Prospectus; Check-in Meetings with Faculty; Town Halls

Jeff Kupperman's picture

The Prospectus

By this Sunday, March 11th, you (and your proposal co-author, if you have one) need to post on the MSC site your written prospectus, in which you describe in detail the specific issue or problem you’ve identified. You post this in the proposal "shell" you created, just as you did with the media artifact.

Although you have already taken an in-depth look at some of the major issues facing Michigan, we hope that as you move from your media artifact to your prospectus you start narrowing your focus to a more specific problem.

In writing your prospectus, you will want to make sure it starts with a sentence that clearly defines the problem or challenge that your proposal will eventually address. The remainder of the prospectus should explain why that problem or challenge is of crucial importance to students in Michigan, backing up your argument with evidence and data. In describing the issue or problem you’ve chosen, please be sure to provide sufficient context so that someone less familiar with the issue has a sense of the bigger picture, but know that your focus here is on a more detailed spelling out of the problem or issue that you’ve identified. You may also want to identify some areas or topics for your further research.

Here are some examples from last fall.

We’ll be looking for evidence of your clear understanding of the problem and the factors that might have caused it. We expect that this prospectus will be at least 250 words in length, though the cogency of your writing and thinking is the most important element. Be sure to include references to sources you located during your research. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out to any of the instructors via email.

Finally, here’s some advice about the prospectus from the Topic Coordinators:

  • Keep reaching out to consultations (no specific due date, but keep working on them now)

  • Relate your issue back to entire state (not just one city or area)

  • Narrow down the problem -- if you have many, pick one to focus on

  • If you list statistics, say what they mean and why they’re relevant

Proposal Check Meetings with Faculty—Required by March 30th

Between March 12th and 30th, each proposal author (or authoring team) must have a 20 minute meeting with one of the faculty in which you succinctly address the following four items related to your proposal. If you are working with a partner, please choose a time when you can come in together.

  • What is the problem to which your proposal is a response, and what might your solution/s be?

  • What legislation in other states have you looked at as a possible model?

  • What is one consultation you’ve already had and what did you learn from it?

  • Who might you talk to (as a consultant) in order to get some push-back on your proposal ideas and/or a different “take” on the issue at hand?

Here is the signup sheet. Faculty will continue listing hours each week, and meeting times will be available both in person and via video-conference.

Ongoing Online Activity

As you work on your prospectus this week and other parts of your proposal in the coming weeks, please continue to post in the topic area discussions as well. As we move closer to writing proposals, be sure to frame the issues in terms of the interests of students in the State of Michigan, broadly speaking. For those in EDUC 362, additions to your proposal and comments on other proposals DO count as posts toward your online activity requirements.

Upcoming Town Hall Meetings

The last three town hall meetings have been scheduled for March 7, 14, and 20. See the “events” listings for details. Oh, and it turns out that the Google Form method of submitting questions wasn’t so great -- we’re going back to the note card method!