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Project 2 instructions // April 2, 2020 (This assignment is worth 25% of your semester grade)
This assignment has three major components:
(1) a podcast that you will script and then record.
What is it? Your podcast script will be at least 900 words long. It will be a creative text in which you interview a character from one of our assigned readings, in an effort to learn more about a specific aspect of their immigration experience. You should anticipate your own research goals here a bit, even though your podcast should not include any research. However, your research should relate to the immigration issues that you discuss with your character. For example, if you discuss assimilation with Neni Jonga (from Behold the Dreamers), then your research should be about challenges related to assimilation. Other topics you may consider focusing on include: the perils of escaping an untenable homeland; the immigrant’s responsibility to family left behind; institutionalized racism and discrimination; access to support programs after immigration; access to effective legal counsel; deceptions and appeals of the American dream. You will record your podcast, using a podcast editing tool like Podbean, and then embed it in the digital story you post to our website.
(2) a digital story that uses academic research to explain a specific aspect of immigration to and in the United States.
What is it? Your digital story should explain an immigration-related issue to your reader, using academic research and literary analysis. Your digital story should be at least 900 words long, and it must include your recorded podcast, a map of the related geographic area, and information from at least two sources you located through the library’s databases. You must include a bibliography. I would also encourage you to include photos, videos, or other media that would enhance your story. Think of the most impactful stories from The Wall, and try to emulate the strategies that worked for those texts. [edited 4/2 to add: I’d encourage you NOT to use too many sources. 2 or 3 is just fine.]
(3) a short presentation. [EDIT: I’ve revised the assignment to make the presentation optional]
What is it? You will give a brief presentation to the class in which you outline your research goals, explain which databases you used and how you selected your sources, and how you incorporated that research into your digital story. You can record your presentation as a voice-over in PowerPoint, or use a platform like Screencast-O-Matic.
This project responds to the multimedia resource The Wall, published by USA Today, with our own, student-generated web site. The purpose of this assignment is to challenge you to conduct research, compose in various media, and connect assigned readings to a relevant contemporary legal issue. You should endeavor to incorporate the digital storytelling techniques we identify in The Wall, and you should rely on your literary analysis skills to predict reasonable ways that a fictional character might respond to specific question. This handout outlines all of your responsibilities. There are a lot of components to this project, so please do your best to stay on top of things. Falling behind early in the process will make it very hard for you to complete this project in time for semester grades to be posted.
4/2: Project assigned and discussed today.
4/14: Idea page for your Podcast Transcript (5 points). Your podcast will be an audio file, like a radio show, in which you interview any character from any book or story we’ve read this semester, discussing an aspect of their immigration story. Since nearly all the characters we’ve read about are either fiction or fictionalized, this means that your interview will be a creative endeavor. You will need to generate questions for the character, and then – in the perspective of the character, and in ways that relate logically to what we know of that character – answer the questions. Your podcast should incorporate at least one quotation from the text. You should also discuss at least one element of fiction. Your podcast transcript (the written script for the audio file) should be at least 900 words long. Your idea page, due today, should identify which character you’d like to interview, which topics you’d like to ask them about, and any stylistic or artistic ideas you may have. I encourage you to be creative with this. Feel free to listen to some podcasts to get a sense of what they sound like, how they’re organized, and how they transition from idea to idea. One of my favorites is The Sporkful. It’s about food, and it’s on the podcast app on your iPhone or at www.sporkful.com.
4/21: Project outline due at the start of class (10 points). This outline won’t look like an outline for a paper, because you’re actually providing me with a timeline for when you plan to work on the various components of this project. Please include the following information:
- Whom are you interviewing for your podcast?
- What questions will you ask them?
- What quotations will you incorporate into your podcast?
- Which aspect of the immigration experience will you research?
- What are your research goals (what do you want to learn)?
- What media will you include in your digital story to help you discuss your researched topic? (e.g., maps, videos, photos of artwork, musical recordings, etc.)
