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Personality Profiles: Prize-Winning Student Journalism Samples

The personality profile is a staple of intro to journalism classes, but newspapers don’t tend to collect all their profiles in one place, so I often have trouble finding models. Entrants in the Hearst Journalism Awards have to supply a profile as part of their application process (which also includes general news and on-the-spot reporting).  While the website doesn’t seem to aggregate the winning profiles on a single page, here…

Constructing Journalism Knowledge in the Classroom

The journalism class that I’m preparing to teach this fall is a writing course, but it’s also very content-heavy — lots of specialized vocabulary, lots of unique professional practices to teach. This fall, I’m not using a big $100 journalism textbook. Instead, I’ll be spending more time with several smaller texts.  In place of assigning chapters for students to read passively (out of a sense of obligation that I need…

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Peering into Your Neighbors' Windows

I’m always on the lookout  for interesting stories that one can tell with statistics — and cautionary tales about misusing statistics in order to create news where there isn’t any. Via MetaFilter — this OK Cupid article breaks down responses to user-generated dating profile questions. Green states were more likely to answer “yes” than the national average (yellow), and red states were more likely to answer “no”.  Note that this…

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The $5,000 Approach to Teaching Writing

“What if I had a check on my desk for $5,000? And what if I rewarded the writer whose introduction most caught my attention, who most effectively made me want to continue because of a solid and clear thesis, with a check for five grand? Would your introductions improve even more?” Cries of “Absolutely!” filled the room — to which I replied, “Then you always could do it. You just couldn’t…

Fall, 2009

LA100: Basic CompositionEL200: Media Lab and SetonianEL227: News WritingEL237: Writing about LiteratureEL266: American Literature I (1800-1915)