84 Proposal Sample

Here is a proposal for a new course at Clinton.

ENGLISH 235                                                                                     MEYERS
TECHNICAL WRITING                                                                      08/30/12


Assignment: Proposal writing
Organization: Clinton Community College
READER (S)/AUDIENCE: Dr Cheryl Lesser, VPAA; Lee Ann Thomas, Curriculum chair.
Position in organization: Positions responsible for moving forward new course ideas.
Prior knowledge of this subject: They may have some familiarity with William Shakespeare but will not have a thorough understanding of the specifics needed to run a successful course at this level; they do have a solid understanding of what a course like this would require for consideration at Clinton.
Prior attitude toward this subject: They may be excited about the potential for a new course that parallels popular interests in today’s society, but they may have strong reservations about how students will welcome a course on Shakespeare.
Prior attitude toward me:  They recognize my position as an English instructor but may have doubts about my connection with literature and Shakespeare since my expertise is in other fields. They will appreciate my hard work and effort put into other projects I’ve taken on.
Reason for reading: To consider the possibility of adding Shakespeare to the curriculum.
Probable response: Will discuss the topics and hopefully bring the proposal forward to the Curriculum Committee for consideration.
WRITER/SENDER: Jeff Meyers, Eng. 23501C
Position for this writing: English instructor
Purpose of writing: To promote a course I believe will be beneficial to all students at Clinton Community College.
Tone wanted here: Positive; persuasive; confident; supportive.


