Final Project Write-Up (Portfolio) Tips & Checklist

You should introduce your project as an intervention in understanding some larger aspect(s) of new media composing (e.g., successful storytelling via social media; detachment from social media’s affects on participation/attention; composing content that is optimized for search engines; presenting yourself professionally online on a variety of platforms; increasing following/user engagement via Twitter). Structure your write-up according to your claims/contributions/conclusions about your project (not necessarily according to what you did in week 1, week 2, etc.). Your write-up should be composed on your OpenLab ePortfolio, and should include your multimodal deliverables and links to your new media composing experiments (e.g., your Twitter, blog, videos, etc.).

Everyone’s write-up will look slightly different, depending on the particulars of her project, but each one should have 1) a focused Introduction section (that introduces the topic/project and its significance: this is similar to the completed abstract), 2) body paragraphs that provide background information & discussion of your project–each paragraph should have a clear/focused topic sentence (claim) and specific, concrete details/examples–integration of research–in support of these claims (these sources are both the outside research you’ve done and that data you’ve produced through your new media composing experiments); 3) Conclusion; 4) Works Cited. There should also be with logical connections/transitions among sentences, paragraphs, and ideas (claims): rather than just compiling different parts of your project, but rather you are synthesizing them into a whole.

Keep in mind that this project was scaffolded through the last two months, through a number of in-class workshops & low-stakes assignments, from a series of drafts of the Proposals (including vision, deliverables, timeline, initial research), Annotated Bibliography, ePortfolio work & design, and Progress Reports (which all had weekly in-class presentations too). All of those smaller, low-stakes assignments were introduced to set the stage for this final project Write-Up, and that is your writing, and you can (and should) use that as material for your Write-Up (and reflection).

However, as we discussed in class many times, the Write-Up extends the thinking/writing you have already done on the project. Therefore, while you should of course feel free to build on what you have already written this semester in blogs, presentations, or other informal writing, for the write-up, you should not simply repeat what you have previously stated elsewhere (as we’ve discussed, Write-Ups without substantial revision would not receive credit).┬áRemember that your previous work (e.g, reflections, progress check-in blogs) are only informal responses and, as such, may not be organized effectively or clearly/fully articulated. In addition, these earlier writings do not reflect the most recent evolution of your project, or the work you have done in the most recent weeks. You should use this material as freewriting (or even a rough draft), and then work to revise it into a coherent and detailed argument/write-up. There is a much greater emphasis on analysis and structure (and synthesis/framing) in this write-up than in the past, pre-draft assignments, and the goal (and challenge) of the write-up is to do the difficult, intellectual, rhetorical work of synthesizing all of your project work and presenting that in an effective way for your audience. This is a challenging task (as it it is with any writing assignment, such as an argumentative researched essay), and that is why we worked through a series of drafts–with multiple opportunities for feedback–along the way).

Remember that there are a number of Resources available on our OpenLab site, especially helpful information regarding successful writing strategies.

Remember, too, that you are resources for yourselves! The presentations each of you gave this week were really amazing, so if you’re having any trouble working on framing your project, connecting ideas, working on synthesis, I encourage you to look back to that (maybe even “give” the presentation again to yourself, recording it, and writing down the ideas), because things really came together wonderfully in those presentations.

Remember, also, that you are resources for each other. I encourage you to browse through one another’s projects, on your ePortfolios, to see how others are approaching the Write-Up and ePortfolio design (you might see things you like and find them helpful for your own work!)

Checklist: Wrapping it all Up
As we discussed in class, below is a “checklist” for your Final Project Write-Up (Portfolio), to help you as you work on revising your final drafts of that work. Best of luck with the revisions, and for all of your other projects and finals in other classes!

Download (PDF, 102KB)

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