While all assignments will be graded on a point scale (15/20) and the running tally of the semester grade on ANGEL will be displayed as percent which will then be converted to a 4.0 scale according to the following criteria:
4.0                   92-100%                                             3.5                   86-91
3.0                   80-85                                                   2.5                   74-79
2.0                   68-73                                                   1.5                   62-67
1.0                   57-61                                                   0.0                   0-56

Late work is not accepted.

Wiki Entries (35%): Throughout the semester, students will be expected to make 3 entries into the class Wiki (check the Schedule section for all due dates). The entries will need to be at least 500 words in length. Unlike the Wiki Articles, the Wiki Entries are not intended to be critical analysis (aka. research paper). Instead, they are intended to be factual accounts of people, places, media, etc – think of them as encyclopedia entries (much like you would find on Wikipedia). Students are not only expected to write about the topic itself, but why the topic is important to the history of the digital age, computers, and computing.  Students must choose from a list of specific topics for each wiki entry (wiki entry #1 topic list, wiki entry #2 topic list, wiki entry #3 topic list). For more information on how to post to the class wiki, check out the handy dandy tutorials in the class videos page. Even though these are not pieces of critical research (like the Wiki Article), you still need to cite your sources.

Wiki Articles (40%): Students will be expected to write a critical research paper (on a subject of their choice – within the context of the class topic). Instead of handing it in, the paper will be placed on the class wiki. Unlike the Wiki Entries, these Wiki Articles must meet all of the regular requirements of a research paper (thesis statement, introduction, conclusion, references, etc.). Students have two options for this assignment: one 2500 word “paper” or two 1250 word “papers.” The due date for both options is exactly the same. The topic of the Wiki Article is completely up to the student. Students must confirm their topic via email with me beforehand (1 week beforehand at the absolute latest).  Wiki articles MUST use parenthetical citations with a works cited section at the end.

  • Meeting the minimum word count is a requirement of the assignment.  If students don’t meet that minimum word count, they will be docked significantly.
  • Students who do not confirm their topic (or topics) beforehand will be docked significantly.
  • When it comes to choosing your topic, do not propose to write the history of a specific device, individual, or platform.  The topic of your paper should exhibit “bigger” thinking – you need to exhibit some intellectual synthesis.
  • This is a research paper.  As such, it requires a strong intellectual focus supported by research (primary or secondary)
  • This is a history class.  As such, your paper needs a very strong historical perspective.
  • This is not a telecom class.  As such, the paper shouldn’t be a technical discussion (remember the historical perspective mentioned above).  This doesn’t mean you can’t include a technical component, it just shouldn’t be the entire focus of your paper.

Here is a copy of the rubric that will be used to grade the Wiki Article

Blog Entries/Responses (25%) – throughout the semester, students will be required to post at least 7 entries (1/week) to the course blog.  Each blog entry needs to be at least 250 words, and in response to a specific question (each week has a list of questions that students can choose from).  In addition to the posts, students are expected to respond to at least one post made by their fellow students.  The responses must be at least 150 words.  The topics of the posts should be a thoughtful response to a specific question posed by the instructor (check the Weekly Blog Questions section of the site for each week’s question). The due dates for the Blog Entries/Responses are located on the course Schedule page. Students must complete both that week’s entry and response in order to get credit for the assignment.  If students meet all of the requirements for the assignment (due date, length requirement, required question), the blog post will be graded out of twenty points.  If students don’t meet all of the requirements, they will not receive credit at all.


HST250 has a lot of writing assignments.  When completing their formal writing assignments (wiki entries & wiki article), students MUST use parenthetical citations with a works cited page. I do not want you to lose sleep over your the style of your citations. HOWEVER, I do want you to lose sleep over plagiarism. Students MUST clearly demonstrate where information is coming from and cite any work that is not their own.