discipline investigation 7

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Purpose and Audience

Purpose: To investigate a discourse community* (e.g. profession) you hope to join and to learn about the kinds of texts (genres) that community uses. This assignment will enable you to identify some of those rules or patterns by interviewing a professional in your field of study and by doing outside research

Audience: Your instructor, your classmates, and other faculty members on the 100A portfolio committee.

*Discourse Community: Any group of people who form a community—a family, a neighborhood, colleagues, practitioners of a particular profession—and establish informal and formal rules regarding who gets to join their community and how spoken and written interactions (i.e. discourse) occur within the community. Anyone who wants to join that community has to learn its discourse rules and patterns.

Writing Steps

Step 1:Interview

For this assignment, you will interview a professional in your field of study to gain insight into your future discourse community. Try to select someone at a senior level, with at least five years of experience working in this field, who can provide you with a broad view of the types of work and opportunities that are available to you. Your professors in your field of study may be able to give you advice on finding a suitable interviewee. Unless you hope eventually to become a faculty member at a research university, you should not interview one of your professors.

It is preferable to interview the subject in person. The interview should cover 1) your subject’s background and career path; 2) your subject’s current role and responsibilities; and 3) your subject’s insight on the types of communication skills required for advancing in your field.

In preparation for the interview, you will work in class to develop a set of questions for your particular interviewee.You will also discuss various interviewing strategies.Before the interview, you will need to discuss with your interviewee the confidentiality of the interview.Because people sometimes share sensitive information in an interview, you may assure them that the information will be confidential and that you will not use their real name or the name of the company without their permission.

Step 2: Outside Research

Find a minimum of 2 outside sources (articles, journals) that give you additional information about your future discourse community – for example, what types of work or jobs someone in that field would have, or what the requirements will be for those jobs in the future. The outside sources must be cited within the Discipline Investigation report. Make sure that the outside sources you add are relevant to the content you are discussing in that specific section and are meaningful. You will also provide in-text citation where you add these sources. You might also research additional genres of writing that might be used in your field.Note: Step 2 can be done while you are arranging the interview.You do not have to wait until your interview is done.

Step 3: Prepare Report

Your Discipline Investigation will report the information you learned during your interview and outside research, providing an introduction and conclusion to share how your own expectations about the field may have changed or broadened in doing this assignment.