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  • Engl 315 S12 Oral Presentations
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Your oral presentation accomplishes a few things:

  • It expands the range of your knowledge by taking you out of the small, temporary community that is our class into the larger, ongoing community of scholars who have written about Victorian literature, history, and culture.
  • It enables our smaller community to benefit from what you've learned from these scholars. (See the community learning outcomes for this class.)
  • It benefits the ongoing community of students who take English 315 at Geneseo through your contribution to the Annotated Bibliography of Victorian Literature.
  • It puts you into active collaboration with the classmates who will be presenting on the same day as you.
  • It requires you to take some responsibility for the nature and direction of class discussion on the day of your presentation.
  • It makes you talk.


  • Begin by taking note of the date on which you're scheduled to present. If you have a conflict that makes presenting on that date impracticable for you, you're free to exchange dates with a willing classmate. In that case, one of you must edit this page to reflect the change.
  • Note the topic(s) on which you're being asked to present. In most cases you have a choice between finding a relatively narrow scholarly article or book chapter on a particular author (on the one hand) and (on the other hand) finding a broader article that provides historical or cultural context to the reading at that point on the syllabus.
  • Head over to the Annotated Bibliography of Victorian Literature to have a look at the kinds of scholarly works on which English 315 students have presented in the past. Be sure not to repeat the work you find there. Find something new.
  • Find a scholarly article or book chapter on the assigned topic(s). The article/chapter should not be from a popular journal or a personal or other non-scholarly website (such as Wikipedia or; but it may be from a scholarly journal accessed electronically (through JStor, for example) or even a scholarly web-only source such as RaVoN (Romanticism and Victorianism on the Net).
  • Consult with the other students assigned to present on the same day as you. Be sure that you are all presenting on different articles or chapters!
  • Confer (online or in person) about what you've read, and decide, together, on a discussion question for the class that emerges from your reading.
  • On the day of the presentation, speak for no more than 5 minutes about the article/book chapter you read, explaining the main idea and how it's relevant to our course. (You'll be able to provide more information in your annotation for the Annotated Bibliography.) Do not quote directly from what you read. (You may, if it's helpful, quote briefly from a text assigned on the syllabus.)
  • Together with your fellow presenters, introduce and manage discussion about your jointly formulated question.
  • Immediately before or after your presentation, add your article/chapter to the Bibliography by following the directions that you find there.


  • Confer beforehand with the classmates presenting with you.
  • Don't speak for more than 5 minutes.
  • Don't quote directly from the article or book chapter.
  • Add to the Annotated Bibliography immediately before or after your report.