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For the following lessons, you will work through the WebQuest given below. Read the assignments carefully, do your best - and keep in mind, that this is not going to be a test in your ability in using drag & drop!



A WebQuest
Designed by Uwe Klemm
uwe at klemm-site dot de

Introduction | Task | Process | Evaluation | Conclusion | Credits


Through this webquest, you are supposed to gain insight into the procedure of electing a US president, get to know some of the candidates for the 2004 elections and their agendas and judge their chances for election.


Using the resources given below, try to understand the procedure that is employed in the election of a US president. Deal with candidates and their views / promises and react towards one of the candidates.


You are supposed to work in teams and split the work that has to be done. So first gather in teams of 3 or 4 people. Go through the following assignments and assign specific responsibilties within the team, so that each of you is able to answer one of the following tasks. As a group, you then prepare a portfolio (with the name of the respective authors below each "chapter" and an appendix giving the sources you used) which you have to hand in (use my "Kopierstelle" on server Gaia). While you do your research work, you might want to store useful links in the LinkBase.
Your research tasks:

(1) Create a flowchart that explains the procedure of electing a US president. Include dates where applicable, also include the constitutional requirements that a candidate has to meet. Brief introduction
(2) Make up a table comparing some major candidates and their agendas. Take the Republican candidate, George W. Bush, 2 Democratic candidates (one of them must be Wesley Clark) and one third-party candidate. Give a short biography of each of them. Compare their agendas on the following topics: economy, welfare and health care, education, foreign politics / security.
Sources: Election at "Washington Post" online
USA today
George W. Bush's Website
Wesley Clark's website
(3) Choose one of the candidates mentioned above and analyze how this candidate uses modern media for his campaign (websites, weblogs, maillists...).
(4) Find out about the costs for running a campaign and where this money comes from.
(5) Taking into account all the information gathered so far, choose the candidate that you - if you were a citizen of the US - would give your vote. Write an e-mail to the candidate in which you explain, why you think he'd be the one who should run the country. You might want to add some criticism or proposals to change the one or other item in his agenda.Alternatively, you might choose the candidate you agree with least and write an explanatory e-mail to him.This e-mail is a mandatory task for everyone! It should have at least 150 words. For the E-mail, please use the form at the bottom of this page.

Additional Sources:
Useful election portal
Congress for Kids
Hail to the Chief


Your writings will be marked using the common grading guidelines for written work in the Oberstufe. You are expected to create texts of your own, extensive copying from the original sources will result in loss of credit in your evaluation.
In addition, the following table will give you some hints on what exactly is ecpected for each task.

  Beginning  Developing  Accomplished  Exemplary  Score 
Content of your "chapter"  just the most basic facts, in parts faulty, incomplete  basic facts are mentioned, partly incomplete, some minor faults  almost complete, accurate, shows deep understandig of subject  completely correct, in-depth analysis,   12 
Structure and Coherence of your chapter  not very coherent, just fact after fact   in parts coherent, some understanding of a well-structured text  well-structured text, coherent, variety of link words etc  fluent argumentation, fairly complex, tightly interwoven 
Level of language proficiency in your chapter  a number of mistakes that inhibit comprehension, and / or extensive copying from original texts  some mistakes that occasionally inhibit understanding, some copying  fluent text, fairly wide range of vocab, minor mistakes, stylistically appropriate  very fluent, wide range of vocab, register, almost 100% language of your own, stylistically accurate  10 
Content and Argumentation of your E-mail   just some opinions, not coherently presented, argumentation not convincing, stylistically inappropriate  basic development of argumentation, some reasoning, in parts convincing  coherent argumentation, comprehensible and mostly convincing, a number of aspects included  mature judgement, in-depth, well-reasoned, complex  10 
Language Proficiency (E-mail)  a number of mistakes that inhibit understanding, fairly straightforward, limited vocab  some mistakes occasionally limit understanding, some choice of vocab and structures  fluent, quite some range of vocab and structures, stylistically engaging  very fluent, wide range of vocab and structures, some stylistic delicacy  12 


By the end of the webquest, I hope you will have understood the basic principles of choosing a president in the USA - or POTUS for short. We will follow the elections in class, of course, and compare the results with our expectations :-)


Apart from the links used within the Process part, I used a cartoon taken from
The Structure of the Webquest is based upon a template from the WebQuest Page.

E-mail to the Candidate

Your candidate's name
Your name
Your message
Your E-mail

Cambridge Advanced