Writing Assignments –
The major goal of the writing exercises is to get students to critically think and evaluate the material presented in the course. The papers should help students better understand the nature of the politics. All paper assignments must be double-spaced and typed with 12-point font. Each paper should be 5-8 pages in length and will comprise 10% of your grade for a total of 30%. The papers will be graded on the accuracy, clarity and depth of the ideas presented. The following rubric will help define what I mean by accuracy, clarity and depth.
Accuracy of Ideas Presented –
How well does the paper answer the essay prompt? How well does the paper present the authors major ideas? Are the statements of fact presented accurately and supported with evidence from the text and outside the text? Does the paper avoid oversimplification of the authors main ideas?
Clarity of Ideas Presented –
How well does the paper explain the meaning of information in the text? Does the student provide examples and illustrations to clarify the authors ideas? Does the student expand upon the authors ideas and present those ideas in his or her own way?
Depth of Ideas Presented –
How well does the paper address the complexity of the problem or issue? How well does the paper consider alternative points of view? How well does the paper offer alternative interpretations and goes beyond the authors thesis?
Writing Assignment #1 –
In his work, The Second Amendment, Waldman traces the history of the second amendment from the founding of our Republic through the Heller Supreme Court decision in 2008. Using the historical evidence that Waldman provides in his book, and incorporating other facts about the Constitution from Dahls work, you are to write a 5-8 page paper that analyzes what we can learn about the American Constitution, the second amendment, and the political process from this history.