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Fall is Coming

posted: 6.26.13 by Barclay Barrios

Sorry Ned Stark but you have it wrong.  Fall is coming.

We’re already working on our standard assignment sequence for the fall, testing it in summer classes to make sure it’s workable and to gather sample student work for orientation.

It’s a tricky process.  The last thing we want is for a student taking our first semester course in the summer to run into the same essays in our second semester course in the fall.  The solution we use is to divvy up the assignments across several sections.  Students in the fall might encounter one reading they’ve had in the summer—perhaps two—but they’ll be approaching the text(s) in a whole new way with a whole new set of questions.

Our sequence this fall uses Malcolm Gladwell’s “Small Change” (about the failure of the “Twitter” revolution to create real social change), Rebekah Nathan’s “Community and Diversity” (about the failure of universities to live up to their ideals of community and diversity on campus), Helen Epstein’s “AIDS, Inc.” (about HIV prevention strategies in Africa, and Wesley Yang’s “Paper Tigers” (about Asian-American stereotypes and “tiger children”).  I’ve yet to title the entire sequence but it will be focused on strategies and mechanisms to create change—hopefully something students can benefit from.

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