Author: Rebekah Coleman (Page 1 of 11)

“You Mean I Can Just Say It That Way?” by Gerald Graff and Cathy Birkenstein

Read:  “You Mean I Can Just Say It That Way?: Academic Writing Doesn’t Mean Setting Aside Your Own Voice” by Gerald Graff and Cathy Birkenstein and write a response to the questions below! 

  1. What do you think of this article? What did you like or dislike about it? Do you agree or disagree with their argument? explain!
  2. The authors say, “The goal of this chapter is to counteract this common misconception: that relying in college on the straightforward, down-to-earth language you use every day will make you sound stupid; that to impress your teachers you need to set aside your everyday voice and write in a way that nobody can understand” ( Graff and Birkenstein 118). What does this meanHow do they want you to change your thinking?
  3. According to the author’s what does it mean to “master academic writing”? How should students go about it?
  4. On page 125, the authors write, “On the contrary, writing is more often a means of discovery in which we use the writing process to figure out what our idea is. This is why writers are often surprised to find that what they end up with on the page is quite different from what they thought it would be when they started. What we are trying to say here is that everydayspeak is often crucial for this discovery process, that translating your ideas into more common, simpler terms can help you figure out what your ideas really are, as opposed to what you initially imagined they were.” What are the authors trying to say? Do you agree or disagree? Have you ever had a similar experience?
  5. In the Code-Meshing section, the author’s discuss using slang, dialect and other components of “everydayspeak” in writing. What do you think? Do you agree or disagree with their position? Explain!
  6. Look over your writing from this semester and maybe from other classes, do you incorporate aspects of “everydayspeak” in your writing? Think about how or why you made the choices you did.


Week 11 Weekly Assignment (Thurs. April 22nd)

Project 3 Proposal

Note: Here is a link to where you can find the project description!

Write a BRIEF Project Proposal that describes your TOPIC, GENRE, AUDIENCE and PLANS for GETTING STARTED 🙂

  1. The prompt for this unit asks you to answer one or both of the following questions: “How has the past year challenged or changed you?” or “What have you learned from the hardships of the past year that you would like to share with others?”  What do you intend to write about in this unit? 
  2. The assignment also asks you to be specific– to talk about a particular aspect of the year that only you can talk about (or to tweak it in your own particular way!) How do you intend to make this project YOURS? (Remember to look at the “Tips” in the Week 11 PowerPoint – Thurs.)
  3. What discourse community (audience) are you trying to reach in Module 3– and what genre do you think will best reach them?  In other words, what kind of document are you going to make? A video essay with interviews? A series of infographics? A comic book?
  4. What is the first step you’ll take to get started?

REMEMBER, ALL PROPOSALS MUST BE APPROVED BY ME! This isn’t a matter of strictness– this is so we’re all on the same page– so you don’t spend your time doing something that I don’t feel fulfills this assignment!  If you decide to change your project, run the new project by me– for your sake!


Week 11 Weekly Assignment (Tues. April 20th)

Choose one of the BROAD Questions and at least one of the specific questions. Write a brief (2-5 sentence) response to each. 


  • What I’ll always remember about this year is….
  • The truth is, I spent most of this year…
  • Some images that will stay with me this year are…


  • How is online learning going so far?
  • How do you (and those around you) feel about masks?
  • What are you doing to combat pandemic fatigue?
  • What is the first thing you plan to do after quarantine?
  • What acts of kindness have you heard about or participated in during the pandemic?
  • What songs matter to you most now and why? 
  • Do you think the last year has made an impact on racism in America? In what way?
  • Is it okay to laugh during horrible times?
« Older posts