Student Web Essays

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Rather than typing a traditional paper to be read only by their professor, students in the Cities Suburbs and Schools seminar compose web essays, which blend textual narrative and digital evidence and are designed for public audiences, with invited guest evaluators. Comments are welcome.

Spring 2016: Historical web essays on civil rights activism in education

Guest evaluators:

Guest evaluators Jasmin Agosto (right) and Glenn Mitoma (center)
Guest evaluators Jasmin Agosto (right) and Glenn Mitoma (center)
  • Jasmin Agosto (Trinity ’10 and NYU Gallatin MA ’15), Hartford artist/activist/ researcher
  • Glenn Mitoma, Assistant Professor of Education and Human Rights, and Director of the Dodd Research Center, University of Connecticut
  • Susan Campbell, Distinguished Lecturer in journalism, University of New Haven

Evaluation criteria:

  • Does the essay tell a compelling story from the perspective of people at that point in time?
  • Does the essay make insightful claims about the past, supported with persuasive evidence?
  • Does this blend of text and digitized sources make you think about the topic in new ways?

Spring 2015 Wesleyan seminar web essays:

Guest evaluators: Fionnuala Darby-Hudgens and Kenny Feder

  • Does the essay present a compelling argument and/or narrative about a significant aspect of choice in schooling and/or housing?
  • Does it inspire the reader to think about this topic in new ways?
  • Are claims persuasively supported with appropriate evidence and is the reasoning well developed?
  • Does the essay also consider counter-arguments or conflicting evidence?
  • Does the essay make effective use of the web format by blending text with appropriate digital elements (such as links, images, charts, maps, etc.)?
  • Is the essay organized and well written? Does it include sufficient background for audiences unfamiliar with the topic?
  • Does the essay cite all sources in an appropriate format, so that future readers may find them?

Fall 2012 web essays:

Guest evaluators: Wesleyan students from SOCL 419: Education Policy in the US 

  • Does the web-essay present a compelling argument or story about a significant aspect of cities, suburbs, and schools? Does it inspire the reader to think in new ways?
  • Are the claims supported with appropriate evidence and is the reasoning well developed? Is counter-evidence fully considered?
  • Does it make effective use of web-essay format by integrating narrative text with appropriate digital elements (such as maps, charts, photos, videos, links)?
  • Is the web-essay organized and well written?
  • Does it include sufficient background for audiences unfamiliar with the topic?
  • Does it cite all sources in an appropriate format that future readers may find?

Fall 2011 seminar web-essays:
Guest evaluators: Claudia Dresser ’10 and Devlin Hughes ’09

Desegregated Schools within Segregated Classrooms: The Reality of Racialized Tracking at Magnet Schools, by Pornpat Pootinath and Nathan Walsh

Housing in Greater Hartford: Does it Affect Education?, by Booker Evans and Carlos Velazquez

A Step-by-Step Guide for Parents: School Choice Shouldn’t be this Complicated, by Ashley Ardinger and Courtney Chaloff

The Sheff Shift: Where Does Higher Student Achievement Fit into the Sheff v. O’Neill Remedy?, by Shanese Caton

Is Open Choice an Effective Program in Providing an Equal Educational Opportunity to Hartford Students?, by Bryan Garrett-Farb

The Middle Ground between Voluntary and Mandatory Desegregation, by Karina Torres

How the No Child Left Behind Act Widened Achievement Gaps in the Greater Hartford Region, by Daniel Luke

Prospect Ave, A Game of Inches: Educational Opportunity Between Hartford and West Hartford, by Bobby Moore Jr.

School Choice: The Child’s Perspective on High School Education, by Jessica Schlundt and Louise Balsmeyer

To Bus or Not to Bus? The Choice of a Hartford Student, by Hannah Malenfant and Candace Baker

Success within Segregation: Jumoke Academy Exposes the Limits of Integration as an Educational Benchmark, by Fionnuala Darby Hudgens and Mary Morr

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