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Writing Challenges


Writing Challenge Worth : 30% of the course grade



The Challenge: Synthesize and post a blog entry between 700 - 750 words by the end of the course that reflects your analysis of a global social problem. Your entry should reflect your heroic attempt to write in ways that are clear, credible, coherent, critical and that demonstrate empathy. Components: • You will write 3 drafts in this challenge over the term—a preliminary draft, first draft and final draft. • If you turn in all your drafts on time, you will be allowed to replace the grades for all of the drafts with the grade for your final draft. However, you only get this grade replacement if you have submitted your drafts and have made a good faith attempt at following the assignment requirements. • If you do NOT turn in all your drafts on time, you will not be eligible for a grade replacement for this challenge. You should check the rubric for this assignment (on Blackboard) and address the following points: 1. Identify and analyze a global social problem, using a variety of sources that you derive from research conducted online through social media in addition to traditional research methods. 2. Think critically about the topics studied in posting. Your writing should embody the values on which this course is based--e.g. clarity, precision, credibility, etc. The blog postings throughout the term are especially meant as a way to demonstrate your competency at making sense of a specific global social problem, and of the local manifestations of that problem. 3. Your analysis should be substantiated with citations, and rooted in the themes studied in this class and mentioned in the course text. 4. Post lengths will be between 700 - 750 words, in addition to reference lists. 5. You will use the course site to post a public link to your postings on Twitter.

Get Social Challenge Get Social Challenge Worth : 10% of the course grade The Challenge: Attend the online sessions of the Social Good Summit ( sgs). Participate in the backchannel Twitter discussion by sharing your tweets using the course hashtag #globsoc. Components: • Attend a minimum of 2 sessions during the summit. • Participate in the backchannel conversation using Twitter. • Write a reflection of between 150 - 200 words that describes what you learned and that includes a reflection of your social media participation. You should check the rubric for this assignment (on Blackboard) and address the following points:

1. Write a reflection that is at least 150 - 200 words in length. 2. Include a description of the sessions that you attended. 3. Possible questions to address in your description: -In what ways was the session related to your global social problem topic? Different from your topic? -What take-aways did you get from the session that might help to inform your topic? -Did you get leads from the session that might inform your research? What were they?

Mid Semester & Final Challenge Course Action Challenges Worth: Midterm Action Challenge = 15% of the course grade Final Action Challenge = 30% of the course grade The Challenge: Take Heroic Action to address your chosen global social problem for this class. You may choose to do any one of three types of Action challenges: Engage in constructive social media dialogue, raise awareness, or take Local Action to help people affected by the problem, or work with an organization to address the problem. Components: • Choose 1 challenge to complete for the mid-term challenge and another to complete as a final semester challenge. • Consult the descriptions for each challenge for specific requirements. Note – the “Constructive Dialogue” challenge is an individual project whereas the other challenges are group-based. • You will write a proposal in preparation for each challenge. Due dates will be posted to the course site. • Note: The mid-term Action Challenge and the final Action Challenge differ in the grade award, and will thus differ in scope. Thus, your proposal for the final Action Challenge should be broader in scope than the mid-term challenge. Examples of appropriate challenges will be given for each assignment. • You will write a summary of your challenge to describe your chosen challenge and its outcomes.

You should check the rubric for this assignment (on Blackboard) and address the following points for each challenge: Action Challenge Choices -Engage in Constructive Dialogue about the problem If you accept this challenge, you will be required to communicate with people and organizations online about specific aspects of your chosen global social problem. You are challenged to demonstrate heroic perspective as you analyze the problem from the points of view presented online and, through your writing demonstrate courtesy, competency, credibility, empathy, patience and criticality as you discuss aspects related to your global social problem. You will need to follow the following requirements to complete this challenge, in addition to the components listed previously: •Select articles from online newspapers that have a traditionally print format. Examples include: the New York Times, Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, etc. -Select postings from clearly credible online blogs such as the Huffington Post to post comments and respond to other comment postings related to the problem. •Select postings from clearly politicized blogs and post respectful and positive, but critical responses to blog entries. *Note: The number of comments made and articles that you choose from each category will differ between mid-term and final Action Challenges. •Write a final, comprehensive summary of your project. Include quotes that highlight your best postings as well as copies of quotes from the original blog postings. Also include quotes from others who have responded to your postings. In short, walk your reader through the conversations that you have had by embedding quotes from your constructive dialogue. 1. In your summary, include a reflection of your participation. What lessons did you learn? In what ways were you surprised by reactions to your postings? In what ways did the dialogue around your global social problem meet or differ from your expectations? What would you do differently the next time you engaged people online in a dialogue on a global social problem? 2. Your summary should be between 500 - 550 words. 3.Local Action: Help People/Organizations Affected by the problem

