Course Schedule

Jan 30—Introductions to course and one another. Review syllabus. In-class writing, why are you in college? Practice free-writing with “I remember”. Introduction to Qwriting: how to set-up your account

Homework: Read the wikipedia entry for CUNY and Queens College,_City_University_of_New_York

and Create your account: Once you’ve created your account, please email me ( your URL address (for example, so I can add you to the class blogroll.  Post your in-class writing from today as your first entry. Customize the visual settings of your blog. Blog: Please post any difficulties you’ve had as your first entry. Also experiment with posting a video from youtube.


Feb 1—Review sites:QueensCollege, its history and mission. Review videos on class “introduction” link:

“QueensCollegeCampus Highlights”

“Protesters Attacked by NYPD at CUNY Baruch

“CUNYQueensCollegeTuition Hike Protest”

“Police pepper spraying and arresting students at UC Davis

In-class writing: reasons for going to college presented in two of these videos. Analyzing your experiences as a student—discipline and reward. Also introduction to library databases. Review of using and posting videos and images, also comments function. Further introduction to

Homework: Download an article from the New York Times Historical database about protests at Queens College CUNY before 1975, one that also includes images. You will turn this in, in paper form, as a homework assignment next class.


Blog: What were the students in the article you found protesting against? What similarities or differences do you notice as a QC student in 2012? Also, upload a YouTube video embedded into a post, please leave a small caption about why you chose the video.


Feb 6—LIBRARY VISIT.  Meet at8:10in courtyard/lobby inside building, and we’ll head to the room downstairs together. BRING YOUR QC STUDENT ID.


Homework: Read over this document outlining the QC Strategic Plan: Brose your classmates’ blogs, check out the videos they uploaded. Please comment on two people’s videos (at least, you can comment on more if you like).


Feb 8—In-class writing. Reviewing strategic plan at QC. Adding media to your blogs, and other navigating aspects. Reviewing protesting students and current events NY Times. Responding to:


“Why We Don’t Need More Public Funding for Higher Education”


“Why 2011 College Graduates Are Screwed!”


“American Colleges—Useless?”


Also: practice writing “detail” with narrative exercises.


Homework: Writing Workshop: Post a response to the following prompt on your

Blog: Best educational moment—what and when.  Describe the scene in detail—be specific, use specific details.  Why was the moment so special?  What did it teach you? Use details: create the scene.


Also review:


Also please briefly review fist pages preview of Natalie Goldberg’s Old Friend From Far Away at


Feb 13—NO CLASS.


Feb 15—In-class writing. Reading the Goldberg chapter. Working with narratives, looking for elements of narrative.  Analysis practice. Free-writing with text in class. MARIAM KHATRI will present a YouTube video for the class. WEIQING LINwill also present a Youtube video for the class.


In-class: “College is a Rip Off”





Written responses to the videos.


Homework:  Blog: Look up your high school online and see what you find out. Take any interesting notes that you think might be worth free-writing about for next class. Post videos, images, and any media you can find. Also quote the mission statement. Did it meet its goal in your opinion?

Follow any leads that interest you. Please also respond to Mariam’s and Weiqing’s video-posts.


Also read a few responses to the ABC News story “College is a Rip Off (three pages of comments):




Feb 21—In-class writing. What I learned about my high school. What sorts of information is valuable? Where to look for information and research. Memories of classes and teachers? What were the cliques? JOSEPH MORANA will present a YouTube video for the class.


Homework: Blog: Write a blog noting any of the cliques you notice around the QC campus.  Where do they congregate?  Who are the members?  How can one determine who is a member and who is not?  Why do you think cliques form? Please respond to Joseph’s video-post.


Capture an image of the cliques as a piece of fieldwork for campus.


Feb 22—In-class writing. Review or articles: cliques and narratives. Searching for narratives about QC experiences from students.

Homework: Read and evaluate the following websites , and ,  Also read the following article: 


Blog: Write a journal entry about what you notice about the truth each site represents, what you find the credibility or believability of the sites to be.  How reliable would each be as a source for conducting research?  Which of these sites present legitimate knowledge?


Feb 27—In-class writing. Continue with discussion of literacy begun in previous class. Reviewing articles and various forms of “truthiness”. practice interviewing, and looking for plot in narratives with the example of “Grab”’s story, also return to your “choking” story from earlier in the term.


Homework:  Watch the following YouTube clips:

“Honest College Ad”

“College is the next bubble”


“College Conspiracy”

Blog: Interview a friend and record a friend (transcribed) about a time they nearly died, or a time they were in a fight. Post this as an entry about “narrative”. Also post the citation to the article you found.


Feb 29—Review of fight stories and narratives. In-class writing. Review the Purdue OWL’s MLA Formatting and Style Guide: MICHELE SARGENT will present a YouTube video to class. KELLY ZHENG will also present a YouTube video to class.


The QC “stereotypes”:


About the ratings: “College Rankings That Make Parents Blush”



Homework: Also read the following

Blog: Gather five videos from youtube that treat the subject of “college” in ways that you think have cultural significance. How does college get represented in each? You can also discuss Chad Vader if you like. Please respond to Michele’s and Kelly’s video-posts.



Mar 5— Reviewing interview transcripts of classmates. In-class writing. Questions about the first essay. Review of Times article. In-class film: College and peer review of essays.


Homework: Read and also Essay One due next class  


Mar 7—Essay One due. Discussion of reading. HYTHM ALRAYASHI will present a YouTube video to the class.


Homework: Blog: Please respond to Hythm’s video-post.

