Ancient Religious Reflections:
Sacred Places Past and Present

1st Semester 2007-2008, Department of Classics, Monmouth College

Individualized Project

Each student will pursue a semester-long project which combines personal reflection and scholarly research in pursuit of a comparison of personal sacred space with at least one sacred place examined in the course. Preparation for this project must include library research, analysis of historical evidence, and original work. The project must also demonstrate significant use of ancient primary sources as well as secondary, scholarly material. A prospectus for this project is due around mid-semester.  See individualized project guidelines for additional suggestions about choosing a topic and completing this assignment.

The central product of this project can take the form of a research paper, creative writing, artwork, website or any other work which deals with material covered in course readings or discussions. Note: Powerpoint presentations MUST contain detailed information in the notes area.

Some further reflections on Powerpoint presentations:
A Powerpoint should not be considered a product in itself but rather as a visual enhancement of the product (i.e. paper) in which you present your project. Therefore, the Notes section for every slide will contain substantial text. Powerpoint presentations which only present information on the screen are generally of poor quality. Filling a Powerpoint screen with lots of text in small fonts is distracting and difficult to read. Powerpoint presentations in which people simply read exactly what is on the slide is somewhat insulting to an audience which can read for itself. Rather the Powerpoint should complement what the speaker has to say. So, the Powerpoint, should provide illustrations and perhaps occasional bullets which help a person understand your product more fully.

Sources for all images used in the project must be fully cited in a list separate from the annotated bibliography.

All central products must be accompanied by:
1.) an abstract of the product (c..100-150 words). This abstract describes and summarizes the product so that the audience can obtain a general idea of the paper, artwork, or other product before viewing or reading it.
2.) a
project overview and self-evaluation (c.750 words) which contains the following information:: a.) a summary of how the project was conceived and prepared b.) the goals of the project; c.) an explanation of how you used and analyzed sources (originality); and d.) your evaluation of the ways your project meet the project goals (self-assessment);
3.) an annotated bibliography
of a works consulted
. A good starting point for this bibliography is the list of websites evaluated by the class. (Annotations summarize the resources and explain how they were used in the project. A typical annotation will be at least thirty words, not including bibliographic information);

NOTE: A minimum of ten sources are required for a B-range grade; more are encouraged for a project worthy of an A-range grade. Course books and website evaluated by the class can be cited in the bibliography but only as complements to at least ten additional works. The quality of the material consulted will significantly affect the grade. It is highly recommended that a variety of resources be consulted, including books, journals, and websites. Heavy reliance on a single kind of resource (especially encyclopoedia articles)  is not advised. For format of bibliographic references, see Writing Guidelines.

This is the form which will be used to evaluate your project.

This individualized project will count 25% of your final grade.

This material has been published on the web by Prof. Tom Sienkewicz for his students at Monmouth College. If you have any questions, you can contact him at

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