Writing 109SS: Writing for the Social Sciences
Fall 2005

Instructor: James Donelan
Email: donelan@writing.ucsb.edu
Office Phone: 893-7177; messages only, 893-2613
Office Location:
1523 South Hall
Office Hours:
10-11 AM; Tuesday, 11-12AM

Class Meetings:
Section 4, TR, 9:30-10:45, Tuesdays in Girvetz 1116. Enroll Code: 46490 or
Section 7, TR, 8-9:15, Tuesdays in Girvetz 1112. Enroll Code: 50716
Lab Meetings: Both sections will meet in in the Gaviota Lab, Phelps 1529 on Thursdays after the first day.

ConnectWeb, a computer program, is available online via E-commerce for $20. Purchase of the program is mandatory.
Steger, Globalization: A Very Short Introduction (Global) ISBN: 0-19-280359-X
Weidenborner, Caruso, and Parks, Writing Research Papers: A Guide to the Process, Seventh Edition (Writing) ISBN: 0-312-41443-9

Texts are available in the UCen Bookstore. Some additional readings will be on reserve at Davidson Library. Copies of the course books will not be on reserve; please purchase them as soon as possible.

ConnectWeb Home Page: http://connectweb.com/ucsb.asp

Course Description:
The course will allow students to refine their skills in scholarship and writing in the social sciences. Students will address the issues of evidence, interpretation, methodology, and critique in social science research as part of a longer project.

Course Outcomes:
Students who complete the course successfully should be able to:

·        read, understand, and summarize scholarship in the social sciences

·        choose an appropriate topic and methodology for an extended social science research project

·        conduct efficient, thorough library research using electronic databases and bibliographies

·        evaluate and document sources properly

·        schedule research, writing, and editing time effectively

·        conduct a social science research project confidently and independently

·        participate in oral, written, and online exchanges among social science scholars

The course requires regular attendance, active participation in class discussion and activities, and timely completion of all assignments, including short on-line assignments, an annotated bibliography (1500 words), a brief essay on methodology (1800 words), and a longer research project (3000 words). All written assignments after the first week are due on-line through ConnectWeb. In addition, please note:


Please note: Full descriptions of all writing assignments are posted on ConnectWeb. Both the assignments and their deadlines may change—be sure to check the syllabus posted on ConnectWeb as the class progresses.

I. Research and Summary: Annotated Bibliography

Introduction and Logistics: Writing for the Social Sciences

Reading: Writing, Chapters 1-3; Global, Chapter 1
Homework: 250 word statement of personal goals for the course.
In-class: The requirements of social science writing; types of essays.

Class meets in Phelps 1529.
Reading: Writing, Chapter 4; Global, Chapter 2
Homework: 250 word annotated bibliography entry for an article. Please have the assignment available as a Microsoft Word or html file, if possible.
In-class: Introduction to ConnectWeb; creation of working groups. Your writing strengths and weaknesses.

Writing, Chapters 5 and 12; Global, Chapter 3
Homework: Annotated bibliography entry for a book.
In-class: The parts of a book; effective summarizing; improving sentence style.


Class meets in Phelps 1529.
Reading: Writing, Chapters 6 and 7; Global, Chapter 4
Homework: Full rough draft of annotated bibliography.
In-class: Introducing an annotated bibliography; peer review of drafts.


Reading: Writing, Chapters 19 and 20; Global, Chapter 5
Homework: Annotated bibliography due. Please post by class time.
In-class: Introduction to methodology essay assignment; method and critique.

II. Critique and Method: Methodology Essay

Class meets in Phelps 1529.
Reading: Writing, Chapter 14; Global, Chapter 6
Homework: Prospectus of methodology essay.
Peer review of prospectuses; improving paragraph style.

Reading: Writing, Chapter 15; Global, Chapter 7
Homework: Outline and first paragraph of methodology essay.
Research methods; evaluation of sources

Class meets in Phelps 1529.
Reading: Writing, Chapter 16; Global, Chapter 8
Homework: Full rough draft of methodology essay.

10/21 Methodology essay final draft due.

III. The Social Science Research Project

In-class: Introduction to the final project. Scheduling and time management.

Class meets in Phelps 1529.

Homework: Prospectus for final project.
In-class: Peer review of prospectuses; beginning an outline.

Homework: Preliminary research and outline; revision of prospects. (Bring a hard copy to class.)
Project plans, Part II.

Class meets in Phelps 1529.
Homework: Reading notes; revised outline.
In-class: Large-scale structure.

Homework: Full outline.
In-class: Peer assessment of progress.

Class meets in Phelps 1529.
First paragraph and working thesis.
In-class: Thesis building; peer review.


Homework: Draft of first two pages.
In-class: Working titles; progress report.

Class meets in Phelps 1529.
First half of draft.
In-class: Work plans.


Homework: Full rough draft; check of preliminary materials.

In-class: Peer review of drafts.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Homework: First revision.  Bring hard copy to class.
Peer review of revisions.

Class meets in Phelps 1529.
Homework: Second Revision of Final Project.
Last Day of Class

12/8 Final Project Due.