My original goal for this class was to improve my writing skills. I wanted to be able to make my writing more concise, improve grammar, sharpen researching skills etc. More specifically when it came down to communication in our workshop groups my response was: “It has always been difficult for me to receive critism. I know it is necessary but is always hard to hear. For our mentor groups I hope that we can all be constructive toward one another’s post. When we say that we like what someone has said, we should be able to tell him or her why we liked it. Also if we disagree with one another hopefully we can give our reasoning why we think differently and support our opinion. Since we’re all adults I know that when we disagree we can be polite and constructive in our reply.

Good posts should answer any questions that have been asked in the prompt and any outside information used to back up a statement should cite where that information was taken from. Useful feedback should extend upon the subject that was answered by the original poster; perhaps ask questions to that the original poster did not consider in the initial post. Good participation is pretty self-explanatory. Don’t just say you like or agree with someone. Give an explanation why”.

My strengths throughout the term were 1.) Staying organized and on top of all the posts and other assignments that were due. 2.) Responding to each weeks instructor prompts to the best of my ability, including using the texts for that week in my responses and also using other outside texts to help support my claims. Some challenges were finding secondary sources for the mirror essay. Researching is not a strong point of mine so finding good reliable sources for this assignment was a little bit of a challenge.

For this term overall I think that I made improvements in four of the areas listed. I feel like as a researcher that I have made improvements. I don’t just take a picture, advertisement or someone’s writing at face value. I try to dig a little deeper and find if the story behind the image or the writing is true to the claims being made. This is something that I did not even have the skills to do before, this course has made me much more analytical. The second improvement that I have seen in myself after this course is an improvement in my writing. The tools given to us through the Purdue website, having our own librarian to help, and the aid of our instructor and mentor have helped me to write better. If I don’t know how something should be cited or whatever else while writing I know of tools now that can be accessed to help make my writing the best that it can be. The last two improvements I think that I have made are as a citizen and a student. I think as a citizen now I am better equipped to see passed the tricks used through the media in the news and also in advertisements. As a student I think that I have improved because this class has put me out of my comfort zone a little bit. Having to review another’s work can be a sensitive matter. I am definitely not a perfect writer so having to tell someone else improvements that should be made in their paper is tough for me. But I think helping others find mistakes in their papers helped me to go back and find my own as well when I was revising.

The main skill that I will take with me and use in my everyday life is analyzing and researching potential sources for whatever I am using them for. It is easy to find something on the Internet and just using it to aid in an assignment. But as we all know the Internet has a lot of unreliable things floating around on it. Sometimes we may not even know that something is unreliable until that source itself is researched. In week two we were shown the perfect example of this. The course text was called, The Urgency of Visual Media Literacy in Our Post 9/11 world: Reading Images of Muslim Women in the Print News Media by Diane Watt. In this case on page 36 of the article we are shown a little girl wearing religious clothing surrounded by a sea of black clothing. The cover states, “Why the world belongs to Islam”. The image and words are very ominous. Yet someone did some research and found that this was a day of mourning in Turkey, where otherwise these traditional garments would not be worn. Finding this out really blew my mind, it just made me wonder about every other news article, broadcast, etc. that I have heard and seen in my life. How much of it was true?

Now that I have seen first hand what the media can do to make their viewers swing one way or another on a topic I am much more wary about the information being given to me. I don’t have the time to research every story but these skills for research have made me see things differently. I don’t just take in information from anyone anymore. I looked at it more skeptically.

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About aubree3

So the image I downloaded was suppose to be of a buffalo because it is my favorite animal, instead it looks like a planet. Anyway I am a first year student at PSU hoping to get into dental school in a few years. I have been married for almost 2 years to my high school sweet heart.

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  1. Choose a role in which you improved or gained a new understanding: reviewer, researcher, writer, citizen, team member, teacher, persuader, student, listener, advocate, netizen, or other. Elaborate and give examples.

    Prior to registering for this Popular Culture class, I found my self skimming and going over different classes that I need to take. The only reason I chose this class over other ones to begin with is just because of the name of class. I know, don’t judge a book by its cover, but this class just seemed interesting and like nothing I have taken before. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, the only thing I knew we would probably talk about is things that are trending now. I can’t name one area that has improved now that this class is over because I find myself thinking and looking at things differently from many different angles. Whether I am reviewing something, researching, writing, being a citizen or a team member, a teacher, a persuader, a student, a listener, an advocate, a hardcore netizen, and more, I have improved in all these areas and just look at everything through a different lens.

