GOAL: Our course blog will be the primary shared writing space for WRT 303 this semester. As such, it highlights the social nature of digital knowledge, as we communicate with one another in this space by posting content, responding to one another’s writing, embedding media, and linking to outside sources. Students will write weekly blog posts of approximately 300-500 words. Your post or posts might be a summary and response to readings, a continuation of classroom discussion, or a question and tentative answer about a style issue. In addition, you will post a significant and thoughtful response to another student’s blog posting. I will keep careful track of the number of blog posts you write, and when you post them.
Through posting to our blog, you will build an ethos and online presence, effectively use media to complement text, and provide links and references to other sources. Reading and responding to others’ posts will help you understand others’ viewpoints and foster a sense of our class as a writing/learning community.
You will always begin your post about a reading with a summary. Be sure your post includes the author’s full name and the correct title of the reading. Summarizing the reading in your own words will help you to understand the author’s perspective and identify his/her main ideas.
Sometimes I’ll provide specific prompts for you to consider in your post. Other times your blog entry may be more open-ended. There are a number of ways to approach these open-ended posts: consider the reading in relation to your own experience; write about an aspect of the day’s reading that you don’t understand, or something that resonates with you; or formulate an insightful question or two about the reading and then attempt to answer your own questions. When you respond to another student’s post, be thoughtful and respectful by building upon it, disagreeing with it, or re-thinking it.
As the semester progresses, the blog will serve as a scaffolding tool, which you can use to both try out new writing approaches and to revise/refine writing you’ve been working on throughout the semester. For example, when you are revising, you might post an excerpt from a longer essay with some reflection and perhaps questions for your classmates regarding revision suggestions. When you are working on your personal statement, you’ll post, say, links to the schools to which you are applying. My hope is that we’ll discover new ways of using the blog as the course progresses. Be sure to regularly check the class blog for further postings, and let me know if you have any questions.