The goal for this challenge is to lend assistance (directly or indirectly) to people who are affected by your chosen global social problem. You should attempt this challenge only AFTER you have thoroughly researched your problem. We recommend that you choose this challenge only as a final challenge, although you may make a case for choosing this for your mid-term Action challenge if you can identify a project in time. You should begin to brainstorm ideas with a group of classmates on this project as soon as you decide to commit to this project. You will need to come to an agreement with your group to work on a project that is related to everyone’s chosen topic. You can choose from a wide range of project options for this assignment. •You will need to draft a final project description of your Local Action. •This description should be between 250 – 300 words and provide the reader with: 1. a description of your project 2. the ways that your project worked to address your global social problem at local levels 3. key outcomes of your project 4. a description of how you worked with other stakeholders to accomplish these outcomes Local Action: Help People - Project Options •Help to advertise or participate in a local event sponsored by an NGO or local non-profit. Note: you may organize your event online. •Organize an event through a Facebook organization page or through Twitter. •Schedule one or more “site visits” with a local organization. Interview the local participants or clients at the NGO or non-profit group. •Interview individuals within NGO or non-profit groups without visiting the local site. •Conduct an online-only “event”. Examples include a mini-“Tweet-up”, focused Twitter-based conversations, focused synchronous forum participation, Facebook event, etc. *Note: Before your group can conduct an online project, you must state in your proposal either how this project involves a local audience or otherwise describe the rationale behind why you and your group would like to use this option. 3. Raise awareness of the problem If you accept this challenge, your goal will be to raise awareness about your chosen global social problem. You may raise awareness either through a local project or through a social media project. Examples of projects to raise awareness include designing a site using social media tools such as or Storify to curate content on topics such as poverty, or by organizing an on-campus event to raise awareness of the plight of refugees in Syria. •If you choose a social media project, your proposal should detail how your social media action will work to raise awareness and how you plan to find, analyze, curate and publicize your work.

•If you choose a local awareness project, your proposal should detail how your event will raise awareness and how you will work with on-campus organizations and marshal on-campus resources to design and execute your project. •For either project, you will need to write a 250 – 300 word summary of your project and include what you did to raise awareness in addition to the outcomes from your project. Action Challenge Proposal (for all Action Challenges) You will need to submit an initial proposal for an Action Challenge project. You will be asked to periodically provide an update to this proposal, either as a class activity or as a component of your blog syntheses. You proposal completion will be reflected in the grading rubric for this project. Your initial proposal for both Action Challenges should address the following questions: 1. What global social problem are you interested in exploring? Why are you interested in exploring it? 2. Describe your chosen challenge. Why are you interested in this challenge? 3. In what ways will this challenge address your chosen global social problem? 4. If this is a constructive dialogue project, describe the ways in which you will use social media to engage in dialogue. 5. If this is a project to raise awareness, in what way and with what tools will you raise awareness? 6. If this is a Local Action project, what organizations or agencies do you envision working with? Have you worked with this entity previously? If so, what was your experience like? 7. What do you hope to accomplish or learn as a result of your experience? 8. If this is a Local Action project, what other group members are you planning to work with on this project? Note: you do not need to commit to student teams at this point, but if you already have or can identify project partners, please list them here.

Heroic Values We challenge you to take a heroic perspective to this class and to act in ways that embody these heroic characteristics. You can demonstrate these values through your words and through your actions. Your peers will give you feedback as to the values that you demonstrate most frequently throughout the class. We will spend significant class time brainstorming discussing what it means to act heroically and to demonstrate these values as you meet the challenges provided in this class. Cooperation










Assignments issuu  

This is the first upload of the GSP'13 course assignments.

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