FORUMS (30%): We will hold the bulk of our class discussions in the “Forums.” You will have ten of these throughout the term. Our goals for each Forum are to explore the assigned readings, lectures, and other, related elements in meaningful conversation with one another, just as you would in any graduate seminar meeting face-to-face. For that reason, I ask you to keep up with your assigned readings, and post in each assigned forum at least twice—once early in the conversation to get things started and again later in the discussion to keep it moving in meaningful directions. [see Grading Rubric: Forums]
Deadlines: For our online discussions, each “Week” begins at midnight on Monday and ends before midnight the following Sunday. For our Forums each week, I ask that you post at least once early in the week (before midnight on Wednesday) and again before the week’s end (before midnight the following Sunday).
TIPS FOR FORUMS . . .
TIPS FOR FORUMS
Tip #1: Make meaningful connections to the assigned readings
To make the Forums as useful as possible, please do your best to engage with each of the assigned readings in meaningful ways. That doesn’t mean you have to summarize every one of the assigned readings. However, you should make it clear that you understand the various contributions each text is making to the overall theme(s) you identify as important. Several of you have done exactly this in the Forums thus far. However, some of you made some good use of one of the readings but little reference beyond that to the major ideas contained within those texts. It isn’t enough to reference the general idea contained in just one of the assigned readings. You need to demonstrate an awareness of the overall contribution made by that author to the larger conversation surrounding DH, especially as it informs your own developing understanding of DH as it might apply to your interests/needs as a humanities teacher or scholar focusing.
Tip #2: Connect the assigned readings to personal, classroom, or research experiences
Everyone of you offered some interesting contributions from your lives as teachers and researchers in the humanities. I am extremely grateful for that and hope it will continue. However, don’t forget to use those experiences to illustrate meaningful elements identified in the assigned readings or other DH-specific texts.
Tip #3: Use the responses to classmates to engage the assigned readings still further.
For example, you may have offered obvious, meaningful engagement with only two or three of the assigned texts in your initial post. That’s fine, as long as you make some use of other texts in conversation with your classmates. Your goal here is not to memorize all the information contained in the assigned articles. However, you do need to be able to demonstrate an awareness of the contributions made by those scholars included in the assigned readings by making meaningful use of them in our discussions of DH.
I saw some good examples of this in your Forums thus far. I’m eager to see more of this in Forum 4. Doing so will be quite useful to everyone as you develop your Response Papers and, soon thereafter, your final projects.
NOTE: Since we have a holiday today, September 1 (Happy Labor Day!), the first post for Forum 4 will due by midnight Thursday (9/4). Keep that conversation going through Sunday, 9/7. That’s the deadline for Forum 4 responses. I’ll grade Forum 4 early next week. Check out Doc Sharing for the rubric I use to guide my evaluations of your contributions to the Forums.