Sunday, January 17, 2010

Blargh, or Sometimes I wish I could tell them to leave me alone.

From Student X:
I have some questions about how you graded my paper. First of all, the comment you left that I didn't cite a source correctly, the website was just on a line below the rest of the citition. It was all one citation and i think you thought the website was just thrown in as a separate citation. You also said my margins are too big, but on my last paper you told me they were too small, so I don't see how I get graded down for that. I also have a lot of trouble understanding the rubric. If i'm correct though it says my paper is "clear and focused" but at the same time "the paper has no clear sense of purpose or central theme". I really don't understand how those two statements aren't completely contradictory. I'd like to know if you'd look over these things and adjust my grade if necessary without me revising it or before i revise it. I also don't really understand how i talked about plot too much, because I would imagine that's the main way to use the text to support my thesis. I think that's everything i was wondering about, but if i remember anything else i'll send another message.
My reply:
Please remember that conventions (eg capitalization) matter regardless of the medium. I think we talked about tone after your last note. This is reading as very accusatory and almost rude.

Your website citation is missing parts as well as being punctuated incorrectly (you have an example in your student planner). In addition, it's hard to tell if you included all the needed information, since you did not cite the website in your essay.

Margins should be 1". We've discussed that in class.

You will notice that the rubric has a spectrum between the 5 and the 3 scores; you received marks between the two, which means there are attributes from both 5 & 3.

Retelling the plot is not the same as providing evidence. Focus on using specific examples, ie quotations, to support the main ideas in each paragraph. I've read the works: I do not need your to tell me everything that happens. Your job is to analyze the examples, and that is what is currently missing.

No, I will not regrade your essay before you do the rewrite. Part of the work of writing is figuring out how to focus on what is important and cut out what is not.
X's reply:
I apologize if my messages sound rude. I don't mean them to at all. I'm still confused on margins because you told me not to use 1" margins on the first paper so on the comparative analysis I used increased margins just like you told me to. Now you say i need 1" again, and I don't understand why. I see now that i put a coma after the day in my citation. I also understand that it has a lot missing so may be hard to read. The date i gave is the date accessed not the date of the website in case that was confusing. The reason so much is missing is because the website didn't provide the other information I needed. It's a sort of message board kind of posting site if you see what I'm saying. Because of that, there wasn’t one author. It was just a bunch of people with usernames posting things. Should I put in a username as the author or the original speaker of the quote I used instead of a website author? I still don't really understand the rubric. It's really hard to read for me. I don't quite get what you're saying about five attributes. It just seemed like i got two scores in parts and that the descriptions of those scores contradicted each other. Since i don't understand it though there is the possibility I'm reading it wrong. I still also don't understand how you want my papers changed to talk less about plot. I don't really know how to analyze the examples if that's not what i did. Maybe I'm just not an abstract thinker, but if you can’t change my grade without a revision, can i revise it just changing the margins and other small things like leaving out "comparative analysis" in the header? I want a better grade but don't entirely understand what I should change in the paper itself to get one. Again, if any of this sounds rude, it's completely accidental. I always try to respect my teachers.
My final reply:
Retell the story less. Introduce short quotations that illustrate your theme in relationship to the plot element. Explain the relationship. Compare how that is done with how it is done in the other text, repeat.

No comments:

Post a Comment