English 192 Workbook - Mr.Doyle

English 192 3 units credit/no credit
Mr. Doyle's office: AD 232 818-240-1000, ext.5343
e-mail: ddoyle@glendale.cc.ca.us
web page: http://english.glendale.cc.ca.us

Required Texts:
Reading Drills : Advanced Level by Dr. Edward Fry , and the Student Workbook for English 192. You'll also need a good notebook, a blank computer diskette, and Scantron answer sheets.

English 192

is a reading class designed for students who are generally good readers, but who wish to improve their reading speed as well as comprehension of academic reading. There is extensive use of computer assisted instruction to drill vocabulary and to practice skills covered in class. This credit/no credit course is a recommended corequisite for English 120.

Topics Covered:
General study skills, memory improvement, speed reading, vocabulary building through prefixes and roots and context clues, comprehension improvement, critical reading, and propaganda.

Registration and Drops:
....It is your responsibility to see that you are officially registered or dropped from a class. If you stop coming to class without dropping officially, you may get a "No-Credit" in this class. You may also be dropped by the teacher for excessive absences.

Expectations:
....That you attend class, pass the 3 big tests, complete at least 16 hours of lab work this semester, and improve at least two grade levels in your reading. This is a credit/no-credit class. You cannot pass if you miss more than four classes, fail the tests or fail to complete lab work and written assignments which includes a book report. We expect you to show that you are serious about the class by buying your textbooks immediately, being respectful of the learning environment, showing up to every class unless you are seriously ill, coming on time, being alert in class, finishing assignments on time and not leaving class once it has started unless in an emergency. Please turn off any beepers or cell phones while in class. Make arrangements with the instructor before class time if you need to leave early for any reason.

Lab Work (Summer Program):
....The class lasts 5 weeks. In addition to times when the instructor will be bringing you into the English Lab (AD 238-242) or the Learning Center's CAI Lab (AD 221), you must do at least one hour of lab work each week outside of class. You should pay the "Technology Fee" for the English Lab at registration or at the office of Admissions & Records.

In order to get credit for lab work, you must check in with your Glendale College Picture I.D. each time you do your work.

You may work any time that the Labs are open.

Tell them that you are doing Lab Work for English 192 or you may not be properly credited.



Academic Honesty
Mr. Doyle follows the official college policy concerning cheating and plagiarism.

How to do better on Mr.Doyle's Tests
Find Mr.Doyle's Lab assignment list on the Internet and work your way through the list. Concentrate on the practice tests, which give you a sample of what some of the quizzes may be like.

You may do some of the lab work from home if you have access to the Internet. Set your browser to:
http://english.glendale.cc.ca.us .

Class Schedule (Summer Schedule - 5 Weeks)

This outline may be changed as class proceeds in order to accommodate a particular section's strength or weakness and to work around holidays and unexpected class cancellations. In addition to these subjects, we will be doing weekly drills with the Tachistoscope and additional outside readings from current magazines and newspapers.

Week 1 class introductions, pretesting, lab work orientation, introduction to speed reading, memory tips, first lab work hours due in the English Lab, study skills, using the card, word-attack skills, speed reading drills, first lab work hours due in the CAI Lab.

Week 2 using the "sweep" method, using the context, speed reading drills, book review book selection and analysis, using the "hop" method, starting Latin and Greek roots, speed reading drills., quiz on Speed Reading, continuing "hop", continuing Latin and Greek roots, speed reading drills. Research the Internet Assignment due.

Week 3 other speed reading methods, continuing Latin and Greek ,roots, speed reading drills, review of Latin and Greek roots, mid-term, speed reading drills, minimum of seven hours of lab work in the English Lab should be completed by this week, reading and understanding analogies, speed reading drills, more work on analogies, and comprehension building.

Week 4 introduction to critical reading, speed reading drills, detecting bias, looking for shades of meaning, speed reading drills., distinguishing between fact and opinion, speed reading drills, propaganda and advertising, speed reading drills.

Week 5 more propaganda and advertising, review, post-testing, book report due, review, final exams, conferences




How to Use the Macintosh Computers
in the English Lab (AD 238)
The English Lab has Apple Macintosh computers. When you get to the lab, they are likely to be already on. If not, ask for help from the aid, or find another computer. When everything is warmed up, a screen like this should appear.

The brown Application page will list the various programs which are available. Your assignments are accessed by loading the program called

Netscape.

Start

Netscape

by tapping on the picture/icon. A page like this should appear on the screen:


Tap on the underlined words "Welcome to the Internet" .
This page will load:

Select the item, "Lab Work for Mr.Doyle's Classes" .









This page should load:

Tap on English 192 .




A page like this should appear. It is a list of all your lab assignments for the semester:First, log on to the software by typing your name in the box next to #2. Press the <Submit> button. Follow the rest of the directions for check-in. What follows on the page is a week-by-week listing of assignments that you should do in order each week. It's not all listed here because I update the page weekly. See the actual web page for the current assignments. Some assignments are simply links to pages that should be read. Others are written assignments that require you to answer questions and submit answers. Follow directions. Ask Mr.Doyle or one of the aides if you need help. Keep up with your weekly assignments. When you are done using the computer, quit the program you were using but leave the computer on.






Other Things Available in the English Lab

Beside using

Netscape

to navigate to school assignments, you may use it to surf the web, look up information for school reports, or to receive or send e-mail. In addition, the word processor

Microsoft Word

is on all the computers, which you may use to write and print out school papers. Currently, we are not charging extra for paper. If you want to save any work done on the word processors, you need to bring your own 3 1/2 inch floppy disk. That disk may need to be formatted before it can be used. Consult with the English Lab Staff on to how to do this.

There are also some drill and practice programs on

Typing

on the computers, as well as programs on various

Writing

and

Reading

skills. Explore the Applications and Documents pages listed on the startup desktop. You always start these lessons by tapping on the picture/icon with the mouse.

You can stop and close most Macintosh programs by pressing "

Q

" and the "

open apple

" button which is on the bottom left part of the keyboard at the same time. Most programs can be stopped also by pulling down the "File" menu with the mouse and selecting "Quit". When you leave the computer after your working time, please close and quit your program, but leave the computer on.

Accessing the Lab Work over the Internet from Off-Campus
Some of the lessons may be done from an off-campus computer with access to the Internet either through America OnLine, EarthLink, WebTV or from any other internet service provider. After launching the browser software, set your browser to: http://english.glendale.cc.ca.us and follow the above directions. It is very important that you fill in the form and post your name in the English 192 assignment sheet page each time you do lab work and especially when doing it off campus in order to get credit.




How to Use the Windows/IBM Computers
in the Learning Center CAI Lab (AD221)
Beside working in the English Lab, you will also be required to do some lab hours in the Learning Center's CAI Lab. The CAI Lab has Windows/IBM type PC computers. These computers use a special program called McGraw Hill PassKey. When you get to the lab, they are likely to be already on. If not, find a computer that is turned on or ask for help from the lab tech. When everything is warmed up, a screen like this should appear:

When you first use the computers, we will use the screen name Student and have no password. When the class gets rolling and lessons are done for credit, you will have an assigned Password given to you. After typing your name and password, tap on the green arrow. This next page should appear:

Tap on Reading and do the lessons in the order presented. The software is designed to be diagnostic/prescriptive, which means that the software will give you a series of questions at the start of each lesson. If you do well in the lesson, the computer will automatically skip this lesson and move on to an area that you need to work on. You work continuously on the lessons and periodic reports are sent to the instructor who may adjust the software to your individual needs. The program keeps track of where you left off. When you are finished with an assignment press the F10 key along the top of the keyboard to save your work and then hit Quit . Don't turn off the computer. Report any computers that don't work.

Other Things Available in the CAI Lab

Netscape

is also available in this lab to surf the web, look up information for school reports, or to receive or send e-mail. Word processing is not permitted in the CAI lab and there are no working printers connected to the network. There are also some drill and practice programs on various

Writing

and

Reading

skills.

PassKey

also has brush up programs in Writing, Math and General Science which you may use. You always start these lessons by tapping on the picture/icon with the mouse when in the Windows desktop.





Read Faster Now
This material will be tested on the first quiz.
It also is reviewed in the Lab Work: on the Macs: Speed Reading Tips, Speed Reading Pacing Techniques, and Flash.

Not all of us can become "speed-readers", but many of us can read much faster than we presently do. Bad habits often slow us down and rob us of some of the enjoyment of reading. Efficient readers know when to slow down and when to speed up. They experience reading as "viewing a panorama of ideas" rather than slowly slogging their way through the text word for word.

How can you get more out of your reading at a faster rate? Try these tips:

Read Actively

Don't read in the same passive way that you watch television. Reading takes effort! You must pay a price or you get nothing out of it! Before you read anything, preview the passage. Look at the title, the pictures, and major headings. Read the first and last paragraph and skim through the text. Get a general idea what the whole thing is about. Remember that a real person actually wrote this passage which you are about to read. Disagree with the author. Get emotionally involved. Make up some questions in your mind which you'd want to ask him as you go along in the reading. As you read, actively seek the answers to your questions.

Avoid Regressions

When you read, do you find yourself reading and rereading and rereading the same passage over and over again? This is called regression and shows a lack of confidence with the material. Don't slow yourself by constantly rereading. Learn to catch the meaning the first time through. If you're reading actively, you will find that you remember as much after a single reading as you did during repeated rereadings at your old passive rate.

How do you avoid regressions? Force yourself to go faster. Time yourself when you are reading moderately easy material. Cover the portion of the book which you have read with a white card and push that card slowly but evenly down the page. Try to read the page quickly before the card covers the print. Try using the "Flash" program on the Macintosh Computers or the "Speed Reading Techniques" program on the Apples to force yourself to read faster without looking back. The regression habit dies slowly, but it will go away eventually with practice.



Stop Talking to Yourself as You Read

Remember when you first learned how to read? It was often in a reading circle in which you had to sit in a small group and read out loud for the teacher. Reading began for most of us as an activity in which we had to move our lips and speak. Many people still read that way. They don't read as slowly as they did in grade school, yet they still find it necessary to move their lips and tongue as they scan the text. This slows reading down unnecessarily because it ties the speed of reading to the speed of speech. Few people speak faster than 300 words per minute, hence their reading speed is limited to that slow level. Moving your lips as you read is called "vocalization".

