- Each response should be at least 200 words and should address every part of the question.
- Each question will require direct quotations from the course texts or discussion board. Please make your quotations explicit (using quotation marks and page numbers), indicate who you are quoting, and then either explain the quotation or apply it in a relevant context. Other notes concerning quotations:
- Quotations should never be longer than one sentence and should always include an explanation. Never try to answer a question merely by quoting a passage from the text.
- Other than when referring to a Discussion Board post, you should reference your quote with a page number and the abbreviation of the text you are referring to. For example: “On page 10 of MP, Barcalow states that…” or “On page 132 in GT, David Hume says …”
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- A portion of your grade will be determined by the quality of your writing. Here is a checklist of those elements that will affect your grade. If you are unsure about any of these terms, please look them up or ask me! =)
- Capitalization: Capitalize the beginning of each new sentence, the first-person pronoun (i.e. ‘I’), and all proper nouns.
- Sentence Structure: Each sentence should express a complete thought and avoid “run-ons.”
- Punctuation: Use proper punctuation at the end of each sentence and throughout your work.
- Apostrophe Usage: Perhaps the most common punctuation mistakes are those involving the use of apostrophes. Please ensure that you are using them correctly. Most often, apostrophes are used to show possession or to create a contraction. I highly recommend the following for more information on apostrophe usage: http://www.chompchomp.com/rules/aposrules.htm. Also recommended is this “self-test” concerning apostrophes: https://writing.wisc.edu/Handbook/CommonErrors_AposTest.html.
- Common Mistakes: Avoid misusing commonly confused words such as there, their, they’re, your, you’re, etc. If you’re interested you can check out a more extensive list of commonly confused words here: http://www.stlcc.edu/Student_Resources/Academic_Resources/Writing_Resources/Grammar_Handouts/commonly_confused_words.pdf.
- Paragraph Construction: Each paragraph you write should consist of a set of ideas that are connected by one main (For more information on paragraph construction see:http://www.monmouth.edu/uploadedFiles/Resources_for_Writers/The_Writing_Process/Paragraphs2013.pdf
- Spelling: Please proof-read for spelling! =)
- Clarity: Please proof-read for clarity! It can help to read your answer out loud to see if everything makes sense to your ear. If you have the time, you may even want to ask a friend to read your answer to see if he or she understands everything you’re trying to say. Lastly, don’t try to impress your reader with complex terminology, long sentences or large leaps in reasoning. When writing philosophy, simplicity is best!
- Short-hand for Grading Writing Assignments: There seems to be a number of issues that crop up frequently when I grade the writing assignments. In light of this I have developed my own short-hand for indicating these recurring problems. Here is a Key:
- A tad brief
- Somewhat brief
- Very brief
- Poor use of quotations
- Quotations inadequately referenced
- No quotations referenced
- A couple proof-reading oversights
- Several proof-reading oversights
- Many proof-reading oversights
- Misuse of apostrophes