eportfolio reflective introduction draft

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Please read carefully. Note that you may indeed quote from or reference this document but mostly use it to make composition and editorial decisions which best reflect your own conclusions.

Remember the required elements of the ePortfolio are:

  • Reflective Introduction (1,300 words minimum, multimodal)
  • Week 1 Self-Assessment
  • HCP final draft
  • AP final draft
  • 6-8 artifacts (informal assignments)

What is the final ePortfolio Reflective Introduction?

Your ePortfolio introductory essay is your opportunity to “self-reflect” or otherwise honestly, carefully consider and assess your progress in reading about, learning and adopting the practices of scholarship, research and argumentation taught and practiced in Writing 39C. In the past nine weeks we have read, critiqued, peer edited, evaluated, revised, argued, persuaded, defended and concluded. We have considered the various methods of further presenting and arguing, including through use of experts, chronology, comparison, graphics and other multi-modal elements which build credibility and affirm the strength and viability of your interpretation of the secondary sources you have gathered and curated as the writer-editor of your work. Finally, we have in addition to composition literacy and research literacy, sought to achieve “civic literacy” in a course whose topic of consideration is built on appreciating public policy.

The RI is a survey of your progress, with detailed discussion and self-assessment. It argues the importance of choices you made, lessons learned, of your decisions and negotiations and missteps, all to show your readers (instructor and fellow student-scholars) that you are ready, or at least readier than you were, for serious and sincere research as an upper-division writer of an argumentative research-based long essay.

The Reflective Introduction is also a guide or map to our appreciation of the rest of your ePortfolio. Since your ePort is organized into sections (HCP, AP, Artifacts) you will want to refer throughout the RI representative sections of each. You should do this using direct quotation, side-by-side comparisons, screen shots, or any other dynamic, active methods which show and illustrate your evaluation of the texts you are discussing and your engagement with them. You will of course want to make sure, first, to have uploaded all sections of your ePortfolio. Under HCP and AP do include all drafts and exercises related to those respective projects. Everything else you choose to include can go under Artifacts, organized as you see fit. Remember this should all be logical, user-friendly, well-organized, inviting and attractive.

To begin, you might find it helpful to remember the following questions as you compose your 1,300-word (with images) RI. Why am I including this particular excerpt or reference or artifact? How (in what way) does it show my development as a writer, editor, researcher, thinker and rhetorician?

For example, one simple method of showing the point of revision is to reproduce portions of a hard copy version of an essay draft with student or teacher comments, acknowledging successes or areas needing improvement and then to share the revised version of the same. Again, you will absolutely need to explain in detail why and how and to what end you made the changes. Example: In my first draft I failed to identify my demographic carefully, and did not have real numbers. In researching my later draft, I used the key words and search terms I noted were actually most typically and frequently employed in the literature. As a result, I found more articles and recent numbers, mostly estimates, which quantified the problem in real-life numbers of affected undocumented women domestic workers in California. Additionally, I found that this new information forced me to revise my original thesis…

Please note that I strongly suggest you begin the Reflective Introduction to your work by reviewing your Self-Assessment from Week 1.

Of course, you will be graded/assessed on the strong writing of the RI itself. Compose and organize it as a personal essay, with an argument and through-line about yourself as a writer – a thesis! It should offer a “promise to the reader,” evidence, other voices, multiple pieces of evidence. You will need to make choices. Proofread, run spell and grammar check, make sure links and images are functional.

Finally, as I have assured you throughout the quarter, this class values process AND product. Don’t be shy about expressing your disappointment in an essay or the flaws of an argument or, yes, the frustration at finding research too late. Many students might indeed wish they had more time this quarter, which they might use to write a more vigorous Advocacy Project or, indeed, choose a different position. That’s okay! Just explain it, and offer a strong defense or explanation of what you might do differently and what you learned. Avoid generic comments, analysis such as “I wish I had planned better.” Be specific instead. Details matter. Now that you know more about research, what in particular might you wish for? Why? This is a persuasive, argumentative “essay,” after all, meant to show all you can do, have done, would do better perhaps as a result of what you have learned.

Here, then, is a long list of the many exercises and rhetorical situations, teaching moments and writing assignments from which you will need to choose. Pick no more than 8 to 10 (minimum 6). Your choices in themselves help to create an argument. Why are they important, instructive? How? What role do they play in the construction of your ePortfolio, RI, essays, research and participation in the class? There are no doubt more. You may quote from texts, emails, conversations and reproduce written notes and comments as part of your multi-modal discussion.

Assignments to pull from:

Annotated Bibliography and Source Evaluations (total of 8)

Library Orientations

Office hours with me

Oral and Visual Presentation to Class

Draft notes, comments from peers and instructor on HCP and AP

Final HCP

Final AP

Graphics and multi-modal elements

In-class peer review

Readings and class discussions on Evicted

Readings (mostly chapter 11) from AGWR

Student sample essays


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