Reading Response Guidelines
In ~350 words (ideally 2-3 short paragraphs), you have two goals: 1) to show me that you’ve read and thought critically about the reading; 2) to help advance our discussion about the reading, its utility, and how it fits into the course.
- 300 - 400 words
- Clear, concise, and meaningful (no fluff!)
- No quotations, except short phrases that you want to critique directly
- 3-5 citations to specific pages, like (Burdick, 22)
- Posted to your blog before you go to bed the day before class
Below are a list of themes and questions you should be asking yourself and comment on in your response. This is not an exhaustive or restrictive list!
- what did you take away as the main point or points?
- what examples did the author(s) give to help make their point?
- how does the piece fit into the course and other course readings?
- how convincing was the author(s)?
- how well was the main point supported by evidence?
- do you agree or not with the premise of the piece?
- who is the target audience? what does the author(s) think their audience knows?
- was this relatively easy to read? what made it so? or not?
- were you motivated appreciate the significance of the piece?
All responses will be graded on a 0-2 point scale, with the following logic:
- 0: You shouldn’t have bothered. The assignment does not show any serious engagement with the material, or is so sloppily written I can’t decipher it.
- 1: Clear evidence of casually reading the assignment, some critical thinking, and clear enough writing that I wasn’t totally confused.
- 2: Significant engagement with the material, original thinking that ties it to other readings (or discussions), and a clear exposition of your ideas.
- 3: I know I said 0-2 points, but sometimes you’ll be inspired by the reading to have some really great ideas, and to convey them in a particularly engaging and energetic way. So you get a bonus point for turning it up to 11…or 3, in this case.