Friday, March 26, 2010


My personal writing process goes something like this. I start off with main ideas I want to get across in my paper. I then write a sentence or two that explain each main point. Then I try to arrange a logical order to put the main ideas in, trying to make a good flow between my main points. After I get a good arrangement of my main points, I will free write a paragraph about each main point. My first run through will be rough and long. Then I will go through and refine the paragraphs. Using less words, choosing better words, rearranging the words in the sentences, and rearranging the sentences in the paragraph, trying to get a good flow, and make it easy for a reader to make scene of it. Even after that, my paper is still pretty rough. I had some people read my rough draft, they caught a lot of inconsistencies with my verb tense, and some simple grammatical error. I also read it aloud to some one, I was able to catch some messy sentences that didn't easily make sense. I actually spend quite a bit of time wrestling with pretty much every sentence. It takes me a few tries, of rewriting, refining and rearranging.

"Revisions: From First to Final Draft", by Sharon Williams helped me catch a lot of my errors. I realized I was using too many quotes, and I didn't always explain the significance of each quote I used. I also made an outline of my paper as Williams advised, this helped me catch some problems in the flow of the paper. By going over my outline I was able to rearrange a few paragraphs to make it flow better. I have spell checked and proofread many times over, and I am fairly proud of my paper.

Friday, March 5, 2010

"Does college matter?"

Examples of rhetorical appeal:

  • The author cited the book and PBS documentary "Declining by Degrees", since PBS is a pretty legitimate and popular documentary source it is a credible source, giving the blog some credibility.
  • She also establishes a common ground with the audience by writing about her experience as a mother of a girl in high school decided whether or not to go college. Parents, college students and high school students can all relate to this blog.
  • She also builds further credibility by respecting the opposition. She is not a big fan of the college institution, but she recognizes that college can do a lot of good for young kids looking to find out what they want to do with their lives.
  • The author tells a personal story about her daughter deciding not to go to college. This builds a emotional appeal when the reader thinks about the mother's concern for her daughter.
  • She also takes other peoples stories about their careers in relation to a college education, broadening the range of her emotional appeal.
  • The tone this author uses in this blog is cynical. Through out the entire blog she criticizes the college institutions. Her strong feelings made this blog pretty persuasive.
  • By stating the fact that the average education in computer science, engineering and medicine become partly obsolete within 18 months, the author builds a logical appeal.
  • Also by stating the fact that a college degree means you will earn more money, but money doesn't necessarily make people happy, she makes her cynical view seem more logical.
  • The Author writes about how students perceive college as being about socializing and independence. Then she brings up the logical notion that college can cost $80,000 and if some one is looking for socializing and independence there are much cheaper ways of going about it, like going on a bicycle trip across Europe.

My Response to the blog:

I have been a college student at UVU for seven years. When I was a junior in high school i decided to take my GED and just go to college a year earlier than my other classmates. I started college with eagerness and passion. I chose a degree in fine arts because i have a great talent that would be a shame not to nurture to its fullest potential. After a few years of just messing around, not really focusing on graduating, which is why i still have no degree after seven years, I noticed that being a successful artist will have little to do with my degree. If i am going to make it as a artist it will happen with or without a degree, it just depends on how much work i put into it. I took the last year off school to catch up on bills, and came to the conclusion that i do need to go back to school, because i now have a family i need to provide for. And the truth of the matter is that i do need that piece of paper called a diploma to get a good job with benefits. Sure i can try to make it as a successful gallery artist or illustrator, but that is a really risky way of trying to feed a family. Some of the greatest art masters in history either never made any money doing art while they were alive, or it took them most of their life to start making money off of their art.

But going to college is far more that getting a degree, I am learning how to learn. In painting and drawing classes I am learning about composition, color theory and what not. And through these classes, to my surprise, I am learning concepts and mechanisms that help me out in every day life and in other courses. I learn how to be efficient and complete project, I am learning how see the big picture and how everything works together and paying attention to detail at the same time. I find my self applying the things i learn with my paintbrush to other aspects of my life.

In addition to a bachelors in fine arts I am working on a associates in science. I feel i am getting a well rounded education. The things i learn about physics, cosmology, history, psychology, math... you know the general ed stuff, I apply them in my every day decision making. Somehow i will be in a situation were my knowledge of osmosis helped my make good decisions to a every day problem.

I chose to go to college to make a stable future for my family and I, but through the adventure of college I was able to "grow up" and find out who i am and what i believe in. College has shaped me as a person. By attending classes i have gained a deep appreciation for my teachers. I realized that teaching is what i really want to do with my life, I cant think of a nobler profession. Doing art makes me very happy, it is a way for me to express my soul, but this is all something i do for selfish reasons, I paint for no one else but me. But i want to do something more in my life, I want to do something for others, and what better way to do that than teaching, passing on knowledge, and providing people with the tools for a successful life, broadening their perspective and helping them make sense out of these dimensions we live in.

I'm not going to say the college is the place for everyone. But for me it is the right place, it makes me happy. What I am gaining through my college education is invaluable to my life, and i wouldn't trade it for anything.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Homosapien 2.0

Now that we have all logged on and actively disconnected from the real world, maybe we can share some of our ideas with the hostility that comes along with face to face conversation. People tend to find my point of view offensive and are quick to tell me were i am wrong. But with a blog like this I wont have to be interrupted. So if you don't like my point of view, then stop reading. If you feel like you need to tell me something, then do so in the designated comment area. It is a much more polite way conversing. Online we are disconnected from the human aspect of conversation, and being disconnected promotes honesty. I'm not saying we are all lying when we talk face to face, but we do hold somethings back.

Using blogging as a tool for an college English class I think it is inventive and bold. But i don't think it is healthy. Like most technology, I think blogging is separating us from the natural way of life. Blogging removes the most important part of conversation, the connection from one human soul to another. When we talk to some one we are using much more than just words, and we receive and give much more than just ideas. That raw human interaction is becoming more rare. What a shame.

Sure our technology has connected the world, but that is not what we need. A globalized community is not what nature intended for us, we are supposed to have small tight nit tribal communities. Our minds and bodies were carefully sculpted through evolution by nature. But we have a strange quark in us, we have taken control of our evolution, mother nature no longer dictates the path for our species. We have snatched the reigns away from mother earth around the time that agriculture was invented, and we have been on a slippery slope ever since. Slowly growing further and further from our natural state of being.But there is still a simple check in balance system built into the universe, which we will never be free of. Successful strategies will live on and unsuccessful strategies will fall. So I have faith that the human race will live on long after the earth dies, with all of our technology we have learned to survive in outer space.

Oh yes I almost forgot about the main point “blogging”. So before I wrap it up let me bring it all back around. Though blogging might be a unnatural way of communicating, what the hell. I might wish to be a human again, a raw organic human, but we as a society are way past that point now, and there is no turning back. We are on our way to becoming cyborgs, half human half technology. Just look at us; lap tops, cell phones, I pods, are all becoming a inseparable part of our society. And as technology progresses those devices get smaller and more personalized, what's next cell phone implants in our brain? It's not that far out, the cyborg is on its way. It is the next generation of humans, the next evolutionary step for a new species, Homosapien 2.0 .