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Throw Back Thursday: Research Paper Woes Part IV

I promised one more post of student quotes from the research papers I painstakingly and frustratedly graded during the last few years I taught sophomore advanced level English.

First, I thought you’d enjoy a visual of an unrelated quiz, just as a warm up to get you in the appropriate mind frame.

Wrinkle in Time quiz

Wrinkle in Time quiz

Now for paper quotes and commentary:

“So of course children should come to Boot Camps so their lives can change and not only will yours, but also the family structure change also.” This was about sending troubled kids to intervention style boot camps.
Here’s a good one. In a paper about spaying/neutering pets, this sentence appeared: “Some people still give reasons as to why they should not go through with the procedure, even with all of this evidence to support why they, by all means, should.”
Uhhh…I thought we were talking about the pets, not the people. That does change things! Given the new light shed on the subject, maybe I should reread this paper.
“Lastlly [yes, student used two l’s, and one really should not even add -ly to last anyway], unclean or too clean water could decrease life expectancy in captivated whales.” Are the whales captive or captivated?
A thesis statement: “Think of the endless possibilities for the limitless knowledge possible to learn online school has many benefits for all students’ elementary school, middle school;, high school, and college absolutely should have the capability to attend their academic classes online.” Remember that the thesis statement sets the tone for the entire paper. Yep, the rest was pretty much just as bad and confusing to read.
I don’t even know what to say. “The head of Flagler county school boards along with different branches along the United States for schools online or public must make more acceptations to those who wish to enroll”
“As a catholic, I know it is wrong to believe in capital punishment, but also you are to treat others like you want to be treated, and if that means you are killing someone, then well why should they not be put to death.” Does this mean you should kill people if you want to be killed? I’m a bit confused on the wording.
For any of you out there who are against Welfare, one of my students assures me that, “Welfare also provides jobs for more people because it requires people to feel guilty that they become dependent on it and rely on it.” Apparently when one applies for government assistance there must also be proof of guilt provided.
“In an economy like the one today, a job sustains one’s basic needs.” I want to go back to live in whatever economy it was where people didn’t need jobs, because apparently this need of a job thing is unique to our current economy. I wouldn’t even need to grade these stupid papers if I lived in that fantasy world!
“If a smoker loses an arm of a leg, they might also not be able to live alone, and function on their own without the help of another person.” I don’t know how I would get through my day without my leg arms.
“If a smoker does not find a job, they don’t have money, no money, and they can not get what they need to survive.” Nice emphasis on NO MONEY.
“People who die of cancer, die slowly, and knowing that their day will soon come, but knowing exactly when. They also hope for the end to come soon, but for them, it never does. Smoking may cause death.” This is how I feel about these papers.
“Juveniles do a very adult-like crime…Young adults remain killing people; committing murder. Juveniles will kill their friends, strangers, and even their own family members.” Dang! I’m glad I’m leaving the high school classroom, or I could be next. It seems they’re all doing it these days. Maybe it’s peer pressure. It is so important to limit generalizations with words like “some.” If you have teens around, you are warned.
Research paper quote: “This takes censoring too far because in America we have the right to bare arms.” Tank tops for everyone! Rage! Rage against long sleeves!
The solution to all our gun issues: “The best thing to do would be to raise the prices of firearms so that for criminals to buy weapons, they have to have a lot more money than they can make, being criminals and all.” After all, criminals aren’t in it for the money or anything.
An example of a student trying to add to the lacking word count in a paper: “Criminals already are not following laws. That is what makes them criminals. If criminals did follow laws, they would not be much of criminals now would they? No, they would not. If they were, we would just call them people.”
Research paper quote of confusion: “Should the American government enforce gun control? Would crime in the united states?” Would crime in the United States (let’s capitalize that proper noun bad-boy) do what? That’s all there is about that, and it moves on.
And now we will just let all juveniles off the hook for whatever crimes they may commit because, “Being charged as a juvenile, let alone as an adult will serve no purpose for a minor because they will get nothing out of it,” which is a bad idea according to another recent paper that informed me all juveniles are criminals…violent criminals “with darkness in their hearts.”
Huh? “For example, say a minor, the age of 13, and a teen, the age of 21 [I’m lost already] were both charged with rape. The 19 year old [wait, where’d he come from?] would have to suffer a more severe consequence (an adult sentence), while the 13 year old could get out with simply serving a few years in a correction facility.”
Now, just to show it wasn’t all bad and the students often made me laugh on purpose, not just inadvertently through bad writing,  this was a response on a peer evaluation sheet I had my students fill out after a Julius Caesar project:
List each group member and a brief description of his/her contribution. Rate His/her contribution on a scale of 1-10 with 1 being “I wish I had worked alone,” and 10 being “I will name my first child after my awesome group member.”
Sir Lukas: 5+7/2-1×2
Austin: 20/4+18-3/2

Do I miss this?  What do you think?



About caverns of my mind


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