There is another problem however, which is much more common than vocalization. Early in grammar school, most of us stopped the habit of actually mouthing the words as we read, but the habit often continues in a more subtle way. When you read, do you hear yourself "telling yourself the words in your head"? Is it as if one part of your head is talking to another part? This is called "sub-vocalization", and this too results in very slow reading because it is still binding reading speed to the level of speech. Many of us begin to feel that we're not actually "comprehending" unless we hear that persistent voice in our head.

The fact is, we can read much faster than we can speak. We often hear in the media about the wonderful capacity of the human brain. We need not fear loss of comprehension when we don't vocalize or sub vocalize. Reading, rather, should be an affair between the eyes and the brain, which doesn't involve the muscles in the throat or mouth. Even during sub vocalization when no external facial movement is apparent, it has been found that the vocal chords make subtle imperceptible vibrations in mimicking oral speech. How do you combat this? Force yourself to go faster. Go beyond the point where you can comfortably talk to yourself as you read. Your comprehension will drop at first as your confidence falters, but soon you will find that you are understanding when you read and you will wonder why you ever went so slowly before.

Read in Thought Groups

When I listen to people read, I notice that sometimes a person will read the words of a sentence, one by one, as if the words had no relationship to each other. It sounds like he is just reading a list of words. When that happens, I know that he is not understanding the text. He is not getting the "thought" behind the passage because understanding the text involves more than just reading individual words. One must see the relationships between the words and also notice the order of the words in groups in order to discover the meaning. Meaning, after all, is what reading is all about. When you read, meaning must be your main objective also. This is best done if you wean yourself away from reading the words one by one and seek to read whole phrases or even sentences at a time. Words by themselves really have little meaning. It is only in the context of a sentence that meaning becomes apparent.

Be Flexible in Your Reading Rate

Some things written were simply not meant to be read rapidly. You cannot speed-read through a Shakespearian play or through poetry. Difficult material of a highly technical or philosophical nature should not be read rapidly. Reading poetry quickly is like gulping down fine wine. The words should be formed on the tongue and savored carefully. You should listen to the sounds of the words as you speak them out loud.

Yet we needn't show the same reverence for a fashion magazine, the newspaper, or most things which we read during the day. The average American reads at about an eighth grade level, so most of the printed materials rarely exceeds that low level. Most hand-outs from teachers are written at a reading level that is lower than the text. Speed reading techniques ought to be used in reading low-level written material.

Go fast when you're confronted with light or familiar material, but don't be reluctant to shift gears into slower speed for more difficult passages. Above all, adjust your speed to match the reading matter.




















Speed Reading Self-Pacing Methods

Speed reading is not magic nor is it a big expensive mystery. Professional speed reading classes simply teach a handful of easy techniques that help a person focus his or her attention better. The eye is drawn to motion. Speed reading techniques put that motion on the page.
Your starting position is important. You should sit up straight, hold the book down with your left hand, and use your right hand to do the pacing.
You should already be a good reader before you attempt to speed read. Speed reading will not help you if you have problems in comprehension and vocabulary. In fact, it may hurt you to try to rush through stuff that you can't comprehend. You should have the basics down already first.
Before you start speed reading, you should do a survey of the information first to get a general idea of what you will be covering and of the type of writing.

The Hand
 
The first method is to simply place your right hand on the page and slowly move it straight down the page, drawing your eyes down as you read. Keep an even, slow motion, as if your right hand has its own mind. Your eyes may not be exactly where your hand is, but this simple motion will help you go faster. Don't start, read a little, stop, read a little, start, read a little. Keep the movement slow and easy. Only do it once per page. If you are "left-handed" use your left hand as the dominant pacing hand.











The Card
 
The next technique is to use a card or a folded-up piece of paper above the line of print to block the words after to read them. Draw it down the page slowly and evenly and try to read the passage before you cover the words up. This helps break you of the habit of reading and reading a passage over and over again. It makes you pay more attention the first time. Be sure to push the card down faster than you think you can go. Slide the card down once per page.


The Sweep
 
Another method is to use your hand to help draw your eyes across the page. Slightly cup your right hand. Keep your fingers together. With a very light and smooth motion, sweep your fingers from left to right, underlining the line with the tip of your tallest finger from about an inch in and an inch out on each line. Use your whole arm to move, balancing on your arm muscle. Imagine that you are dusting off salt from the page.







The Hop

Similar to the "sweep" method is the "hop", but in the "hop" you actually lift your fingers and make two even bounces on each line. Each time you bounce, you are making a fixation which hopefully catches sets of three or four words. Moving to a "hop" method also makes it easier to keep a steady pace as it is a lot like tapping our fingers on a desk. Balance on your arm muscle, don't just wiggle your wrist.


The Zig-Zag or Loop
 
The last method is a type of modified scanning technique. In this one you take your hand and cut across the text diagonally about three lines and then slide back to the next line. Now the idea here is not necessarily to see each word, but to scan the entire area, letting your mind pick out the main ideas. I wouldn't recommend this for material that requires very careful reading, but it is a way to help you get the general ideas of easy material.

These methods seem simple and easy, but don't let that fool you. These are very useful methods which can help a good reader read faster and better in very little time. But these techniques will not do you any good unless you PRACTICE them. It usually takes about three or four session before you get accustomed to a particular technique.
As you move along and learn the methods,you may find that one is more suitable for you than the others. Find the one that works for you and use it.
Keep Track of your Reading Rate:

















Study Skills Basics

If you are like most college students, you never really developed a system for studying. You have what is called an unconscious study method. This means that you muddle through courses somehow, taking too many or not enough notes, preparing for tests by reading and rereading texts, rushing to finish assignments at the last moment-and somehow managing to be surprised by items you find on the final test.

Get out of the rut. Adopt a "conscious" method. In an "unconscious" method, you are always a victim. Take charge of your education with a consciously planned method. Follow these steps:

Manage Your Time

Business executives do it; doctors do it; you should too. When you were in high school, there were scores of people available to nag you into getting down to business and studying. One of the first things a person discovers in college is that these people drop away and you are now stuck with the problem of forcing yourself to hit the books. Assignments given at the beginning of the semester seem easy until the final weeks of the class when everything is becoming due. Lab work, which should have been done a little at a time over the weeks, suddenly piles up into a mountain which is threatening to collapse on you. Poor mortals like yourself have unnecessarily dropped all their classes at this point, feeling overworked and devastated by the threatening assignments. Avoid all of this by scheduling your time carefully during the semester. Make a plan and reward yourself when you stick to it.

Find a Distraction-Free Place

Let's face it, almost anything is more interesting than studying. Your mind, rebelling like an undisciplined child, suddenly is fascinated by the bug crawling up the wall next to your desk. For the hundredth time, you gaze out the library window trying to spot that girl in your history class. You count the number of slats in the heating vent at your feet.

Don't cheat yourself. Get away from all the distractions. Establish a place that becomes your "territory" away from windows, noises, passing girls (or boys), and telephones. Make it a regular spot because if you study at the same place and at the same time each day, you "settle in" faster to the job of studying. You "condition" yourself to get down to business when you go there and the normal environmental distractions (bugs on walls, heating vents, etc.) lose their appeal. Be absolutely unavailable to visitors and phone calls during your study time and do not study in front of the television.

Light, Air, Temperature and Food

Some other problems should be taken into account also. How is the lighting? Too much bright light reflecting off of white pages will fatigue your eyes, give you a headache and cut your concentration. Not enough light can have the same effect. Do you study in a dark room with just a small intensity light over your work? Don't. The contrast between the dark room and the white pages is bad for your eyes. Is it too hot or too cold in the room? if it's too warm, you might fall asleep. Extreme cold inhibits memory, but it's best to keep the room on the cool side. Slight discomfort seems to help the mind concentrate. Is there enough fresh air in the room. Your poor brain is starved for oxygen in a stuffy room. You may not think you need air when you study, but have you ever felt "hung over" after a session of study? Not having enough air will dull your mind and put you to sleep.
Your mind is lodged in a body which must be considered in the study program. Sufficient light, heat and fresh air are all necessary. How about the way you sit? Remember that if your body is relaxed and too comfortable, your mind dulls and sleep will likely result. So don't slouch at your desk; sit up straight. Avoid easy chairs. Somehow, a little discomfort seems just right for keeping the mind alert. Never read in bed. When a person gets into bed, the purpose usually is to go to sleep. Reading in,bed and periodically falling asleep over a book will often condition a person to fall asleep whenever he is handling a book. Get your work done, then go to bed.

Let your physical needs help you get your work done. For example, if you are hungry for a cookie in the middle of a chapter, make a deal with yourself that you won't get the cookie until you've finished the chapter. Make up little rewards for yourself for finishing assignments. Promise yourself a soft drink for successfully finishing your lab work. Put off calling your girl/boy friend until you've reviewed your French conjugations. Having a tangible reward helps you to focus your attention on the subject and the quiet gnawing desire for the reward encourages you to go faster.

Organized?

Have everything you need in one place. This includes pens, pencils, reference books, paper, notes and the textbook. You'll break concentration if you keep jumping up to find the things you need. Also, keep your notes legible and organized. You don't get any points for having the neatest notebook on campus, but if your notebook consists of scrambled bits of paper and scrawled memos scratched on the back of receipts, you will end up spending as much time deciphering your notes as studying them.

When reading an assignment for class, don't just passively read over the pages and assume that you'll retain the information. Forgetting begins immediately after you close the book. Reading actively takes so little time yet pays big dividends in retention.

Make the Effort

Above all, make the effort to concentrate. We are all bombarded with a tremendous amount of information during the day and we have become adept at filtering out most of it. We are so skilled at this filtering. process that many of us have a serious problem just paying attention. So make the effort to concentrate in class; make the effort to remember as you read your text; make the effort to take notes and study them. Make the effort the first time through and you will find that you are getting more out of your classes and actually need less time cramming before the final test.

Improving Your Memory

1. Make the effort to remember . Your memory improves if you pay attention to the task and concentrate on trying to remember something.

2. It must make sense to you. It is easier to remember something you understand. Try to understand a subject, formula, date or other facts before you try to memorize them. It is very hard to memorize and retain nonsense.

3. It is easier to remember something in context with other things you already know. Try to see how the information that you are trying to memorize fits in with other bits of information. Use outlines, or use mnemonic devices to help your recall of lists and dates.

4. Complete ideas are easier to recall than details. Main ideas are easier to remember than the parts. If you focus on the whole, the details will follow.

5. Your physical needs will affect your memory. You can actually make yourself stupid by not getting enough air, food, water, and sleep. A regular schedule beats a hectic unplanned, sleepless lifestyle while you are in school. Be aware of how drugs, prescribed or not, may affect your ability to pay attention or to remember things. Also, don't get too relaxed when you study. If your body is too comfortable, then your brain will soon follow.

