Weekly blog posts (25%)

Weekly blog posts (25%, 400-500 words each): Wordpress is a free and widely-used platform for blogging, and MU has a university-wide installation linked to your MUID. Blogging is a form of dynamic public writing that has been used in classroom contexts and beyond for at least two decades, and because WordPress is a very standard platform, it is likely to be available for many years to come. This makes it a great tool for you to begin learning. We are using the blogging platform this term to do three things: 1.) to help you develop a sense of public authorship and voice, 2.) to help you develop your academic persona by narrating your interests as they develop, 3.) and to encourage you to engage with your peers as they continue on a similar path.  Each student will have her or his own personal/professional blog on WordPress, which will aggregate specifically-tagged posts in a full-class blog.

These posts are your place to narrate your progress through the class: what did you learn? What do you have questions about? What are you curious about or interested in? Why? I will give you a topic to help focus your thoughts, and your responses will also form the basis of our in-class conversation–as well as provide a model for mature, thoughtful collaboration and a way for you to develop your ideas and generate possible directions for the final project.

Requirements: These blog posts should be well-written for the medium, free of notable grammatical or stylistic errors. They should be specific, rather than overly-general, and incorporate details from our readings and class discussions. Indicate your word count in parentheses at the end of each post (412). These posts must be made to your personal blog by Sunday. By class time, you are asked to have replied to 5 of your peers’ posts in a way that adds new knowledge. You must reply to your peers’ posts via our class blog–that is, the main site for our classroom discussion on the blog posts, not your peers’ individual sites, which are their own.

Grading: Grade is out of 20 points. Excellent posts and strong, complete replies to peers will earn 19-20 points; good posts with strong and complete replies to peers will earn 17-18 points; effective posts (on target, but perhaps overly general or poorly edited) with and complete replies to peers will earn 16 points. Posts that are too short, too general, or do not fully engage with peers will receive 15 points. Grades will be kept in Canvas. I will not respond to every blog post, but I will comment on selected posts periodically. I will not be responding to every blog post because I want to encourage you to grow into that role as you continue throughout the class.

Other details: Set up your blog using your MUID and login information at http://commons.marymount.edu. Marymount uses WordPress. There are myriad websites available to help you set up your blog, so be sure to google anything you have questions with!

  • You must provide me with your feed URL by the end of week 1. To find your feed url, you must have first set your blog to public (not private). Read more about feeds here: https://en.support.wordpress.com/feeds/. Your feed should be at the address that looks like this: https://commons.marymount.edu/thowe/feed/ where “thowe” is replaced with your alphanumeric MUID.
  • Email your feed URL to me once you’ve set up your blog. You can continue to format and shape your blog after giving me this URL–the appearance of your blog has no bearing on that feed URL.
  • Our class blog is located at https://commons.marymount.edu/571sp17/ — this is where you will comment on your peers’ posts, NOT on their individual sites or the original posts.
  • Posts MUST be tagged correctly for them to be incorporated into the class aggregate blog. Tag all posts to be imported into our class blog with 571. Only those posts tagged 571 will be imported. If you do not tag your post correctly, and it doesn’t import as a result, I will not consider it submitted. You can choose to write more on your blog; if you do NOT want it imported, DO NOT tag it 571.
  • Otherwise, you should develop a tagging and/or categorizing schema for your own blog that suits your purposes. Consider carefully how you will organize your blog, as you should continue this project into the future. Note that you can export/import blog posts into any WordPress environment, so you will always have access to your posts from MU.
  • Remember to include your word count (412) in parentheses at the end of your posts.