HU2506 | Spring 2008: The Rhetoric & Poetics of Sustainability

Course Projects & Grading

Project details TBA, but will include,

  • Personal ecological/autobiographical narrative: 10%
    Due Friday, January 18th, 500 words, typed, double-spaced: what are your earliest memories of nature? Of spending time outdoors? With whom do you associate working, playing, and spending time outdoors, in natural environments? How much time do you spend outdoors currently—and are these structured activities (hunting, skiing, hiking) or unstructured “exploration” activities? What kinds of values do you have regarding the natural environment—conserve it? exploit it? ambivalent about it? Why?
  • Reading journal (as assigned, biweekly): 20%
    This is a reading- and discussion-intensive course. You will keep a reading journal and provide regular reading notes that serve as the basis for our discussions and reflections. Your dialectic-reading journal is meant to encourage you to actively engage in a meaningful conversation with the reading individually and comparatively. As you make journal notes, you should regularly re-read your previous pages of notes and comments, noting any new connections. The journal is important because you “own” the new facts by putting them in your own words or by raising your own questions. Writing is a way to produce or possess new knowledge as you attempt to do interpretative phrasing.

    I read, but do not judge or evaluate the notes, tone, questions, or reflections during the course. Your dialectic-reading journal grade is based on your willingness to document your reading notes as we proceed resulting in a record of your intellectual engagement.

  • Reading presentation: 20%
  • Field trip report: 20%
  • Major research report & presentation: 30%


A The writing & design are exceptional. This is the kind of document that might lead to promotions in the workplace. It is professional and reflects the writer’s careful consideration of audience and purpose. It contains all necessary information, is written in an appropriate and engaging style, is memorable, and its delivery is visually appealing. It is free of mechanical errors.

B The document is strong. It would be considered acceptable in the professional contexts. It too reflects consideration of the rhetorical situation. It is generally above average in terms of the criteria mentioned above, but falls short of excellent in one or more category. It is free of mechanical errors.

C The document is competent. It would probably be returned for revision in professional contexts. It is generally average in terms of the major criteria listed above. It has few mechanical errors.

D The document is weak. It would probably get the designer into a bad situation in professional contexts. It falls below average in terms of one or more of the major criteria.

F Pink Slip

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