Multi-Genre Assignment

What is a Multi-Genre Paper?
A multi-genre paper is just what the term suggests: it is a non-traditional paper using many different genres, depending on what the specific subject, facts or audience call for.  Tom Romano who coined the term “multi-genre” said that multi-genre papers, “recognize that there are many ways to see the world, many ways to show others what we see” (Romano, Tom. Writing With Passion. Portsmouth, NH: Boynton/Cook Publishers, Inc., 1995. )

Why aren’t we writing a traditional research paper?
We are doing this assignment because multi-genre papers allow for more creativity.  This is your chance to think outside the box, experiment with types of writing you may never have tried.  You can write in multiple voices, compare, contrast, analyze, or argue multiple points of view.  Multi-genre papers challenge students to think, and hopefully it will be fun as well.

What topic do we have to research?
You may choose the topic for yourself; pick something that is interesting and meaningful to you.  Remember though, you should try to pick a topic that you will able to do formal research on, and that you will be multifaceted enough to provide you with inspiration for many different types of writing.

I’ve never done anything like this before!
Don’t worry.  It’s not that complicated.  We’ll take this project one step at a time, and I’ll be available for consulting all the way!

So…What’s a Genre?
A genre is category of composition distinguished by distinctive style, form andcontent.  This is just a short list of examples of genres you could include in your paper
(Any you think of that aren’t found on this list, you may also use.  Just talk to me!):

  • Advertisement
  • Advice column
  • Autobiography
  • Blog
  • Cartoon
  • Comic strip/book
  • Creative visual (poster, mobile, diorama)
  • Dialogue
  • Diary entry
  • Encyclopedia entry
  • Eulogy
  • Myspace Page
  • Eyewitness account
  • Interview
  • Letter
  • Memo
  • Monologue
  • Newspaper Article
  • Photo/drawing
  • Play
  • Poem
  • Resume
  • Scrapbook
  • Song
  • Speech
  • Website
  • Video clip
  • Map/Brochure


Your paper must include:

  • A title page
  • A preface
  • At least three total pages of informative text (aside from the preface).
  • Use of at least five genres (outside of your informative text)
  • A works cited page (showing that you’ve consulted and used at least 3 sources)

Title Page: The title page should include your name, the date, class period, and
the title of your project.

Preface: This will be where you supply the reader with anything you want
them to know before reading the paper, such as: how the genres
are related to one another, or which parts of your paper are fiction
and which are fact.  This is your chance to welcome the reader into your piece of writing.  Also, I need for you to discuss within the preface the mediaums, audience, and purpose of this piece.

Genres: FIVE different genres minimum are required, but feel free to add more.
Also, all photos and drawings used must either be of your own creation.  Copy/pasting something from the internet is just too darn simple!  If you have questions about this, please ask.

Works Cited: For the works cited page, I will require a complete list of all the
sources you used in proper MLA form.  A minimum of THREE
different sources are required.  ONE may be from a website of
reputable quality.  (If you have a question about what websites are
acceptable, come ask me.)  Journal Articles and newspaper articles
found online that are from non-internet based journals or
newspapers (example: A New York Times article found on the
New York Times website) will be counted as a non-internet based

Things I will be looking for:

Completion of project guidelines: have you met all the requirements?

Does your choice of genre effectively express the research?  Is it logical for your audience?

When deciding on your genres, you must first think: “who is my audience” and “what is the most effective way to reach them?”  Look at your research then decide the best way to express your facts and point of view.

Does your paper effectively express an idea or convey information?  Does it link your genres together?  During research you should narrow your topic down to a central theme. This will help link your entries together and allow your reader to make sense of your paper.  Think of it as your thesis statement that you never need to state. Even if you are showing opposing views, they should be opposing views of one
central topic.

Is your paper neat? Have you taken the time to proofread?

We will devise as a class a detailed definition of a successful piece.

Adapted from Matt Moberly

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