Meaning, Language, and Communication

Application Paper Assignment Guidelines
 
Assignment: Explore the claims of one or more of the course readings by applying them to an outside communication situation, event, or text of your choice. Specifically, you will advance an argumentthat examines the ways in which the claims found in one of the readings can be applied to a concrete communicationevent/situation/text found in an external article (newspaper, magazine, or television news) orcommunication artifact (speech, song, film, television show, etc.) of your choice; do not selectartifacts analyzed in the assigned readings or class lectures when that same theory was introduced.
 
Your analysis of the concrete communication event/situation/text can take the form of comparison and/or contrast to the applied reading; in other words, your analysis could seek to apply your chosentheory in terms of how it does, or does not, describe/explain/predict what you see as significant about the language and meaning in your chosen event/situation/text. In short, the application papers must advance and support an argument about the extension of the readings to the “real world” ofcommunication practice. A simple summary of the reading and/or communicationevent/situation/text is not acceptable.
 
Guidelines:

  • The application paper must include the following components:
  • An introduction (including a thesis statement and preview of main points)
  • A brief description of the key claims about rhetoric found in the theoretical reading from the course to be utilized in the paper
  • A brief description of relevant aspects of the communication event/situation/text you have chosen to relate to the reading
  • An extended, organized analysis of the ways in which the concepts discussed in the reading do (and/or do not) manifest in the particular communication event/situation
  • A discussion of the significance of your findings from the analysis
  • A conclusion

 

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  • The paper should make specific reference both to the reading you are utilizing and an article/communication artifact that represents the communication event/situation/text you are analyzing. This might take the form of direct quotations or paraphrases, but either must include appropriate citations. I do not expect you to do additional research beyond the article/communication artifact you are analyzing and the assigned readings (although you may).

 

  • Analysis papers should be 4-5 pages in length and conform to the general written assignment guidelines listed in the syllabus.

 

  • A bibliography/references page containing any sources cited in the paper must be included. Grading: The grade for application papers will be based upon the degree to which the paper thoughtfully and thoroughly engages the issues raised in a reading and applies them to a communication situation/event/text according to the criteria in the grading rubric discussed in class.

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