OT: An update on a couple things

So, today is Thursday of the last week of classes for me, and my last final paper is due on Monday. That means I used up 2 days worth of posting time on yesterday’s thread, so now I don’t even quite have my class paper that’s due tomorrow morning finished and we’re running late in 25-man Ulduar tonight. So, today I’m just going to post a couple random things…

First, I do plan on updating my leveling guide next week. I know a lot of younger druids will be happy to see a new version, and I know I said I’d get around to it by now, but it actually needs more hours of work than I can put into it before the end of the semester…

Okay, for something happy:

My raid got Deconstructor down for the first time tonight, along with FL hard-mode (with 1 tower up) for the first time. Wewt! We’re making good slow & steady progress. We’ll be back in Ulduar tomorrow to try and get a couple more bosses. We got a couple tries on Kologarn before calling it…

and something not wow-related:

And since I just finished grading a bunch of papers, I also have a writing tip for all the students. If you are writing a paper, the first sentence of every paragraph should be your topic sentence. When I wrote my master’s thesis, my introduction was written in a way that you could read the first sentence of every paragraph and pretty much know exactly what my main points were for the entire thing. The rest of each paragraph provided further explanation and detail related to that section (ie. related to that paragraph’s topic sentence). So, if you are doing paper writing like me, try to keep that in mind. It’ll make the people grading your papers so much happier.

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7 Comments

  1. Posted April 30, 2009 at 10:11 am | Permalink

    I love you.

    Your writing advice is exactly what I just told my literature class yesterday.

    When I was halfway through my dissertation my advisor said I had structural problems and made me write out a new topic sentence for every single paragraph of an 80-page chapter and give it to him so he could help me reorder it.

    That was the most helpful writing exercise I ever did.

  2. Posted April 30, 2009 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

    Don’t listen too closely kids! This is like when your basketball coach told you to concentrate on hustle and rebounding. S/he didn’t want you to stop trying to score. No, s/he figured you couldn’t help yourself. You’d keep shooting. But now at least you’d *think* about boxing out.

    Same here. Don’t come into my class and tell me Lissanna told you to put topic sentences at the start of every paragraph. ;^) It’s often appropriate to start with a topic sentence. It’s also occasionally appropriate, once you’ve got the hang of it, to have your paragraphs act and interact in more nuanced ways. Like this paragraph does, though it’s hardly the model of nuanced construction.

    I’m guessing the same sort of compositional assistance could be taken from an outline? It is hard to make folk authentically outline, myself included.

    (Just please, please tell me this isn’t a case of wanting to skip parts of student exams to be done more quickly! ;^D Shame!)

    That said, why are at least three blog-reading druids lit instructors? Wonder if warlocks have the same demographics? /smirk

  3. Posted April 30, 2009 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

    I’m not a lit instructor. I graded research methods papers. The writing quality in non-language classes can be sketchy & unorganized with way worse problems… I don’t want to skip reading things. I just want them to be organized in a way that makes sense. :)

  4. Posted April 30, 2009 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

    But isn’t it all lit & lang? (I kid, Hasselhoff…)

    Yes, teaching how to write the “professional” paper is a different beast entirely, isn’t it? There’s a genre without quite as much room for stylistic nuance. ;^)

    And still, can we argue for an in-game red pen or something for druids? Bet someone still says, “Hunter weapon!!!1!”

  5. Posted May 1, 2009 at 1:27 am | Permalink

    I use green pens. There was a memo circulated at my college (I kid you not) that said that red pen users were perceived to be meaner than those who graded in any other color.

    My department started buying big boxes of green felt-tip grading pens–the bic flares. Love em.

    Give me one of those for my healing staff and I’m set for life.

  6. Posted May 1, 2009 at 1:29 am | Permalink

    We actually play a video in my class of researchers that found red ink on cognitive tests causes people to do worse on them. So, I can’t grade in red.

    It appears to be a real phenomena, but not really something to get worked up over. I mean, if everyone grades in green… then eventually the effect would probably switch, to green having worse performance…

    So, I change back and forth between green & purple colors to mix things up.

  7. Meta
    Posted May 1, 2009 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

    /sign list as another paper grader in favor of clear objective statements. Just finished grading final projects for the forest ecology class I TA. DROOD teachers are coming out of the woodwork all over the place :P