Blogging Guidelines

Blog posts will be evaluated based on their success in demonstrating engagement with course materials, and their ability to prompt engaged discussion.  Engaged discussion is characterized by:

  • A thoughtful response — not simply barfing your thoughts on the page.
  • Finding connections between the topic of your post and relevant course materials.
  • Original ideas — in fact, I encourage provocative conversation that challenges us to think outside of the box.
  • Engagement not only with MY question, but with the responses already offered.  This isn’t a conversation between me and you; it’s a conversation among the whole class.
  • Checking back to see if other people have commented — this is crucial!
  • Some indication that you have actually completed the necessary reading.
  • Proofread.  Proofread.  Proofread!  You don’t have to be overly formal, but you also should steer clear of emoticons and abbrevations.  This isn’t instant messaging, it’s writing.

You should also review and remember the tips provided in the course handout on the class blog regarding tagging your posts, including images and video, and incorporating useful links into your posts.

Blog posts will be graded according to the following system—4 points for the blog post itself, 1 point for a thoughtful and well-developed comment.

4 points: Exceptional
The post is focused, cogent, and coherent.  It evidences in-depth engagement with the materials and pushes that engagement to a more profound level: asking questions, pushing boundaries.  The post is elegant, points to specific examples, and is free of errors.  It inspires others to respond.

3 points: Above Average
The post is focused and coherently integrates examples with explanations or analysis.  The author skillfully integrates examples and thoughts concerning the week’s topics, readings, and lectures and connects them to the texts in question.  The entry reflects in-depth engagement with the topic.

2 points: Satisfactory
The post entry is reasonably focused, and explanations or analysis are mostly based on examples or other evidence. Fewer connections are made between ideas, and though new insights are offered, they are not fully developed. The entry reflects moderate engagement with the topic.

1 points: Underdeveloped 
The post is mostly description or summary, without ample reference to ideas and readings from the week. The entry reflects passing engagement with the topic.

0: No Credit
The journal entry is missing or consists of one or two disconnected sentences.

(Material from these guidelines borrowed extensively from Dr. Anne Helen Petersen, at her class blog)


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