Dear GIS 3510 Participant,
Instead of repeating myself to each and every one of you, I shall occasionally resort to a collective letter. Here is the second one.
Every assignment must be preceded by a title. Have you ever read a book that has no name? Seen a title-less film? Met a nameless person?
An assignment without a title falls, more or less, into one of these very sorry categories. Why? Well, first, a good title tells the reader what to expect. Second, in a class like this, I get all kinds of messages, and I shouldn't have to spend five minutes figuring out what you are trying to do. Third, a good title is an invitation to the reader to go on reading. It is perhaps one of the most important parts of a piece of writing. I could go on, but these reasons should already convince you.
Now, what is a title? Would, say, "Ballad of a Landlord" do? Absolutely not!!! Why, because that's the name of the poem, not what YOU are trying to do. Also, how do I know that your goal is a summary, not a critical evaluation? At the very least, your title would look like that:
SUMMARY OF LANGSTON HUGHES' "BALLAD OF A LANDLORD"
[Give YOUR NAME HERE]
A title, especially if it involves creative writing, can be more imaginative and inviting, but for the moment, for the kinds of assignments we are doing in the first 2-3 weeks, a descriptive title like the above is best.
All the best, Moti