Assignments & evaluation

Formatting and submission guidelines

All typed assignments must be submitted in hard copy (an e-copy must also be sent to my email address for insurance, but the hard copy is what counts as the submission, except for the final blog-entry submission, where both hard and e-copies count). Assignments must be formatted as such:

  • Times New Roman, 12-pt font
  • Normal margins (2.54 cm all round)
  • Double spaced
  • Double-sided printing is acceptable
  • MLA citation style for references
  • No cover page
  • No need for a separate page for the bibliography (include your works cited on the same page as your analysis, unless you have no space for it there)

Blog entry (35%).

  • Initial submission (10%): you will sign up to write a short discussion of one of the texts on the syllabus; the discussion should focus on a single passage or specific theme or issue in the text. It can take the form of observations, critical questions, textual analysis, etc. The submission in total should be about 2 pages long. The more focused the discussion, the better. Avoid plot summary and mere opinion; don’t paraphrase the text or my lectures. Use the journal to explore your own interests, insights, and reactions. The submission must be in hard copy (with e-copy as backup) the week we discuss the pertinent text.
  • Peer-critique (5%): Having revised your entry based on my comments on your initial submission, bring a hard copy to class on March 27. Exchange entries with a fellow student, and offer constructive criticism of each other’s entry. The drafts and revisions must be submitted to me.
  • Final submission (20%): Submit your re-revised journal entry to me by April 10. This revision must be substantively improved from your original submission. Any entry that is unchanged (or nearly unchanged) will receive a grade of 0. Here is what and how you must submit:
  1. A hard copy of the revised entry
  2. An identical e-copy of the revised entry, sent to my email (no attachments–paste the text into the body of the email)
  3. A copy of the marked-up peer-critiqued entry
  4. A copy of the marked-up initial submission (with my comments)

The entry will be published in your name on the course blog. Click here for a sample version of this blog entry.

Participation (5%). There are two forms of graded participation. (1) Submitting 3 questions to me related to a text on which you’re writing a journal entry; these have to be in my email by the Monday night before the relevant lecture. Some or all of these questions will be asked in lecture. (2) Submitting to the course blog. This includes questions for the class; observations on the readings; relevant science news; responses to the posted blog entries; etc.

Creative-Analytical assignment (25%). This assignment is described here. It is due in class on February 13, 2015. It should be about 3-4 pages long.

Quiz (10%). This is an in-class quiz based on the readings to date, mostly multiple choice and short answer questions. It will take place at the beginning of class on February 20.

Take-home exam (25%), due April 20 in my mailbox or office. On April 13, I will post questions on the website. You will answer one of the questions in a short (~3 page) essay based on at least 3 texts on the syllabus, including at least 1 novel).


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