Blog Prompt #4 (9/24/2015)

Download, print, and readĀ the student sample papersĀ from the handouts section of the web site. Grade each paper using the same scale used by USC Aiken (A, B+, B, C+, C, D+, D, F) and the rubric distributed as part of the syllabus:

  • Clarity of Purpose: Students will demonstrate the ability to establish a clear purpose (thesis or announced intent) and an appropriate awareness of audience (reader).
  • Quality of Thought: Students will demonstrate a level of rational thought that recognizes and examines complexity of ideas and is supported by credible and logical evidence.
  • Organization of Content: Students will demonstrate unity and coherence, and demonstrate effective arrangement of content, all in the appropriate support of purpose.
  • Synthesis and Integration of Sources: Students will demonstrate effective synthesis of multiple sources so that various claims, findings, and arguments are clearly and concisely presented.
  • Attribution and Documentation of Sources: Students will demonstrate accurate citations in text and in works cited / references so that readers can clearly identify and track purposeful use of source materials.
  • Language and Style: Students will demonstrate the ability to make stylistic choices in vocabulary, diction, and syntax.
  • Grammar and Mechanics: Students will demonstrate competence in grammar, usage, punctuation, and spelling

Reply to this blog post with your grade for each paper and an explanation for that grade.

Blog Prompt #3 (9/22/15)

Now that we are beginning to wind down our reading of The Other Wes Moore and getting ready to gear up for the Research Proposal and Researched Argument, let’s start discussing topics. For this blog post, introduce at least two possible argumentative topics that you might want to research in more depth. As you explain each argumentative topic, you must show the connection to The Other Wes Moore and explain why that topic is important to you.

We will discuss topics in class on Tuesday.

Blog Prompt #2 (9/8/2015)

Let’s use this blog post to develop ideas for discussion on Tuesday. Now that you have finished the first three chapters of The Other Wes Moore, what do you think is the most significant difference between the author Wes Moore’s childhood and the incarcerated Wes Moore’s childhood? What should we as a society do to alleviate that difference? What policy or policies should we put into place?

Fallacious Reasoning

Many arguments contain what we call fallacies. Whether they are used deliberately or not, fallacies are perhaps best understood as little tricks that make an argument seem sound when the claims are actually weak. As you begin to analyze others’ arguments and develop your own arguments, it’s a good idea to have at least a basic understanding of fallacies, how they work, and how to spot them. After reviewing this presentation, it might be fun to watch Fox News or MSNBC or any news program in which political pundits present specific arguments to further their agenda. As you watch, try to summarize their arguments and identify some fallacies.

Regardless, keep an eye out for fallacies in arguments you analyze and avoid falling into the trap of fallacious reasoning as you develop your own arguments.

Blog Prompt #1 (8/27/15)

Let’s use the first blog prompt to introduce yourself and get started on the narrative draft. First, introduce yourself. You can include your hometown, major, hobbies, something memorable about yourself, etc. Then, explain the decision you have chosen to develop in your narrative and the consequences of that decision, whether they are large or small. Ultimately, you should share your preliminary thesis sentence. Unlike the rest of the blog posts, you will have until the end of class on Thursday to respond to this blog prompt, so if you have any trouble, we can work it out on Thursday.