In this project, you will collaborate with 2 to 3 other students on projects that evaluate a need for change or intervention within a familiar discourse community, and will write a proposal developing that plan for intervention. The final essay will be a culmination of the research your group’s members will complete in the I-search, Project Three. These evaluation/proposal projects will be 2000-2500 words.
To complete this project, work through the following steps with your group (see timeline for specific due dates):
- Determine means of exercising collaborative writing practices in your group (i.e. how you might use technology like Google docs or wiki, or how you will optimize in-class and out-of-class meetings).
- Identify a meaningful issue or area in need of change within a community in which your group members have voice or some relative expertise. You may use one or more of your I-Search papers as a starting point.
- Develop a working bibliography of texts you may use to research the issue.
- Through research (primary and/or secondary), establish this issue or need for change exists within the community.
- Write annotated bibliography entries on sources which you will use to explain sources to other members of your group and begin developing your draft. I expect to see at least two new sources (not used on any of your group member’s I-Search).
- Through research (primary and/or secondary), develop a proposal for addressing this issue or need for change, including concrete explanations and evidence for what your proposal is, why this proposal addresses the issue, what benefits your proposal will provide, how your proposal will be implemented, what obstacles your proposal may face, a refutation of these obstacles, and a call for action
- Define key terms of your topic to help you make your argument.
- Draft your essay collaboratively, using Google docs or another collaborative interface.
- Use MLA format for in-text citations and works cited page.
- Bring a complete draft to class for peer response.
- Develop a short presentation (in whatever genre your group deems appropriate) that you will use to explain your proposal to an audience, and to participate in a Q and A session. Use the class’s feedback to think about what revisions, if any, you will make when and if you move forward with proposing your solution.
- Revise and edit your writing into a polished final draft of 2000-2500 words, double-spaced (Times New Roman, size 12 font, MLA format).
In the evaluation (which is the introduction to the paper), you will work through the following points:
- Describe your stake in the particular community you will be evaluating, your stance as a member of this community. In short, who are you within this community and why do you care about it?
- Using your own observations and research, describe the specific community you are writing about, giving your audience (the class, at this point) key information
- Using thoughtful, credible research and your own experiences and observations as they are relevant, explain the issue you see in the community and the various perspectives on the issue (who believes different things about how this issue should be handled?)
From here, you will move on to develop your proposal. The evaluation serves as a discussion of the issue and a lengthy, developed introduction of your proposal. That is, it sets the stage for what you are proposing.
As you move into the proposal, expand on the following, providing evidence where needed to support your claims:
- The proposed idea
- Why the idea should be implemented (how it addresses the problem you’ve explained in the evaluation)
- What the benefits of this idea/change would be for the community/communities addressed
- How the idea will be implemented
- What obstacles the proposal may face, either in terms of implementation or opposition
- An addressing or refutation of these obstacles/opposition
- Conclusion summarizing your argument and/or calling your audience to action
Sample Collaborative Student Proposals
Timeline for Project Four
Team Charter and Topic Selection by end of class on Tuesday, 10/28.
Annotated bibliography of sources by Tuesday, November 4.
Rough draft presentations due in class on Thursday, November 13.
Final draft uploaded to Safe Assign by 11:59 Tuesday, November 18.