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Synthesis Assignment: Charting Where the Authors Intersect

Synthesis Assignment: Charting Where the Authors Intersect
California State University, San Bernardino
Kathryn Hansler, an Instructor at Cal State San Bernardino, developed an assignment for a First Year Composition course that takes place after several lessons on synthesis and close readings of 2 texts. This assignment is used to help prepare students for an essay where they develop their own theory on the issue of news media objectivity. Part 1 of the assignment asks students for homework to complete a chart [Google doc] identifying where the two authors' ideas intersect, how/why they intersect, and then asks the student to draw conclusions; what they're noticing about the scholarly conversation; what's at stake or forms the disagreement. The two scholars utilized for this assignment are Jay Rosen’s “Beyond Objectivity” and Linda Greenhouse’s “Challenging ‘He Said, She Said’ Journalism”, however any 2 texts on any issue can be substituted. Part 2 and 3 can be adapted as an in-class learning activity, either for synchronous or asynchronous course, or f2f. Part 2: Students complete a Google Shared Chart, where each student adds 1 idea from their homework. Part 3: Using Google Jamboard students then discuss what they discover in their synthesis in 3 prompts.