Exam 2

Dr. Diane Thompson, NVCC, ELI

Bring the following to the Testing Center of your choice:

Your Exam Pass (see left menu on Blackboard Forums page) and a photo ID
Your emplid
An outline, or notes for your essay (optional)
Printouts from WWW sources (not more than ten pages!) that you want to refer to in your exam
Your textbook or other print sources for stories that you want to discuss in your essay

You will write this exam in the Testing Center on the Blackboard testing system.

Call the Testing Center you intend to use well ahead of time to be sure that they will be open when you intend to take the exam.

There is no time limit, so be sure that you enter the Testing Center early enough to allow yourself as much time as you think you may need. Allow yourself about two hours. You may use a dictionary. Be sure to edit your writing carefully before submitting it to Blackboard.

After you have completed the exam, you will submit it to the Blackboard exam box. I will read it there and mail your grade to you with my comments on your exam. Allow several days for turnaround. You will not receive the exam back, nor will you be able to get back any papers you bring to the exam. The exam will be retained on Blackboard for one year.

Exam Two will ask you to compare/contrast some interesting theme, event, or character(s) from more than one time and place. You need to select at least one text from those you have studied in Unit 3, and one from either Unit 1 or Unit 2. You may discuss more than two texts, but the discussion MUST be in depth with many supporting examples from the texts you have selected. It is much better to work with two texts in depth than with more than two superficially. Possible topics include:

GilgameshOdysseyAgamemnon, MedeaAeneid and Arabian Nights - woman troubles in two or three of these stories; be sure to include Arabian Nights as one of them
Odyssey, Aeneid and Arabian Nights - adventures and marvels in two or three of these stories; be sure to include Arabian Nights as one of them
Aeneid and Roland - two visions of empire
Lysistrata, Aeneid (Dido) and Arabian Nights - how women relate to heroes, power and empire in two or three of these stories; be sure to include Arabian Nights as one of them.
Bhagavad-Gita and Roland: two visions of the relationship between war, heroes and divinity
Aeneid and Arabian Nights - two ideas of fate or destiny
Odyssey and Arabian Nights - brave, clever Penelope and brave, clever Shahrazad - the right kind of wives
Gilgamesh, Agamemnon, Oedipus, Creon compared to Charlemagne and/or Shahrayar - rulers and powers; law and tyranny - be sure to include either Roland or Arabian Nights
Rama and Roland - two very different kinds of heroes
A pair or group of your choice, so long as at least ONE text is from month one or two and ONE from month three: You must let me know what you want to use as a question and what your point will be in advance of the essay. Sometimes students create questions that simply do not work for exams. I can be helpful if you contact me in advance (which does not mean the day you intend to take the exam).

Remember--your essay must have a point to it; it should be able to answer a reader's question: SO WHAT? If you are having trouble thinking about how to plan your exam, you are welcome to email me with questions but do NOT send me a full outline or draft of your exam. I will not read those. I will read and respond to a statement of thesis topic that explains which texts you intend to write about and what your main point will be.

Plan on about two hours to write and edit your essay before posting it--I want good writing as well as good thinking; you may have more time if you wish.

You should develop an essay of not less than eight hundred words; it may be longer if you need to say more about your topic. You may bring notes and articles to the testing center; the notes and articles will be stapled to your test and returned to me. You may also bring your textbook to the testing center.

Note: If you are using etexts, you will not be able to access them from the Testing Center. You may bring short printouts of texts--don't bring more than ten pages! That will force you to plan in advance to decide what you actually will use for the essay.

You may not bring a draft of the essay, or completed Activities. Be sure to support any statements you make with examples from the texts themselves. The purpose of this exam is to encourage you to demonstrate your own understanding and thinking about what you have read; there is no simple, single answer to any of these questions.

For the exam itself, discuss the group you have selected. Look at the similarities and differences between/among the works in your group. Be sure to ask yourself, "so what?" and try to answer that question. This will help you to focus your discussion. Be sure to use plenty of specific examples from the texts you choose to support your ideas.


Exam 2 is worth up to 150 points.


You develop a topic of comparison that is relevant to the texts you have chosen to write about
You contact me and discuss your proposed topic before taking the exam.
You state your topic of comparison in a clear and complete manner at the start of your essay.
You develop your ideas into a coherent essay of about 800 words.
You use plentiful, specific references to the texts you are writing about to support your main points.
You make sure your essay has a point (e.g. an answer to the reader's question, SO WHAT?)
You write your essay in clear, correct English.


(c) Diane Thompson: 11/14/1998; updated:07/06/2011