English Expeditions - Ritsumeikan University

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Discussion Skills

Course Description

This course aims to develop students’ competence in both participating in and leading a small scientific research team. Firstly, students will focus on critical thinking skills while identifying the issues of an article, the author’s stance on those issues, and the supporting evidence for that stance. Secondly, students will practice oral skills including: 1) debate, discussion, and persuasion skills as part of the critical thinking skills above, 2) communication skills among members of a group, and 3) presentations skills in presenting a short report of findings to a small group and a poster presentation to a larger audience.

Course Goals

Upon completion of this course, students should be able to:

  • find articles related to their research and evaluate the usefulness and reliability of those articles
  • lead, participate in, and evaluate scientific research team discussions
  • create and deliver a short poster presentation based on a research article

For more detailed information, check the Can-do Goals for this course.

Grading Criteria

NOTE: The following Grading Criteria and Course Schedule will be followed regardless of the BCP level. If there is a change in BCP level, please check your weekly agenda for any updates. Additionally, all meetings of this course are designated face-to-face classes. If you've received official permission from the university to attend via Zoom due to special circumstances such as health reasons, if the BCP level is BCP3+, or if your instructor has opted to conduct classes via Zoom, please note that all Zoom sessions will be broadcast live (your instructor will contact you directly with details for Zoom access), with no recordings available. You are required to attend and participate in these scheduled sessions. Except for these situations, attendance via Zoom is not permitted.

注意:以下の成績評価基準およびコース・スケジュールは、原則、BCPレベルに関係なく適用されます。BCPレベルに変更があった場合は、これらを含め、何らかの変更がないか、最新情報を毎週のアジェンダで確認してください。この科目の全授業回(1週目から15週目、すべての授業)が対面授業に指定されています。健康上の理由など特別な事情によりZoomでの受講を大学から正式に許可された場合、BCPレベルが3以上になった場合、また、授業担当教員の事情によりZoomでの授業を余儀なくされている場合は、全授業がZoomでライブ配信(=リアルタイム配信)されます (Zoomアクセスに関する詳細は教員から直接連絡があります)。 録画はされません。必ず、定時にZoomセッションにアクセスし、授業に「参加」してください。尚、ここに挙げた状況以外でのZoomによる出席は許可されません

Grades will be based on the following:

1 Poster Presentation 15 points
NOTE: A score of 0 for your presentation will result in an unsatisfactory grade ('F') for the course.
15 points
1 Discussion Presentation
Materials Preparation
15 points 15 points
3 Unit Article Preparation Unit Article Preparation tasks are graded on a 8~0 scale. If all requirements of the task are completed at an exceptional level, you will receive 8 points; if they are fully met, you will receive 6~7 points; if they are adequately met, 4~5 points; if they are only partially met, 1~3 points; if you do not participate in the task or are absent, 0 points. 24 points
9 In-class Tasks In-class tasks are graded on a 4-3-2-1-0 scale. If all requirements of the task are completed at an exceptional level, you will receive 4 points; if they are adequately met, 3 points; if they are only partially met, 1~2 points; if you do not participate in the task or are absent, 0 points. 36 points
2 Workshop Tasks Workshop tasks are graded on a 5-4-3-2-1-0 scale. If all requirements of the task are completed at an exceptional level, you will receive 5 points; if they are adequately met, 3~4 points; if they are only partially met, 1~2 points; if you do not participate in the task or are absent, 0 points. 10 points
Late to class, using your cell phone, chattering in Japanese, sleeping in class, no text, no dictionary minus 1 point  

Text

Discussion and Presentation Skills: English Expeditions, Seibido Publishing Co., Ltd.

Note: You are required to purchase a copy of this text for this class. Any possession of a copy of this text (even if it is your own copy) from a previous semester will be considered a violation of academic honesty.

English-English Dictionary

You are required to bring an English-English dictionary to class every day. See the list of recommended dictionaries below for more information.

