This part of the course will focus on gathering information to be used as context for understanding this area. Multiple assignments will be assigned including reading, homework and in-class activities. We will seek to define visual rhetoric, both on a general level and on a specific level, related to your discipline. You may want to think of this initially as a learning journal, an exercise where you aren't seeking to write a completely polished final report but rather you are continuing to add knowledge and build your understanding of what visual rhetoric is. So your writing for this assignment will reflect your increased understanding of visual rhetoric as we progress through the course. We will work on this assignment both in and out of class and we will continue to come back to it and add to it as we read and learn more about visual rhetoric. The readings and our class discussions will provide the information that you will use to develop your definition.

Two Graded Activities

  • Journal - Keep a journal in which you will post your definitions of visual rhetoric and how to analyze it.
    • These entries can come from the texts, stuff we talk about in class, other sources info you find, things you see or hear in any setting that relates to visual rhetoric.
    • Make sure to give the source for the info you include. You don't have to do a formal reference citation; you can just tell the reader where the info came from, i.e. "I read this in Chapter 3." "I found this on the website http://xxx."
    • Post a minimum of 9 times, once for each class day (not including day of the final).
    • The journal will be graded twice. See schedule for specific dates.
  • Chapters in The Elements of Visual Analysis - After reading each chapter, post in Blackboard a response to one of the "Discuss" or "Freewrite" options. They are in gray boxes throughout the chapters. Your posts should be substantial enough to meet the points on the grading rubric.

Grading Rubric:

  • Makes clear to the reader how the journal entry is focused.
  • Does more than just tell what you see.
  • Provides a deeper application of what visual rhetoric means.
  • Provides a new way of looking/thinking about visual rhetoric.
  • Uses formal terms from readings.