Book Reports
You are required to do one book report over the course of the class. Mr. Doyle will give you the due dates. Select a book of about 150 to 300 pages which you have not read before. The book may be fiction, non-fiction or whatever. Find something that you are interested in and that you are likely to finish in time. You will have only about a month and a half to finish. You should carry the book with you in class and be prepared to do some assignments based on the book.

First, select a book from these suggested authors:

The listed authors are merely suggestions, with the listed books only their best-known:

Tan			The Joy Luck Club, The Kitchen GodŐs Wife
Erdrich		Love Medicine
Crichton		Jurrasic Park, Terminal Man
Kingston		The Woman Warrior
Walker			The Color Purple
Terkel			Working, Hard Times
Bradbury		The Martian Chronicles, Fahrenheit 451
Christy			Easy to Kill, Mysterious Affair of Style
Clark			2001 a Space Odyssey, The Sentinel
Clavel			Shogun, Noble House
Crane			The Red Badge of Courage
Hesse			Siddhartha, Magister Ludi
Huxley			Brave New World
Katzanzakis		Zorba the Greek, Francis, The Last Temptation
Lee			To Kill a Mockingbird
LŐEngle		A Wrinkle in Time
Lewis			Surprised by Joy, Chronicles of Narnia
London		The Call of the Wild, The Sea Wolf
McCaffrey		Dragonquest, Dragonsong
Miller			Canticle for Leibowitz
Orwell			1984, Animal Farm
Potok			The Chosen, My Name is Asher Lev
Salinger		Catcher in the Rye
Dickens		A Tale of Two Cities, A Christmas Carol
Doyle			The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
Golding		Lord of the Flies
Graves			I, Claudius, Claudius the God
Heinlein		Stranger in a Strange Land
Heller			Catch 22
Hemingway		The Old Man and the Sea
Saroyan		Plays and Short Stories
Solzhenitsyn		A Day in the Life of....., Gulag Archipelago
Steinbeck		The Red Pony, the Grapes of Wrath
Swift			GulliverŐs Travels
Tolkien		The Hobbit
Twain			Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn
Uris			Trinity, Exodus
Vonnegut		God Bless You Mr.Rosewater, Slaughterhouse Five
Wambaugh		The Blue Knight, The Choirboys
White			Once and Future King


Next, do Internet Research Project #1:
Before you start your first book, you should do some research about the book. Look up biographical information on the Internet about the author of the book that you selected for your recreational reading book report. If you can't find anything about the author, look for information about the book . If you can't find anything about the author, or the book, look for information about the subject. When you find some information, carefully screen the web pages to see if it is helpful and relevant. The idea is to find a little background about your author. This should help give you some insight into the book itself.

When you find a good page, record the URL (which means Universal Resource Locator) which is the Internet address which is in the Location box at the top of the page, for example "http://english.glendale.cc.ca.us/check.first.a.html" and print out a few pages from the material .

How to do it:

Go to the English Lab and sign-in as usual. Find a place at one of the Macintosh computers.

Launch Netscape. The first file that comes up should be our local homepage. Tap on the Glendale College logo. On the page that comes up, tap on the line that says "Search the Internet with Alta Vista". When the Alta Vista page comes up, tap in the long rectangular box. Type the name of your author in the box. You'll get better results if you put the name between quote marks, i.e. "Mark Twain".

It may take a little time while the program searches the Internet for the information. It will let you know if it finds any information. If you were successful, scroll down the page and look at the various "hits" that the program has found. Tap on any of the underlined links to the hits. The program will bring you to that Internet site. Scan the material carefully to see if the information is relevant to your book. If so, write down the URL address (it should be in the "Location" box above the buttons), and press the "Print" button and have the computer print the first few pages of the Internet site.

Either write the URL address on the print-out, or when you do the print page set-up, set it to print the location of the page on the top of the page. Put your name on the paper and turn it in to Mr.Doyle.
Next, read the book and write the report, using these
questions as your guide:
Use this format for the book report. You may use the program "Microsoft Word" to write your report.
The book report should be about 4 to 6 pages long and be written in a simple, concise, clear style. It may be shorter if your ideas are complete and longer if you are not too wordy. Don't simply copy pages out of the book or quotes from the cover as some students have in the past. I prefer the work to be typed, double-spaced with writing on only one side of the paper, but your neat handwriting or printing in black or blue ink is acceptable.

You should thoroughly answer these questions:

1. What is the name of the book? Who is the author? Who is the publisher? How many pages are in the book? These questions should be answered in one or two complete sentences. You don't need to rewrite the question; simply number the answer.

2. What kind of book is it? Fiction? Non-fiction? Biography? Argumentation? This is a couple of sentences long. Say what makes it "fiction" or "non-fiction".

3. How many days did it take you to read this book? This is about one sentence.

4. Who are the top three or four characters? Tell me about them. Why are they important? List them and say a little about each one. This could be about a half a page to over a page long.

5. Tell me what the book is about. Summarize the plot . Use your own words and ideas to describe the story. If the book is a collection of short stories, pick the three best and explain their plots. If the book is not fiction, explain the main idea and the supporting details or arguments. If it is organized historically, give a list of the important events in the text. This could run from one and a half page to several pages. Don't make it too long or too short; you don't need to explain every little detail in the plot).

6. Now give me some analysis of the book. Tell me why you liked or did not like it. Was it too hard or easy to understand? Was the vocabulary too hard? Would you recommend it to a friend. Did you see a movie or video of the book? How is it different form the real book? How would you judge the author? Was the story something you could relate to or was it not connected to your real life? This could be one to several pages. Don't forget this part. Most students do well on the summary of the book (question#5) but only write a few sentences for this question. Do a good analysis.
Using Microsoft Word (available on the Macintosh Computers)
 





Gunning-Fog Readability Formula

Use this to analyze your book for reading difficulty level:

1. Open the book to any page with at least two paragraphs.
2. Count out a section of 100 words.
3. How many sentences are in the sample? Divide 100 by the number of sentences to get the average number of words per sentence.
4. Look over the sample again and count the number of words that have three or more syllables, but don't count words that make three syllables because of an additional "ing" of "ed".
5. Add the average number of words per sentence to the number of multisyllabic words.
6. Multiply this by .4
7. The number you have left is a rough "grade level" of this section of text.

1-6 elementary level
7-9 junior high
10-12 senior high
13-16 college
>17 graduate level

Worksheet:

a. Count a 100 word sample. Write the number of sentences: _______
b. Divide 100 by the number of sentences: (100/"a") _______
c. Count the number of words with three or more syllables: _______
d. Add "b" + "c": _______
e. Multiply this by .4: grade level: _______

Repeat this with another sample of the book. If you get a wide variation between samples, do it again in another section, and again if needed until you start to see a trend.

Vocabulary Skills

No matter how old you are or how much education you have, at one time or another you will encounter a word which you've never seen before. How do you handle it? How are you going to figure out what it means?

The skills that we use to discover the meanings and pronunciations of unknown words are called "word attack" skills. When you "attack" word it doesn't mean that you're out to destroy it, but that you are going to gently take it apart and coax it into revealing its meaning. What are these skills and how can you use them to improve your reading? Follow these steps:

Try to sound-out the word using traditional phonics

At the heart of many arguments about basic skills lately is the relative usefulness of traditional phonics. Critics say that the English language is so mixed up and inconsistent that there is hardly a single phonics rule which you can apply to every word. True, many English words do not follow the rules, because of the massive borrowing that has take place over the years from other languages, but most syllables of most words do follow the rules. Trying to "sound-out" a word is often a good first step, because, like most adults, you probably have a large vocabulary of words that you've heard in conversation or on television, but couldn't spell or perhaps recognize in print. Phonics helps bridge the gap between a person's "hearing vocabulary" and his "reading vocabulary". Phonics also helps a person spell words better.

Try to Guess the Word Meaning from its Context

Words really only have meaning when they are used in sentences. Often you can guess a word's meaning by how it is used in the sentence. Ask yourself: What part of speech is the unknown word? What are it's modifiers? Are there other clues in the sentence which point to the unknown word? Is the unknown word part of a list? Things that are part of a list often share the same characteristics. Is the unknown word in contrast to a known word in the passage. Also, authors often define difficult words right in the passage. It's often right there if you know where to look.

Look for the Greek, Latin, or old English Roots in a Word

Most English words came from some other language. The greater portion of English's scientific, cultural, religious and medical terms were derived from Greek and Latin, or have been coined from roots based on these languages. Also, many borrowed words from other European languages evolved from these ancient languages. If you have a basic understanding of some Greek and Latin roots, it is like having a shortcut into pronouncing and understanding many college-level word.

Take for example, the root aud which means "to hear". It is in the word audiometer . It is also present in the words auditorium, audiovisual, and audition ,. The meter part of the word mean "measure"- and is the same root in thermometer, seismometer, and the metric system. It should not be difficult to guess that audiometer has something to do with the measurement of hearing.

Get a good book or take a class which stresses recognition of common roots, prefixes and suffixes. Seek out root words as you read. They are the heart of our language and will be tremendously useful for you, especially in discerning scientific, medical, and technical terms.

Look it up in the Dictionary

When all else falls, ask somebody to tell you the meaning of the word or look it up in the dictionary,- but don't just leave it at that. Make this an opportunity for you to add to your vocabulary.

You will triple your chances of remembering the word if you immediately try to use the word in a sentence of your own. If you have the dictionary open, look up the alternative definitions of the word and see if any synonyms are listed. If the entry contains an etymology, look at the root words which are the ancient source of the modern word. Finally, write the word down somewhere and periodically review it until you can confidently use it in your speech or writing.

Summary of Basic Phonics Rules
(Lab Work Assignment: New Phonics, and College Spelling Drills on the Apple Computers)
The vowels are "a,e,i,o, and u"; also sometimes "y &w". This also includes the diphthongs "oi,oy,ou,ow,au,aw, oo" and many others.
The consonants are all the other letters which stop or limit the flow of air from the throat in speech. They are: "b,c,d,f,g,h,j,k,l,m,n,p,qu,r,s,t,v,w,x,y,z,ch,sh,th,ph,wh, ng, and gh".

1. Sometimes the rules don't work.
There are many exceptions in English because of the vastness of the language and the many languages from which it has borrowed. The rules do work however, in the majority of the words.

