Pract The Facts General Course Outline

Critical Analysis of Current Event Civics Issues In Today’s Media

Prerequisite: 10th grade and above. This can be taught as an adult education class as well.

Quarter

TBD

Meeting Days/Time

TBD

Instructor

Dr. Ellis G. Godwin

(Resume On Request)

Instructor Phone

312-339-4673

Instructor E-mail

dreggodwin@practice-learning.com

Instructor Office Hours/Location

TBD

Academic Office Phone Number

TBD

Strayer Online Technical Support

TBD

 Helpdesk

 

Course description

The course is designed to teach students how to critically seek out, analyze, and fact check information related to current event civic issues in the media.  By taking this class it is hoped the student will develop the skills to determine the validity and accuracy of the information they get from the media on civic related issues. Using articles and quotes from a variety of sources the student will discover how things such as omission, fake news, brand awareness, and point of view can affect how information is delivered via print, television, and social media.  Subjects covered in the course include issues both locally and nationally with respect to race, politics, education, health care and more. The students will be evaluated using essay writing, classroom participation, discussion questions and math problems.  It is also hoped that they will develop the ability to determine how they will react to the issue with respect to their life objectives and their community.

Note:

While the course will deal with many current and past political issues it does not point the student to one particular position on the issues.  The objective is that the student makes his or her decisions based on their research.

 

Required Course Material

Book:

Pract The Facts

Critical Analysis of Current Event Civics Issues in Today’s Media

Volume 1

Dr. E.G. Godwin

Equipment:

The student should have access to a computer to do in class research. The course can be taught in a computer lab.

Classroom Equipment

For some video challenges it would be good to have a television or radio available for live research.

Course Objectives:

  1. Teach the student how to identify civic issues in the media that are relevant to him or her.
  2. Teach the student how issues can be manipulated in the media to distort the accuracy of what is being reported.
  3. To teach the student who the major stakeholders are with respect to civics ….nationally, statewide, and locally.
  4. To provide exercises to improve the students critical thinking and fact checking skills with respect to the civic issues in the media.
  5.  To promote actions as a result of the decisions they make based on their critical analysis of the subject.

Course Highlights:

Each chapter of the book includes the following assignments:

  1. Quotations or statements related to current events that the student needs to fact check (Pract The Facts).
  2. Short essay writing.
  3. Research
  4. Critical Thinking
  5. Oral Discussion
  6. Mathematical questions
  7. Discussion Questions  (Could be done online as homework using Blackboard.)

Classroom size:

10 to 15 students.

Evaluation:

Students will be evaluated on the following:

  1. Essay writing.
  2. How well the student defends their position in their essay.
  3. The use of references to support their position in essays and discussion questions.
  4. Class participation in oral discussions. Learning how to orally defend a position.
  5. Written discussion questions.
  6. Math questions.

 

Grading Guidelines:

Non-Credit Course:

Grading for non-credit courses should be done based on assignment completion percentage as established by the instructor. 

Grading Scale…Pass/Fail

Assignment

Total

Required to pass course

Essays.

11

9

Discussion Questions (2 per week)

22

18

Math Question

Various

9

What Divides Us.

11

9

Class Participation (Weekly)

9

11

Call To Action

11

9

One of the other assignments in the section for the week i.e Facebook Challenge,Article Challenge, Video Challenge, Comment Challenge

11

9

 

Pass….Student completes at least 80% of all assigned assignments.

Fail……Student completes less than 80% of all assigned assignments.

 

 

Grading Scale Credit Course:

Assignment

Total Points

% of

Grade

Essays (11 one for each assignment. 50 points each)

550

29%

Math Question (11, worth 10 points each)

110

6%

Discussion Questions (2 each lesson worth 20 points each.)

220

11%

What Divides Us (11 worth 10 points each.)

110

6%

Class participation (50 points each week)

550

29%

Call to Action (11 worth 10 points each)

110

6%

One of the other assignments in the section for the week i.e Facebook Challenge,Article Challenge, Video Challenge, Comment Challenge (11 worth 20 points each)

220

11%

Total

1870

 

 

 

Points

Percentage

Grade

1683 – 1870

 90% – 100%

A

1496– 1682

80% – 89%

B

            1309 – 1495

70% – 79%

C

            1122   -  1308

60% - 69%

D

Below 1308

Below 60%

F

 

Suggested Grading Rubric for Essay Questions:

Excellent 45-50 Points

Shows a thorough understanding of the question -  Addresses all aspects of the question

Shows an ability to analyze. evaluate, compare, and/or contrast issues and events

Richly supports essay with relevant facts, examples, and details

Writes a well-developed essay. consistently demonstrating a logical and clear plan of organization

 Includes a strong introduction and conclusion and strong topic sentences for each paragraph

The student has met 90% of the word count requirement

The student has met 100% of the reference requirement

Good 40-44.9

Presents a general understanding of the question

Addresses most aspects of the question or addresses all aspects in a limited way

Shows an ability to analyze or evaluate issues and events, but not in any depth

Writes a satisfactorily developed essay, demonstrating a general plan of organization, with adequate topic sentences

The student has met 80% of the word count requirement.

