Tip: go systematically through these, crossing each one off like a list. When I
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Tip: go systematically through these, crossing each one off like a list. When I mark your Review, it’s what I’m going to do. This review should do four things, in order of priority from 1 to 4. 1. FULFIL BASIC UNIVERSITY EXPECTATIONS.
For your Review to be marked, it must be
· Written in paragraph – sentence form. · Single-spaced (easier for me to mark).
· About 1500 words minimum. o Why ‘about’? Because I’d rather have 1400 words that form an interesting and insightful review rather than 2000 words that are dull and repetitive. § As you develop your writing, you should be aiming to squeeze, distil and compact your ideas – so take a 100 word paragraph and try cutting it to 75 or less.
· When referring to a specific point made by the author, must include a reference, including page number. o Use the (Author, Page) format for the first reference, for instance”(Berman and Dorrier, 3)”. After this, just put the page reference in, e.g. “(4)”.
If your Review does not meet the conditions noted above, it will be handed back to you, and you will have to resubmit; late penalties will apply.
For your Review to receive above 50% it must be
· Grammatically correct and clearly written.
· Polished, with few or no typos or spelling problems. o This means you have to proofread it. For your Review to receive above 55%, it must Have its first two paragraphs summarizing the central claims or claims of the article, in your own words. o Hint: if there’s an abstract, look at it or the conclusion. 2. LOOK FOR WHAT’S THERE.
For your Review to receive above 60%, it must answer the following questions:
o Who are the authors? o Who are they writing for? Their audience? · WHERE
o What part of the world are the authors writing from? If it’s not explicitly stated, can you guess or find out? Are they professors or entrepreneurs or some other occupation?
o Where is the location of the topic they’re writing about? If unstated, can you guess where the “epicentre” of this topic is (e.g. Silicon Valley)?
o When was this piece written? · WHAT
o What kind of evidence is used to support their claims? o What kind of research methods did they use to gather this evidence? o What do they mean by the words “X”? § In the case of Berman and Dorrier, “X” mean the words “evolution,” “progress,” and “technology.” Define what you think they mean by these words. § Then go to a dictionary (try https://www-oed-com.ezproxy.library.yorku.ca/) and look up those words. In your notes, write down the definition that’s closest to the definition the authors are using. Notice if there’s a gap or not.
o How do the examples or cases or other forms of evidence used illustrate the authors’ points? (Do you think they work or not?)
o Why are the authors writing this? What is their stated purpose? If they aren’t saying why, can you speculate on a reason?
3. LOOK FOR WHAT’S MISSING.
For your Review to receive above 70%, it must answer the following questions:
o If it’s been a few years since the piece was published, have things changed so much as to cast doubt on the claims or conclusions? Or do its claims still largely hold?
o Are the authors taking their own location or situation and extrapolating it to the world situation at large without meaning to? (Are they being ‘provincial’ and blinkered?)
o What do the authors want you to think? o Are the definitions being used accurate and precise? Or are there logical flaws or mistakes in those definitions? § For instance, · Are there large blind spots (conceptually)?
· Are there large blind spots (methodologically or evidentially?)
o What objections might you raise to their claims?
o Is the evidence they use good enough to support their claims? Is it missing something?
For your Review to receive above 75%, it must answer the following questions:
o Cui bono? Who benefits? § There’s a great saying: never ask a barber if you need a haircut (since they’ll always say ‘yes’). Barbers have a financial interest in getting you to have more haircuts. Authors, even university professors, have interests, even if they’re not fully aware of these interests or are explicit about them. § Therefore: whose interests are being served by this article? In other words, if everyone in the world came to accept every single word in this article as truth, what kind of people would benefit financially or by reputation? 4. START ASKING BETTER QUESTIONS.
Look at “Newell’s Questions” in the eClass reading to see which of them are applicable to the reading. For instance, in Berman and Dorrier, look at CHOICE and the subquestion “who’s doing the choosing?”: who is doing the choosing about technology accelerating? (If they don’t say, can you try to figure this out?)
BENEFITS and the subquestion “how is benefit [progress] defined? By whom?”
But you can look at other questions about RISK, RESPONSIBILITY, COST or ACCESS.
For your Review to receive above 80%, it must answer all of the questions noted above, and also
· Be well written
o Show signs of “compression” : no unnecessary words o Use words precisely o e.g. don’t just say “artificial intelligence” where you really mean “machine learning” (a specific kind of AI); don’t say ‘southern Africa’ when you really mean Zimbabwe; don’t say “the 1990s” when you really mean April 21, 1997.
· Show signs of critical thinking
o pointing out weaknesses in the text such as § imprecise language or definitions § logical contradictions
§ scanty or insufficient evidence for the claim the author is making
§ assumptions made by author they don’t seem to be aware of
o I especially value “contrarian” thinking, if it’s backed up with evidence and is logically self-consistent.
· Show signs of (self-aware) thinking (aka “reflexivity”)
o self-awareness of one’s own beliefs; questioning those beliefs
§ for instance, you might say how your beliefs changed. · Show signs of analytical thinking o able to break down argument or definitions into parts, possibly summarizing each one
§ e.g. “Smithson says there are 2 forms of ignorance: conscious ignorance (knowing one doesn’t know something) and meta-ignorance (not knowing that we don’t know).”
· Signs of synthetic thinking
o show how a point made by an author relates to a point made in a previous class, or in another article we’ve already looked at.