            Type of document: Proposal using standard memorandum format.
            Order of information: Traditional proposal outline with project summary at top.
Graphics needed: Perhaps a table/chart identifying course outline.
Source of information: Past experience; Shakespeare literature.
To:                          Dr. Cheryl Lesser (VPAA); Lee Ann Thomas (Curriculum Committee chair)
CC:                         John Jablonski, president of CCC
From:                    Jeff Meyers, English Department faculty member  JM
Date:                     August 12, 2012
Subject:               Proposal for a new Shakespeare course
The Clinton Community College English Department is considering the addition of Shakespeare as an elective for Humanities/Social Science majors. The course will be an upper-level elective and will feature an overview of at least four major Shakespeare plays as well as a unit on Shakespeare sonnets and the time period when Shakespeare was actively writing.
We project the course to cost a minimal amount of money should an adjunct instructor be utilized, but we are also open to bringing an expert into the program on a full-time basis at a beginning salary no greater than $40,000. We anticipate offering the course by Spring 2014. English Department Chair Carey Goyette will oversee management of the project.
With the popularity of two recent blockbuster movies based on plays by Williams Shakespeare, we have seen a rebirth in interest for the immortal bard. Communities across the nation are celebrating all that Shakespeare has to offer with local festivals, play productions and reading groups.
The time is right to bring Shakespeare back into the classroom as well. Not only will a study of Shakespeare works be relevant in promoting the important concept of critical thinking, but it will also allow our students to stay on top of this current trend toward Shakespeare fever.
Students at Clinton Community College have also voiced an interest in this topic. In a random survey I conducted with students while having lunch in the cafeteria, 87 percent of those asked said they would strongly consider taking Shakespeare as an elective, five percent said they were unsure and eight percent said they would not take the course. Although this was a small sampling (83 students were questioned), I believe a more extensive and formal survey would produce similar results.
I am proposing that we develop and offer a course on William Shakespeare. The course will serve as an English elective and a Humanities elective for students in our Humanities and Social Sciences program. I also believe it will be of interest in other curriculums as well:
  • Criminal Justice majors will find Shakespeare’s study of forensics fascinating;
  • Human Services students will empathize with Shakespeare’s ability to identify and address human suffering.
  • Computer programming and electronics majors will connect with Shakespeare’s use of logic and critical programming skills.
The first step in establishing a course on Shakespeare would be to hire an instructorwho has a solid background in both literature and specifically in Shakespeare and his works. We need to make sure the instructor is comfortable in presenting the bard’s works and in translating Shakespeare’s messages to students with various backgrounds and interests. The instructor must also be able to transform the language and actions of Shakespeare’s characters into a modern world, so that his ideas are relevant for today’s students.
Next, an appropriate curriculum must be considered. Although we would like to work closely with the instructor on this issue, we believe it is imperative that the course focus on standard works deemed most relevant for a young but mature audience.Othello and Macbeth are two Shakespearean dramas the class must examine along with All’s Well that Ends Well, Shakespeare’s most important comedy. A unit on Shakespearean sonnets is also a must.
The course should also utilize modern depictions of Shakespeare plays, whether through movie renditions of the bard’s plays or with field trips to live Shakespeare productions.
The course will be a three-credit English or Humanities elective and will run for 15 weeks. We believe a M-W-F format would be most effective since larger doses of Shakespeare during a 75-minute course may not be as rewarding for students. The course should be limited to 25 students.
Class discussion, written assignments and two major exams (midterm and final) should constitute the grading schedule for this course, though the instructor will have autonomy to design and grade assignments by his/her standards.
Task and Management Plan
In order for this course to work successfully, I have identified a specific timeline (which can be adjusted by the instructor to meet his or her needs), the proper facilities/equipment needed and overall management of the course as it unfolds.
Task With Schedule
As mentioned earlier, this will be a 15-week course, broken into 45 classes.  Students should be expected to complete at least four plays along with a selection of Shakespeare sonnets. The informal class outline is as follows:
  • Week 1- Introduction of Shakespeare course, including a history of Shakespeare and his time.
  • Week 2/3- Reading and discussion of Othello (instructor will determine his/her preference in testing students).
  • Week 4/5- Reading and discussion of All’s Well that Ends Well.
  • Week 6/7- Reading and discussion of Macbeth.
  • Week 8- Review and midterm exam.
  • Week 9- Presentation of movie/live performance (this could be adjusted depending on when live performances are available).
  • Week 10/11- Reading and discussion of a fourth play (instructor’s choice).
  • Week 12- Review of Shakespeare drama and comedy as literary mediums.
  • Week 13/14- Reading and discussion of Shakespeare sonnets.
  • Week 15- Review and final exam.
Again, this is a tentative schedule; instructors should have control over how they present material, and this schedule should be used as a guideline for assistance in setting up the course syllabus. The instructor should have final say in evaluating students, based on participation, quizzes and exams. But again, we emphasize the need to cover the three plays previously identified.
Although there is a 25-student limit for this course, it is suggested that a classroom be suitable for presenting skits during the semester. The classroom should have access to open space; a stage-like area would be ideal, but there should be room for students to act out important scenes from the plays. Also, the instructor should have access to up-to-date technical support to utilize Internet opportunities for exploring Shakespeare’s history.
Also, the instructor should have final say in the specific textbook for the course, but it is recommended that a text with Shakespeare’s complete works be utilized: students will want to continue with their Shakespeare studies following completion of the course.
We want to stress the need for bringing an instructor on board immediately to help with planning for the course; however, support from the English Department chair will be essential in ensuring a successful program. The chair will be responsible for overseeing any possible field trips and in accepting documentation that the course covers the core requirements for an upper-level Shakespeare course.
The major financial needs will be in staffing the Shakespeare course with a top-notch instructor. Since we may hire internally, this cost will not increase the college’s overall budgetary figures, but a nationwide search could also have to potential of attracting an applicant with increased qualifications. Textbooks will be a responsibility of the students, but any outings to attend Shakespeare events should be included in overall costs.
The breakdown for expenses is as follows:
College Responsibility
Student Responsibility
$3,300 (3-credits adjunct instructor)
$42,000-$45,000 full-time English)
$3,300 to $45,000
Approx. $55
Field trips
Approx. $300 (based on one trip per semester)
Classroom materials
None (teacher responsibility)
$3,655 to $45,665
$3,335 to $45,335
The class could also be involved in a series of fundraisers (bake sales, for instance) to help offset the cost of bringing Shakespeare performers to college.
As noted, Carey Goyette, the chair of the English Department, has spoken favorably of the concept for a Shakespeare course and has agreed to oversee activities, beginning with the posting of a job opening for the position. Again, we are specifically looking for a part-time instructor but will consider full-time if an applicant has outstanding credentials with Shakespeare studies and is willing to take on an additional load of English composition courses.
Ms. Goyette has 13 years experience at Clinton Community College and has been chair of the department for three years. She studied English Literature in college and earned her Master’s degree in British Literature of the 1800s from Boston University. She has taught a variety of courses at Clinton, including British and Early American Literature.
Two existing full-time professors, Susan Raab and Judith Cavanaugh, have also taught English Literature and have voiced an interest in teaching Shakespeare. Both instructors will be welcomed to submit applications with resumes to enter the job search. However, we will make a final decision based on all applicants and subsequent interviews.
We anticipate the ability to offer Shakespeare as an English elective by Spring 2014. We anticipate the course’s popularity will allow us to run Shakespeare during the fall and spring semesters and will consider an on-line version in the future. Shakespeare has never been more popular, and this course will benefit from that global interest. I have strong confidence in its success.


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