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Interdisciplinary Studies 375 Language & Society Dr. A. R. Washington

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Integrative Final Writing Assignment Description Course participants will develop an interdisciplinary conceptual essay that explores a complex topic at the intersection of language and society. Recall that a complex problem consists of multiple components or challenges that interact as part of a larger system and thus “require study by different disciplines” (Repko, 2015, p. 4). This paper will require students to apply coursework taken as part of their interdisciplinary education as well as their reading and learning in INT 375 to identify a complex, real-world topic about language use, examine and deconstruct it, and begin synthesizing approaches to address it according to the process and principles of interdisciplinarity. Ideally, the topic will engage with one or more of the student’s concentrations or areas of academic interest. This assessment fosters a critical awareness of language and will help students to develop skills in creative and critical thinking, systems thinking, contextual thinking, integrative thinking, and communication in the form of clear, organized writing, among other skills. Through this activity, students will demonstrate their achievement of integrative and applied learning as students make connections to and between relevant experiences and academic knowledge in INT 375 (Connections to Experience), and then reflect on, adapt, and apply their learning in new and different situations to solve problems or explore issues (Transfer). Because this assessment explores phenomena at the intersection of different fields of study, it will also familiarize students with academic writing within multiple disciplines and encourage students to make connections between those fields (Connections to Discipline), which is foundational to an undergraduate and particularly an interdisciplinary education. Moreover, this assignment requires students to effectively and intentionally use language in ways that enhance meaning and overall communication and descriptively (not prescriptively) approach linguistic variation (Integrated Communication). Finally, this assignment attends to Programmatic Goals 1 – 3 in asking students to define, discuss and apply interdisciplinary studies while synthesizing disciplinary insights in order to address real-world questions. Your rough draft constitutes 8% of your course grade. The final writing assignment will contribute to 16% of your final grade. Specific guidelines Each student will need to identify a real-world topic, theme or complex phenomenon involving language use in society. Then students will select four (4) conceptual terms from the course readings and write an essay of approximately 3,000 words (not including quoted material) that clarifies the theoretical concepts (i.e., defines, explains and discusses the terms according to at least the required readings) vis-à-vis the subject they have chosen. Your paper will follow the classic five-paragraph essay structure (i.e., introduction, body paragraphs, conclusion), though you will exceed three body paragraphs as necessary, and should incorporate the following components:

Interdisciplinary Studies 375 Language & Society Dr. A. R. Washington

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• Introductory paragraph o Provide a topic sentence (or two) to state or establish the subject; provide background

information regarding the topic so that the reader understands it and is engaged. Is this a complex, interdisciplinary topic? If so, please explain how.

o Use this paragraph to introduce the theoretical concepts you will explore in relation to your topic. § State your thesis, i.e., the purpose, position or point of view on the topic, in a sentence

or two. This thesis should connect the chosen theoretical concepts to your real-world topic.

§ Provide a brief overview of your paper in the form of outline sentence(s), which will describe the main topics covered in the body paragraphs.

o Provide a sentence to transition to your next paragraph. • Body paragraphs

o Each paragraph should explore one of your chosen theoretical concepts in relation to your real-world topic. Begin with a topic sentence that identifies the new focus or main idea introduced in this paragraph in relation to your thesis. Be sure to clearly define your theoretical concept according to the appropriate literature before going further in your discussion.

o Provide several supporting sentences, which will utilize specific details and/or appropriate examples or evidence, to develop (or expand) and explain the central point or idea. Supporting sentences should be closely related to the topic sentence and therefore the theoretical concept of the paragraph. They provide coherence within the paragraph and unity around a central idea. § In addition to your required textbook, draw upon at least five (5) appropriate,

scholarly supplemental sources (e.g., books, academic journal articles, news or magazine articles, other credible texts that demonstrate your concepts or topic) in crafting your supporting sentences.

o Provide a sentence to transition to your next paragraph. • Conclusion paragraph

o Restate your overall purpose or thesis for the paper and/or summarize the major points and any broader implications or takeaway points of the essay regarding the chosen theoretical concepts in connection with your real-world topic. Use distinct wording from the introduction and body paragraphs. Do not introduce new, unrelated ideas in the conclusion, but do leave the reader with a final thought to ponder.