Course Schedule Print

Class Unit Stage Workshop Agenda
1 Orientation  
2 Unit 1 Text Materials    
3 Unit 1 Discussion Presentations I    
4 Unit 1 Discussion Presentations II    
5 Unit 2 Text Materials    
6 Unit 2 Discussion Presentations I    
7 Unit 2 Discussion Presentations II    
8 Unit 3 Text Materials    
9 Unit 3 Discussion Presentations I    
10 Unit 3 Discussion Presentations II    
11     Presentation  
12     Presentation  
13 Unit 1 Poster Presentations    
14 Unit 2 Poster Presentations    
15 Unit 3 Poster Presentations    

Course Can-do Goals

Reading Skills

  1. I can read a moderately complex 700~1200 word article.
  2. I can quickly find the information that I’m looking for in an article.
  3. I can quickly get the gist of an article.
  4. I can read and understand both concrete and abstract language, dealing with facts, opinions and feelings.
  5. I can determine if an article contains bias.
  6. I can identify the key words of an article.
  7. I can paraphrase and summarize the key points of an article.
  8. I can properly identify and use comprehension questions and discussion/research questions.
  9. I can judge the reliability of an article based on its source, purpose, and biases.

Discussion Skills

  1. I can participate in a small group discussion and express my opinions, feelings and reservations about a topic.
  2. I can lead a small group discussion, expressing my opinions and eliciting opinions from other group members.
  3. I can correct myself or rephrase what I said when I know that people do not understand me.
  4. I can use a variety of sentence structures and idioms.
  5. I can ask people to repeat when I don’t understand.
  6. I can use a number of strategies to keep a conversation going.
  7. I can agree or disagree with another person’s opinions.

Presentation Skills: Creating a Presentation

  1. I can follow the basic presentation pattern to create a poster presentation.
  2. I can properly organize the slides for a poster presentation.
  3. I can identify information that should be presented in a chart or graph.
  4. I can properly cite my sources.

Presentation Skills: Delivering a Presentation

  1. I can follow the basic presentation pattern to deliver a poster presentation.
  2. I can make eye contact effectively when delivering a poster presentation.
  3. I can use gestures effectively when delivering a poster presentation.
  4. I can speak loudly and clearly when delivering a poster presentation.
  5. I can effectively control my pace when delivering a poster presentation.
  6. I can give an honest answer to a question from an audience member.

Presentation Skills: Attending a Presentation

  1. I can understand a poster presentation on a familiar subject.
  2. I can provide constructive positive feedback on a poster presentation.
  3. I can provide constructive negative feedback on a poster presentation.
  4. I can properly identify myself when asking a question to a presenter.
  5. I can ask relevant questions to a presenter.
  6. I can thank a presenter for their presentation and for answering my question.

IT Skills

  1. I can use critical browsing skills to quickly find information on a web site.
  2. I can use advanced searching techniques to quickly find information on the internet.
  3. I can use word-processing software to create a worksheet for an academic discussion.
  4. I can use presentation software to create a poster presentation.
  5. I can choose an effective design in presentation software for my presentation content.
  6. I can use data-processing software to create a chart or graph.


Program-wide Standards

Grading Scale

90% or more, A+; 80-89%, A; 70-79%, B; 60-69%, C; below 60%, F

NOTE: At the end of your second semester, you will be taking a TOEIC®L&R IP Test. You will then be re-streamed for your second-year courses based on the results of this achievement exam, your placement test, and the numerical average of all of your first-year English courses. Therefore, it is important to strive for not only a high letter grade, but also for the highest numerical grade that you are capable of.

Attendance Policy

Students are expected to attend class regularly. Failure to attend class regularly may result in a reduction of the student's overall grade. Students will be penalized 3 'demerits' for each absence and 1 'demerit' for each 30-minute period they're late. Students who accumulate more than 15 'demerits' (the equivalent of 5 absences) will receive an unsatisfactory grade ('F') for the course, regardless of their actual score. As a rule, no make-up work will be given for unexcused absences.

NOTE: Students who fail to take the TOEIC®L&R IP Test will have 5 points subtracted from the total score of EACH English class they are enrolled in.

English-English Dictionaries

You are required to bring an English-English dictionary to class every day. The following is a list of quality paper dictionaries for English language learners. You may use any other dictionary or you may elect to use an electronic dictionary.

Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary, Oxford University Press.
Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English, Longman Press.
Collins Cobuild English Dictionary, HarperCollins Publishers.

Online FAQs

A bilingual set of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) has been prepared for each course, as well as a general set for the entire curriculum. You can access these FAQs from the menus on your English Expeditions home page. Please read all of your FAQs before your second meeting.

