Reflection Paper

COURSE ASSIGNMENTS All assignments should be completed using APA style. Use the Calibri or Arial font (not Times New Roman). Assignment #1: Reflection papers (20%) The purpose of learning theory about human behavior in the social environment is to strengthen our understanding of why people behave as they (we) do across development and in changing environmental contexts. This process is enhanced by consistent application of theory to particular behavior. To facilitate that process in this course, you will write 3 reflection papers in which you:  Reflect on a specific prompt I will provide on Blackboard (See assignments). They may include:  Reflection and discussion of peer reviewed article assigned;  Observation of behavior in someone in which you are paying attention to and writing on developmental themes and issues;  Reflection on yours or another family member’s/friend’s experiences in a particular stage of development, in which you pay attention to developmental themes and issues.  Engage with the readings, either through direct discussion of ideas (a), or by applying relevant theory, concepts, or research from the readings to interpret the behavior or interaction (b or c). What concepts are exemplified? How do these concepts contribute to your understanding of “what’s going on” and “why”? Your paper must have substantive content.  Use graduate level writing skills. Your entries should be 1.5 pages in length, double spaced, with a simple header and no title page or abstract. Do cite properly using APA style. When you discuss a theory from the text, please use the theorist’s name, for instance, “According to Erikson’s theory of psychosocial development”, and then cite the text. You should cite other articles as you use them. Assessment criteria (no rubric):  Depth of insight  Appropriateness of application of readings to reflection  Graduate level grammar  Capacity to express relevant ideas succinctly 5 Each reflection paper will have a specific prompt. See Blackboard Assignments for the prompts. Each paper will be graded on a scale of 100 points and all together are worth 20% of the final grade. Reflection papers are due by 11:59 pm on Blackboard on the dates given in Module Schedule. Assignment #2: Quizzes (2 quizzes | each 10% = 20%) There will be two quizzes in this course on content from the readings and lecture. Each will focus on major theorists, content of theories, and developmental themes and issues. Quizzes are a combination of multiple-choice questions and short answer. Quiz 1 is due 3/27/21 at 11:59 pm. Quiz 2 is due 4/24/21 at 11:59 pm. Assignment #3: Discussion Boards (10%) Several discussion boards will be assigned connected to film you watch or a case study, and a handout or prompts to which to respond. These are typically scheduled for asynchronous weeks. See Module Schedule for due dates. Class Participation including in class discussion and small group work (10%) Throughout the course, there will be weekly opportunities for substantive discussion based on the lecture, readings, case studies, films and videos and other content. This grade will be related to both your level of active participation in discussion in class and any group work, and any in class written work. Both oral and written contributions will form an ongoing grade according to the following rubric: A (93-100%) B+ or B (83-92%) C+ or C (70-82%) D or F (0-69%) Excellent engagement and effort demonstrated in online synchronous and asynchronous classroom discussions, integrating readings, lecture, and reflection on a consistent basis. Written work actively integrates readings, lecture, and in class material, demonstrating engagement with learning, and completion of readings. Good engagement and effort demonstrated in online synchronous and asynchronous classroom discussions, integrating readings, lecture, and reflection. Written work attempts to integrate readings, lecture, and in class material with some success. Minimal engagement and effort demonstrated in online synchronous and asynchronous classroom discussions, integrating readings, lecture, and reflection. Written work shows little evidence of integration of readings, lecture, and in class material. Student does not participate in class discussion, is distracted by phone or computer, or contributes without integrating readings and lecture. Written work is not completed or shows no evidence of engagement with the readings, lecture, and class material. Class participation is graded throughout the term.  Signature Assignment #4: Using theory to understand difference PAPER (40%) People think, feel, and behave differently toward the same event depending on their developmental age 6 and the social environment around them. For this assignment, you will analyze how different members of your own family experienced the same important event in the past; then compare their reactions to theories we learned in the course and larger literature. Papers should be about 10-12 pages, doublespaced, using APA citation and reference style, 6th edition. The assignment will be conducted in the following steps: Step 1 (Weeks 1 – 4): You will pick an event currently happening or that has happened in the family (e.g., birth/adoption of a child, death of family member, divorce, someone having cancer, a major accident, move abroad, going to college, deployment