2. Every syllable in every word must have a vowel.
English is a "vocal" language; Every word must have a vowel.

3. "C" followed by "e, i or y" usually has the soft sound of "s". Examples: "cyst", "central", and "city".

4. "G" followed by "e, i or y" usually has the soft sound of "j". Example: "gem", "gym", and "gist".

5. When 2 consonants a joined together and form one new sound, they are a consonant digraph. They count as one sound and one letter and are never separated.
Examples: "ch,sh,th,ph and wh".

The Vowel Rules:

6. When a syllable ends in a consonant and has only one vowel, that vowel is short. Examples: "fat, bed, fish, spot, luck".

7. When a syllable ends in a silent "e", the silent "e" is a signal that the vowel in front of it is long. Examples: "make, fete, kite, rope, and use".

8. When a syllable has 2 vowels together, the first vowel is usually long and the second is silent. Examples: "pain, eat, boat, res/cue, say, grow". NOTE: Diphthongs don't follow this rule; In a diphthong, the vowels blend together to create a single new sound. The diphthongs are: "oi,oy,ou,ow,au,aw, oo" and many others.

9. When a syllable ends in any vowel and is the only vowel, that vowel is usually long . Examples: "pa/per, me, I, o/pen, u/nit, and my".
10. When a vowel is followed by an "r" in the same syllable, that vowel is "r-controlled". It is not long nor short. "R-controlled "er,ir,and ur" often sound the same (like "er"). Examples: "term, sir, fir, fur, far, for, su/gar, or/der".

Basic Syllable Rules


1. To find the number of syllables:
---count the vowels in the word,
---subtract any silent vowels, (like the silent "e" at the end of a word or the second vowel when two vowels a together in a syllable)
---subtract one vowel from every dipthong, (diphthongs only count as one vowel sound.)
---the number of vowels sounds left is the same as the number of syllables.
The number of syllables that you hear when you pronounce a word is the same as the number of vowels sounds heard. For example:
The word "came" has 2 vowels, but the "e" is silent, leaving one vowel sound and one syllable.
The word "outside" has 4 vowels, but the "e" is silent and the "ou" is a diphthong which counts as only one sound, so this word has only two vowels sounds and therefore, two syllables.

2. Divide between two middle consonants.
Split up words that have two middle consonants. For example:
hap/pen, bas/ket, let/ter, sup/per, din/ner, and Den/nis. The only exceptions are the consonant digraphs. Never split up consonant digraphs as they really represent only one sound. The exceptions are "th", "sh", "ph", "th", "ch", and "wh".

3. Usually divide before a single middle consonant.
When there is only one syllable, you usually divide in front of it, as in:
"o/pen", "i/tem", "e/vil", and "re/port". The only exceptions are those times when the first syllable has an obvious short sound, as in "cab/in".

4. Divide before the consonant before an "-le" syllable.
When you have a word that has the old-style spelling in which the "-le" sounds like "-el", divide before the consonant before the "-le". For example: "a/ble", "fum/ble", "rub/ble" "mum/ble" and "thi/stle". The only exception to this are "ckle" words like "tick/le".

5. Divide off any compound words, prefixes, suffixes and roots which have vowel sounds.
Split off the parts of compound words like "sports/car" and "house/boat". Divide off prefixes such at "un/happy", "pre/paid", or "re/write". Also divide off suffixes as in the words "farm/er", "teach/er", "hope/less" and "care/ful". In the word "stop/ping", the suffix is actually "-ping" because this word follows the rule that when you add "-ing" to a word with one syllable, you double the last consonant and add the "-ing".

Accent Rules

When a word has more than one syllable, one of the syllables is always a little louder than the others. The syllable with the louder stress is the accented syllable. It may seem that the placement of accents in words is often random or accidental, but these are some rules that usually work.

  1. Accents are often on the first syllable. Examples: ba'/sic, pro'/gram.

  2. In words that have suffixes or prefixes, the accent is usually on the main root word. Examples: box'/es, un/tie'.

  3. If de-, re-, ex-, in-,po-, pro-, or a- is the first syllable in a word, it is usually not accented. Examples: de/lay', ex/plore'.

  4. Two vowel letters together in the last syllable of a word often indicates an accented last syllable. Examples: com/plai n', con/cea l'.

  5. When there are two like consonant letters within a word, the syllable before the double consonants is usually accented. Examples: be/gin'/n er, let'/t er.

  6. The accent is usually on the syllable before the suffixes -ion, ity, -ic, -ical, -ian, -ial, or -ious, and on the second syllable before the suffix -ate. Examples: af/fec/ta'/tion, dif/fer/en'/ti/ate.

  7. In words of three or more syllables, one of the first two syllables is usually accented. Examples: ac'/ci/dent, de/ter'/mine.
Roots and Prefixes from Greek & Latin

ab, a
acro
ad, ac, ap
agri, agor
ambi, amphi
ambl
amo,ama-
anthr, andr
anti
aqua
arch
astr, aster
aud
bene, bonus
bi, du, di, twa, twi
bib
biblio
bio
camera
can, ken,houn,cyn
capt
cardia
cent
chrom
chron
cide, cis
circ
clud-,clos,claus
corp
counter, contra
cred
crypt
cyber
de, dis
dent, dont
derm
deus, dei, div
dextra
dict
dox, doc
dyn
epi
eu
extra
fer
ferr
fin
fract, frang
fratr
gamy
gen
giga
glos, glot
gno
graph, gram, glyph
gyny
hep
heter
homo (Latin)
homo (Greek)
hydr
hyper
hypo
inter
intra
ject, jact
kil
lat
ling
locu, loqu
log
luc, lux
magna
mal
mand
mania
manu
mar
mater
mega
meter
metro
micro
mil
mini
mis
mit, miss
mono
morph
mort
multi
nano
nat
naut
nov
nova
ob, op
oct
omni
ortho
pan
pan
pater
pax, pac
pen, pend
pent
petr
phil
phobia
phon
photo
phyte
pod, ped
poly
polis
port
poss,pon-
post
pre
pro
pyr
quad
quint
rupt
scio
scop
scrib, script
seme
semi, hemi
sex, hex
sinestra
somn
soph
soror
spect
sta, sti, ste
stella
sub
super
tact, tang
taph, tab
tele
terra
theo
tort
tox
trans
tripl
uni
urb
ven
verb
vert
vis, vid
vita, viva

Roots  Practice 1 
1.	a body or collection of writings or laws	 			A.  aqueous humor
2.	an instrument for determining the altitude of a star	B.  ad hoc
3.	a legislative body with two houses				C.  android
4.	a rage for possessing books						D.  anthropomorphism
5.	a robot which is shaped like a human				E.  astrolabe
6.	acquainted with								F.  auditory
7.	against the removal of the Established church		G.  bibliomania
8.	an instrument for recording the  heart				H.  bibulous
9.	apt to believe without good evidence				I.  bicameral
10.	becoming pregnant, forming and idea				J.  biosphere
11.	fond of drinking alcohol						K.  caption
12.	for this", temporary, for one occasion only			L.  cardiograph
13.	giving an animal human qualities					M.  cerebrum
14.	recurring frequently							O.  chromosphere
15.	related to hearing							P.  chronic 
16.	to draw a line around							Q.  circumscribe
17.	region around the earth which supports life			R.  cognizant
18.	the heading or title of an article or picture			S.  conception
19.	the main anterior part of the brain				T.  contravene
20.	the reddish gaseous layer surrounding the sun		U.  corpus
21.	the watery fluid which fills part of the eye 			V.  countermand
22.	to be in conflict with							W.  credulous
23.	to revoke a former command				X.  antidisestablishment

Roots Practice 2

1.	a small space the size of a tooth						A.  ambidextrous
2.	a unit of measurement of force						B.  androgyny
3.	a woman married to more that one man at once			C.  bigamy
4.	able to use both hands well							D.  diction
5.	an instructor									E.  digraph
6	.brother killing brother							F.  diva
7.	correct speaking								G.  docent
8.	faithfulness									H.  dyne
9.	"happy death"									I  epitaph
10.	having ambiguous sexuality							J.  eugenics
11.	holding correct beliefs							K.  euthanasia
12.	infection of the liver							L.  extraterrestrial
13.	marriage to one partner							M.  fidelity
14.	marriage to only two partners						N.  fratricide
15.	marriage to two or more people at once				O.  glossolalia
16.	outside of earth									P.  hemiplegia
17.	partial paralysis									Q.  hepatitis
18.	rock drawing									R.  indentation
19.	"speaking in tongues" not learned					S.  infinite
20.	the science of improving a species					T.  monogamy
21.	the star opera singer								U.  orthodox
22.	two letters which together form a new sound				V.  petroglyph
23.	without an end									W.  polyandry
24.	words on a memorial marker						X.  polygamy

Roots Practice 3

1.	a chemical with the water removed					A.  anhydrous
2.	a projectile									B.  companion
3.	bad smell										C.  cosmonaut
4.	concerning both Americas							D.  elucidate
5.	fatherhood										E.  heterodox
6.	foot doctor										F.  homicide
7.	holding different beliefs							G.  homogeneous
8.	in many different languages						H.  hyperbilirubenemia
9.	into the muscle									I.  hypoglycemia
10.	killing a person									J.  interregnums
11.	knowing all things								K.  intramuscular
12.	low blood sugar									L.  malodorous
13.	making peaceful									M.  mariner
14.	of the same types								N.  missile
15.	oil-based substance								O.  mortician
16.	one who prepares the dead							P.  multilingual
17.	one with whom you share bread						Q.  neurology
18.	sailor										R.  omniscient
19.	sails the universe								S.  pacification
20.	send back										T.  panamerican
21.	study of the nerves and the brain						U.  paternity
22.	the foot of a statue								V.  pedestal
23.	the time between regimes						W.  petrochemical
24.	to make clear									X.  podiatrist
25.	to make young again								Y.  rejuvenate
26.	too much bile in the blood							Z.  remit




Roots Practice 4

1.	a breaking out									A.  acrophobia
2.	a flat carrying case								B.  agoraphobia
3.	a math variable with many parts						C.  constellation
4.	a star system									D.  eruption
5.	after death										E.  inscribe
6.	belief in many gods								F.  nontoxic
7.	evil											G.  philanthropy
8.	fear of going outside							H.  photosensitive
9.	fear of high places								I.  polynomial
10.	knowing things before it happens						J.  polytheism
11.	living											K.  portfolio
12.	looking ahead									L.  portmanteau
13.	love of mankind									M.  posthumous
14.	not poisonous									N.  prescient
15.	oral											O.  provision
16.	partially dry								P.  psycholinguistics
17.	sensitive to light									Q.  scientology
18.	sleep walking									R.  semiarid
19.	sophisticated									S.  sinister
20.	study of knowledge							T.  somnambulism
21.	theory that reading is the mind's "guessing game"			U.  sorority
22.	to turn from under								V.  subvert
23.	travel bag										W  tortuous
24.	twisted and difficult								X  urbane
25.	women's fraternity								Y.  verbal
26.	write in										Z.  vital

