Thursday, April 26, 2007

Gareth's VA Tech Post / Car Wash

The final blog topic is in the post below this one. I just wanted to say that I really enjoyed reading Gareth's response to the VA Tech Tragedy. I think you might all feel the same if you read it.

Also, the TeamWORKS car wash is Saturday.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Final Blog Topic

I had originally mentioned a topic invovling a usability test to my 9:05 and 10:10 classes; however, Beth is on vacation, so we cannot finish in time to do this. Therefore, let's make the following topic the assignment for all four classes.

In August, I'll have four new sections of people very similar to all of you. It will probably be the first time they've worked with a real client. Chances are, many of them will feel like Business Writing is just one of those humanities requirements they must fill to get their degree and might not feel terribly engaged at the thought of writing lots of memos or making a resume.

I think the class starts on a very easy note, with lots of review. IMHO, nothing in this curriculum is terribly difficult; it's just that with the client project, we can have lots of due dates hit all around the same time. Additionally, students have to write a proposal in the class, be it for a client or totally hypothetical. I think sometimes it's hard to see the purpose of that when several groups are working on the same project. The thing is - if we don't write a proposal of some sort for the client, we're required to give one to you as a separate assignment.

To me, it seems like the client project would seem a little confusing at first because you'd have to do some problem-solving. If the client doesn't know exactly what he/she needs, it makes it doubly challenging. I think that all the groups managed to write effective proposals this semesters for our three clients; the grades certainly reflect this. You also created very nice deliverables after having your proposals approved by the client.

What I'd like you to do is try to ease some of the worry of next semester's students by writing giving them tips on how to do well in this class. Let me know if you have any questions. Please remember to complete the instructor evaluation in Blackboard.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Go Willy!

The Client-Based Showcase went very well last night, thanks in large part to Willy (please thank him at his blog link). He did a fantastic job of explaining the Anderson Sunshine House project to visitors, while he also invited them to the carwash that TeamWORKS is doing for the costs of putting the site online. All of you are invited to this carwash, btw. It will be on April 28 at Papa John's. We plan to create a Facebook event to promote the carwash.

For you blog topic this week, please select one of the following writing prompts.

1. What can we do to prevent something like the VT tragedy from happening again? Today is the 8th anniversay of the Columbine massacre, and we must not have responded in the way that we needed to since we have had a variety of school shootings since then. Is this preventable? If so, HOW?

2. Your group projects will be officially done next week? How was the experience for you? What did you really enjoy? What can I do to make it even better in Fall 07?

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Snow!

Now, I can't say too much because I believe CT just got/is expected to get 2 feet of snow, but the weather here in Chicago is horrible! The snow/wind are so bad that the DSL connection here at our hotel keeps going down. I just got online for the first time and downloaded 160 emails. I hope to get back to all of your questions before it goes out again.

I answered a few questions in Facebook and have responded to comments on the post that follows this one.

Hope it's nice and warm there. =o)

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Email down again =o(

So, I'll answer 2 questions I DO have in my inbox here.

Casey: You need to make copies of your index page, saving it with new names for each of the links... one for resume, one for proposal, and one for each of the others. Then, copy and paste the text from the word docs into the column where the text is on each page. (You can delete the home page stuff out of that column before you do it.) I hope that helps!

Capri: Right now, the link is not opening for me. Have you uploading the file to Blackboard yet? Or if you are working logged into Novell, are you saving the index page in the Engl304 folder in the public.www folder in your U:Drive?

To get the links on one side and the text on the right, you need to insert a table. Put the links in the column on the left and the text in the column on the right. I hope that helps!

And I also hope email's back up again ASAP. If not, just leave your ?s here or on Facebook. I'll keep checking both.

Hope you all have productive team meetings this week! Orange Cross - contact Ann or LInda about the Chamber of Commerce meeting on April 18.

See you next week!

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Newest Blog Topic

Of course email goes down when I am planning to send the rest of the PPT 1 feedback emails. Hopefully it will be back up soon.

In the meantime, I can post about this week's blog assignment. First of all, I do have a specific assignment for the team blogs this week. I want the person who does it this week to write about what your team will be doing next week. If you are in the 9:05 or 10:10 class, I would also like for you to include a list of links that your group included in its proposal. I'd like for Tiger Web Design to be able to view your ideas as they plan what how they will organize the links on the templates. Every group has an assignment for the rest of the term now, but I am not sure if we covered stats on the homeless, about ASH, or FAQs. We should include these somewhere.

For the individual blogs, I would like you to write about the contribution that you will make as an individual as your group finishes the project. If there is anything else class-related you'd like to add, that will be fine.

Phase 2 is ending next week, so it will be time for me to do another daily grade average and another blog grade. I will average the daily grade from Phase 1 with the daily grade I give you on Phase 2; the average of the 2 grades is what you will see in Blackboard. I will do the same thing with the Phase 1 blog grade and the Phase 2 blog grade.

I found another Web site that might be of interest to you as you create the final materials for Phase 3. It's a very user friendly explanation of a variety of grammar rules. http://www.sparknotes.com/writing/style/toc_E.html

I am going to talk more about the portfolio on Friday. I hope that my 2 lectures, along with the handout that I emailed to you, will be enough to make the creation of the portfolio a simple process.

It looks like one of the groups from the 9:05 class will be doing a car wash to raise money to help the Anderson Sunshine House get its new site going. I'll announce the date/time/place when we get it so that anyone who would like to help or who would like to bring a car to be washed can do so. (I believe that if you have a public servcie grant, helping with something like this would count towards the hours required.)

Crystal, I can't email right now to ask you about this, so I'll go ahead and post it here. If it is possible for you to have that lunch meeting I mentioned on Friday, that works for Andrew. We could go to the Hendrix Center or even off campus if you would like. (One of the few good things about having 2 herniated discs in my back is that I get excellent parking and could get us back to Daniel very quickly.) I'll buy the two of you lunch while we figure out the best way to get this site on a server. Andrew has actually written a really, really nice php page that will help make maintaining the site very easy for our clients.

I'm really looking forward to seeing the next portfolios. I feel like you guys did some great writing in this phase, especially on the proposals. Overall, they were really persuasive and professional.

I know I have said it several times, but kudos to all of your for doing such great work!

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