to war-zone, etc.) or an event external to the family but is remembered by the family (e.g., a hurricane, earthquake or flood in the neighborhood, shooting at local school, recession, election of the first African American president, a big change in their community, 9/11, Iraq war, etc.). Then you will select 3 family members to interview about the same event. Ideally, you should pick family members with different ages, gender, political beliefs, religious beliefs, education, and so on. You must ask for permission from people you want to interview (oral permission is enough, so you don’t need to develop a written consent form). Ask your interviewees also if they are comfortable with being taped; if not, you must take careful notes. You must also discuss measures you will use to protect their privacy and confidentiality. Week 4: Submit a one-page proposal about what you plan to do for the paper: the event you pick, family members you plan to interview, how to plan to conduct the interview (where, face-to-face interview or over the phone, taped or not, etc.), and key questions you want to ask. Students will share their topics with each other during class (TBA). Due February 6th at 11:59 pm on Blackboard. Your proposals will receive comments, but no grade. You will be sharing them briefly (verbally) with each other in class on the 14th . Step 2 (Weeks 5 – 9): Conduct the interviews. I would strongly encourage you not to wait until the last minute to conduct these interviews! During these weeks, you arrange to interview family members. You must conduct your interviews at a place where the interviewees feel safe and comfortable talking to you, especially if the event is something they do not want to discuss publicly. Before each interview, you must state clearly again the purpose of the interview, assure them of confidentiality (only I will read them). You should state clearly that interviewees can ignore any questions they do not want to answer and stop the interview at any time. Ideally, you will interview each family member at least once for about 45 minutes to an hour (longer if necessary). During the interview, remember to ask specific questions to understand their thoughts, emotions, and behaviors in relation to the event. Probe to understand who/what shaped their reactions, how their reactions changed over time (before, during, after the event). Compare and contrast their memories to what you know as facts about the event, their current framing of the event/experience. Pay attention also to nonverbal behaviors of the interviewees.  Step 3 (Weeks 10 – 14): Write the paper In your paper, you will do the following (suggested page lengths are simply to indicate parameters): 1. Introduction (.5 – 1 page): Briefly introduce the purpose of the paper, describe the event you will focus on, why you picked the event, then introduce the family members you will interview. 7 2. Description of the interview process (.5 – 1 page): Describe how the interviews were conducted (e.g., whether they were done in person or over the phone; separately or jointly, audiotaped or not, how long was the interviews). Here you can also discuss any particular responses, emotional reactions, or behaviors of the interviewees as well as your own emotions and thoughts that you might not have expected. Reflect on the process of interviewing and how you might have done it differently, whether the way in which you conducted the interviews may have affected what you learned. 3. Results of the interviews (3 – 4 pages): In this part, you organize materials from the interviews into key themes where you can compare and contrast the interviewees’ responses to the same event, depending on their age, gender, background, religious beliefs, etc. You can have subheadings for these themes. This is the heart of your paper. 4. Applying and connecting theory to people’s reactions to the event: (2 – 3 pages): You will use at least two theories we discussed in class to discuss similarities and differences in the interviewed individuals’ experiences. Use theories and evidence to discuss why these similarities and differences exist and manifested in the ways they did. Discuss not just the content of their experiences but also the language and the way they talked about these experiences (including emotion and wording). 5. Connecting theory with people’s reaction and larger literature (2 – 3 pages): For this part, you must search the literature to know what researchers have said about people’s responses to the same event and what explained these responses. Compare and contrast these research findings (at least two) with what you found from the interviews with your family members. Did their responses fit what the literature found or differed, and why? 6. Application to social work practice (1 page): What lessons did this exercise teach you about social work practice in general and your own practice as a social worker in particular? What insights did you develop about professional identity and self-awareness as a social worker? In order to protect privacy, either create pseudonyms for the people you describe in order to protect their identity, or get their permission to use first names. Please do use names. A rubric will be provided for this paper. The signature paper is worth 40% of your grad 




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