Required Work

Twice-Weekly Blog Posts

Each student will set up and maintain his or her own individual Weblog, or blog, for the duration of the course. Your blog must have a specific, single focus (e.g., politics, education, environment, technology, sports, medicine, law, music) that will be maintained throughout the course. Two posts are required each week. (For grading purposes, the week begins at 12:01 a.m. Sunday and ends at midnight on Saturday.) A total of 22 posts is expected (see the Schedule page). Each blog post must link to and comment on at least one pertinent and recent Web page, Web site or specific blog post by another author. Blog posts need not be long, but they do need to say something -- and be interesting!

Each post will be graded on content, mechanics, and the quality and relevance of the link(s).

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Whenever a reading assignment or Web-observing assignment has been made, it is likely that an unannounced quiz will be given. Quizzes cannot be made up or taken early. Quizzes are intended simply to show that you have completed the assigned work. When you are reading or observing, think and make some notes about what you are learning. If you do, the quizzes should not pose any problem for you. The total of all quiz points will be divided by 10 to determine your final quiz grade for the course (see Grading). Most quizzes will be worth 10-15 points, and the total will be at least 150.

Project 1: Profile

Each student will interview another student in the class, make an audio recording of the interview, and take digital photos of the interview subject. The completed profile consists of a photo, a sound bite and a very brief text. The profiles will appear online.

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Project 2: Soundslides project

Using the skills developed in Project 1, students will go out in small teams and report on something of interest in the community beyond the university. At least one expert on the topic must be interviewed and recorded. Natural sound must be gathered. Photos must be included. One student on the team will be designated as the project editor. Each team will choose its own topic and plan its own story, but each story must be approved in advance by Professor McAdams.

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Project 3: Data and Research Study project

Teams begin with a research article from a scholarly journal and write a 2-min. radio script about that the research reported in that article. Teams then identify a data set related to the topic of that research. Individual team members create data visualizations. Finally, team members work together to produce a five-page wiki section about their topic, including reliable external resources and audio interviews with topic experts.

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Project 4: Video project

Teams will choose a story idea for which three diverse people can be BOTH interviewed AND videotaped in action. New skills taught: video shooting and video editing. Existing skills brought to bear: interviewing and team coordination on identifying resources and story ideas.

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