Please read the Introduction of The Curious Researcher, pages 1-18. (It’s OK to just skim the sample
paper on pages 13-17).
Fastwriting Assignment #1
Note: What Bruce Ballenger calls “fastwriting” is what I often call “freewriting.” It just means that you’re
exploring an idea by writing about it. For fastwriting/freewriting assignments in this class, you just
need to respond fully to the prompt. You don’t need to worry about grammatical correctness on these
fastwriting assignments as the emphasis here is on your ideas. 🙂
Complete and submit Exercise 1 on page 2 of The Curious Researcher. You can submit your work for
this exercise by using the link in the Getting Started section in the Modules part of our Canvas
classroom. Be sure to put your name at the top of your document, and save it as a Word ( , x)
or Rich Text File (.rtf). This assignment is worth 15 points. You must do both Step 1 and Step 2
below to get full credit!
Please complete both steps of the exercise as given in the textbook. I am summarizing the exercise
below so that you can still do the assignment if you don’t have your textbook yet.
Step 1: Choose one of the following statements about writing research papers and write fast (for at
least three minutes without stopping!) about that statement; it can be helpful to pick a statement that
you have some kind of feeling about right away—like you have a strong idea that it is true or false. In
your fastwriting, you can cover any of the following questions (or anything else that occurs to you):
why do you think this statement is true or false; where did you get your ideas/beliefs about this
statement; are there any stories that come to mind when you think about this statement?
On your assignment sheet, please note the statement you’re writing about.
–You have to know your thesis before you start.
–You have to be objective.
–You can’t use the pronoun, “I.”
–You can use your own experiences and observations as evidence.
–You can use your own writing voice.
–There is always a structure you must follow.
–You’re supposed to use your own opinions.
Step 2: Now choose one of the statements below about facts, information, and knowledge, and write
fast for another three minutes about that statement. Start by writing whether you agree or disagree
with the statement, and then explore why.
–There’s a big difference between facts and opinions.
–Pretty much everything you read in textbooks is true.
–People are entitled to their own opinions, and no one opinion is better than another.
–There’s a big difference between a fact in the sciences and a fact in the humanities.
–When two experts disagree, one of them has to be wrong.
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