Welcome to Methods and Practice of Communication, I (English 3A/4A), which is an integrated-skills offering in which students will engage in and with the four basic skills of language acquisition. Using the topics of food and university student life, we will explore various modes of expresssion, including oral presentations and debate. This course will focus on language useful in university contexts. This is a 15-week course offered by the Department of Economics during Spring, 2017.

The principal focus of this course is on enhancing English that students can and hopefully will use in university contexts. In addition to some reading, writing, and listening, this course will include many speaking opportunities, in which students are expected to actively engage.

Class material will be provided by the instructor and will also be available online. Students are encouraged to bring any electronic devices they feel might be helpful, including by not limited to e-dictionaries, smart phones, and personal computers.

 Week 1 (April 11, 2017) — Class introducation; e-mail basics 

Good day, everyone, and thank you for enrolling in this course. We will endeavor, as you certainly know, to expand your knowledge of skills necessary to succeed at academic conferences.

 Homework: 

  • ✓ Become familiar with our Google Drive Word Bank and add at least five lexical items.
  • ✓ From your particular area, upload (or bring in) a handful of articles for analysis.

 Week 2 (April 18, 2017) — University Student Unit 

This class we will devote to becoming more familiar with corpus analysis tools, including those at the Compleat Lexical Tutor, a very useful yet ugly site, Corpora at Brigham Young University, and finally the myriad tools from Laurence Anthony via his website.

A small sidelight I'd like to address today is writing polite email (or emails if you prefer the plural form with that distinctive S). These are, of course, of considerable importance, and the skill to craft effective messages is an often overlooked skill.

 Homework: 

 Week 3 (April 25, 2017) — E-devices; academic manuscript basics 

A potentially very helpful tool, the art of corpus analysis allows us to look in detail at various things, but we will touch on two types of analyses.

 Homework & Class Material: 

 Reminder: Next week and the following week (Nov 4th) we will have no class. See you in November! 

 Week 4 (May 9, 2017) — Part-Time Jobs 

In these two sessions today we will delve into the oh-so-necessary world of abstracts. This are short, concise statements that are often what determines if a reader will choose to actually read your article or come to watch your conference presentation. Thus, Gentle Students, these are crucial.

Abstracts, as you will see in the examples below, are relatively brief summaries that appear at the beginning of an article. Often they mirror the organization of the article or presentation yet must follow certain guidelines (e.g., number of words). Let's begin with a look at a how abstracts are often organized.

 Class Material: 

Having looked at abstracts from a couple different fields, let us extend our corpus analysis notion here.

 Homework: 

  • ✔ For the three abstracts that you found, mark the various parts we talked about in class. In addition, provide the bibliographical information for each article.

Week #5 (May 16, 2017) —  Domicile Choice; Debate Skills Introduction 

This class will be devoted to crafting proposals for conference presentations, which is a scenario you might well encounter in the future (and I hope you do so!).

Readings:

 Week 6 (May 23, 2017) — Quiz; Debate Skills 

This fall we will we will talk some about the oral components of public speaking and making presentations. I prefer a certain template which makes the organization of your presentation very, very clear to your listener.

 Class Material: 

 Week 7 (May 30, 2017) — Group Debate on University Student Topic 

Good afternoon, everyone. Today we will enjoy a series of debates ...

look more closely at writing and the language of academic papers. This is an area in which students can sometimes get perilously close to the register used in oral communication, which is generally much more casual. Here we have a useful chapter on academic style, courtesy of Scott Bailey and his book titled Academic Writing: A Handbook for International Students. Below you will also find two of my articles, which we will glance at to check for my use of academic style.

We will also delve some into the world of tables and figures, which is more art than science, I think. Here we have a useful chapter on the use and presentation of visual material.

 Homework: 

 Week 8 (June 6, 2017) — Food Unit; Presentation Basics  

This week we will examine a couple common methods that occur in academic writing.

Good People, your homework today is a bit of practice using actual academic articles. In the last couple classes we've been talking about elements of writing and, today, visual presentation. Your homework is thus to select one of the articles in the December literature folder in Dropbox and then gently critique it. In more detail, I'd like you to look for elements of ...

 Class Material: 

 Week 9 (June 13, 2017) — Slow Food 

We will devote some time today to looking at definite articles, which routinely give students problems. Below you will find some material to help you along.

Inasmuch as this is our final class of 2016 (where does the time go?), I have cleverly decided to give you a bit of homework (the sample essay below). Lest you worry, however, note that our next class meeting will be late in January—specifically, on January 27.

 Homework over the winter holiday: Here we find an easy article for correction; you need to follow the directions on the first and last pages. In addition, consider whether you would revise anything in the essay (e.g., grammar). Of course, you should also enjoy your holiday!

 Homework: 

 Week 10 (June 20, 2017) — Food Movements 

Welcome back, everyone, and I hope that 2017 is a happy, healthy, prosperous year for you and your family.

This afternoon I would like to spend the first part of our class covering the article for correction from last week as well as reviewing and practicing articles. We'll select one of the worksheets from our last class.

OK, having finished that I would like to move on into a type of corpus analysis that is called genre analysis. This consists of parsing an essay (or multiple essays) and examining the resulting mini-corpus. We'll be using a shared spreadsheet in Google Drive, on which you'll find an example taken from a 1997 article by Chris Bramall about differences in living standards in pre-war Japan and China.

 Homework: 

  • Living Standards (1997)
  • ✓ HW: Prepare a genre analysis of one article, either one from the December lit folder in Google Drive or one of your choosing. You'll need to focus on a particular aspect in your chosen article, and the choice of which is entirely yours. For example, as I'll have shown you in class, you could look at the topic sentences of all of the paragraphs.

 Week 11 (June 27, 2017) — Food Aid 

Welcome back, everyone, and I hope that 2017 is a happy, healthy, prosperous year for you and your family.

This afternoon I would like to spend the first part of our class covering the article for correction from last week as well as reviewing and practicing articles. We'll select one of the worksheets from our last class.

 Week 12 (July 4, 2017) — Population and GM Food (Part 1) 

Welcome back, everyone, and I hope that 2017 is a happy, healthy, prosperous year for you and your family.

This afternoon I would like to spend the first part of our class covering the article for correction from last week as well as reviewing and practicing articles. We'll select one of the worksheets from our last class.

 Week 13 (July 11, 2017) — Population and GM Food (Part 2) 

Welcome back, everyone, and I hope that 2017 is a happy, healthy, prosperous year for you and your family.

This afternoon I would like to spend the first part of our class covering the article for correction from last week as well as reviewing and practicing articles. We'll select one of the worksheets from our last class.

 Week 14 (July 18, 2017) — Quiz; Final Presentations 

Welcome back, everyone, and I hope that 2017 is a happy, healthy, prosperous year for you and your family.

This afternoon I would like to spend the first part of our class covering the article for correction from last week as well as reviewing and practicing articles. We'll select one of the worksheets from our last class.

 Week 15 (July 25, 2017) — Final Presentations 

As you have no doubt surmised, in this class you will be making your presentation.

Final grades will be determined as follows:

  • ✓ Class participation 10%
  • ✓ Homework 15%
  • ✓ Group presentation 10%
  • ✓ Debates, town meeting 20%
  • ✓ Final paper 20%
  • ✓ Quizzes 10%
  • ✓ Vocabulary 15%

URL: www.jimelwood.net/students/toyo/methods3A4A/methods3A4A.html

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Date last updated: February 25, 2017 * Copyright 2017 by JE