Roots Practice 5

1.  extracurricular		A  hot water drips through coffee
2.  counterrevolutionary	B.  false teeth
3.  percolate			C.  knowing all things
4.  posterior			D.  water carrier of the Zodiac
5.  prenatal				E.  out of correct time
6.  Aquarius	 		F.  outside of regular classes
7.  audition	 			G.  a hearing to find if you can sing or act
8.  anachronism	 		H.  a place where the dead are prepared
9.  recognize	 		I.  one who walks
10. omniscient	 		J.  what you sit on
11. credentials	 		K.  one who looks
12. dentures	 		L.  a rebel against a revolution
13. mortuary	 		M.  before the birth of a baby 
14. pedestrian	 		N.  inability to sleep
15. podiatrist	 		O.  to write aimlessly
16. porter	 			P.  one who carries things
17. rupture		 		Q.  to know someone or something
18. inspector	 		R.  to manage badly
19. insomnia	 		S.  a license showing your qualifications
20. scribble	 		T.  easily broken down
21. mismanage	 		U.  the distance around a circle
22. biodegradable	 	V.  to break or burst
23. circumference	 	W.  a foot doctor

Roots Practice 6

1. homogenized	 		A.  not getting enough to eat.
2. heterosexual	 		B.  marriage to one person only
3. automatic	 		C  one who speaks many languages
4. astrology	 		D.  the study of stars
5. nautical		 		E.  a liquid mixed without lumps
6. theology		 		F.  a list of books at the end of a paper or book
7. hydrophobia	 		G.  magnetic tape for recording TV
8. polyglot	 			H.  study of God
9. anthropology	 		I.  false teeth
10.monogamy	 		J.  self working machine
11.vision	 			K.  reference to sailing
12.videotape	 		L.  fear of water
13.hydrotherapy	 		M.  a person who loves English things
14.dentures	 		N.  study of human cultures
15.bibliography	 		O.  reference to the act of seeing
16.anglophile	 		P.  therapy by squirting water on you
17.malnutrition	 		Q.  sexually attracted to the opposite sex
18. Insomnia 			R.   half or part of a circle
19. Semicircle 			S.   acting against a fever
20. Substernal 			T.  against fertilization of the ovum
21. Antipyretic 			U.  passing blood from one to another
22. Contraceptive 		V.  inability to sleep
23. Extrahepatic 			W.  referring to under the breast bone
24. Transfusion 			X.  outside of the liver


More Roots Practice 7

1. Transposition 	 		A.  Evidence that indicates against
2. Unicellular 	 		B.  An agent that works against a toxin
3. Semiconscious 	 	C.  three-headed muscle of the arm
4. Contraindication 	 	D.  Outside of the uterus
5. Anteflexion   	 		E.  Placed across (to the other side)
6 . Hemiplegia 	 		F.  Under or below the mammary gland
7. Extrauterine	 		G.  After having eaten
8. Antitoxin	 			H.  Relating to having a single cell
9. Prenatal	 			I.  Bad or poor position
10. Subaural	 		J.  Within the cranium
11. Triceps	 			K.  Half or partially conscious
12. Postcibal 	 		L.  Free from association
13. Malposition 	 		M.  Coming before the operation
14. Intracranial  	 		N.  Bending forward
15. Disassociate	 		O.  Under the ear
16. Unilateral	 		P.  Before birth
17. Bilateral 	 		Q.  The condition that a person is born with
18. Intravenous  	 		R.  Paralysis of half the body
19. Preoperative   	 	S.  Within a vein	
20. Congenital    	 		T.  Relating to two sides
21. Incompetency  	 	U.  A condition of poor nutrition
22. Inframammary 	 	V.  Relating to only one side
23. Malnutrition 	 		W.  A condition of not being competent
	 	
			











Roots Practice 8

1.	benefit	 		A.  a good feeling
2.	homocentric	 	B.  a five-sided figure
3.	euphoria	 		C.  a curse
4.	hexagon	 		D.  to cut off a head
5.	contingent		 	E.  a funeral parlor
6.	terrestrial		 	F.  a funeral speech
7.	magnify	 		G.  person-centered
8.	pentagon	 		H.  wishing evil
9.	mortuary	 		I.  earthly
10.	decapitation	 	J.  a good thing
11.	eulogy	 		K.  something which touches
12.	malevolent	 	L.  to make bigger
13.	malediction	 	M.  a six-sided polygon
14.	linguistics	 		N.  to speak in unknown languages
15.	glottal stop	 	O.  hatred of women
16.	glossolalia		 	P.  the first book of the Bible
17.	sinister		 	Q.  evil, wicked
18.	ambidextrous	 	R.  to kill mercifully (happy death)
19.	misogyny	 		S.  study of languages
20.	euthanasia	 	T.  to make alive again
21.	dictator	 		U.  the top layer of skin
22.	Genesis	 		V.  a left-handed person
23.	epidermis	 		W.  a tyrant, a monarch
24.	revitalize	 		X.  capable of using both hands well
25.	sinistrad	 		Y.  the sound in your throat for Bach


Roots Dictionary
Roots			Definitions		Examples
ad			to, toward		admit
anthro			man			anthropology
anti			against			antimatter
aqua			water			aquarium
astro			star			astronaut
aud			hear 			audience
biblio			book			bibliophile
bio			life			antibiotics
chron			time			chronic
circu			around			circumference
cogn			know			recognize
contra 			against			contradict 
corp			body			corpse
counter		against			counterrevolutionary
cred			believe			credit
dent			teeth			dentist
deus			God			divine
dextra			right			dexterity
dict			speak			dictionary
dyn 			power			dynamic
epi			on top			epitaph 
eu			happy, good		euthanasia
extra			over, above		extrahepatic
fin		     	end			infinite
gamy			wife			polygamy
gen			begin, race		generation
glot,gloss		tongue		glossary
graph,gram		write			paragraph
gyny			woman		gynecology
hemi		  	half			hemisphere
hetero			different		heterosexual
homo			same			homogenized
homo			man			homicide 
hydr			water			hydrogen
hyper			over			hyperactive
hypo 			under			hypotension
inter			between		international
intra 			within			intravenous
lingua			tongue		linguistics
lux,luc			light			lucid
mar	      		sea			marine
micro			very small		microbe
mit,miss		send			mission
mal	      		bad			malpractice
meter			measure		thermometer
mort 			death			immortal
multi 			many			multitude
nano			dwarf			nanotechnology
naut, nav		sail			navy
-ology,log		study of..., words	logical
omnia			all			omnipotent
pan (Latin)		bread			companion
pan (Greek)		all			pancreas
pax,pac		peace			pacify
ped,pod 		feet			pedestrian
phil	      		love			anglophile
phobia			fear			claustrophobia
phon			sound			phonograph
photo			light			photography
phyte			little plant		neophyte
poly			many			polygon
port			 carry			portfolio
post			after			postpone
pre 			before			prenatal
pro 			for, forward		promote
pyr			fire			pyromaniac
rupt			break			rupture 
scio			know			omniscient
scope			see			telescope
scrib,script		write			inscribe
semi			half			semester
sinestra		left			sinister
somn			sleep			insomnia
spect			look at			inspection
sta,sti,stu		stand			standard
stella			star			constellation
sub			under			submarine
super			over			superior
theo			God			theology
tele			far away		telescope
trans			across			transfusion
twe,twi		two			twice
vis,vid			see			video
vita,viva		life			vital





Finding Main Ideas in Paragraphs

You can find the main ideas by looking at the way in which paragraphs are written:

A paragraph is a group of sentences about one main idea.

Paragraphs usually have 2 types of sentences:

--a topic sentence, which contains the main idea,
and
--one or more detail sentences which support, prove, provide more information, explain, or give examples.

You can only tell if you have a detail or topic sentence by comparing the sentences with each other. The only exception to this is if there is only one sentence in the paragraph. Then the one sentence is the topic sentence.

Look at this example paragraph:

There are many uses for this great product. --TOPIC SENTENCE
Some mix it with chocolate to make cake icing. --DETAIL SENTENCE
It is the main ingredient in some milkshake mixes. --DETAIL SENTENCE
It will also kill rats in small amounts. --DETAIL SENTENCE

The first sentence introduces the main idea and the other sentences support and give the many uses for the product.


Rules for Finding the Topic Sentence

1. The topic sentence is usually first, but could be in any position in the paragraph.

2. A topic is usually more "general" than the other sentences, that is, it talks about many things and looks at the big picture. Sometimes it refers to more that one thing. Plurals and the words "many", "numerous", or "several" often signal a topic sentence.

3. Detail sentences are usually more "specific" than the topic, that is, they usually talk about one single or small part or side of an idea. Also, the words "for example", "i.e.", "that is", "first", "second", "third", etc., and "finally" often signal a detail.

4. Most of the detail sentences support, give examples, prove, talk about, or point toward the topic in some way.

How can you be sure that you have a topic sentence? Try this trick:

--Switch the sentence around into a question. If the other sentences seem to "answer" the question, then you've got it.

Where is the Topic Sentence?

Model 1.
Americans enjoy many advantages. They enjoy freedom of expression. They have freedom of movement within the country. They have a high standard of living.

Model 2.
Americans enjoy freedom of expression. They have freedom of movement within the country. They have a high standard of living. Certainly Americans enjoy many advantages.

Model 3.
Americans enjoy many advantages. Americans enjoy freedom of expression. Americans have freedom of movement within the country. They have a high standard of living. Americans are truly blessed in many ways.

Model 4.
The previous discussion has pointed out the duties and responsibilities of being an American citizen. Now let us turn to the many advantages that Americans enjoy. They have freedom of expression. They have freedom of movement within the country. They have a high standard of living.

Model 5.
Americans enjoy freedom of expression. Americans have freedom of movement within the country. They have a high standard of living.

advantages= good things
freedom of expression= free speech and freedom of the press
high standard of living= comparable wealth




Underline the Topic Sentence

1. There are only four poisonous snakes native to the United States. Three of these are pit vipers: the rattlesnake, the copperhead, and the cottonmouth moccasin. The fourth is the brightly banded coral snake.

