Low-Stakes Writing

Low-stakes writing (LSW) are like journal entries. They should be written with care, but they are only invention documents for emerging ideas. Though I don’t expect intense research and thorough arguments, I do expect evidence of some level of critical thinking, which I have explained in class. Usually, LSW will be assigned once a week. You must have each one posted on Tuesdays, before 11 a.m. (presentation days!). See below and cross-reference with the syllabus to confirm due dates. They are 10% of your final grade. Late LSW posts will affect the grade of the post, typically by one grade (e.g., An “4” LSW submitted late will earn a “3,” and so forth).

Labeling LSW

Label the each of your LSW posts with LSW and the number of the LSW, then a colon, and then your engaging and unique title (better than my examples, please). See my following examples.

LSW 6: Analysis of a prominent organization like my client #1

LSW 7: Analysis of a prominent organization like my client #2

Grading

A “4” LSW follows the common conventions of academic grammar, mechanics, and punctuation (GMP), with only one minor error at the most. Online media conventions of GMP are acceptable if you are trying to make a point. The LSW clearly demonstrates critical thinking, as defined in class. A “4” goes a little above and beyond the obvious in style and content, ESPECIALLY offering a “little” research to support claims or offer context. To demonstrate some basic research, authors will include links that clearly lead readers to texts and data that support particular claims and include supporting images. Remains within the 150-300 word count requirement, accurately tagged and categorized.

A “3” LSW follows the common conventions of academic GMP, with only two minor errors at the most. Online media conventions of GMP are acceptable if you are trying to make a point. The LSW demonstrates some gestures or moves toward critical thinking, as defined in class. A “3” goes a little above and beyond the obvious, maybe in style or content, but avoids even a little research or lacks accurate research and citation to support claims or offer context. May be slightly above or below word count of 150-300 words posted on english3172.wordpress.com, accurately tagged and categorized; or limited, absent, or inaccurate tags and categories.

A “2” LSW follows the common conventions of academic GMP, with only three minor errors at the most. Online media conventions of GMP are acceptable if you are trying to make a point. The LSW is simply descriptive and lacks critical thinking, as defined in class. It completely completely avoids avoids research or lacks accurate research and citation to support claims or offer context. May be above or below word count of 150-300 words posted on english3172.wordpress.com, accurately tagged and categorized; or limited, absent, or inaccurate tags and categories.

List of LSW Due Dates and Content Prompts

  1. Jan 15  Facebook is best used for what? Twitter is best used for what? LinkedIn is best used for what?
  2. Jan 22  What types of patterns of language or rhetorical features could we look for when we analyze a social media site? What sorts of common terms could we apply appropriately?
  3. Jan 29  Who is or will be your authentic client? What is the tone or buzz in the industry of your authentic client? What SM platforms are used by companies or organizations in the same business as your client? Give evidence.
  4. Feb 5 What is the minimum number of general posts on a FB wall or Twitter feed of an organization similar to your authentic client does one have to analyze to get a sense of the nature of and values of that organization? What is the reputable source that guides the methodology? IN OTHER WORDS: How many posts on a social media platform does it take you to discover the nature/values of a company that competes with your authentic client? How many posts does it take other researchers of social media to conduct their studies, make their claims, and come to their conclusions/evaluations? Start with Google, but Galileo can help too. See the Resources page of this blog.
  5. Feb 12 Generally speaking, what are the acceptable and unacceptable conventions of grammar, mechanics, and punctuation? Don’t forget to define key terms. Reminder: These questions are “tricky,” not “trick.”
  6. Feb 19 Find a prominent organization like your client. Analyze the first 20 or more posts, including “likes” and comments. What can you tell us about the organization’s image or its values and its customer’s values and response to the organization’s social media presence? Reminder: These questions are “tricky,” not “trick.”
  7. Feb 26  Find another prominent organization like your client. Analyze the first 20 or more posts, including “likes” and comments. What can you tell us about the organization’s and its customer’s regard for Standard Edited or Academic English?
  8. Mar 12 Find articles, blogs, etc. on PR or marketing reports. See if you can find one for social media. Look for suggestions for format or layout of marketing plans or reports. What are two or three options for your client? Look for advice that suggests layout and content options. Note where they have common suggestions, and note where they diverge.
  9. Mar 19 Pick a tentative primary platform that you’ll recommend to your AC. Research social media advice to find nuts-and-bolts advice for the frequency of posting and what to post, possibly actual calendars or tables that show this. Maybe you’ll discover one of an existing organization. If you discover nothing like this, then speculate why this might be the case.
  10. Mar 26 Review 3172 Report Heuristic. Examine the heuristic at [the following link leads to yet another example of a heuristic that the teacher completed] “engl 3171 project proposal instructions.” Based on your notes from class about the Report Heuristic, the Report instructions, and the examination of engl 3171 project proposal instructions, complete the heuristic with questions/prompts that will guide your drafting of the Report. For example–and maybe everyone will at least have this–under the Introduction a question might be “What is my thesis and why should my client use social media? OR  Why should my client revise his or her social media practices?” Go ahead and make headings with prompts below them. You should feel empowered to even change the heuristic headings. Find balance between my instruction and your authority. Submit as a Word .doc to appropriate CougarView dropbox.
  11. Group Review LSW the remaining prompts, # 12-14
    1. Before 3 p.m. on the day prior to your assigned group review, submit a PDF file to the appropriate CougarView dropbox folder. Reviewers, when you give feedback, focus on content and high order concerns and save the editing for the proofreading stage. These are graded LSWs: 0 is for bringing nothing, 2 is for bringing insubstantial and/or incoherent work that still relates to the task and topic, 4 is a substantial and coherent work that is ready for serious feedback from peers.
  12. Mar 21, Mar 28, Apr 2, Apr 4 Submit as a PDF to appropriate CougarView dropbox.
    1. Title page and headings with placeholder text
      1. What are the common items found on a formal report title page?
      2. What would the recipient and the recipient’s colleagues find useful on the title page?
      3. What is a common organization of a formal report? What goes first, second, third, and so forth?
      4. What makes a good title? What makes a good heading?
    2. Introduction (Background, preface)
  13. Apr 4, Apr 9, Apr 11, Apr 16 Submit as a PDF to appropriate CougarView dropbox. Include in the same document file your work and revisions of the previous LSW.
    1. Competition (What is the competition doing with social media and how are they doing it?)
    2. Platform (What platform(s) do you recommend and why?)
  14. Apr 16, Apr 18, Apr 23, Apr 25 Submit as a PDF to appropriate CougarView dropbox. Include in the same document file your work and revisions of the previous LSW.
    1. Social media plan (What is your broad and specific recommendations and what are the rationales for each?)
    2. Conclusion/Appendix Please include the following in your conclusion: Review in very general terms what you just presented (~2 sentences). Also answer, What successes and challenges a client should expect? What more can the client expect from you (“Please contact me so I can….” or “Of course, don’t hesitate to contact me because I will….”)? Do you have any words of inspiration? Maybe use Orsburn’s conclusion as a model with which to begin, but do not quote her and do not paraphrase her words or do a “synonym exchange.”
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