The student has met 80% of the reference requirement.

Average 35-39.9

Restates the question in the introduction and concludes with a simple restatements of the question

Attempts to address the question, but uses vague and/or somewhat  inaccurate information

Shows a limited understanding of the question; omits concrete examples; uses weak details

Writes a poorly’ organized essay lacking focus: uses few facts, examples & details;  includes information that contains  inaccuracies.

The student has met 70% of the word count requirement.

The student has met 70% of the reference requirement.

Poor  30-34.9

Has vague or missing introduction and/or conclusion

Develops a faulty analysis or evaluation 

Lacks analysis or evaluation of the issues and events beyond stating vague and/or inaccurate facts

Uses little or no accurate or relevant facts, details, or examples

Weak topic sentences and/or no paragraphing (one long paragraph)

The student has met only 60% of the word count requirement.

The student did not use any references in his essay.

Unsatisfactory  Below 30

Fails to address the question adequately

Is illegible

Suggested essay word count guideline

Evaluation

Short Essay

10th Grade…………….100 words…..1 reference

11th Grade……………..200 words….2 references

12th Grade and above……………..300 words....3 references

Discussion Questions

10th grade……………50 words….….1 reference

11th grade…………….75 words……..1 reference

12th grade and above…………….100 words…...1 reference

 Suggested Discussion Question Grading Rubric

Grading Rubric for Classroom Weekly Discussions          (?)=Word count TBD by grade level

Points Earned

CATEGORY

5

4

3.75

1or 0

 

 

 

 

   _____

Contributions


Provides useful ideas when participating in the group and in classroom discussion. A definite leader who contributes a lot of effort and brings several new and thought provoking ideas to the discussion.

Usually provides useful ideas when participating in the group and in classroom discussion. Brings at least one new idea to the discussion.

Sometimes provides useful ideas when participating in the group and in classroom discussion. A satisfactory group member who does what is required.

Rarely provides useful ideas when participating in the group and in classroom discussion. May refuse to participate.

 

 

   _____

Quality of writing and proofreading


Written responses are free of grammatical, spelling or punctuation errors. The style of writing facilitates communication. Always identifies the person they are responding to in the post.

Written responses are largely free of grammatical, spelling, or punctuation errors. The style of writing generally facilitates communication.

Written responses contain more than six grammatical, spelling or punctuation errors. The style of writing does not facilitate communication.

Written responses contain more than a grammatical, spelling or punctuation errors the style of writing does not facilitate communication.

 

 

 

   _____

Initial Posting


Posts well developed assignment that fully addresses and develops all aspects of the task; contains full development of the concepts. Post is greater than (?) words. The majority of the post is not cut and paste and is composed of a majority of the students own words

Posts well developed assignment that addresses all aspects of the task; lacks full development of concepts. Post is between (?) words. The post is not cut and paste and is composed of a majority of the students own words

Posts adequate assignment with superficial thought and preparation; doesn’t address all aspects of the task. Post is between (?) words. The majority of the post is a cut and paste and not composed of a majority of the students own words.

The post is inadequate and/or off topic. The student did not respond to the initial/original question. Post is less than (?) words.

 

 

 

 

 

 

   _____

Response to other students and instructor


Post one thoughtful response to at least one other student’s ideas.  Posts is well developed and fully addresses and develops all aspects of the task; contains full development of the concepts. Post is greater than (?) words. The majority of the post is not cut and paste and is composed of a majority of the students own words

Post one thoughtful response to at least one other student’s ideas. Post is well developed and fully addresses and develops all aspects of the task; contains full development of the concepts. Post is between (?) and words. The majority of the post is not cut and paste and is composed of a majority of the students own words.

Post one response to at least one other student’s ideas. Post adequate assignment with superficial thought and preparation; doesn’t address all aspects of the task. Post is between (?) words. The majority of the post is a cut and paste and not composed of a majority of the students own words.

 

Rarely, if ever, becomes engaged in discussion with anyone else. The post is inadequate and/or off topic. Post is less than (?) words.

 

Grading for Classroom discussion rubric

A = 18-20                                                                     

B = 16-17.9                                                      

C = 14-15.9                                                      

D = 12-13.9

F =   Below 12

Course Syllabus:

Week 1.  How Do I Pract The Facts?

Objective

 In this session you will learn what it means to Pract The Facts. You will also review search techniques for the Internet.

