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Final Essay Wiki Mechanics

Page history last edited by Peter Ramberg 15 years, 8 months ago


1) Your essay is a collaborative response to the material we have looked at throughout the semester. The collaborative answer will be done (by definition) at the final exam time (Monday, December 8 at 9:30 AM). I will print out the wiki page at that time and grade it as it stands.


2) The essay is worth a total of 200 points, and your essay grade will consist of two parts: the completed essay will be graded as usual and each of you will receive that grade as half of your essay score. The other half of your essay score will consist of your contribution to the essay. I would expect that you contribute at least 10 substantial edits/additions to the project for full credit. "Editing" includes addition of new material, as well as rewriting and rearranging text to improve the argument. If you do not contribute at all, or only in a very minor way (e.g. correcting typos or formatting changes), you will not receive any points for either the content portion or the participation portion of the essay.


3) As with the other wiki pages, I will not be editing the page. However, I will monitor the development of the essay, and add comments for suggestions or corrections. Please check the comments section, and feel free to use it among yourselves for clarifications, questions, etc.


4) As I mention on the wiki page itself, this is effectively a completely open-book, collaborative essay, so I will expect a fairly substantial answer, with passages from primary sources (This does not include Fry, Dick or Crowe’s commentary), and references to readings from the semester (using the author-page number format of the notes pages). Use and link to various class notes pages in the class wiki, pages from the student presentations, and to the class discussion pages. Sources from outside the assigned readings are not expected or necessary, but feel free to link to relevant webpages you find.


5) Continue to aim this paper at the same audience as the other papers, that is, at someone who is interested in extraterrestrial life, but is not familiar with the sources you have read or the major issues involved.


6) In order for this to work, you must start on the answer soon and work on it continuously. It shouldn't take much time to start. Simply add material and thoughts as they occur to you, so others can see it and incorporate it into their own. Once examples are put up, all of you can then put them together into a more coherent essay.


7) A good way to start might be to craft a common thesis together. Write some claims from the semester and gather an initial paragraph that looks coherent. Highlight the final thesis in some way. We can spend some class time working out some ideas.


8) Be sure to use the section tool and headings, to keep the reader alert to where the essay is going.


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