SP 372 - Grading


Participation: 10%

This means that the student will actively contribute to class individually, in pairs, and group work by asking and by answering questions, it also means that the student will willingly engage in class activities using the target language: Spanish. The level of class participation will be assessed regularly.

Active class participation is a very important component in this class; the following criteria will be used to evaluate class participation:

-A range: very dynamic engagement in all class activities, student is consistently prepared for class sessions, very often begins interaction, participates actively and promotes participation in partnered and group activities, collaborates keenly in the creation of the learning environment. The student speaks with great fluidity and fluency, has excellent range of vocabulary and excellent control of grammatical structures.

-B range: active engagement in all class activities, student is generally prepared for class sessions, often begins interaction, participates actively in partnered and group activities, collaborates in the creation of the learning environment. In general the student speaks with fluidity and fluency, notices mistakes and correct them, good range of vocabulary and good use of grammatical structures.

-C range: moderate engagement in class activities, student is irregularly prepared for class sessions, seldom begins interaction, participates moderately in partnered and group activities, limited fluidity and fluency. Responds usually limited to homework and drill exercises. The student seldom expresses opinion due to limited grammatical control or limited vocabulary.

-D range: little engagement in class activities, student is seldom prepared for class sessions, never begins interaction, participates little; very limited fluidity and fluency. The student has very limited range of vocabulary and only answers if is asked. The student cannot express opinion and offer advice.

-E range: no visible engagement in class activities, student is usually unprepared for class sessions, doesn’t participate in partnered and group activities; interferes with the creation of the learning environment.

Assignments: 5%

Each student will have read the material and do the homework to be covered in class on the due date. The student will work diligently in the assignments and submit them to Sakai. Late assignments will not be accepted..

Final Portfolio: 15%

On the final day of class you will turn in a draft of a story that you have written as well as its revised version (approx. 7-10 double-spaced pages). The story included in the portfolio should include revisions based on workshop comments. All stories should be original work written during the duration of this course.

Oral presentation: 5%

The student will make an oral presentation (report style, 4/5 minutes) on the story written for the class (The final Portfolio). The instructor will provide guidelines and detailed instructions.

Critiques: 10%

I expect you to come to class having thoroughly read both your peers’ submissions and the assigned readings. For every story to be workshopped, you must write a 100-150 word response that discusses both good points and areas for improvement (please keep in mind workshop etiquette). Print out two copies of you response, one for me and one for the writer. Give one to each of us at the end of class. Again, you should come prepared to comment, discuss, and ask questions. Energy, curiosity, productive craziness, bravery—all of these will help your grade and the workshop.

Forum Assignments/Response Papers: 5%

There will be response papers. These will be designed to get you in the habit of reading actively and to demonstrate certain writing techniques.

Reading Quizzes: 5%

The six quizzes will be on the short stories we will read during the semester.

Mid-term: 15%

The exam is cumulative of the topics covered during the first half of the semester, and includes an oral comprehension section, grammar as well as culture and/or literature.

Native Speakers Sessions: 10%

Regular attendance and active oral participation is mandatory. Native speaker’s sessions meet once a week. You are allowed one absence without penalty. Each absence following will lower your grade; Five absences will earn you a grade of E in Native Speaker (10% of your grade). SIX ABSENCES WILL EARN YOU A GRADE OF F IN THE COURSE.

Final exam: 20%

The final exam is comprehensive and cumulative of all the topics covered in class, and includes an oral and a reading comprehension sections, grammar, culture and/or literature. The final exam is during final exam week; don’t make travel arrangements before you know the final exams schedule.

Note on Grading Creative Writing

Despite the fact that you are doing creative work, I will be assigning letter grades to your writing assignments. These grades will be based primarily on three things:

  • Mechanics – I expect you to proofread your work, and turn it in to me without typos, spelling mistakes, grammatical errors, and so on. Consistently turning in work with gratuitous grammatical errors, for example, will result in lower grades.
  • Artistic Quality – While no one can settle on precise guidelines for what makes good writing good and bad writing bad, certain characteristics of writing fall clearly into these two camps. We’ll be developing our sensibility discussing a number of techniques commonly employed in good writing, and I expect you to put them to use. Creativity and ambition are important and will get you bonus points. Repeated gratuitous dealing in clichés will not help your grade.
  • Effort and improvement – This is most important for me, which may seem counterintuitive or not meritocratic. However, focus and commitment maybe the two most common hallmark of great writers, and history is littered with the unmarked graves of unrealized talent. A large part of your grade will be based on your effort and improvement. People in this class will be starting at different levels of development and experience, and your performance in this class, whether great or mediocre, is unlikely to be an accurate forecast of your writerly potential. However, if you’re putting in the time and effort, participating, turning things in on time, and getting better, you will do well in this class and develop habits which will help you to maximize your talents.