Updates from October 16

I covered a lot of ground in class last Thursday, so here's a recap of some important points (thinking of those absent, asleep, etc):

  1. Welcome back from the break -- this short week feels weird.
  2. Thank you to those who worked with the IBCN symposium. Your work was well praised. I hope things went well this morning. I will see you at the symposium today, Friday, and Saturday. Here are flyers you can distribute to recruit participants.
  3. If anyone wants to work with the Ultimate Pink Party and YWCA, I need to know today.
  4. Grading: I will send out proposals today and tomorrow, then add grades to Blackboard this weekend. I will grade the literacy narratives as soon as I can, too.
  5. Some general notes on the project work:
    1. Too many of you are not reading the assignments. I will get more strict about this from now on. When the research methods assignment (due 10/24) comes out over the weekend, please read it carefully. (Note I've also released the report draft assignment, too.) Please continue to use Deans to shape your work. Of course, I can help too.
    2. Many of you need a schedule for your project. Plan ahead! You don't want to get in the situation of needing extra time or having to deal with two deadlines on the same day.
    3. Essay-format is fine for the course work, but don't be afraid to use tables, lists, and other ways to write.
    4. One of you wrote: “I would love some advice or help at some point whether in class or email on how I should set up the interview and who I should interview and in what time frame.” That’s the purpose of the research methods: you will draft your approach in writing and I will help. We will talk about it in class, too.
    5. Several of you wrote something like this: “I do not have any experience with this group. At this point I do not have any questions about it either.” That is the wrong way to proceed. Lack of knowledge should raise questions. Use preliminary research to move forward.
    6. The assignment said, “what texts do you expect to collect and analyze? Why do you think these genres are important to your interviewees? Describe any sources you have for these genres other than your discourse community.” -- this is a critical part of the project. Use activity theory to help you understand how and why this is a good idea. Remember, the point of this stuff is giving you tools to understand, break down, and deal with contexts. So that's where to begin.
  6. The detailed schedule is done up to November. Please use it!
  7. I will end class a few minutes early today to handle questions.
  8. Here is a handout on discourse community which should be a useful companion to Deans.

As always, I welcome your questions.

ENG 108, Fall 2014, Bradley Dilger