Sunday, February 28, 2010

Final Assessment

I had mixed emotions going into this class. I had just finished my Capstone Research Project and had a bit of senioritis. I was expecting English 240 to be just a last minute, easy class I just needed to get through in order to graduate. I soon found out I was wrong. I wish I would have taken this class earlier in my college career. I have spent the last two years trying to sound educated and fill my papers with wordy explanations in order to fill page requirements. I had never heard of inductive and deductive arguments though looking back I have been working with both the entire time.

My initial expectation for this class was that I would breeze through it with little effort. I couldn’t imagine what I could possibly learn from a lower level class after completing all my higher level requirements. After week one I changed my attitude toward the class and really became engaged in the assignments. I was surprisingly excited about researching and writing about a topic other than history. I expected to not learn much or find much enjoyment out of the class but after writing my paper and completing the assignments I found a new respect for finding credible sources in unconventional places as well as not needing to be wordy in order to sound educated.

If I had a chance to take the class again, the only change I would make would be to take it earlier in my college career. I did not notice that I needed this class until I met with my advisor after my first year at NU. By then I had a full schedule and no place to put a missing class except at the end of my schedule. I would definitely look for sources in unconventional places. I have been schooled to look at highly credible academic journals and primary sources and to dismiss everything else. I used newspaper articles, magazine articles and blogs for the first time in research and found they do have their place in the academic world.

Asking me what grade I think I have earned is a tricky question. If you look at completing all the weekly assignments on time as well as constructing a final research paper according to the instructions I would have to say I have earned an “A”. If you compare my work to others in the class I would also say I have earned an “A”. We had a very interactive class this month and everyone was very involved and helpful with each other’s work. Also, going into the final days of the class I had an “A” in the class without the grade for the final paper, the blog and the discussion boards so I am fairly confident that I should receive a low to mid “A” for a final grade.

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