Reflection: Student Feedback Rhetorical Situation of the College Application - Section 3: Rhetorical Situation of a College Application

 

The most important take-away for me today is that I should do this particular lesson, and in fact read this whole book, at the beginning of junior year.  The particular discussion on the high school transcript, where Bauld explains how college admissions officers can identify those students who are either trying to impress by taking all AP courses, or trying to have the highest GPA, and will put those aside in favor of those who show a genuine interest in learning and challenging themselves.  Since they are signing up for senior courses, they wished they had been told this sooner; they would have perhaps chosen some different courses (of course, who knows if this is really true, since a year has gone by and they are much more aware of thinking about their futures now than they were then).   Besides this, the overall message that the application is a single document with a variety of evidence about them seemed very meaningful; they just had never thought if it that way (and, I'm not sure many seniors do, either--many see it more like another school assignment, something to get done, because they don't have the opportunity to reflect on the rhetorical situation of it).  While I could see some stress in their eyes because the discussion made senior year seem a little closer, I think, as we continue work with this book, that the other message of showing an authentic self is most important because there is no way to "game" the system will ultimately be a relief and make the process easier.

Another part they found particularly interesting was a little section on the teacher recommendation, where Bauld suggests that, when you ask the teacher, if they hedge, tactfully say "that's okay, I have others"--to bail out.  Similarly, he suggests it is okay to judge what teachers might write better recommendations, based on how they speak and act in class.  This was a revelation for students--that it is okay for them to take full control of this situation, and to make decisions regarding teachers writing recommendations based on who will best represent them on paper, and that they don't have to use the recommendation if they don't like it (and can look at it).

  Eye-Opening for Students
  Student Feedback: Eye-Opening for Students
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Rhetorical Situation of the College Application

Unit 15: Writing the College Essay
Lesson 1 of 6

Objective: SWBAT use their rhetorical analysis skills in a real life situation as they analyze the rhetorical situation of the college application

Big Idea: An application is a rhetorical situation as a whole--a set of evidence making an argument about the applicant.

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