English 481: 01 English Seminar (PDF Version)
Grant T. Smith, Ph. D.
MF 3:10 p.m. – 4 p.m. MC 444
Spring Semester, 2010
Office: MC 533; Phone: 796-3485; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Office hours: T Th 9 a.m. to 12 noon (By Appointment)
English Seminar is the capstone course for all English Majors. In the seminar the students will complete an approved senior thesis in composition, literature, or pedagogy; prepare a public defense of the thesis; present the defense in English Symposium 427.
MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, seventh edition. New York: MLA, 2009.
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- Thinking—Students engage in the critical and creative thinking
- Ethical Decision Making—Students respond to ethical issues
- Communication—Students communicate effectively orally and in writing
- Aesthetic Sensitivity—Students engage in artistic experiences and reflect critically upon them
- Cultural Sensitivity—Students demonstrate a respect for the diversity of the human experience
- Community Involvement—Students demonstrate responsible citizenship
English Department Student Learning Outcomes:
Student Learning Outcomes for English 481
- invent, draft, revise, and edit effectively for various audiences and purposes.
- Research and document senior thesis correctly according to MLA Handbook
The course grade for English 481 will be divided into four major areas:
- The thesis (60 % of grade)
The finished product of the thesis is the capstone of an English major’s undergraduate work. As such, it should illustrate the students’ abilities within his or her emphasis—writing, literature or education. Guidelines for theses in each of these areas may be found on the department’s blackboard page, and will be consulted during the course of the semester.
- The presentation (20% of grade)
Each student will present the essential substance of his or her thesis project to the English Department faculty and students during a meeting of English 427, Symposium. This presentation should meet professional standards within the students’ area of emphasis.
- The graduation portfolio (20% of grade)
From the English Department’s “Portfolio Guidelines” in Blackboard: “The portfolio process culminates in the Graduation Portfolio, or GradPo. You will develop the first draft of the GradPo the fall of your senior year, in English 426, Thesis Proposal. In preparing the GradPo you will again supplement a portfolio of papers with an argument that explains how well these papers show how your skill levels in the learning outcomes have advanced or progressed since the SoPo assessment. In that essay you will need to directly address how well you have followed the suggestions faculty gave offered in the fall after you submitted your SoPo
“The senior thesis is the last piece of the GradPo. Your thesis will be your best argument for the development of certain learning outcomes of the major. But no thesis will cover all six English SLOs. In your GradPo you will need to include other papers that argue for your development of learning outcomes your thesis does not show. For example, if your senior thesis is a feminist analysis of Dickens's Bleak House, then it should provide good evidence of the first four SLOs. Your thesis is not likely, however, to include any evidence of the last two learning outcomes, understanding the development of English and transferring skills to work. In this example, you would need to add materials to your GradPo that show evidence of SLOs five and six.”
- Participation in class readings, discussions, and workshops
- Completion of approved senior thesis
- Successful presentation of thesis defense in English 427
Week One: January 18
We will meet Friday, January 22, at 3:10 in MC 444. At that time we will decide how often we want to meet and what we want to accomplish in those meetings.