window click here: http://goo.gl/forms/7TU89FZ1Ss.

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 (sites.gsu.edu)

Unit 1 | Exteriors

  • Reading Summaries 1 & 2 (11:59 pm, January 25th)
  • Bibliography Annotations 1, 2,& 3 (11.59 pm, February 5)
  • Built Environment Description 1: Exterior (11:59 pm, February 12)
  • SCHINDLER, SARAH. “Architectural Exclusion: Discrimination And Segregation Through Physical Design Of The Built Environment.” Yale Law Journal 124.6 (2015): 1934-2024. Academic Search Complete. Web. 20 Nov. 2015.
  • NERSESSOVA, IRINA. “Tapestry Of Space: Domestic Architecture And Underground Communities In Margaret Morton’s Photography Of A Forgotten New York.” Disclosure 23 (2014): 26. Advanced Placement Source. Web. 20 Nov. 2015.
  • MORTON, MARGARET. The Tunnel : The Underground Homeless Of New York City. n.p.: New Haven : Yale University Press, c1995., 1995. GEORGIA STATE UNIV’s Catalog. Web. 20 Nov. 2015. [*On reserve in the library]

Unit 2 | Interiors

  • Reading Summaries 3 & 4 (11:59 pm, February 15th)
  • Bibliography Annotations 4, 5, & 6 (11:59 pm, February 22nd)
  • Built Environment Description 2: Interior (11:59 pm, March 4th)
  • “Recognizing Campus Landscapes as Learning Spaces” by Kathleen G. Scholl and Gowri Betrabet Gulwad http://libjournal.uncg.edu/jls/article/view/972
  • “His & Hers: Designing for a Post-Gender Society” by Suzanne Tick http://www.metropolismag.com/March-2015/His-or-Hers-Designing-for-a-Post-Gender-Society/
  • BAZELON, EMILY. “Making Bathrooms More Accommodating.” New York Times Magazine. 17 November 2015. Web. 2 January 2016. http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/22/magazine/making-bathrooms-more-accommodating.html?_r=0
  • “Space and Consequences: The Impact of Different Formal Learning Spaces on Instructor and Student Behavior” by D. Christopher Brooks

Unit 3 | Digital Spaces

  • Reading Summaries 5 & 6 (11:59 pm, March 7th)
  • Bibliography Annotations 7, 8, 9, & 10 (11:59 pm, March 25th)
  • Built Environment Description 3: Digital Space (11:59 pm, April 1st)
  • By Week 12 these major projects should be complete: Reading Summaries, Annotated Bibliography, Built Environment Descriptions. After Week 12, submissions related to these major projects will no longer be accepted.
  • “Color Walking” by Radiolab: http://www.radiolab.org/story/214709-color-walk/
  • Hocks, Mary. “Understanding Visual Rhetoric in Digital Writing Environments,” College Composition and Communication 54.4 (2003): pp. 629-656.
  • King, Melissa. “Better Online Living Through Content Moderation,” Model View Culture 28 (October 14, 2015). Web: https://modelviewculture.com/pieces/better-online-living-through-content-moderation.

Unit 4 | Text as Built Environment

  • Built Environment Analysis (or, for top earners across all of the sections, Collaborative Website, 11:59 pm, April 25th)
  • Course evaluations and conclusions
  • Schryer, Catherine. “Records as Genre,” Written Communication 10 (1993): pp. 200-234. Print.
  • Montgomery, Scott. “The Scientific Paper,” The Chicago Guide to Communicating Science (Chicago: Univ. of Chicago P, 2003): pp. 78-98

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. Make sure you’re looking at the correct tab for your class: Monday Hybrid, Monday/Wednesday F2F, or Wednesday Hybrid.

You can also use Google to view and subscribe to your class calendar:

Monday Hybrid Section

Wednesday Hybrid Section

Monday/Wednesday F2F Section

How will my grade be calculated?

Check your points in your class notebook on OneDrive.