2. Keep your tree outdoors until the day before Christmas. Never use lighted candles. There are other suggestions, also, for avoiding the Christmas tree fire. Turn off the tree lights before you leave the house, and get rid of the tree by New Year's Day.

3. Ten thousand people huddle inside a wall which encircles flat-roofed houses built of baked mud. Dust, inches thick, is stirred up by the camels and donkeys as they move through the town. For six months in the year it never rains: 120 degrees in the shade is not uncommon.

4. A fiddler crab waves his brightly colored claws and dances for his lady. The penguin hunts a fine smooth stone and takes it as a gift to his lady. Gestures of courtship like these are common throughout the animal kingdom.

5. To some people, the flood is an enemy. It comes like a river to hit the city and destroy their homes. But to the farmer the water is a friend, even in cloudburst amounts.

6. Finally, at some time or other, one will see a crowd of men, women and children who seem to move together like a herd of sheep. They huddle together or they rush across the street in a mob or they gather in a group, shouting and jabbering. These are the new arrivals in the city. They have come to Calcutta because of famine, flood, drought, or other causes. They are homeless and hopeless when they reach the city. They get along in Calcutta as people have always managed in a new place.

7. Europe today is the auto maker's dream. Millions of people want cars. More than that, millions of people can afford them.

8. Tall and powerfully built, he appeared to be about fifty. He had youthful gray eyes, intensely blue. Despite his ragged clothes, there was a kind of shaggy nobility in his bearing.

9. We would bring in a full harvest of chestnuts and walnuts. The apples we stored in the cellar, and we sun-dried the other fruits. Autumn was all these joys to us and we looked forward to its coming.


10. The early settlers in South Carolina sought profit. They took to raising Indian corn, hogs, and cattle. Then they looked to the timber lands and the products of the forest.

11. Concrete went into the foundation of the new houses. It was used for streets and for sidewalks. Tall office buildings sprang up largely built of concrete, and concrete was used for aqueducts and dams.

12. The early trains were often fire hazards. The locomotives sent out showers of sparks, so that the passengers were kept busy putting out fires in their clothing. The sparks often set fire to the dry grass and then, in turn, to the farm buildings.

13. Unfortunately, there are no new lands to be discovered. Even the smallest islands can be seen clearly from the air. But there is much to be discovered about the oceans, and science is now exploring them.

14. Changes in temperature are sometimes the reasons for the movements of animals. Crabs and lobsters go into deep water in the winter, then return to shallow water in the spring. Birds and some bats go north or south, depending on the season.

15. The corner of the basement toward the tornado usually offers the greatest safety, particularly in frame houses. People in houses without basements can sometimes find protection by taking cover under heavy furniture against inside walls. Standing next to a wall on a lower floor is a good defensive tactic.

16. Everything was just getting settled after World War II. The Deep South had just begun to feel comfortable again. Then came the ants! Whole colonies of them had sprung into being almost over night. It seemed like an invasion from Mars or some other unearthly place. Agricultural experts were brought in to study the situation and to map strategy for defense.

17. There is much concern over accidents among children. In the age group from 15 to 24 years, pedestrian deaths constitute only twelve percent of the total for the group. In the age group from 0 to 14 years, the percentage is over sixty. There are five times as many deaths among young children as among youth. Yet people 65 years of age or older suffer an even greater percentage of pedestrian deaths (sixty-six percent) than do children! Such facts are useful in indicating where accident-prevention efforts should be concentrated.

Analogies
Find the relationship between the first two words in each sentence. Try to find a matching relationship between the third word and a word from the list.

1. face: nose as foot: _____________________
2. brush: clean as knife: _____________________
3. feel: touch as enough: _____________________
4. clean: dirty as top: _____________________
5. stove: cook as ladder: _____________________
6. bug: crawl as sled: _____________________
7. drum :band as letter: _____________________
8. meet: met as hold: _____________________
9. daddy: father as mail: _____________________
10. corn: ear as banana: _____________________
11. bang: noise as flash: _____________________
12. cow: calf as queen: _____________________
13. right: wrong as edge: _____________________
14. stone: rock as watch: _____________________
15. throw: threw as wear: _____________________
16. circle: ring as hurry: _____________________
17. twin: two as alone: _____________________
18. pond: lake as hill: _____________________
19. trap: catch as ribbon: _____________________
20. shore: bank as nearly: _____________________
21. bite: bit as drink: _____________________
22. butterfly: insect as donkey: _____________________
23. inch: foot as one: _____________________
24. glance: stare as wheel: _____________________
25. horse: gallop as cloud: _____________________
26. twelve: eleven as winter: _____________________
27. turkey: bird as bee: _____________________
28. bee: hum as bird: _____________________
29. arrange: music as develop: _____________________
30. sock: stocking as knife: _____________________
31. bank: vault as saw: _____________________
32. milk: cows as honey: _____________________
33. Sunday: Saturday as morning: _____________________
34. amicable: hostile as diffident: _____________________
35. artist: studio as hound: _____________________
36. sleeve: vest as air: _____________________
37. hundred: century as twenty: _____________________
38. widow: widower as witch: _____________________
39. boar: bore as baron: _____________________
40. grumpy: happy as harsh: _____________________
41. hundred: century as twenty: _____________________
42. confess: deny as burnish: _____________________
43. ewe: lamb as mare: _____________________
44. meter: millimeter as gram: _____________________
45. three: triangle as four: _____________________
46. whale: wail as vein: _____________________
47. ink: blotter as water: _____________________
48. tusk: ivory as linen: _____________________
49. beat: drum as blow: _____________________
50. chicken: rooster as turkey: _____________________
51. speak: phone as write: _____________________
52. book: page as record: _____________________
53. justice: oppression as energy: _____________________
54. sight: television as hearing: _____________________
55. boy: masculine as girl: _____________________
56. cow: bovine as horse: _____________________
57. March: April as Wednesday:_____________________
58. disease: aids as fish: _____________________
59. charity: love as hatred: _____________________
60. hunter: quarry as lover: _____________________

Word List
slide, climb, score, square, barren, equine, flax, fall, kennel, bottom, fatigue, mail, sponge, song, teeth, Tuesday, beast, one, rush, radio, chirp, clock, vain, cut, twelve, drank, snow, tarnish, vacuum, plenty, confident, mild, feminine, held, film, horn, king, princess, drift, almost, typewriter, enmity, shark, horse, mate, sword, wear, score, summer, bees, skin, lift, middle, time, gobbler, spin, Thursday, midnight, insect, wizard, milligram, toe, wore, light, close, bunch, mountain, post








Fact or Opinion
Facts are statements which can be tested for truth or falsehood.
Opinions are personal, subjective judgments or beliefs which cannot be tested for proof.
Facts are not necessarily better than opinions, but it is important to know the difference between them because we tend to read, understand and trust facts in a different way than opinions. We use the word "fact" in a slightly different way than the way the word is used in standard English. Our use of "fact" has it as a specific, concrete, testable statement. "Facts" may be false, yet still be "facts" if they can be tested. Read each sentence. Try to decide if each statement is "fact" or opinion.

1. ____Your face is beautiful.
2. ____My brush had 4 gray hairs in it this morning.
3. ____The daily edition of the Los Angeles Times costs 25
4. ____Star Trek is a great show.
5. ____Madonna is 28 years old.
6. ____Madonna is a beautiful woman.
7. ____The Republican party works harder than the Democrats.
8. ____Nevada is east of California
9. ____All wars are bad.
10. ____Corn is a grain.
11. ____Mr. Doyle is six foot, five inches tall.
12. ____Mr. Doyle is three foot, three inches tall.
13. ____Mr. Doyle is a good-looking teacher.
14. ____Most Communists are evil.
15. ____Most lawyers are bad.
16. ____God created whiskey so that the Irish wouldn't take over the world.
17. ____Maritime law is the law of the sea.
18. ____A "best-seller" is a book that sells at least 20,000 copies in a specified time period.
19. ____The Glendale College of 1993 is not the same as the Glendale College of 1952.
20. ____The United States is only justified in going to war when it is attacked.
21. ____Our next holiday is Thanksgiving Day.
22. ____Employment is valued by every member of society.
23. ____Cabbage tastes like boiled garbage.
24. ____New York was one of the original American colonies.
25. ____The base pay for an American general is $43,026 a year
26. ____Glendale College has been in operation for over 55 years.
27. ____Black shoes look better that brown shoes.
28. ____The moon is made of green cheese.
29. ____The temperature was 83 in Glendale yesterday.
30. ____It was too cold in Glendale yesterday.
31. ____Glendale has a bad smell.
32. ____A mackerel is a type of fish.
33. ____The accused had a blood alcohol level which exceeded the legal limit.
34. ____A business partnership involves at least two people.
35. ____Three plus four equals seven.
36. ____Three plus six equals seven.
37. ____Thanksgiving is on November 24th.
38. ____There are 531 Block-Buster Music stores in North America.
39. ____Block-Buster should stay in the video business.
40. ____"Star Trek" is one of the great television shows of all time.
What is the Bias of the Author?

Put "G" if you think that the author thinks the person is "good" or "B" if you think that the author thinks the person in "bad".

1.____He is a short, sweaty individual.

2.____He was about as smart as the steamroller he drove, and moved as quickly.

3.____He was fish-belly white.

4.____Although a big men, his voice was quite soft.

5.____He had darting eyes which didn't miss a thing.

6.____His quick glance took in the room.

7.____He pushed back from the table and got to his feet.

8.____She wore no makeup.

9.____It was a little house with big windows, like eyes.

10.____The automobile growled into life.

11.____She tried to meet his gaze and failed.

12.____"Hello," he boomed.

13.____She glided into the room.

14.____It was Dr. Smith.

15.____It was Congressman Smith.

16.____It was Reverend Smith.

17.____It was Professor Smith.

18.____It was Homer Smith.

19.____She looked at him with frank approval.

20.____He looked at her with frank approval.

21.____The boy whined softly.

22.____The puppy whined softly.

23.____The boy cried softly.

24.____The room was yellow and white.

25..____The room was purple and orange.

26.____The room was paneled with oak wood.

27.____It was a solid old chest, scuffed and battered in its journey.

28.____He cleared his throat discreetly and spat into a handkerchief.

29.____He was clean.

30.____He was ragged and unshaven.