Extra-Credit Points

The English Expeditions extra-credit system is tied to your TOEIC®L&R IP Test results, in order to encourage all students to practice their TOEIC-IP® test-taking skills. For more information on the TOEIC®L&R IP test, see the TOEIC® Exercises section of your Online Education text. The extra-credit point system is as follows:

Semester One Semester Two Semester Three Semester Four
No extra-credit points are available. Score higher on your first-year TOEIC®L&R IP Test than you scored on your placement test. No extra-credit points are available. Score higher on your second-year TOEIC®L&R IP Test than you scored on your first-year test.

NOTE: Extra-credit points are only available for regularly matriculating (no genkyuufukki) students in all levels of English 3, English 4, English 7, English 8, and Super-Advanced and Advanced-level English 10.

The Extra-Credit points available are outlined in the chart below.
Note: TOEIC® Bridge-IP scores will be converted to TOEIC®L&R IP Test scores for all calculations.

No Academic
Honesty
Violations
TOEIC-IP Exam Extra-
Credit Points
Took Exam Score Gain Score
> 200
Score
< 20% Drop
6
0
0
-5
-5
-5

The Academic Honesty Policy for S&E English Classes

The following will be considered violations of our academic honesty policy:

  1. Copying any answers from another student's exercise, doing any exercises together with other students, or using a textbook from previous years. Exercises are to be completed entirely on your own.
  2. Showing any portion of your exercise to another student.
  3. Using any form of 'cheat sheet' in performing an exercise, quiz, etc.
  4. Taking copies of an exercise, quiz, etc. (including unused copies) outside of the classroom. (This includes taking pictures of the exercise, quiz, etc.)
  5. Using writing instruments or telephones during feedback of an in-class exercise, quiz, etc.
  6. Copying answers from another student's exercise, quiz, etc. while it is being administered.
  7. Copying any portion of a homework exercise from another student.
  8. Allowing any portion of your homework exercise to be copied by another student.
  9. Copying (or closely paraphrasing) portions of a homework assignment from other sources (printed matter, the Internet, etc.) and presenting it as your own, regardless of whether you acknowledge the source. This includes using translation software to translate any portion of your submission into English.
  10. Sharing Rainbow or English Expeditions User IDs or Passwords with another student.

Any of the above violations will result in a score of 0 for ALL exercises on that day, as well as forfeiting your chance for extra-credit.

理工学部英語授業における「不正行為」に関する取り決め

不正行為は、いかなる理由があれ一切認められません。以下のような行為は、不正行為とみなします。

  1. 他者に(たとえ一部でも)課題の答えを写させてもらった場合 (課題を複数で一緒にやること、そして、過年度のテキストを使用することも含みます/課題は必ず独力でやること)
  2. 他者に(たとえ一部でも)課題の答えを写させた場合
  3. Quiz, Exercise等において、カンニングペーパー等を使用した場合
  4. Quiz, Exercise等の答案(未使用のものも含む)を不当に持ち帰った場合 (カメラ付き携帯等による撮影も含みます)
  5. Quiz, Exercise等のフィードバックの際、筆記用具、携帯電話等を手にした場合 (正答を盗もうとしたとみなします)
  6. その他、Quiz, Exercise等の実施を妨害する行為、他者の受験を妨害する行為、 替え玉受験等も、不正行為とみなします。
  7. Homework Assignmentにおいて、他者のAssignmentの一部または全部をコピーした場合
  8. Homework Assignmentにおいて、他者に自身のAssignmentの一部または全部を コピーさせた場合
  9. Homework Assignmentにおいて、書籍やWWWのサイトから得た情報をそのまま、 もしくは改ざんの後、断りなく(引用を明記せずに)、自身のAssignmentに盗り入れた(すなわち著作権を侵害した)場合(英語の授業で課されるassignmentの多くは、引用を明記する、しないにかかわらず、一切の引用を認めていません) 。これには翻訳ソフトの使用も含みます。一旦日本語で書いて、それを翻訳ソフトを利用して翻訳して提出することは、それがたとえ一文であっても許されません。
  10. RainbowやEnglish ExpeditionsのユーザーIDやパスワードの授受があった場合

上記、および上記に類する「不正行為」があった場合は、当該学生の当該科目における、その日の得点を0点にするとともに、Extra-credit pointsはすべて無効になります。