• 10% participation and discussion in class
Will be graded according to regular and punctual attendance, evidence of having digested the assigned readings before class, attention to others, and quality of contributions in class throughout the term. Any contributions to discussion on the e-learning site will also be taken into account.
• 10% debate leading
Leading a randomly-allocated side of a class debate on a pre-announced policy question with a moral dimension. You will have the opportunity to prepare before class, and should research and consider both sides of the question. You will give the opportunity to give a five minute opening argument, participate in discussion, and provide a two minute summing up. Unlike in many debating contexts, mere rhetoric and spin are positively discouraged here: the exercise is intended to inform and challenge easy assumptions, as well as to try to persuade. Participants will be assessed according to the quality of their moral arguments, including relevance, clarity, and soundness, as well as for their ability to clearly and incisively respond to opposing arguments by interpreting them accurately, charitably and giving the best available objections.
• 20% presentation of a 1-page draft outline plan for the final paper
Presentation of a 1-page draft outline plan for the final paper. This assignment is intended help you to work out, logically organize, and concisely communicate the central points you intend to make in your final paper, and to provide an opportunity to discuss and think through potential objections and amendments. The outline should clearly state the intended thesis of the paper, and concisely present the main steps of your argument for it (bullet points are recommended!). Students may present and discuss their outlines either in class, time permitting, or in appointments with the instructor.
• 60% final paper of about 2,500 words