Critical Essay #1, Spring 2005
This page includes the assignment sheet for the first critical essay. My goal is to make this page as useful to you as possible, so let me know if it can be improved. If anything is badly worded, unclear, or missing, please contact me with constructive criticisms and suggestions. Thanks.
Due: no later than 5 pm on Tuesday, February 22, 2005, either in my mailbox in the English department main office (Fenton 277), or in the envelope on the bulletin board outside my office door (Fenton 240).
Format: 5-8 pages, double spaced, with reasonable fonts, font sizes, and margins (be warned that barely getting on to the fifth sheet of paper does not a five-page paper make!); title that indicates main argument of paper; heading that includes your name, the course name or number, and the date; format, bibliography, and citations in MLA style (see the links page for explanations and examples of MLA style; the basic template is Author. "Title of Poem, or Essay, or Story." Title of Book from which It Comes. Editor of Book (if any), ed. Place of Publication: Publisher, Date of Publication. Page Numbers.); proper quotation format in body of paper: "..." (Card 12). for quotations within a paragraph; blockquote format for quotations five lines or longer.
Criteria for Evaluation: Your grade for the critical essay will be determined by the coherence and validity of the paper's arguments, the effectiveness of the paper's structure in conveying your ideas and convincing your audience, and the quality of the paper's prose (including grammar, syntax, and punctuation).
Audience: In general, think of your immediate audience as those who have taken and are taking this class; hence, you can assume that your readers have read the texts you're writing on and you don't have to include the kind of background that someone not taking this course would need.
Draft Policy: I would be happy to offer brief comments on your drafts, so long as you get me them more than a day before the paper is due.
Rewrite Policy: I will not grade rewrites of the first critical essay, although I will give comments on any rewrite(s) you choose to do (which will improve your preparation/participation grade). For extra credit, simply do more than one critical essay: it will improve your preparation/participation grade, plus your lowest critical essay grade(s) will be dropped.
Options: Here are your options for the first critical essay. In each of these options, your job is to come up with an argument that you are trying to support by using textual evidence to persuade your readers of your interpretation's validity. You will not have the option of choosing your own topic/question for this essay; instead, you must choose one of the following topics and use at least one of the works we've read from the "Interstellar/Interspecies War" unit in developing your response to it.
ENGL 216: Science Fiction, Spring 2005
Created: 2/7/05 9:03 pm
Last modified: 2/22/05 1:56 pm