Answer EITHER of the following questions (pretty much the same question to me):
Given that we’re adjusting to our online-only format by writing more executive summaries, and because you’re all obviously working hard to refine your executive-summary-writing skills, it makes sense that the final exam can take the same format.
Now there are TWO format options:
Use whatever format you think will allow you to say the most about what you’ve learned in the course. I think they are equally difficult, but in distinct ways. Don’t pick the executive summary just because there are fewer required words—I expect a much higher density of information, so it because easy to run out of space and not say very much.
This assignment, in either form, shows that you’re able to summarize key course themes and use the course material to make smart arguments about the future of food using historical precedents.
As a final exam, your answer should draw widely from the entire course to show me how much of the material you’re now able to use. Your essay is to an extent an opinion piece, but I care less about what your opinion IS than HOW you back it up. In other words, you can argue anything you want—there’s no right or wrong answer per se—but you need to make a coherent argument supported by historical evidence and examples.
DO NOT simply provide a prose version of the syllabus outlining the topics we covered. Think thematically and synthetically. I’m looking for you to highlight WHAT you think are the most important themes/topics we’ve covered AND explain WHY they are the most important.
Pausing the obvious for a moment: Your audience is NOT ME as your professor who is grading your paper. It’s someone you want to impress who asks you what you learned in your food technology class. If you just recite facts or historical tidbits your learned at some point this term, your audience (including me) will not be impressed. They want the big picture. The so what. The who cares. What kinds of issues are important for this person to think about that they probably haven’t considered or maybe have thought about only superficially? Again, think thematically and synthetically.
There is no set organizational structure like the book reviews. But your paper must make a coherent argument throughout, not just randomly drift from topic to topic in the hopes of mentioning everything that you think I might be looking for. I’m definitely not looking for that! To be succinct: MAKE A CASE for what you think are the most important big picture themes this semester—don’t just describe some topics we’ve covered or keep repeating that history is important. EXPLAIN HOW.
Again (and again), think thematically and synthetically. And give SPECIFIC EXAMPLES. Don’t write a whole paragraph about olives making people sick. So what?!? Write a paragraph or more about consumer trust, industrial growing pains, or the role of the media, in which you mention olives making people sick as a specific historical example.
Anything in your text that refers to a specific point or idea (and obviously direct quotations) should a have parenthetical page reference. These show me as the grader how you are using course materials in your review. Use author/date format like (Gibbs, 75). When we’ve read more than one thing from an author, cite a short title of the work as well, like (Jenkins, Food Fight, 33). Do not cite entire works without a page number or page range.
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