31.____ He was ragged and unshaven, but he was clean.
Compare the Articles

Rosary 'Pro-Life' Action Gathers Hundreds
by Paula Doyle, The Tidings , Friday, November 29, 1991

A parade took place on a busy street in Glendale last Saturday morning. There weren't any floats, costumes or signs. The 400 participants carried rosaries; their destination was an abortion mill.
Though greeted by 10 chanting abortion advocates, the Helpers of God's Precious Infants gathered on the sidewalk outside the two-story brick building housing the Family Planning Associates Medical Group and patiently recited the Rosary led by Bishop Armando Ochoa.
According to a "regular" pro-life sidewalk counselor, it was a good day. Instead of the usual 30 to 40 individuals entering the building on Saturday for abortions, there was a handful. Cars cruised by, slowed down and drove on. Two couples came, saw the group and declined the offered escort by abortion advocates.
"It was fantastic," declared "Helpers" security organizer Al Wertz. "The Glendale Police Department was outstanding. They were fair, and they allowed both sides to express their opinions," said Wertz who is on the Board of Directors of the west coast "Helpers." The police described the demonstration as peaceful with no arrests.
On Saturday, the vigil began at 7a.m. with Mass at Incarnation Church followed by a two-block march down Brand Blvd. and a several-blocks walk down Arden Avenue to the corner location of the abortuary building. Event organizers estimated that about 600 people gathers for Mass concelebrated by 10 priests with Bishop Ochoa as principal celebrant...


















Abortion Conflict Played Out in City
by Kay Fanslow, Glendale News Press , Monday, November 25, 1991

Hundreds of Southern California Catholics sparred with about 25 pro-choice activists at a Glendale family health clinic Saturday.
Aside from the occasional shouting match, Saturday's demonstration at the Family Planning Associates Medical Group was peaceful and the Glendale Police Departments reported no arrests.
Police estimated the crowd to be at about 400.
The demonstration was the second prayer vigil staged by the local Helpers of God's Precious Infants group. The first prayer vigil was held in Pacoima last summer.
The anti-abortion protesters met at the Church of the Incarnation for Mass before being led by Bishop Armando Ochoa on a procession to the clinic.
At the clinic, the anti-abortion group was met by a line of pro-choice activists blocking the entrance.
The anti-abortion group prayed and recited the rosary. Pro-choice activists locked arms and shouted slogans.
"We're trying to intercede with God so that these women can change their minds about their abortions." Helpers of God's Precious Infants volunteer Jackie Denny said.
"Virtually every Saturday, we try to have a presence here since this clinic is subject to regular anti-choice activities," Pat Devin, a Womens' Health Action & Mobilization (WHAM) volunteer, said.
.....












Now you do your own comparisons:

Internet Research Project #2

Assignment:



Compare and detect the differences in bias and handling of the same incident or newsworthy story by different media outlets. Look up two or three different media outlets on the Internet. Find a big controversial story that is covered by all three outlets. Print out those stories and read them carefully. Write a compare and contrast essay covering these points:

What is the difference in the headlines?
What is the tone of each article?
What appears to the bias of the author in each article? ( Whose side is he on?) List examples of particular words that show the bias.
How do the articles agree on basic facts? How do they disagree? State explicit examples.
Rate each article's objectivity. Is it relatively unbiased, somewhat biased, or very biased?

How to do it:

Go to the English Lab and sign-in as usual. Launch Netscape. Tap on the Glendale College logo. On the page that comes up, tap on the line that says "Lab Work for Mr. Doyle". When that page comes up, tap on "Internet Assignment #2". On the bottom of this page, tap on one of the media outlets listed there (like USA Today or Time Magazine, or the San Jose Mercury).

Look for a good article on the homepage of each site. Scan the material carefully to see if the information is relevant and is talked about on at least three sites. If so, write down the URL address (it should be in the "Location" box above the buttons), and press the "Print" button and have the computer print the first few pages of the Internet site.

Write your essay answering the above questions using Microsoft Word on the Applications page. It should be about a page in length. Put your name on the paper and turn it in to Mr.Doyle.
About the word "Propaganda":

Propaganda is any attempt to persuade using irrational appeals.

An "appeal" is an argument. "Irrational" means "not thinking or not using reason". The word "propaganda" is related to the word "propagate". The root means "throwing seed." Imagine the way most third-world farmers plant crops. Farmers do not use machinery to plant crops nor do they plant seeds in neat rows. They walk into the field with a big bag of seed and take handfuls and toss the seed to the four corners of the wind. In the same way, modern propagandists "spread the seed" of information, allegations or half truths with the purpose of forming mass opinion. The propagandist uses irrational appeals, i.e. he doesn't seek to bring assent using reason, but rather seeks to inhibit thinking.

The classic methods of propaganda are:

transfer -in which the viewer is invited to "picture himself" in the image. Appeals often to psychological needs.

glittering generalities -which is the uncritical praising of a product.

name-calling -which is criticism or the "putting down" of the competition. In politics, it's called "mudslinging.
In debate, its an "ad hominem" attack or "poisoning the well".

bandwagon -an appeal to join the group. "Everybody's doing it".

plain folks -an appeal to average middle-class family or patriotic values.

card stacking -the unfair manipulation of information to make your product appear better than it is. "Stacking the deck". If often uses unfair comparisons or leaves out important information

testimonial -a famous person endorses or recommends the product.

propaganda=advertising=spin doctoring=public relations=community relations=political handling



Examples
1.product: Seagram's 7
picture: a group of nice-looking people having fun putting up Christmas decorations.
text: Seagram's Seven Crown, America's Good Time Spirit.

2.product: Pontiac Grand Am LE (a car)
picture: a beautiful car is speeding along
text: Pontiac: We Build Excitement. Grand Am LE. Buying Power, á la Pontiac. You don't need a carload of cash to get an overload of performance from Grand Am LE. A hunger for excitement will do the same. etc...

3.product: Jack Daniel's Whiskey
picture: a family sitting down for Christmas dinner
text: Sit to Christmas dinner at Miss Mary Bobo's Boarding House in Lynchburg, Tennessee, and you're likely to be there a while..They'll be baked turkey with cornbread dressing, tipsy sweet potatoes, zucchini au gratin....Smooth sippin' Tennessee Whiskey

4.product: CANOE Cologne for Men
picture: a very sexy female face fills the picture and you can see the reflection of a very sexy man in her glasses.
text: C.A.N.O.E....CANOE? The Cologne for men. The message is clear.

5.product: Chevy S-10 small truck
picture: a red truck being driven by a man in a cowboy hat over very rough country.
text: YOU'RE ABOUT TO HAVE A CHANGE OF HEART. S-10 4 4 MORE AVAILABLE POWER THAN FORD. PLUS STANDARD INSTATRAC. Let's throw some numbers at you:160 HP,230 pound of torque. Or 14% more horsepower, 35% more torque than Ranger can offer you. From the biggest engine with the most V6 horsepower....

6.product: Magna Cigarettes
picture: two giant boxes of cigarettes suspended in space with lightening bolts striking the packages.
text: MAGNA. GOOD SMOKE. GREAT PRICE.

7.product: Reincarnation, The Phoenix Fire Mystery (a book)
picture: just a picture of a book
text: BACK IN PRINT BY OVERWHELMING DEMAND. 84,000 SOLD.
"Wonderful material...I am a great admirer of the diligence, erudition, and good taste of the compilers"
Karl Menninger, M.D.










Propaganda Exercises

a. Name-Calling
b. Glittering Generalities
c. Testimonial
d. Plain Folks
e. Card-Stacking
f. Bandwagon
g Transfer

match the definition with the example.

1._____An appeal to do something or to buy something because everyone is doing it.

2._____An appeal to average middle-class political, social or religious values.

3._____An advertisement which invites you to identify with the persons in the picture and which pictures their product as a fulfillment of some emotional need.

4._____Advertising which tears down the opposition.

5._____An appeal made up mostly of general unprovable positive statements.

6._____An appeal which manipulates facts or make unfair
comparisons in order to make a product appear better.

7._____An advertising which features the personal witness of a famous person.

8 ._____"Marxist terrorists are responsible for all the trouble in Central America."

9._____"President Clinton has endorsed Vice President Professor Doyle for President."

10_____"Country-Time tastes just like good old fashioned lemonade ."

11._____"Most Doctors surveyed tell their patients to use the main ingredient in Bufferin."

12._____"Michael Jordan appears in a new series of
commercials for Pepsi Cola."

13._____"When presidential candidate Bush visited a factory in California recently, he wore a worker's hard-hat. When Jesse Jackson visited a farm in Ohio, he wore a farm hat and posed for pictures on a big piece of farm machinery."

14._____"The White House today characterized the leaders of the Bosnian Serbs as a "Nazi thugs."

15._____"The full page advertisement in a magazine shows a group of men and women enjoying each other's company. They are all drinking Seagram Wine Coolers."

16._____"Jay Leno personally endorses Alpo Dog Food for your dog."

17._____"The Bartles and James Wine Cooler advertisements feature two plain-looking unglamorous men who wear overalls and look like farmers."

18._____"At Kentucky Fried Chicken, we do chicken right!"

19._____"In the Pepsi television commercial, an entire beach-full of people climb over the hot sand in order to get a cup of Pepsi."

20._____"The Pepsi Challenge features a blind taste-test between Pepsi Cola, and Coca Cola. The Pepsi Cola usually wins."

Analysis of Advertising

1. What does the advertisement sell?

2. How many people are pictured in the advertisement?

3. The time of day is:

4. The scene is:


5. Your attention focuses on:


6. What is the mood of the advertisement?




7. What pictures or words are used to set the mood?




8. What is the covert message of the advertisement?





9. Which "classic" method of propaganda is this primarily?




Why Think About Propaganda?
by Aaron Delwiche Used by permission of the author. Comments to author: redwood@halcyon.com

It may seem strange to suggest that the study of propaganda has relevance to contemporary politics. After all, when most people think about propaganda, they think of the enormous campaigns that were waged by Hitler and Stalin in the 1930s. Since nothing comparable is being disseminated in our society today, many believe that propaganda is no longer an issue.

But propaganda can be as blatant as a swastika or as subtle as a joke. Its persuasive techniques are regularly applied by politicians, advertisers, journalists, radio personalities, and others who are interested in influencing human behavior. Propagandistic messages can be used to accomplish positive social ends, as in campaigns to reduce drunk driving, but they are also used to win elections and to sell malt liquor.

