A large number of people have said they will be absent on Friday due to the start of Spring Break. Therefore, I’m going to post Friday’s class content online so that everyone can get the same information before they leave town.
It is important that you go through this “class” before you finalize your research papers, as all of this information will be directly relevant to putting the finishing touches on your paper. DO NOT wait until the last minute to submit your papers, as “the wi-fi on my cruise ship was malfunctioning” is not a valid excuse for not submitting your paper.
On Friday, in lieu of holding an in-person class, I will hold extended office hours from 8:30am-12:00pm. You may email me or stop by the office during this time and I will be happy to answer any of your questions or talk through any last minute concerns you have about the research paper.
Friday’s “class” will cover the following:
- Complete and post a reflection on your presentation
- Watch a lecture on improving Introductions and Conclusions
- Read through a few tips about the intricacies of MLA in-text citations
- Look at a few resources I have provided to help you proofread and double-check your formatting for your research paper
Continue below to find all the information you need to complete Friday’s class – you may work through this class at any point this week, so long as you complete it, then turn in your research paper prior to Friday, March 17 at 11:55pm.
1. Complete and post a reflection on your presentation:
Like we have done for our other major assignments, please take approximately 5 minutes to reflect on your Mock Academic Conference Presentation. Brainstorm your responses to 3-4 of the following questions in writing. In order to get attendance/participation credit for today’s class, please post this reflection in the comments of this blog post. This post can be very informal and include sentence fragments, bullet points or other elements of brainstorming.
- What was your argument and purpose, and how did you make them clear and persuasive in this presentation?
- Describe the methods and modes that were the focus of your communicative work in this project. What are the defining features of the genre or media you are using in this presentation? How do you make the best possible uses of these features (affordances)?
- Who was the intended audience for your artifact; why is this an appropriate audience? How is your audience reflected in your presentation?
- How did the process of presenting your argument help to clarify the written version in your research paper? Did anything change in your paper based on the process of composing your presentation, giving your presentation or the feedback you received from your presentation?
- Reflect on your strengths and weaknesses in completing this project. Articulate areas and strategies you would like to focus on for continued improvement.
- If you had more time for revision, what would you change and why?
2. Watch the lecture for today on Improving Introductions and Conclusions
After watching this video, take a look at your introductions and conclusions for your research paper; what can you do to improve these vital elements of your paper?
3. Read over tips on in-text MLA citation style:
As you are finalizing and proofreading your papers, one of the things you want to be double-checking is that you are including appropriate in-text citations in your papers. A few tips to help you make sure you are citing your sources correctly.
Every time you are using someone else’s ideas, you MUST cite them.
If you are using quotation sandwiches, you are including information about the author in your writing, so that will indicate the switch to someone else’s ideas. Do NOT forget the citation when one is relevant! If you are using a source without page numbers, like a website, it is helpful to indicate this in your quotation sandwich as well, so the reader knows why you have no page number reference.
As Darko Suvin discussed in a recent blog post, “cognitive estrangement is the best idea I’ve ever come up with.”
In general, MLA citations go at the END of the sentence, with the closing punctuation for that sentence after the close parenthesis.
To create a meta-example, “the relevant quotation goes here inside the quote marks” (Fitzsimmons 22).
In this additional meta-example, the important quotation “comes in the middle of the sentence” so that I can use that key phrase, but the citation still goes at the end of the sentence (Smith 47).
Is it possible to imagine a stranger concept for a utopia than the one my fictional Dr. Smith termed “perfect insanity” (27)?
What belongs in the parenthetical citation depends on what you have written in the text and what sources you are using.
If you do not cite the author/source title in the text, as a general rule you should include the last name of the author and the page number.
If the source does not have an author, use the first word(s) of the source – remember, you want your reader to be able to scan down your Work Cited page and find that first word in alphabetical order.
If you have more than one source by the same author, include the author’s name, the first word(s) of the source’s title to distinguish it from the others, then the page number.
If your source does not have page numbers, you do not need to include them.
If you have what you feel is an exception to these rules, this is when you need to consult a reference guide. Your MLA 8 handbook has an excellent style guide in the second half of the book; the Purdue OWL guide also has a page dedicated to the intricacies and exceptions to the MLA in-text citation rules.
4. Look at a few resources I have provided to help you proofread and double-check your formatting for your research paper
On TSquare, under the Resources folder, I have provided you with two documents to help you with the final polishing stages of the writing process.
Paper Proofreading Tips: This document gives you a number of tips for improving your proofreading skills as well as highlights a number of common problems students have with their writing. Read over this document to help you proofread your research paper carefully before you submit it.
MLA Formatting Checklist: Use this document to ensure you are creating a professional document that fits MLA standards. Double-check all of these formatting elements before submitting your paper.
MLA Sample Paper: Purdue OWL has a digital sample paper in MLA format. It conforms to all the same standards as the formatting checklist above, but is a bit more visual and can serve as an example if you would rather look at a finished product.
NOTE: When it comes to the length of your paper, your heading and Work Cited DO NOT COUNT towards word count. When in doubt, use the word count from the assignment as your guide, rather than page length.
HOMEWORK DUE BEFORE BREAK
- Research paper due Friday, March 17 at 11:55pm. SUBMIT BEFORE YOU LEAVE FOR BREAK!
- CATME team builder survey due Friday, March 17 at noon
HOMEWORK DUE AFTER BREAK:
- Watch Lynda Video “Teamwork Fundamentals” for Monday, March 27
- Read resource on elevator pitches available on TSquare for Monday, March 27
- Movie poster due in class on Wednesday, March 29
If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to email me or stop by my extended office hours on Friday.
Have a happy, healthy and safe break! See you all in a week!