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.:

  • Reading Summaries (6): 300-600 points
  • Annotated Bibliography (10 entries): 250-500 points
  • Built Environment Descriptions (3, 1 each for exterior, interior, digital space): 300-600 points
  • Built Environment Analysis (1): 300-600 points
  • Participation (including attendance): 400-???

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 summaries, annotated bibliography, 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 “C-,” MEANING THAT YOU WILL HAVE TO RE-TAKE THE CLASS.

If you complete all four of the major projects, earning at least the minimum number of points for each and miss no more than four class meetings (two for hybrid sections), you will earn at least 1,475 points and pass the course with at least a grade of “C.” After that, your grade will be determined by the number of points you’ve earned in total. Students who complete all four of the major projects and earn at least 2,500 points will automatically receive a grade of “A.”

For those who earn below 2,500 points and more than 1,475 points (and complete all the major projects), the top earner from each section will determine the grading scale for the rest of section.

For instance, let’s say the top earner in your section completed all of the major projects and accrued 2,600 points. She will get an A+ and everyone who completed all of the major projects and earned at least 2,500 points will get an A. Further, the top points score of 2,600 determines the grading scale for everyone who completed all the major projects but didn’t earn at least 2,500 points as follows:

A-/A: major projects complete + 2,340-2,600 points
B-/B/B+: major projects complete + 2,080-2,339 points
C/C+: major projects complete + 1,475-2,079 points
Non-passing: one or more major projects incomplete, or fewer than 1,475 points total

You will be able to view a record of which major projects you’ve completed and how many points you’ve earned at any time in your class notebook on OneNote. Keeping track of your total points and completed projects is the only thing for which we will be using OneNote.

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

  • Lunsford, Andrea. Writer’s Help 2.0. 5th Edition. Boston: Macmillan Learning, 2015. Web. http://bit.ly/1PKACcB.
  • Gaillet, Lynée, Angela Hall-Godsey and Jennifer L. Vala. Guide to First-Year Writing. 4th Edition. Southlake, Texas: Fountainhead P, 2015. 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

  • Help documentation for most of the technology we’ll be using is available here.
  • Access to a laptop or desktop computer for daily use.
  • Access to email on a daily basis.
  • An active student account on sites.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.
  • 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

The Forms

Use the forms below to submit all of your work, and to sign up for in-person and online study groups and in-person group conferences. 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. We will keep track of when you come to see us during office hours for individual or group conferences and when you complete exercises in Writer’s Help. For everything else, however, you will need to submit a link to evidence of your work on your own site, on Zotero, on Google Maps, 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. Scheduling an in-person study group session . . . You can use this form to sign-up for and organize in-person study group sessions. You may sign-up just yourself, or the better option is to organize a group with at least one other person and sign up at the same time.

Scheduling a group conference . . . You can use this form to sign-up for and organize an in-person group conference with one of the instructors. You may sign-up just yourself, or the better option is to organize a group with at least one other person and sign up at the same time.

General

ENGL 1102-English Composition II: The Rhetoric of Space and Place in Atlanta

Spring 2016 | UL302c

M Hybrid | 12:00-1:15 pm

W Hybrid | 12:00-1:15 pm

M/W F2F | 1:30-2:45 pm

Instructors:

Dr. Robin Wharton

  • Office: 25 Park Place #2434
  • Office Hours: M/W 9-11 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

Mrs. Paige Arrington (Mrs. A)

  • Office: Langdale 970
  • Office hours: Tuesdays 9:30-11:30 a.m., and by appointment; I’m able to meet via WebEx or Google Hangout if you can not be on campus
  • Contact: parrington2{at}gsu{the dot goes here}edu

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

You earn points for coming to class and lose points for unexcused absences. Students in the M/W F2F section earn 20 points for coming to class, and lose 20 points for each absence. Students in the hybrid sections earn 40 points for coming to class, and lose 40 points for each absence. Arriving to class late will result in a deduction of 10-20 points (20-40 points for hybrid sections).

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 severely 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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