WR 121: Week 4 Workshopping, Topic Selection, & social issues

Agenda (Mon & Wed)

  • Library Assignment Review (Done)
  • Paper #1 (Done)
  • Workshopping (Done)
  • Reading Discussion: Pacific Standard Magazine, selected articles (Done)
  • Brainstorming topics for paper 2 (Done)

Library Visit: Monday, February 6 in library room 124



In your journals, I want you to write about your first paper. Where did you struggle? What are you proud of? What would you like feedback on, if anything? What areas could be expanded or condensed? What would you do differently if you were starting over again? What did you learn from reading your peer's papers over the weekend?

Workshop session

  1. What in this piece worked particularly well for you – that is, what shouldn’t be lost in the revision? If you were to pick one particular passage or section that stands out, what would that be?
  2. Who or what do you want more detail about?
  3. Why should anyone believe this writer? For example, do you have a sense that the author is fairly and accurately describing the scene? Does the author make declarations and then support them with evidence?
  4. Has the author made connections between place and the “real” word?
  5. What else can you say about this work? Any other general/questions/suggestions?

Paper #2

What will you write about?

  • In your journal, draw columns and label each with one of these words: PLACES, THINGS, TECHNOLOGIES, CONTROVERSIES, HISTORY, HOBBIES
  • Now, in each of these columns, generate a list of words or phrases (related to the column heading you chose) that come to mind when you think about what you know and what you might want to know about the category. For example, under hobbies, you might know a great deal (or want to know a great) deal about extreme sports. Be patient, write as many items as you can, but know they ideas may come in waves.
  • Now, look at a single item on the list and ask yourself questions: Is this something that raises questions that research can answer? Does this item get at something you've always wondered about? Might it open doors to knowledge you think is important, fascinating, or relevant to your own life? If the answers are yes, circle that item.

(If anyone is interested in more resources like this, the exercise was borrowed from Bruce Ballenger's The Curious Researcher.)

Asking Questions to Guide Your Research

  • Interrogating the common banana - or is it even common?
  • Now, for a circled item on your inventory, generate a list of questions that you may want to explore on this topic. Think of as many questions as you can.
  • Newsprint activity, modified.

Library Visit: Monday, Feb 7, Library Room 124

Happy Exploring!

Created By
Jenny Woodman


Image Credits: Jenny Woodman

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