- What is your timeline for completing each component of the project? I know when they are due. I want to know when you plan to complete them. How will you make sure you meet your deadlines?
- Your podcast transcript?
- Your recording of your podcast?
- Your research?
- A draft of your digital story?
- The final revisions of your digital story?
4/28: A rough draft (5 points) of your podcast transcript is due by email to Professor Mazumdar by midnight tonight. I will email peer review sheets and set up peer review groups that can work remotely, likely by email.
5/5: Peer review sheets are due to your partners by midnight tonight (10 points).
5/12: The final draft of your podcast transcript is due by email to Prof. Maz by midnight tonight. This transcript should be at least 900 words long and include at least one quotation. The podcast does NOT have to include any of your research. Your transcript is worth 30 points, and will be evaluated using the rubric included in the syllabus.
Also on 5/12: by midnight tonight, post your Digital Story to our project site (30 points). Your digital story will represent the textual components that accompany the videos we’ve watched on The Wall. To a large degree, much of the information in your podcast will be summarized in your digital story. However, your digital story will provide the researched contexts for the discussion you had with your fictional character.
Your post should include the following components in order to be considered complete:
- A link to your recorded podcast on Podbean. You can record the podcast using Podbean, either on your laptop or on your phone. Then, link to the podcast when you’re crafting your digital story in OpenLab. If given the option, select that your link open in a new window.
- A compelling news story about your chosen topic. Present your research in a way that provides context and background for the interview you conduct in your podcast. You can use footnotes like this  and  to provide MLA-formatted citations for the research you use in your digital story. The link to your podcast should be included strategically; where do you want your reader to hear what your “source” has to say? Aim for around 900 words. Model your digital story on the ones you found compelling from The Wall.
- A photo that will represent your digital story on the home page of our web site.
- An embedded Google map that displays the geographic region most relevant to your story.
- Appropriate tags that will help others navigate our site.
5/14: Presentations due. (10 points) Use a video platform like the one on your phone, Screencast-O-Matic, or the voice-over function on PowerPoint, and tell the class about your research goals, findings, and applications to the class. Briefly, you will tell us what you wanted to learn through research, which search engines and databases you used to find your research, and how you incorporated your research into your digital story. Presentations will be graded based on preparation as well as clear and professional communication/delivery. I encourage you to practice before sending your presentations. These videos will be posted to our website, so keep in mind that other students will see yours! To submit your video, please email it to Prof. Maz or add it to your digital story on OpenLab. Keep it brief (2-3 minutes)! [EDITED: Due to the stresses of distance learning, I’ve decided to make the presentation an extra credit option, rather than a requirement of the assignment.]
I know that this assignment requires a great deal of techno-savvy. We will spend time in class discussing topics like using the library’s databases, how to record a podcast, how to compose a digital story, how to embed a map, and how to post your digital story to OpenLab. Through it all, please know this: you have my permission to have fun with this assignment. The academic goals of the assignment are important, but the lessons you learn from it may be more related to the impact it has on you as a real live human person. So take your time with it, and take some chances. And let me know how I can help.
Because this assignment falls due at the end of the semester, and because I have to have enough time to fairly assess all the end-of-term work for all students in all of my classes, I cannot allow for extensions for this project. Please do a little work every day to keep yourself on schedule.
Reminder about Academic Integrity: Responsible scholarship requires you to submit work that is entirely your own, and that properly cites and acknowledges any source material. Acts of plagiarism will result in a zero (0) for this assignment, and may result in further penalty.
A notice about audience: Please know that this Project Site (our website) will be used for future classes as well, which means your work (and your name) will be visible to future students. It may also be shared with other City Tech faculty, staff, and students. In the event that it is shared more widely than that, I will contact you directly by email to obtain your permission to do so. If you want to opt-out of having your work included on the website after the semester ends, please email me at email@example.com and tell me you want to opt-out of the website after grades are posted.