PRACTICAL DETAILS The work of the course will entail intensive independent reading, analysis, and discussion.
The course will be taught by the discussion method. I assume that students will spend roughly twice as long preparing for class as they spend in class (e.g., six hours of preparation for every three-hour class.) Regular attendance at all class sessions, including those set aside for discussion of individual research projects, is essential. Extensive library study will be called for. The readings must be done carefully, analytically, and on time. Some texts may well need to be read more than once. Short papers will be assigned periodically. Substantial weight will be given the preparation of a term paper on a topic to be chosen in consultation with the instructor. The times for choosing a topic, reporting on progress, presenting progress reports for class discussion, and submitting a final version are given in the following schedule.
Each term paper should include (1) a concise statement of the issue under investigation, (2) a brief evaluation of the sources, (3) a sketch of recent scholarly discussions ("the state of the question"), with evaluation of at least five modern/contemporary studies, (4) an orderly explication, and (5) a summary of results and unanswered questions. As a general rule of thumb, term papers should be between fifteen and twenty pages long.
From time to time, it may be necessary to alter assignments.
The final grade will be calculated by including the results of the short papers (25%), discussion and class participation (25%), and the term paper (50%).
Postponements of assignments (including the term paper) will be allowed only for such emergencies as illness or death in the immediate family. They will normally require documentation, for example, by a doctor’s note or a death certificate.