envpolcy

Environmental Policy Graduate Seminar

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Environmental Policy Seminar Overview

 Grading Criteria for Research Paper Presentations

  • Presentation: Clear and well-organized; presentation articulate, poised, with appropriate choice of language (adequately formal, precise, scholarly, accurate terminology, but easy for the audience to follow).

  • Understanding of the topic: Appropriate understanding for in-depth discussion; correct summary of positions of various stakeholders, if relevant; grasp of relevant technical topics and methods, and of relevant policies, regulations, or agency positions and responsibilities.

  • Use of concepts from class: Placing of the presentation within the context of concepts and themes developed in class; accurate grasp of class concepts as they relate to the selected topic.

  • Analysis and conclusions: Depth and accuracy of assessment of the issue presented; conclusions valid and well-supported

  • Comprehensiveness: Success and completeness of the group presentation as a whole; addressing the predominant issues of the selected topic and accurate selection of relevance of topics from the class, with scope appropriate to the number of people in the group.

Grading Criteria for All Written Work

  • Understanding of the topic (20%): Appropriate depth of understanding; correct summary of positions of various stakeholders, if relevant; grasp of relevant policies, regulations, or agency positions and responsibilities; appropriate use of concepts presented in class (mastery of the concepts, and correctly placing your arguments in the context of the appropriate concepts). As a guideline, to demonstrate you have recognized key topics presented by previous researchers, I expect your work to cite and reference at least 3 items from the scholarly literature, plus additional information from public agency sources or Web sites, to the extent those are helpful.

  • Quality of analysis (25%): Depth and sophistication of the arguments; appropriate emphasis on important aspects of the topic; emphasis on critical assessment of the issues rather than descriptive summary; appropriate recognition of advantages and disadvantages of “both sides,” not limited to concepts supporting the preferred conclusion.

  • Conclusions (20%): Depth and accuracy of assessment of the issue presented; conclusions valid and well-supported by the data, concepts, and arguments presented in the paper; recognition of limitations.

  • Writing style (15%): CLEAR; polished and professional; grammatically correct; easy to read. Appropriate choice of language (adequately formal, precise, scholarly, accurate terminology). Appropriately cited and referenced in APA format: (Utilize the Web Resources to Follow)

 APA Documentation Method

Students are strongly encouraged to take the time to complete the following online APA Citation and Reference Tutorial offered by Harvard University. One of the objectives of this class is that you learn how to use the APA documentation style. You can learn everything you need to know about how to use this method by studying the material at the following sites. Please understand that any of your discussion questions or your student presentation papers that are lacking in complete APA styled documentation will be returned to you and will not be graded until they are in order.

  • Organization (20%): Clear and well-organized; divided into sections as appropriate.

  • Overall: Discussion coherent; arguments clearly introduced, build upon one another.

  • Paragraph level: Arguments well constructed; paragraphs make sense internally.

Student Assessment Form and Format

Students will utilize the following format in critiquing the presentations of fellow students:

 

Student:   ____________________________       Begin time: ______   End time: _______

1.      Presentation: Clear and well-organized; presentation articulate, poised, with appropriate choice of language (adequately formal, precise, scholarly, accurate terminology, but easy for the audience to follow). Graphics well chosen, informative, and relevant to main points; easy to read.  Length / time of presentation appropriate for time assigned.    

Score: ________ / 20    Comments:

 

2.  Understanding and description of the material: Appropriate understanding for in-depth discussion; correct summary of positions of various stakeholders, if relevant; grasp of relevant technical topics and methods, and of relevant policies, regulations, or agency positions and responsibilities. Describe topics and issues in a way the class can follow, but not too elementary.

     Score: ________ / 25                      Comments:

 

3.  Use of concepts from class: Placing of the presentation within the context of concepts and themes developed in class; accurate grasp of class concepts as they relate to the selected topic.

     Score: ________ / 15                      Comments:

 

4.  Analysis and conclusions: Focus on analysis rather than presentation of data. Depth and accuracy of assessment of the issue presented; conclusions valid and well-supported. Avoid conclusions not supported by your material.     

     Score: ________ / 25                      Comments:

 

5.  Collaboration / comprehensiveness: Effective group effort: presentations work together effectively, avoid redundancy. Completeness of the group presentation as a whole: successfully capture the predominant issues of the selected topic, and appropriately selected key issues relevant to the topics, with scope appropriate to the number of people in the group.

     Score: ________ / 15                      Comments:

 

 

Final Research Paper Assignment

The research paper will address a topic derived from the case studies found in The Environmental Case by Judith Layzer (2012). Class will begin with a lottery and the student will develop their research paper around the case study chapter they draw from this text . Students will thoroughly research the literature around which the case has been developed and will update information on the case whenever that information is available. They will also compare the case they are working on to similar cases that have dealt with similar issues and critique similarities and dissimilarities.  The research case analysis must be well-supported with full citations and references.  The paper should provide a careful critical analysis of the policy and/or scholarly issue you are working on. You should cite (and make analytical use of) supporting documents from the scholarly literature and/or appropriate texts, as well as primary sources for government policy, in addition to the main document you are critiquing. The paper must be no more than 30 pages in length, double-spaced, with ample margins for instructor’s comments.

 

Class Participation

The class has an orientation toward analysis and discussion, so your active preparation and participation are a key part of your grade evaluation. I encourage questions and discussion. It is crucial that you complete the readings before they are discussed in class, and that you prepare intelligently for class before discussing and analyzing the material and related concepts. This includes the readings assigned for each class session. Students are expected to actively engage in thoughtful discussion that is on topic and makes critical use of the scholarly readings. Students must complete all readings before coming to class and will be penalized for coming to class unprepared.

 

Attendance & Classroom Setting

Students are expected to participate in all class sessions. If some unavoidable circumstance results in your missing a session, please confer with the instructor before class if at all possible, or immediately after class. Students who expect to miss class for reasons related to observance of religious holidays should inform the instructor no later than the second week of class.

 

Short Written Assignments

Students will complete brief papers on assigned topics, to be selected. Written assignments are to be submitted in Word or Rich Text Format, double-spaced, 10 point type, with ample margins (no less than 1 inch), and no more than 10 pages in length.  Students should pay attention to organization and clarity of writing and all work must strictly adhere to APA format.

 

Papers and Comp Exam Submission

Electronic submittals are required of ALL work. The Comp Exam must be emailed to the instructor at twimber@fgcu.edu and must be in Word or Rich Text format. Due dates for assignments are found on the course schedule page.

 

 Research Paper Presentation

Students will be expected to present their research papers to the class in a 10 minute presentation and must be prepared to address issues and concerns raised by classmates as well as defend and critique the major assumptions of their paper. All students in the class are expected to study the case studies students will be presenting on prior to coming to the class and in preparation for critiquing their fellow students.

 

Academic Honesty

Take care to properly attribute text and ideas when citing published literature or other work, including Internet sources. Using text or ideas from another’s work, including your own previously published work, must be fully cited and documented. Failure to do this is not only careless but actually a violation of academic standards. Students are expected to understand the definitions of all forms of plagiarism. Students who violate the prohibition against plagiarism will fail the course with a “permanent F.”

Sources of Information

 The library system maintains electronic subscriptions to a large number of scholarly journals, so recent literature and academic-style analyses are readily available. State and federal Internet materials are useful sources for current official positions and recent deliberations, and competing critical analyses can often be found on sites of public interest groups (NRDC, WWF, many others). However, students are cautioned to consider the validity of print and Internet sources that are not peer reviewed and/or do not contain official policy decisions of government agencies. Wikipedia is not a valid source for research papers. 

 

Class Sessions

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