Your grade will be based on in-class assignments (writing on deadline), outside writing and editing assignments and projects, and quizzes and exams. Since in-class writing assignments, class participation and quizzes will account for more than one-third of your grade, it is important to attend class. Students who attend all (or almost all) of the class sessions, and who complete all of the assignments, almost always do well in this class; those who don’t, usually don’t.

Your final grade in this class will be based on:

  1. In-class writing assignments, class participation, and quizzes on AP style, the assigned readings and current events. (35%)
  2. Short pieces: hard news story, profile, broadcast story (20%)
  3. Online package with multimedia element (10%, group project)
  4. Long-form story, including a short-form sidebar (see Ch. 6) and a broadcast version of this story (15%)
  5. Midterm exam (10%) & final exam (10%)

Note: There will be approximately 850-900 points worth of assignments for this class. Point totals listed above are approximate and may vary slightly, depending on student needs and assignment opportunities.

Grading Criteria

Assignments will be graded on the quality of your writing, based on the following criteria: accuracy, clarity, fairness, completeness, conciseness, sourcing and attribution, correct and appropriate use of quotes, proper use of Associated Press style, grammar, spelling, and appropriateness of the writing style to the intended audience and medium.

Grades will be computed as follows:

97-100% = A+
93-96% = A
90-92% = A-
87-89% = B+
83-86% = B
80-82% = B-
77-79% = C+
73-76% = C
70-72% = C-
67-69% = D+
63-66% = D
60-62% = D-
Less Than 60% = F

Late Papers, Missed Assignments/Tests

Journalists must meet deadlines, and so must you. All assignments, quizzes and exams are due on the specified due date. Late assignments, quizzes and exams will not be accepted. The only exception will be for a serious illness or accident, family emergency or death in the family, preferably reported to the instructor before the due date.

Revising Your Work

If you get a poor grade on an assignment, I encourage you to revise it. In fact, if you have trouble with an assignment, I will likely ask you to revise it.

With a good revision, you can earn back up to half the points you lost the first time around. Just put “revised” in the title of the blog post, and I’ll go back and regrade it. Revising makes most sense if you get a B- or less.