Update: Progress report and follow-up of 21 March 2015

Let’s see if this can help you catch up on this lasts stages of your work and learning experience on our challenging topic. Let’s start if we can all see where things stand with the course today.

  1. Progress report: The following summarizes the assignments I have received from you and posted to our site thus far. It may well be that I have not received and posted some of these.  If you can see that I have missed something from you on this chart, please let me have your latest and best submittals. My error will be corrected. Thank you

Class progress 21mar14

  1. Improved Quick Reports: First of all I would like to thank those of you who have accepted the challenge and taken the time and trouble to do this, for your much improved “quick reports”. A good 50% of them as fist submitted were, let me find he word, “underdeveloped”. It was clear that I had not been sufficiently precise in terms of the quality that I expected from you.  About half of you went to work and sent on substantially improved paper. As a result they’re now looking a lot better and far more interesting.This is to your advantage and to that of the class since hopefully we will all be following the progress and work of our colleagues here.  Again this is a group learning process. So do your best, not only for yourself but for all of us.  (If you have any questions about them, please note that in the top menu link labeled ASSIGNMENTS, in each case there is a background note next to the respective report which clarifies our level of ambition for you.  Which of course is high.
  2. PowerPoint, Oops: Please do not use, either here in my course or in all your professional work, PowerPoint as a crutch to unthought-out work. Noting is more grating than a PPT presentation that opens with your name and some off the shelf graphic, then goes on to list a few pints, and then ends with a final flamboyant THANK YOU. No please, use your heads and do all of your original exploratory work and writing in prose form.  Then perhaps, once you have it all down, you can then develop your nice set of PPT slides to help your audience follow your dense and carefully researched and analyzed presentation. But please, don’t start with PPT.
  3. Final Report/Personal excellence: You all have something interesting to say and share with us on the topic of our seminar. But to put it on paper requires rigor, thought and work. But once again, there were a fair number of the early proposals that clearly needed more attention.Happily a handful of you have in the last days initiated discussions with me about your proposed topic, and have started to show a higher level of ambition on what you want to achieve and have in the book as a lasting contribution of which you can be proud.  In several cases this involves some juggling of the work plan and objectives, and in one case a complete change of topic.  I’m very hopeful about these discussions and what they are leading us to. I invite you to step up your ambition to become part of a great a varied group contribution.
  4.  Our  Collaborative Book Project — and Why This Year We Want to write essays:  May I ask you before you turn back to work on your final paper to carefully read the posting at http://wp.me/p1zD54-Jy
  1. Submittal Date: Okay, I am asking a lot. But I know you all have it in you (Remember I told you that first morning that we were not going to forget this experience.)I’m looking at the calendar and I see that as of today you have barely two weeks to get in your final papers (6 April). Hmm, a bit tight perhaps for those of you who are ready to seize this challenge. So let me offer an adjustment. I will set back the due date by one more week (remember at first it was 30 April), so you now have to 15 April.

Use that time well. Dig deep. Give us something that we are going to read with interest and appreciation.

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