But mulling over my evaluations and then trying to take a hard, extended look at campus life both here at the University of Virginia and around the country eventually led me to some different conclusions. To me, liberal-arts education is as ineffective as it is now not chiefly because there are a lot of strange theories in the air. (Used well, those theories can be illuminating.) Rather, it's that university culture, like American culture writ large, is, to put it crudely, ever more devoted to consumption and entertainment, to the using and using up of goods and images. For someone growing up in America now, there are few available alternatives to the cool consumer worldview. My students didn't ask for that view, much less create it, but they bring a consumer weltanschauung to school, where it exerts a powerful, and largely unacknowledged, influence. If we want to understand current universities, with their multiple woes, we might try leaving the realms of expert debate and fine ideas and turning to the classrooms and campuses, where a new kind of weather is gathering.
From time to time I bump into a colleague in the corridor and we have what I've come to think of as a Joon Lee fest. Joon Lee is one of the best students I've taught. He's endlessly curious, has read a small library's worth, seen every movie, and knows all about showbiz and entertainment. For a class of mine he wrote an essay using Nietzsche's Apollo and Dionysus to analyze the pop group The Supremes. A trite, cultural-studies bonbon? Not at all. He said striking things about conceptions of race in America and about how they shape our ideas of beauty. When I talk with one of his other teachers, we run on about the general splendors of his work and presence. But what inevitably follows a JL fest is a mournful reprise about the divide that separates him and a few other remarkable students from their contemporaries. It's not that some aren't nearly as bright -- in terms of intellectual ability, my students are all that I could ask for. Instead, it's that Joon Lee has decided to follow his interests and let them make him into a singular and rather eccentric man; in his charming way, he doesn't mind being at odds with most anyone.
The new exam is in four parts and includes 25 multiple-choice questions, two short written responses, and one extended essay. The first two parts require the student to listen to or read extended passages of informational text or literary passages and answer multiple-choice questions on those passages. The third part requires the reading of two literary passages linked by a common theme, answering 5 multiple-choice questions, and writing two short Constructed Response questions. Part 4 is an essay of critical analysis and an evaluation of two works of literature the student has read.. All written responses require effective use of language and standard written English.
Part 1: Listening for Information and Understanding
You will listen to a lecture or a speech and answer 8 multiple-choice questions about key ideas in the passage. The lecture or speech will be read twice. You may take notes at any time during the readings, and you may use your notes in answering the multiple-choice questions.
Part 2: Reading for Information and Understanding
You should expect to read a literary passage plus an informational passage and answer 6 multiple-choice questions on basic comprehension of main ideas, vocabulary, and interpretation for each passage.
Part 3: Reading and Writing for Literary Response
You will read two literature selections (from fiction, poetry, memoir, or literary non-fiction) that are linked by a common theme, answer 5 multiple-choice questions on key ideas, details, vocabulary, and answer two short constructed response questionsone on the controlling idea and one on a literary element or technique from one of the passages.
Part 4 Reading and Writing for Critical (Literary) Analysis and Evaluation
In this part, you are required to write a critical essay in which you discuss two works of literature you have read from the particular perspective of a statement that is provided as a “critical lens.” Your interpretation of the “lens” and response to it become the controlling idea for your essay. Here you must interpret a sophisticated prompt, develop a critical point of view in response to that prompt, and develop that critical point of view with detailed reference to two works. You must also use specific references to appropriate literary elements to show how the chosen works support your opinion.
Your final score is based on the total number of correct answers to the multiple- choice questions and the rating of the essay. All papers are read by at least two English teachers and may be reviewed by a third reader. They will evaluate your essay for meaning, development, organization, language use, and conventions. The scoring rubrics for the essay are outlined below.
Understanding the Rubrics
Rubrics are descriptive guidelines for how teachers will score the essays you write. Understanding the language of the rubrics will help you understand what is expected in each task and show you what makes the difference between a high and a middle score, or between a middle and a low score on an essay.
The essay of the Regents exam is scored on a scale of 16 for the same five qualities. Essays rated 5 or 6 are considered high scoring essays; 34 are middle range; 12 are low scoring and are not likely to result in a passing score.
What are the Five Qualities in the Rubrics?
Meaning The extent to which the response exhibits sound understanding, interpretation, and analysis of the task and text(s).
Development The extent to which ideas are elaborated using specific and relevant evidence from the text(s).
Organization The extent to which the response exhibits direction, shape, and coherence.
Language Use The extent to which the response reveals an awareness of audience and purpose through effective use of words, sentence structure, and sentence variety.
Conventions The extent to which the response exhibits conventional spelling, punctuation, capitalization, grammar, and usage.
An air of caution and deference is everywhere. When my students come to talk with me in my office, they often exhibit a Franciscan humility. "Do you have a moment?" "I know you're busy. I won't take up much of your time." Their presences tend to be very light; they almost never change the temperature of the room. The dress is nondescript: clothes are in earth tones; shoes are practical -- cross-trainers, hiking boots, work shoes, Dr. Martens, with now and then a stylish pair of raised-sole boots on one of the young women. Many, male and female both, peep from beneath the bills of monogrammed baseball caps. Quite a few wear sports, or even corporate, logos, sometimes on one piece of clothing but occasionally (and disconcertingly) on more. The walk is slow; speech is careful, sweet, a bit weary, and without strong inflection. (After the first lively week of the term, most seem far in debt to sleep.) They are almost unfailingly polite. They don't want to offend me; I could hurt them, savage their grades.
How does one prosper with the present clientele? Many of the most successful professors now are the ones who have "decentered" their classrooms. There's a new emphasis on group projects and on computer-generated exchanges among the students. What they seem to want most is to talk to one another. A classroom now is frequently an "environment," a place highly conducive to the exchange of existing ideas, the students' ideas. Listening to one another, students sometimes change their opinions. But what they generally can't do is acquire a new vocabulary, a new perspective, that will cast issues in a fresh light.
Regents Exam Nys English English Regents A Guide to Writing Critical Lens - English Regents PrepA Guide to Writing Critical Lens; We’re preparing for the upcoming English Regents and the goal for the website Steps to Writing a Critical Lens Essay
These are not the opinions of the University of California Riverside however, they are the opinions of a highly volatile arachnologist who is bloody tired of everybody claiming that every little mark on their body is the result of a brown recluse bite and who believe with a religious zeal that brown recluses are part of the California spider fauna despite the incredibly overwhelming evidence to the contrary. The tone of this article is purposely crafted to mimic the hyperanxious state of the paranoid public because many of them have trouble listening to boring cold scientific presentations (of which this may still be guilty despite my intentions) when their beliefs are solidly based on erroneous general consensus.
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High school or college level
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An extensive archive of assessment materials associated with the approach.
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Includes rubrics for essay questions, logs, journal writing, and lab write-ups (Word doc) (Word doc) (Word doc)
But demystifying theories are now overused, applied mechanically. It's all logocentrism, patriarchy, ideology. And in this the student environment -- laid-back, skeptical, knowing -- is, I believe, central. Full-out debunking is what plays with this clientele. Some have been doing it nearly as long as, if more crudely than, their deconstructionist teachers. In the context of the contemporary university, and cool consumer culture, a useful intellectual skepticism has become exaggerated into a fundamentalist caricature of itself. The teachers have buckled to their students' views.