As Anthony Pratkanis and Elliot Aronson point out, "every day we are bombarded with one persuasive communication after another. These appeals persuade not through the give-and-take of argument and debate, but through the manipulation of symbols and of our most basic human emotions. For better or worse, ours is an age of propaganda." (Pratkanis and Aronson, 1991)

With the growth of communication tools like the Internet, the flow of persuasive messages has been dramatically accelerated. For the first time ever, citizens around the world are participating in uncensored conversations about their collective future. This is a wonderful development, but there is a cost.

The information revolution has led to information overload, and people are confronted with hundreds of messages each day. Although few studies have looked at this topic, it seems fair to suggest that many people respond to this pressure by processing messages more quickly and, when possible, by taking mental short-cuts.

Propagandists love short-cuts -- particularly those which short-circuit rational thought. They encourage this by agitating emotions, by exploiting insecurities, by capitalizing on the ambiguity of language, and by bending the rules of logic. As history shows, they can be quite successful.

Propaganda analysis exposes the tricks that propagandists use and suggests ways of resisting the short-cuts that they promote. This web-site discusses various propaganda techniques, provides contemporary examples of their use, and proposes strategies of mental self-defense.
Propaganda analysis is an antidote to the excesses of the Information Age.
Propaganda Techniques: Special Appeals Band Wagon

"The propagandist hires a hall, rents radio stations, fills a great stadium, marches a million or at least a lot of men in a parade. He employs symbols, colors, music, movement, all the dramatic arts. He gets us to write letters, to send telegrams, to contribute to his cause. He appeals to the desire, common to most of us, to follow the crowd. Because he wants us to follow the crowd in masses, he directs his appeal to groups held together already by common ties, ties of nationality, religion, race, sex, vocation. Thus propagandists campaigning for or against a program will appeal to us as Catholics, Protestants, or Jews...as farmers or as school teachers; as housewives or as miners.

With the aid of all the other propaganda devices, all of the artifices of flattery are used to harness the fears and hatreds, prejudices and biases, convictions and ideals common to a group. Thus is emotion made to push and pull us as members of a group onto a Band Wagon." (Institute for Propaganda Analysis, 1938)

The basic theme of the Band Wagon appeal is that "everyone else is doing it, and so should you." Since few of us want to be left behind, this technique can be quite successful. However, as the IPA points out, "there is never quite as much of a rush to climb onto the Band Wagon as the propagandist tries to make us think there is." When confronted with this technique, it may be helpful to ask ourselves the following questions:

* What is this propagandist's program?
* What is the evidence for and against the program?
* Regardless of the fact that others are supporting this program, should I support it?
* Does the program serve or undermine my individual and collective interests?
------------------------------------------------------------------

Propaganda Techniques: Special Appeals Plain-Folks

By using the plain-folks technique, speakers attempt to convince their audience that they, and their ideas, are "of the people." The device is used by advertisers and politicians alike.

America's recent presidents have all been millionaires, but they have gone to great lengths to present themselves as ordinary citizens. Bill Clinton eats at McDonald's and reads trashy spy novels. George Bush hated broccoli, and he loved to fish. Ronald Reagan was often photographed chopping wood, and Jimmy Carter presented himself as a humble peanut farmer from Georgia.

We are all familiar with candidates who campaign as political outsiders, promising to "clean out the barn" and set things straight in Washington. The political landscape is dotted with politicians who challenge a mythical "cultural elite," presumably aligning themselves with "ordinary Americans." As baby boomers enter their fifth decade, we are starting to see politicians in blue jeans who listen to rock and roll.

During the 1980s, Bartels and James appeared on television in comfortable, farm-style clothing, and, with a folksy drawl, thanked consumers for their continued support. The irony was that these two "regular guys" who pushed wine coolers were actually multi-millionaires -- hardly like you or me. In all of these examples, the plain-folks device is at work.

The Institute for Propaganda Analysis has argued that, when confronted with this device, we should suspend judgment and ask ourselves the following questions:

* What are the propagandist's ideas worth when divorced from his or her personality?
* What could he or she be trying to cover up with the plain-folks approach?
* What are the facts?
------------------------------------------------------------------

Propaganda Techniques: False Connections Testimonial

Bruce Jenner is on the cereal box, promoting Wheaties as part of a balanced breakfast. Cher is endorsing a new line of cosmetics, and La Toya Jackson says that the Psychic Friends Network changed her life. The lead singer of R.E.M appears on a public service announcement and encourages fans to support the "Motor Voter Bill."

"This is the classic misuse of the Testimonial Device that comes to the minds of most of us when we hear the term. We recall it indulgently and tell ourselves how much more sophisticated we are than our grandparents or even our parents.

With our next breath, we begin a sentence, 'The Times said,' 'John L. Lewis said...,' 'Herbert Hoover said...', 'The President said...', 'My doctor said...,' 'Our minister said...' Some of these Testimonials may merely give greater emphasis to a legitimate and accurate idea, a fair use of the device; others, however, may represent the sugar-coating of a distortion, a falsehood, a misunderstood notion, an anti-social suggestion..." (Institute for Propaganda Analysis, 1938)

There is nothing wrong with citing a qualified source, and the testimonial technique can be used to construct a fair, well-balanced argument. However, it is often used in ways that are unfair and misleading.

The most common misuse of the testimonial involves citing individuals who are not qualified to make judgments about a particular issue. In 1992, Barbara Streisand supported Bill Clinton, and Arnold Schwarzenegger threw his weight behind George Bush. Both are popular performers, but there is no reason to think that they know what is best for this country.

Unfair testimonials are usually obvious, and most of us have probably seen through this rhetorical trick at some time or another. However, this probably happened when the testimonial was provided by a celebrity that we did not respect. When the testimony is provided by an admired celebrity, we are much less likely to be critical.

According to the Institute for Propaganda Analysis, we should ask ourselves the following questions when we encounter this device.

* Who or what is quoted in the testimonial?
* Why should we regard this person (or organization or publication) as having expert knowledge or trustworthy information on the subject in question?
* What does the idea amount to on its own merits, without the benefit of the
Testimonial?

You may have noticed the presence of the testimonial technique in the previous paragraph, which began by citing the Institute for Propaganda Analysis. In this case, the technique is justified. Or is it?
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How Politicians Use Propaganda

Four years before Contract With America became a household phrase, Newt Gingrich's political action committee (GOPAC) mailed a pamphlet entitled Language, A Key Mechanism of Control to Republicans across the country. The booklet offered rhetorical advice to Republican candidates who wanted to "speak like Newt." It was awarded a Doublespeak Award by the National Conference of Teachers of English in 1990.

The booklet contained two lists of words. GOP candidates were instructed to use one set of "positive, governing words," (glittering generalities) when speaking about themselves. A second set of negative words (name-calling words) were to be used against their opponents.

This is the list of "positive, governing words" that GOP candidates were told to use when speaking about themselves or their policies.

* Active(ly) * Activist * Building * Candid(ly) * Care(ing) * Challenge * Change * Children * Choice/choose * Citizen * Commitment * Common sense * Compete * Confident * Conflict * Control * Courage * Crusade * Debate * Dream * Duty * Eliminate good-time in prison * Empower(ment) * Fair * Family * Freedom * Hard work * Help * Humane * Incentive * Initiative * Lead * Learn * Legacy * Liberty * Light * Listen * Mobilize * Moral * Movement * Opportunity * Passionate * Peace * Pioneer * Precious * Premise * Preserve * Principle(d) * Pristine * Pro-(issue) flag, children, environment * Prosperity * Protect * Proud/pride * Provide * Reform * Rights * Share * Strength * Success * Tough * Truth * Unique * Vision * We/us/our * Workfare

This is the list of negative words and phrases that GOP candidates were told to use when speaking about their opponents.

* "Compassion" is not enough. * Anti-(issue) flag, family, child, jobs * Betray * Coercion * Collapse * Consequences * Corruption * Crisis * Decay * Deeper * Destroy * Destructive * Devour * Endanger * Failure * Greed * Hypocrisy * Ideological * Impose * Incompetent * Insecure * Liberal * Lie * Limit(s) * Pathetic * Permissive attitude * Radical * Self-serving * Sensationalists * Shallow * Sick * They/them * Threaten * Traitors * Unionized bureaucracy * Urgent * Waste

A brief glance at the words on Gingrich's lists suggests that he continues to use these techniques. Words such as "vision, courage, lead, learn, commitment, empower, and freedom" can be found throughout Contract With America. Gingrich frequently uses words like "ideological, liberal, bureaucracy, crisis, endanger, and lie" to describe his opponents.

Gingrich understands the power of propaganda. When Language, A Key Mechanism of Control was first reported in the press, Gingrich's spokesman Thomas Blankley said "''Obviously, the general concept is something Newt has been pressing in his public speaking for a long time, that Republicans need to use vivid language to describe the values of people we oppose politically.'' As recently as January 20th, 1995, Gingrich called upon his colleagues to "paint a vivid, brilliant word picture" in order to truly become a majority by April of 1997.

(Sources: Chicago Tribune, September 19, 1990; Orlando Sentinel Tribune, September 14, 1990; New York Times September 9, 1990)

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Differences Between Scholarship and Propaganda
from the Journal of Academic Librarianship Jan '95

Indicators of Scholarship



Strives for truth and admits weaknesses

Presents other points of view and may include dissenting points of view

Attempts to be fair-minded and admits bias or viewpoint

Interprets data carefully whether they support or refute a premise

Invites critical analysis

Invites continuing research

Describes limits of data.

Presents accurate description of alternative views.

Presents data that do not favor preferred views as well as data that support these.

Encourages debate, discussion and criticism.

Settles disputes by use of generally accepted criteria for evaluating data.

Looks for counter-examples.

Uses language in agreed-upon ways.

Updates information.

Admits own ignorance.

Attempts to discuss general laws/principles.

Finds own field or area of investigation difficult and full of holes.

Relies on critical thinking skills.




Indicators of Propaganda



Operates with many levels of both truth and falsehood.

Presents one point of view as the only point of view.

Misleads deliberately.

Manipulates charts, graphs, statistics to support a premise.

Provides ready-made answers and solutions to problems.

Results in changed attitude and or motivation to action to be successful

Excessive claims of certainty. (We have "the way, the view").

Personal attacks and ridicule.

Emotional appeals.

Distortions of data unfavorable to preferred views.

Suppresses contradictory views.

Suppresses contradictory facts.

Appeals to popular prejudices.

Relies on suggestion or negative innuendo.

Devalues thought or critical appraisal.

Transforms words to suit aims.

Magnifies or minimizes problems, suggested remedies.

Presents information or views out of context.