As I knew it would, choosing the Top 5 Blogs of the Week got a whole lot tougher in round two.
Indeed, I had hoped to name a Top 5, but there were so many great posts that I chose six of my faves instead. That’s because my marketing communications students are finding their feet in Week Two of their six-week blogging assignment.
The best posts of the week are good because their writers have probably spent some time proofreading their work and making sure it meets the requirements of the assignment, which are listed in a simple one-page checklist. The checklist is designed to address many of the expectations stated by business textbooks for good business writing and to challenge students to think critically. Among these expectations are the following:
- short paragraphs with one idea per paragraph to make information digestible
- use of examples to back up and illustrate claims
- sourced evidence to give credit to all sources of information that is not common knowledge
- organized structure that requires writers to first grab readers’ attention, then explain why they are writing the article in a given week, then expand on their points, then back up their points/facts/ideas with sourced examples, and then provide a memorable close
Of course, there are also marks for using visuals and for clean writing. And students receive a zero if they miss a deadline or fail to write about the subject of the week (last week it was the global industry for the product or company that is the subject of their market research report in their market research class).
There were a couple of perfect scores this week and several high grades. And I had to whittle down the Top Blogs of the Week from about 12 or 15 solid posts. If you check out the blogs to which I’ve linked below, you’ll see why these ones were clear contenders.
Daniel Beals, who is studying toward his Marketing diploma while acting as President of the Kingston & the Islands New Democrats, wrote about the global perspective of Canada Post and pondered how Canadian marketing professionals can play a role in saving it. Daniel clearly has larger designs on his blog that extend much further than this assignment.
Andrew Hewgill makes the Top Blogs list again with his second post on homegrown winter attire maker Canada Goose. In this article, Andrew writes about the company’s global expansion and incredible growth. He also follows the checklist almost to a T by citing his sources, by backing up his claims with examples, and by providing an attention-getting introduction and memorable close. Well done, Andrew, you’ve succeeded in meeting some solid basic business writing expectations while crafting a worthwhile read.
In his witty post on the global perspective of Kellogg’s, John Sullivan makes the Top Blogs list for the second week in a row. This guy carefully cites all of his sources and has mastered the art of attention-getting intros and memorable conclusions—a key skill in writing for business.
Jolisa Masucol makes the Top Blogs list for the first time with her global review of online learning. Jolisa describes how online learning could bring significant learning opportunities to countries where the attendance of a bricks-and-mortar higher education institute is not always within the financial grasp of citizens. She also argues that Canada needs to jump on the online learning bandwagon. This post meets almost all of the checklist requirements and Jolisa cites most of her sources. Most important, she’s provided specific examples to back up her claims. Nice one, Jolisa.
Emily Culhane also examines the global perspective of Canada Post and learns that there’s hope yet for the future of our national mail deliverer. Emily backs up all her claims and provides specific examples to illustrate her opinions and ideas. Check out Emily’s Week Two post. You might learn a thing or two.
There’s one other post I really liked, and that’s the Week Two post of Ashley Kitts. Ashley’s blog also made the Top Blogs list last week. Ashley provides not one but two images (the minimum requirement is one). She also backs up her claims. And she makes the article more interesting by personalizing the story: she connects the global cereal industry to her own personal experiences of shopping for cereals outside of Canada. Ashley’s post is indeed worth a read this week.
I hope you will visit these students’ blogs, follow them, and comment on them. You know how much it will mean to them to know that their writing matters and that this is so much more than a simple in-class assignment.