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Viewing: PSYCH 4971W vanmarlek : Developmental Psychology Capstone - Writing Intensive

Last approved: Mon, 17 Oct 2016 14:35:56 GMT

Last edit: Mon, 17 Oct 2016 14:35:56 GMT

Proposal Type

Writing Intensive

Contact Information

Psychological Sciences
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Instructor for whom you are submitting proposal:
Psychological Sciences
Subject Area’s Department Chair/Director:
Psychological Sciences

Term for Proposal

Spring 2017

Course Catalog Information

Psychology (PSYCH)
Developmental Psychology Capstone - Writing Intensive
Introduces students to developmental research methods through relevant readings and by students conducting original research. Enrollment limited to psychology majors with senior standing who have a grade of C or better in PSYCH 3020.
A-F (allow student to choose S/U option)
Instructor's consent required.

Instructor Information

Psychological Sciences
(numbers only)
Tenured Associate Professor
210 McAlester Hall

The Campus Writing Program conducts a two-day faculty workshop to assist with the design and implementation of your writing intensive course. Once your course proposal has been approved by the Campus Writing Program, you will receive information on time, date and location of the workshop.
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Graduate Student
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Honors Course Information

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Writing Intensive Course Information

This course has two primary objectives: a) To introduce students to the research methods used to study human development. This objective will be accomplished through readings regarding developmental methods, readings of primary sources that incorporate developmental methods, and conducting and reporting original research. b) To provide students with experience writing an APA-style research report. This objective will be accomplished by providing students the opportunity to write the research report in sections over the course of the semester, receiving detailed and critical evaluation of their writing skills for each component, as well as for the final completed report. This course is not part of a multi-course sequence.
Self paced?

Should this course be considered for funding?

Large Enrollment Courses:

Writing Intensive Assignments

All Assignments
The students are required to write an APA-style research report, complete with all appropriate sections, in the correct APA formats, including references, tables, and figures. Initial drafts of each major section are due over the course of the semester. All assignments will be thoroughly commented on by the TAs and the instructor, providing 2 independent sets of comments/suggestions per assignment. The student is expected to incorporate the comments/suggestions into their final report. So, in essence, there are two drafts for each portion of the paper. Here are the individual assignments: 1) List of references, to be formatted in APA style. This provides students with experience finding and writing references in APA style. The assignment is usually 1-3 pages long double-spaced. 2) Article Summaries. Students are required to summarize 6 articles that are relevant to the research question they have chosen to explore. The goal is to give them early feedback on the scope of information they should be including when summarizing background research in the introduction section of their research paper. Each summary is approximately 1/2 pg in length, for a total of 3 pages of text. 3) Introduction and Methods. Students are required to write a draft of the introduction and methods sections of their research paper. The introduction is approximately 2-3 pages long, while the methods section is approximately 2-3 pages long. Students are also required to include a reference list in APA style. They receive elaborate feedback as to their writing style, conciseness, clarity of expression, and adherence to APA style, with regard to references, citations, section headings, etc. (4-6 total pages) 4) Data analyses. Students are required to perform and report their data analyses in the same way as in an APA style research report. They have to include the statistics and a written out summary approximately 6-8 sentences long of each statistical finding. This is intended to prepare them to write an APA-style results section. Length of assignment varies depending on how many statistical tests were conducted. (1-2 pages total) 5) Results and Discussion. Students are required to write a draft of their results and discussion sections, in APA style. They receive detailed comments regarding the clarity of their expression, the accuracy of their reporting of statistics, the validity of the conclusions they draw on the basis of their findings, and on the scope and clarity of their discussion of the results. The results section is generally 2-3 pages long, while the discussion section is usually 2-3 pages long. (4-6 pages total) 6) oral presentation. Students are required to give a short 5 min PowerPoint presentation that follows the same structure as their research paper. They are graded partially on their use of PowerPoint slides, which in essence is another writing skill. 7) Final research paper. Students are required to turn in a final draft that should be formatted like an APA style manuscript. They are expected to take into account the extensive comments made by the TA and the instructor regarding their exposition on earlier assignments. They are encouraged to turn in drafts of their final research paper to the TA and/or instructor for comments before the final due date. The total length is approximately 8-10 pages, with additional pages devoted to the reference list, tables, and figures. Additional Writing: We use writing to practice/learn how to form an argument, within the context of a research manuscript, such as would be submitted to a peer-reviewed journal reporting empirical findings. In class writing exercises will focus on clarity of argument, basics such as topic sentences, connecting ideas with proper language, and supporting conclusions.
Length of assignment:
Course instructor (me) and the TA
Course instructor (me) and the TA

Total pages for all assignments:
First drafts:
First draft evaluators will be myself and the TA. All students have all their written assignments commented/graded by both myself and the TA.

Writing Intensive Teaching

Instructor provided feedback
Oral presentation by student, followed by feedback
Peer review
Students receive feedback from their peers in a small group setting, written feedback from the instructor and TA on the assignments they hand in, and they also must deliver a short oral presentation with power point at the end of the semester, on which they also receive feedback.
The students in this course are all conducting original research, which involves coming up with a research question, developing hypotheses, designing a study to assess the hypotheses, collecting data, conducting statistical analyses on their data, reporting their results, and interpreting the implications of their results. In every case, there is room for interpretation, especially with regard to the possible implications of their research. Each student is encouraged to think for themselves from the beginning, when they are deciding on a research question, to the end, when they are interpreting their findings and discussing their implications.
They begin in class writing assignments the first week of class and have their first written homework assignment due in the 7th week of the course. The remaining in and out of class assignments are distributed roughly evenly over the course of the semester.
In addition to requesting previous TAs who have done well, I provide all TAs with explicit grading instructions to ensure objectivity and consistency in grading. In addition, I meet with my TA prior to the beginning of the semester to go over my expectations and the role they play in the course, which includes not only assessing students writing, but also working with students one-on-one in class, giving feedback on their project and their writing.

Course Syllabus

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Administrative Information

Education and Social Sciences


I have read and reviewed the updated proposal

Additional Comments

Patricia Luckenotte (luckenottep) (Mon, 17 Oct 2016 14:35:49 GMT): I have added PSYCH 4971W, 01 to the Spring 2017 schedule of classes and cancelled the regular section of PSYCH 4971, 01 for Spring 2017
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