• 4806/7806 Course Assignments and Grading

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    Graduate students and undergraduate students in this class are subject to plus/minus grading.

    Your grade will reflect these percentages:

    Class participation and Attendance – 10%
    Class participation and attendance are vital and can rarely be made up. Classes are designed to supplement your hands-on learning, introduce new ideas and bring up big picture topics that may or may not be relevant to your weekly shifts.

    We will take attendance at every class. You may miss two classes for any reason without penalty. (We will not judge absences as excused or unexcused.)  Missed classes/meetings related to project management count toward absences.

    Please check with a classmate to find out what happened in class when you were gone. If you still have questions about the material, check in with an instructor.

    After two absences, an additional absence will result in a C for attendance. A fourth absence or chronic tardiness will result in an F for attendance. If you have an ongoing illness or unforeseen circumstances that cause you to miss class for more than two weeks, please meet with a faculty member.

    Editing/Producing Work (Two newsrooms and Project Manager) – 60%
    You will receive two grades for each newsroom (Summer students will one grade for two newsrooms, plus project management). You will receive one grade for project management.  Your grade is based on feedback faculty receive from your newsroom supervisor and your OWN self-evaluations and descriptions of your shifts and projects.  To this end, you will file a 100-200 word report at the end of each week (Saturdays 5 p.m.) in our 4806 Classes Server.


    Check your connections and make sure you have a VPN client if you are off-campus.  Failure to file a weekly report will result in at least one letter grade reduction for your quarterly newsroom work.


    Blogging – 15%
    You will be required to create your own blog (we recommend using WordPress.com) and to contribute at least 15 posts for the duration of the semester. Blogging is an integral part of convergence journalism. A blog is regularly updated space that can be devoted to many different kinds of content. Though some students use their blog as an evolving portfolio, you may find it more beneficial to create a blog about a niche that you have a continuing interest in. It may be a beat that you wish to report on like county government, the city of Ashland, higher ed, freshman life or science and technology. Or it may be a subject or issue unique to you. This kind of niche blog has been a launching point for many entrepreneurial journalists.

    Blogging is graded on a pass/fail basis for each of your 15 posts. You may post as frequently as you want each week, but only one post per week will count toward your required 15.

    The idea is that the blog will be a continuously and regularly updated publication.

    You may choose to use a blog you’ve created previously to complete this assignment.

    Blogs also being written, though, to meet course requirements for other classes are not acceptable. That is considered “double dipping,” commensurate with turning in a single paper for multiple classes, and will be regarded as an act of academic dishonesty.

    At the end of the semester, if your blog has the required 15 posts, you’ll receive a 93 (A). If your blog posts consistently include original reporting and multimedia work of your own creation, you will earn a higher grade. Each post fewer than 15 will lower your grade by five points. Your first blog post is due by 5pm on Saturday of the first weekend after classes start.

    Please feel free to meet with us at any time to discuss grades or any other issue. Part of professionalism is seeking advice when needed to handle special concerns or problems or to propose new ideas or innovations.

    Style Quizzes – 10%
    There will be five style/grammar quizzes and two vocabulary quizzes during the semester, administered through the University’s Blackboard site. The vocab quizzes and first four style quizzes are 10 questions and 15 minutes each. The last quiz will be 30 minutes long for 15 points.

    All the quizzes use the AP and Missourian stylebooks (open book.) If you have a problem accessing a style quiz or a computer issue, you must contact an instructor immediately or the quiz score will stand as incomplete.

    Portfolio – 5%

    Students will create and publish and online portfolio showcasing their professional work. This might include work done in the various Missouri School of Journalism newsrooms, in off-campus internships or fellowships, personal blogs, etc.  A successful portfolio will demonstrate a student’s skills, professional interests and career aspirations. Potential employers should be able to visit the site and know right away what the the student could add to their workplace — within the field of journalism or not.

    Graduate Student Requirement

    Graduate students will complete an additional assignment that combines the creation of a portfolio site and offers high-level analysis of developments in the world of online journalism. Click here for the full details of the graduate assignment, due dates and instructions for submission.

    Completion of this assignment is required for graduate students to pass this course.

    Work will be graded on the following plus/minus A-F scale. Failure to complete the assignment will result in a failing grade for the course. The graduate component grade will be counted as the majority of your attendance/participation grade for the class.

    A+ 97-100
    A 94-96
    A 90-93
    B+ 87-89
    B 84-86
    B- 80-83
    C+ 77-79
    C 74-76
    C- 70-73
    F 69 or lower

    ----------Posted on August 16, 2012 by in 4806, Assignments

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