    Here I wrote a bit about how practitioners that work at doctors offices get training for communication to work with both patients and doctors. Before this piece it never quite occurred to me the effect of pop culture not just in social gatherings, but professional ones as well.
    “I found the health communication certificate, which is through the program that will start in 2016, but it seems to be pretty interesting. While in this program one can learn skills to communicate and work with other practitioners as well as patients. As this field is quite serious and professional it is important for people who want to work and at the very least be taken seriously in this environment to learn the proper ways to communicate and act to move forward and grow. I think what’s the most interesting is that talking and communicating is something we do with people everyday so we don’t know, or don’t see, the importance of these skills.”

    Here, again, popular culture is having an effect on something as big as the supreme court.
    “There has been a special senate committee created to deal with the issues of the medical marijuana measure. The story is timely relevant as this is happening now and also because marijuana in general has been quite the hot topic for a while now, especially in Oregon so I suppose it falls close to home both physically and psychologically. The committee wants to fight for counties and cities to have power to ban dispensaries so this could ultimately affect quite a significant number of people if it pulls through and more cities and counties decide they do not want to these facilities open and this product to be available in their communities. The majority of the House members on this committee want this decision to be in that hands of the people and decided by voting, and at the same time they don’t want the people who are in need of marijuana for medical purposes to not be able to get their hands on it, which is where I’m left a bit confused because if they do vote to ban dispensaries where would those people who need it get it? It was quite the short article and not too much information. There wasn’t any emotion or humor of any sort as it just went straight to the point. It definitely does matter and does serve a purpose because it is a change that would happen in our community and the decision would ultimately have quite the chain of events behind it both if it did and if it did not pass. It was a little influential in the sense that it seemed they were for this motion, but there wasn’t an essence of persuasiveness.”

    This ad was really cool to talk about in class. Of course I see advertisments everyday, but I mainly see that as the target of which the advertisors want to see it. After talking about it a bit and really breaking it down and answering questions that you asked like who was the target and what was the purpose and technique… well it really just blew my mind. They are so clever and so sneaky that you really don’t realize the effect that they have on you.
    “Its an ad for Adidas, by Adidas. I think its made for young people directed at all types and sorts of young people from the partier, the skaters, the girls who just want to have fun, the guys who wants dance or guys that want to hook up with girls, dj’s, there is a little bit of everything. It looks like it’s a commercial that shows up on TV and the internet.”
    “Whats interesting to me is there almost seems to be an element of “bad.” It immediately starts off showing spray paint bottles with guys doing some street art, going in for close ups on their tattoos and then on them riding the motorcycles which all three symbolize that element. Then it goes to the skateboarding and everyone going to the party where you can see the legs of girls wearing short skirts and shorts and guys dressed trendy. I think its interesting that if you pay attention you’ll notice the people who they focus on wearing Adidas quite bluntly are all guys, it’ll say it in big while letters contrasting on the black t-shirt or zoom in on the mens shoe, yet when it shows the women it’s usually for a different purpose, although they are wearing the brand (at times), you would only see it if you’re paying attention, otherwise it captures your attention in a different way, a more sexual and playful way. Although this ad targets both sexes, I would argue its specifically directed at guys and girls are more of the siren effect in this.”

    After briefly discussing where we get our information and how we learn about the news we know about it really occurred to me that peoples views and opinions (on quite significant topics might I add) are all resulting factors on what channel they watched and where they got their information from.
    “I get my news online, shocker. I like to control and filter the stories I read and hear about. I get my political news on tayyar.org, I can’t deal with the mainstream political biases on fox and CNN and the liking. I use many different sources though and not all of them are political and criminal, I like to keep up with the Kardashians. JOKING! I had to… I like to keep up with trending topics though. I think consumption of news influences your perspective 900%. People who watch a show and are told Germans are the root of all evil all the time will start to believe it, even if they have never even met one before. It influences everything and anything from political and religious beliefs to racism and fashion sense and taste in music.”

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