Genre Assignment


(This is still in progress*)

Students will be asked to do the following:

One: choose a topic of interest: this should be one that relates to current issues, problems, or experiences that are relevant or significant in our current society. For example: students can choose how mental health is viewed or understood in our society, police brutality, environmental injustices and movements, technology’s impact on our everyday lives, issues/topics that relate to a particular culture or discourse community, etc.

Two: Students will then be asked to research their topic. They will be asked to explore the various ideas, theories, or approaches to understanding the central concerns and questions that inform the topic or issue. They will be given specific questions to explore the topic that will help them to investigate the various arguments or points of view that one might find about the topic/issue.

Three: Students will then be asked to choose 3 to 5 genres that explore or incorporate this topic.

For example: a student might choose how our use of social media or technology impacts our identities and/or relationships. They then would be asked to find three different texts from three different genres that explore the topic. For example: they might find a short story about the destructive impact of technology on human relationships, a podcast about how tech impacts relating, and a researched scholarly article or essay about the topic. Students would then be asked to analyze and interpret each of the genre/text examples that they found.

Four: Students will be asked to choose a particular approach to, argument about, or side of this topic/issue. This can include a possible solution to a problem or taking a side or stance on the issue/topic. They then will choose a genre that they wish to compose in/model—this should be one of the genres that they explored in their research and analysis. They will use their genre product/composition to argue their point/idea/approach or to inform their readers about the importance of the topic/question/issue.

Five: Students will be asked to reflect on the processes involved in the project. This will include reflections on research, analysis, and composition in the genre. Reflections can take place after each step or stage of the project.  Especially useful can be the reflections on how writing in the genre might be useful for for our writing in other areas–for ex: students can be asked to think about how their writing changed when they modeled the genre as well as what they noticed about their writing.

There is also the possibility to have students reflect on their reading experiences–students can be asked to reflect upon how their reading changed, what kinds of strategies they used, etc. when they read and analyzed the different genres.

The project actually can encompass all 6 of the learning outcomes. I will elaborate on this and re-post/update…The last learning outcome that involves multimodality can certainly be added to this assignment–I will post more….

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