Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Term Papers

I've received my peer evaluations for my term papers.  On each one I got dinged on a point.  On my personal education philosophy paper I was dinged for clarity--some of my sentences weren't easy to understand.  It's true that I don't write subject-verb-predicate, subject-verb-predicate, subject-verb-predicate, but I thought that was a little picky!  Is this blog so difficult to read?

On my history of education paper I was dinged for going over the 7 page limit.  I did so only if you count the abstract as a page, which I certainly don't as it isn't content.

I have until May 5th to submit them to my instructor.  I actually have until late on May 8th, but on Friday the 6th I'm heading to the airport immediately after school to go to Las Vegas for a mini-reunion--and I won't be home before late May 8th.

As far as I'm concerned the two papers are completed; as we used to say at West Point, RD=FC (rough draft = final copy).  Mine aren't really "rough" drafts, though, but highly polished "first" drafts.  If I didn't think they were good enough already I wouldn't have submitted them for review!  So I'll reread the first one and see if I can simplify a couple sentences, and I'll do a once-over on the second just to make sure I haven't missed anything.  I find that reading them out loud is a very good technique for catching errors.

And then I'll be done with my 8th course.  Two to go.


Auntie Ann said...

I find reading my writing out loud brings out the clunk. I just can't read clunky sentences out loud smoothly, they always trip me up.

Pseudotsuga said...

That's the problem with most peer evaluation-- you don't actually WANT your peers to evaluate your work! Instead, you need your "betters" (in a manner of speaking) to evaluate it. Otherwise, you get clueless people who think everything is fine, or you get people who hold a microscope to find problems which are not actually problems. Neither will accurately evaluate the writing well.
To answer your question, no, your blog is not difficult to read, and to demand that you conform to a certain artificial style or else get dinged for points is ludicrous.

I can see how somebody might think an abstract is part of the content (although that's a format question which the syllabus or instructor should be clear on, rather than the opinion of a fellow student).