• Conventions and Presentation o Please format your paper according to APA guidelines. Be sure to acknowledge any

sources and properly cite them. Make sure that your references comply with APA guidelines.

o Remember to use clear, precise, and descriptive language. Double-check your paper for consistent and standard spelling, punctuation, capitalization, grammar, word choice/usage, and sentence structure.

Interdisciplinary Studies 375 Language & Society Dr. A. R. Washington

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INTEGRATIVE LEARNING VALUE RUBRIC1

Capstone 4

Milestones 3 2

Benchmark 1

Connections to Experience Connects relevant experience and academic knowledge

Meaningfully synthesizes connections among experiences outside of the formal classroom (including life experiences and academic experiences such as internships and travel abroad) to deepen understanding of fields of study and to broaden own points of view.

Effectively selects and develops examples of life experiences, drawn from variety contexts (e.g., family life, artistic participation, civic involvement, work experience), to illuminate concepts/theories/fra meworks of fields of study.

Compares life experiences and academic knowledge to infer differences, as well as similarities, and acknowledge perspectives other than own.

Identifies connections between life experiences and those academic texts and ideas perceived as similar and related to own interests.

Connections to Discipline Sees (makes) connections across disciplines, perspectives

Independently creates wholes out of multiple parts (synthesizes) or draws conclusions by combining examples, facts, or theories from more than one field of study or perspective.

Independently connects examples, facts, or theories from more than one field of study or perspective.

When prompted, connects examples, facts, or theories from more than one field of study or perspective.

When prompted, presents examples, facts, or theories from more than one field of study or perspective.

Transfer Adapts and applies skills, abilities, theories, or methodologies gained in one situation to new situations

Adapts and applies, independently, skills, abilities, theories, or methodologies gained in one situation to new situations to solve difficult problems or explore complex issues in original ways.

Adapts and applies skills, abilities, theories, or methodologies gained in one situation to new situations to solve problems or explore issues.

Uses skills, abilities, theories, or methodologies gained in one situation in a new situation to contribute to understanding of problems or issues.

Uses, in a basic way, skills, abilities, theories, or methodologies gained in one situation in a new situation.

Integrated Communication

Fulfills the assignment(s) by choosing a format, language, or graph (or other visual representation) in ways that enhance meaning, making clear the interdependence of

Fulfills the assignment(s) by choosing a format, language, or graph (or other visual representation) to explicitly connect content and form, demonstrating

Fulfills the assignment(s) by choosing a format, language, or graph (or other visual representation) that connects in a basic way what is being communicated

Fulfills the assignment(s) (i.e. to produce an essay, a poster, a video, a PowerPoint presentation, etc.) in an appropriate form.

Interdisciplinary Studies 375 Language & Society Dr. A. R. Washington

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language and meaning, thought, and expression.

awareness of purpose and audience.

(content) with how it is said (form).

Alignment with Assignment Goals

Includes all sections required to produce a complete, scholarly paper on language and society (i.e., Introductory paragraph, Body paragraphs, Conclusion) and abides by Conventions & Presentation.

Includes most sections and components required to produce a near- complete scholarly paper on language and society (i.e., Introductory paragraph, Body paragraphs, Conclusion) and mostly abides by Conventions & Presentation.

Includes some sections or components required, produces a partially complete scholarly paper on language and society (i.e., Introductory paragraph, Body paragraphs, Conclusion) and somewhat abides by Conventions & Presentation.

Includes few of the required sections or components needed, produces an incomplete scholarly paper on language and society (i.e., Introductory paragraph, Body paragraphs, Conclusion) and does not abide by Conventions & Presentation.

Total (out of 20)

1 This rubric was created using the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U)

Integrative and Applied Learning VALUE Rubric. Retrieved from https://www.aacu.org/value-rubrics

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