Project 1: Rhetorical Analysis
The analysis essay is a common college assignment across many different majors. Simply put, analysis focuses on describing how something works by breaking it down and examining its various components. In this version of the analysis essay, the something you’ll study are examples of non-fiction writing designed to persuade readers to take action. To do your analysis, you will use rhetorical analysis, which is an advanced reading strategy used to explore how rhetorical messages work in specific situations.
Project 2: I-Search
This project will be used to explore and develop research skills and your ethos as a researcher. You will pick a topic and compose a research question or questions about that topic. Then you will use the “I-Search” method to work through the process of composing a reflective research narrative. The I-Search is a process of researching a question, but also refers to a particular form of writing–a genre–that is based in questions, rather than answers, and that centers on a narrative of research. It is a project where you search for information rather than only reporting what other writers have researched before you. The outcome of the I-Search project may be an answer to your initial research question, an understanding of how to best research this kind of question, an evaluation of sources for a future research project, or even a refined sense of the argument you might pursue in the next project.
Project 3A: Research Argument
You will compose a researched argument essay, using the argument types outlined in our reading (definition, evaluation, causal, rebuttal, proposal). The objective of this paper is to present the findings from your research, composing an argument about the issue you’ve identified within the topic you studied. You will be focusing on writing in an academic tone and style, developing your ethos as researchers by practicing using an “academic voice” to respond to or join the conversation you see happening.
Project 3B: Infographic
This project will exercise your knowledge of genre analysis, rhetorical analysis and composing for specific audiences, as it asks you to rhetorically and graphically represent the data from your Project 3 researched argument in an infographic that you will design. An infographic is a visual representation of an evidence-based argument. We will spend some time working with sample infographics to get a sense of the genre conventions and to analyze various rhetors’ rhetorical choices in composing them. You will then work through your own rhetorical decision-making process to prioritize your data, and compose an infographic representing that data. In addition to creating your infographic, you will compose a short reflective piece that describes your composing process and gives a sense of your rhetorical choices. We will then present our infographics and reflections to each other in class.
Project 4: Reflective Essay
The Reflective Essay is a four-to-five page essay in which you evaluate how well you have achieved the goals of the course. To do so, you must look back over the work you produced during the semester in order to find, cite, and discuss evidence of achievement in each of the four learning outcome categories (reading, writing, research, and reflection). It is critical that your Reflective Essay includes concrete examples that support your claims as well as ample discussion of how your work in the course shows what you have learned and what you are able to do as a writer.