Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Mort doesn't have much trouble

Mort says he planned his paper for three weeks before drafting it the night before it was due. He says he spent enough time on his paper and when asked if his reasons for waiting a long time to start his paper said, "Don't fix something that is not broken."

Mort's paper was the longest one I studied, 2798 words compared to his class's median of 1465. Where some of his classmates resorted to increasing their font size to make their papers physically larger, Mort seems to be using the Word 2007 default 11-pt. And it's not a string of block quotes making it longer. Instead, he takes on five possible solutions to the problem he poses. And while this doesn't make for the most unified papers, it doesn't immediately suggest procrastination even if it is actually a consequence of putting the paper off to the last minute.

Mort's rate of surface error is in the second quartile. And his problems really do seem often to come from trying out more challenging constructions. For instance, he has a few number agreement problems when the subject is compound and far away from the verb. Mort reports proofreading.

Mort's problems with evidence are also in the second quartile. His only issue is making unsupported claims. This is the kind of thing I'd expect from waiting to the last minute. I know when I'm rushing to finish a paper I often include claims I know need citations to support them but I simply don't have time to find them.

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