The WNM Book Review

Writing New Media
Book Review/Discussion Leading on Selected Text (100 points total)

You will select one book from the list of recommended texts to read, review, and present to the rest of the class.  You are welcome to work with a group of peers who have selected the same text for the presentation and discussion leading. Each student must post his/her own review.

Instructions for Book Review Post:

In your individual book review post, you will present the selected book (with appropriate signal phrases and links) and write:

  • a brief overview of the main arguments of the text with selected examples and quotes from the text;
  • an explanation of what, for you, is the most significant moment/idea in the text and why? Discuss that particular part of the text and detail its significance;
  • a discussion of how the book connects to other texts you’ve read, listened to, viewed, or interacted with so far in the course;
  • a commentary on what you learned as a result of reading and reviewing the book and what you would now like to know more about.

Your review should be posted to you web space the Tuesday before you are schedule for the presentation/discussion leading in class on Thursday. You are invited to create the review in any shareable digital mode; in other words, you are not limited to just text. Of course, you must tweet a link whatever you create as soon it is ready to go (don’t forget #cccwnm).


Instructions for Presentation and Discussion Leading:

Our book review discussions are aimed at pulling apart the text, exploring the ideas, and digesting them for our own contexts and use.

  1. Assemble a presentation on key passages and/or ideas in the text in a format that you can share with your classmates (print or digital).
  2. Prepare a presentation for the class that responds mirrors your book review post:
  • How do the main ideas of this text connect to what we have been discussing in class? To other texts we’ve read or watched?
  • In what ways can we adapt the ideas to our own studies of digital networked writing?
  • Is there anything missing or confusing in the text? What did the author not mention or not know about at the time of the writing? Are there other things you would now like to know?
  • Develop a set of three guiding questions that you think will get the discussion rolling and use them to lead the class discussion.

During class, you (your group) will be responsible for getting the class to really engage with the ideas in the text. Lead and moderate the discussion. Feel free to call on people–it will keep a variety of voices involved. Your presentation/ discussion should take 20-30 minutes.


Book Review Evaluation (50 points):

The book review post will be evaluated on the extent to which the posted review includes the required components and is thoughtful, insightful, and carefully crafted.

Presentation/Discussion Leading Evaluation (50 points):

Preparedness: Is the discussion leader/group prepared? Is it clear that he/she/they did the reading? Does the leader/group present thoughtful guiding questions?

Presentation of Key Passages/Ideas: Is the presentation thorough? Does the leader/group choose significant and/or interesting passages from throughout the reading? Is the content and design of the presentation effective and appropriate for the situation?

Discussion: Does the leader/group manage the discussion well? Does s/he or the group engage the class in interesting, thoughtful dialogue? Does s/he or the group uncover connections to our course themes in the discussion? Does the leader/group follow up on and expand on comments from classmates?


Presentation/Discussion Leading Schedule:

Week 9 – How to Design and Write Web Pages Today by Karl Stolley

Week 10 – Remix: Making Art and Commerce Thrive in the Hybrid Economy by Lawrence Lessig

Week 11 – Spreadable Media: Creating Value and Meaning in a Networked Culture by Henry Jenkins, Sam Ford, and Joshua Green

Week 12 – Newtorked: The New Social Operating System by Lee Rainie and Barry Wellman and Social Media In Disaster Response by Liza Potts

Week 13 – Smarter Than You Think by Clive Thompson