Also, what are some of the different stereotypes you notice about college? What do you notice about status in each grouping?  Who were the popular people you knew in high school?  Why were they popular?  What sorts of popularity do you notice on the campus of QC?


Mar 12—In-class video and responses based on students’ research. NATHALIE ESCUDERO will present a YouTube video to the class.




Homework: Blog: What are your responses to how college gets portrayed in the music video. Can you find any other music videos or films which treat college in a similar manner? Please add them to your blog. We’ll use these to generate discussion next class. Please respond to Nathalie’s video-post.


Mar 14—In-class writing, and responding to student responses. Modeling helpful responses for your upcoming blog work with classmates. SUPREET SAHNI will present a YouTube video.


Homework: Read the following:,

Blog: How much importance do you give to college ratings? Why? Why do you think some schools are so competitive and others not? What has (have) been your experience(s) with competition in schooling?  Please also comment on Supreet’s video-post.


Mar 19—EXTENDED BLOGWORK: Respond to five classmates’ blogs, and also “copy” one of their videos from each to your blog (add five new videos from each person).

Blog: What would you change about QC if you could?  What do you think would make this campus better?  Be as creative as possible.  Allow yourself to free-write for 12 minutes on the topic. Read the following:


Mar 21—field testing for the new CUNY Assessment Test in Writing. You don’t need to practice for this test, it’s only to measure how effective the test is. To read more about it, see this:

Homework: watch the following:

and reviewing viewer comments.


Mar 26—In-class writing. In-class review of “cooling-out,” meritocracy, and inequality. Review of PIE paragraphs and using the article for source data. SYLWIA URBANSKA will present a YouTube video to the class. Also review cooling-out in the documentary Educating Sergeant Pantzke:


Homework: Read the following: and

Blog: What are the majors you are considering? What career can you envision yourself pursuing? Why? What is the average salary for a starting position in this field? Please comment to Sylwia’s video-post.


Mar 28—In-class writing. For-profit universities, corporate models of college.

Homework: Watch and write a short response to the racial politics in A Girl Like Me

And these two videos from the same CNN special report:






Apr 2—EXTENDED BLOGWORK: Making connections between “A Girl Like Me” and what you know about racism in the USA. Review



 Essay Two due next class


Apr 4—ESSAY TWO DUE. In-class writing. More practice with PIE. Ideas for revision for your portfolio: adding structure to arguments based on claims. Connecting this to your previous compositions and also your next one.


Blog: Respond to the following video on your blog:







Apr 16—Continue with applications of Bourdieu to A Girl Like Me. Using PIE and critical sources, and organizing your essay. MARGARITA AMINOVA will present a YouTube video to the class. EVELYN and STEFANNY will present YouTube videos to the class. Margarita’s, Evelyn’s and Steffanny’s video-posts 

Homework:  Blog: What have been your favorite classes at QC so far? What were your favorites in high school? Why? What classes do you look forward to taking in your major? Look for a course name and professor in the department website and include those in this post.

Please comment on Evelyn’s, Stefanny’s, and Margarita’s video-posts.


Apr 18—NO CLASS. Watch and respond to the following videos here

Homework: Keep working on your Next essay due the 30th.


Apr 23—Collecting data to document your QC experience. What do you like, dislike about QC? In-class review of Queens College Office of Scholarships website and beginning to draft your scholarship essay, and using your blog for inspiration.

TINA FENG will present a YouTube video to the class. ANGELA BENAVIDES will present a YouTube video to the class.



 Start drafting your personal statement, and bring in a paper draft (three pages) next class.

Blog: What are your merits? What are the selling points that make you stand out from the rest of the folks competing for this scholarship? Consider your audience . . .

Please respond to Angela’s and Tina’s video-posts.


Be sure to review the following:


And the scholarship application:


Apr 25—Finishing with the cooling-out function and Bourdieu. Reading your QC experience.

“The Scholarship Hunt”:

Peer review of personal statements. In-class review, does college make you smarter debate on New York Times: DANNA GAL-ED will present a YouTube video to the class.

Homework:  Please also respond to Danna’s video-post. Essay Three due next class



Apr 30—Essay THREE DUE. Review of scholarship resources at QC. Continuing to work on the personal statement: writing one as a class. ULIAN GOGA and YVONNE CHENG will present YouTube videos to the class.


Homework: Work on your personal statement.  

Please also comment to Ulian’s and Yvonne’s video-posts.


May 2—In-class, working on scholarship essays.  Good points to note for scholarship committees. Brainstorming your merits.  Also short film about “school culture.” NABEELA HANIF will present a YouTube video to the class.



Blog: Collect media to add to your previous essays, make sure that the links all embed correctly.

Please comment to Nabeela’s video-post.


May 7—Discussion about final portfolios and also revisions. In-class writing and short film. MOLLIE JUTKOWITZ will present a YouTube video to the class.



Blog: Review the media of five classmates and “take” a piece of media from each for your blog. Respond to the piece of media borrowed, and mention why you enjoyed it.

Please comment to Mollie’s video-post.


May 9—Working on revising your essays in-class. Short film: “Immersion.” YEANA KWON will present a YouTube video.


Homework: Essay four due next class. Continue to work on your portfolios.

Blog: Last thoughts about the class before the end, and final thoughts on writing. You can incorporate much of this for your cover letter due with your portfolio as well.

Please comment on Yeana’s video-post.


May 14—Essay four due. LAST CLASS. In-class writing.


Last day to submit your final portfolio revisions is May 25, 12PM.

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