Short Paper and Presentation (25%)
Once during the semester, each student will complete a short paper and presentation that analyzes a work from the Electronic Literature Collection, Volume 3. Students will turn in a paper and deliver a presentation on the work they've decided to analyze. Students must tell me in advance which work they will analyze, and we will schedule due dates during week five of the course.
Papers are to be a maximum of 1500 words (papers exceeding this limit will not be accepted), broken into two sections. First, the paper must describe the artifact in question in 500 words or less. That description should address things such as: What is it? How does it work? Who created it? What tools were used to create it? If there is a narrative component, what are the basics of that narrative? If it is a work of poetry, what does the poetry evoke? The second section of the paper will be a close analysis of the object that makes use of at least one theorist we have read. This section must be no longer than 1000 words. The analysis section can take one of two directions: 1) It can use the artifact you're analyzing to help us understand a theory we've read in a new way; 2) It can use a theory we've read to understand the artifact in a new way. Regardless, you should make clear what your argument is, and you should use evidence to support that argument. Remember that 1000 words is not a great deal of space, and the scope of your argument should relatively small. This may require you to focus on a single portion of a text we've read or on a small piece of the object you are analyzing. The key here is to understand what can be accomplished in 1000 words.
When grading papers, I will be looking for the following:
- Have you followed the guidelines described above?
- Have you effectively described the artifact?
- Have you effectively incorporated one of the theories we've read during class?
- Have you clearly stated your own analytic argument of the object?
- Have you supported your argument with evidence?
On the day you submit your paper, you will also deliver a presentation to the class in the Pecha Kucha format. We will discuss this format in class, and I will deliver a sample presentation in this format. The basics are as follows: Each presentation must have exactly 20 slides and each of those slides must be displayed for exactly 20 seconds (you must use the autoplay function of whichever presentation software you choose to ensure this timing). The result will be a presentation that is just under 7 minutes and that encapsulates your paper (both the summary and analysis sections).
When grading presentations, I will be looking for the following:
- Have you followed the pecha kucha format?
- Have you effectively summarized and describe your artifact?
- Have you effectively communicated your analysis of your artifact?
- Have you made effective use of visuals?