Eiland's Online English Materials

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CROSSOVER ASSIGNMENT for English 101 and Sociology 201

  • Objective: to create a crossover assignment that incorporates elements of Sociology 201 and English 101
  • Method: create a project that incorporates elements of both Sociology and English in a way that focuses on the correlation between the two courses.

    • Sociology 201 Learning Objectives:
      • Develop a deeper understanding of the sociological imagination by focusing on specific corners of life occupied by different people.
      • Apply a research method in order to better understand social life.

    • English 101 Learning Objectives:
      • Incorporate secondary source material into a literary analysis.
      • Recognize and apply author’s theme and its broader context outside of the story itself.

Section One: SOCIOLOGICAL Analysis– worth 60 points (See class schedule for due date.)

    Plan: The Sociology portion is a multi-part project
    • Part one of Sociology Project:– Observation and Reporting (20 points)
      The student is expected to observe and take notes while watching the movie American Graffiti by George Lucas. You will observe the behaviors and interactions of young adults transitioning from high school to adulthood. You must follow the plotline of at least one of the major characters: Steve, Carol, Milner, Terry (Toad), Laurie, Debbie, or Curt.

      Observe the character's behavior and story arc, watching for identifiable signs of social class as identified by the following elements:

      1. Gender identity, gender roles
      2. High school/peer social strata
      3. Non-peer identity
      4. Peer interaction
      5. Drug use/alcohol use
      6. Sexual roles/scripts
      7. Non-peer interaction
      8. Crime
      N.B. Failure to take notes will result in loss of 30% of the overall Sociology grade for this assignment, as the notes themselves must be turned in for credit.

    • Part two of Sociology Project: – Research (worth 40 points): Each student will then create a 2 to 3 page analysis of that character in the context of social strata and other sociological concepts. You must incorporate at least one valid sociological research resource in the analysis. You will provide quotations from both the movie itself and your research resource. You will also identify standard use of conflict, symbolism, and irony on the part of the writers in order to demonstrate this characters social standing or standings.

      This report must address the following:

      • Clearly explain the paper’s topic
      • Clearly defined the character's social strata (social class ranking).
      • Give specific examples from the movie as to evidence of that social class ranking.
      • Include one Research source to collaborate or contextualize your findings
        • are your findings supported by current research?
        • are your findings in contrast to previous publications?
      • Identify strengths/weaknesses of research
      • Subsidiary findings – Did you discover any findings that were unintended? Explain.
      • What, if any, further sociological questions did your research provoke?

    Below is the timeline for the Sociology portion of the Crossover Assignment.
    • Nov. 2: Watch movie.
    • Nov. 3: Analysis and research in class in groups formed around character choice.
    • Nov. 9: In class test in English class.
    • Nov. 11: First draft of Crossover Assignment due in English class.
    • Nov 23: Final draft due in Sociology and English class (one copy each).
The analysis of the movie will be submitted to the English class in two ways.
  • The Make-up test will be offered on November 9. Discuss symbolism, irony and/or conflict of at least one of the characters from American Graffiti. You need to bring a copy of the script in order to provide quotations.
  • You may also opt to submit the Sociology paper for a credit of two RESPONSES by November 16. If the paper does not utilize research, quotation, citation and sociological and English literary terms successfully, the work will not be accepted. There is no revision option for this particular assignment.

© S. Samoff and T. T. Eiland, August 2010-2017
Last modified: February 21, 2016