Reading

Chapter 1. Read how to Pract The Facts.  Read how to search the internet.

Assignments

Pract The Facts:

Has Barack Obama Done Enough For African Americans During His Presidency?

Read the quote and do in class research.

Short Essay

Math Question

Call To Action

Participate in Classroom Discussion

2 Discussion Questions

One other assignment as assigned by the instructor.

 

Week 2.  Primary and Secondary Resources

Objectives:

To learn to identify primary and secondary resources

Reading

Read chapter two.

Assignments

Pract the Facts:

Chicago Teachers Threaten A Strike in 2016

Read the quote and do in class research.

Assignments:

Short Essay

2 Discussion Questions

Math Question

Call To Action

Participate in Classroom Discussion

One other assignment as assigned by the instructor.

  

Week 3.  What Divides Us

Learning Objectives:

To review the organizations, views, and ideologies, that divide us in the U.S.

Reading:

Read Chapter 3

Assignments

Pract The Facts:

Hillary Clinton And The Basket Of Deplorables

Read the quote and do in class research.

Short Essay

2 Discussion Questions

Math Question

Call To Action

Participate in Classroom Discussion

One other assignment as assigned by the instructor.

 

Week 4.   Points of View

Learning Objectives:

Understanding how points of view can influence public opinions and the media.

Reading

Read Chapter 4

Assignments

Pract The Facts:

Sugary Drinks Are Not The Problem. People Need To Exercise More.

Read the quote and do in class research.

Assignments:

Short Essay

2 Discussion Questions

Math Question

Call To Action

Participate in Classroom Discussion

One other assignment as assigned by the instructor.

 

Week 5. Know the Other Side

Learning Objectives:

To underscore the importance of understanding all sides of an issue.

Reading:

Read Chapter 5

Assignments:

Pract The Facts:

Why We Can’t Be Friends Any Longer After You Voted For Donald.

Read the quote and do in class research.

Assignments:

Short Essay

2 Discussion Questions

Math Question

Call To Action

Participate in Classroom Discussion

One other assignment as assigned by the instructor

 

Week 6.   Omission

Learning Objectives:

To understand how the omission of information can affect the accuracy of

Information.

Reading:

Read chapter 6

Assignments:

Pract The Facts:

Black People Don’t Protest About Black On Black Crime

Read the quote and do in class research.

Short Essay

2 Discussion Questions

Math Question

Call To Action

Participate in Classroom Discussion

One other assignment as assigned by the instructor

  

Week 7.   What is Beautiful is Good

Learning Objectives:

How the attractiveness of the person delivering the information can affect how people view

The accuracy of the information. 

Reading:

Read chapter 7

Assignment

Pract The Facts:

Do  Men and Women Find Other Attractive Women More Credible When Presenting The News?

Read the quote and do in class research.

Short Essay

2 Discussion Questions

Math Question

Call To Action

Participate in Classroom Discussion

One other assignment as assigned by the instructor

  

Week 8.   What’s in a Brand?

Learning Objective:

How  a persons brand can affect what they say on an issue and how we should react.

Reading:

Read Chapter 8

Assignments:

Pract The Facts:

John Stewart comments On Racism and Donald Trump

Read the quote and do in class research.

Assignments:

Short Essay

2 Discussion Questions

Math Question

Call To Action

Participate in Classroom Discussion

One other assignment as assigned by the instructor

 

Week 9.   What’s in a Headline?

Learning Objective:

How Headlines can affect how a person reads and understands an article.

Reading:

Read Chapter 9

Assignments:

Pract The Facts:

What’s in a Headline? (various headlines)

Read the quote and do in class research.

Short Essay

2 Discussion Questions

Math Question

Call To Action

Participate in Classroom Discussion

One other assignment as assigned by the instructor

  

Week 10.   Fake News

Learning Objectives:

How to identify and fact check fake news stories.

Reading:

Read Chapter 10

Assignments:

Pract The Facts:

“Nobody fact-checks anything anymore”

Read the quote and do in class research.

Short Essay

2 Discussion Questions

Math Question

Call To Action

Participate in Classroom Discussion

One other assignment as assigned by the instructor

 

Week 11. Fact Checking Resources

Learning Objectives:

Fact Checking Resources on The Web

Reading:

Read Chapter 11

Assignments:

Pract The Facts:

Donald Trump and Immigration

Read the quote and do in class research.

Assignments:

Short Essay

2 Discussion Questions

Math Question

Call To Action

Participate in Classroom Discussion

One other assignment as assigned by the instructor

Syllabus Notes :

1. The 5 week summer course will consist of week 1 and week 2 lessons. The other 3 week subject matter will consist of 3 of the 8 week lessons on the syllabus.

2. This is a living class. Some subject matter may change based on current events in the media in or around the weeks session. 

 

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