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    Buzzy Essay Assignment: The 5th Criterion Will Blow Your Mind

    Here's a college essay assignment aimed to help students rise to the Buzzademia standards. Go here for more information on Buzzademia.

    1. Essays are overrated

    Essays, who has time to read them anymore, let alone grade them? So for this assignment, you can all write a persuasive Listicle to develop your prowess in the most influential new form of literary journalism of our day!

    There will be important choices: numbered vs. countdown vs. plain list. Choose the one that best fits your rhetorical strategy.

    2. Your essay will not be about Buzzfeed Listicles. It will be one.

    (or a Quizzicle.)

    Yes. For credit. In college.

    It's part of a tsunami taking over education.

    3. Top Myths About College Writing You were Taught in High School

    Your AP English class had you writing an essay a day warning you that college would be worse. Much worse. They also taught you to write a 5 paragraph essay. Turns out college classes are much more interested in being trendy.

    So here you are, writing a Buzzfeed article.

    4. Buzzfeed is a site for sober reflection


    Well, Buzzfeed is what we make it. So we're making it a place of academic writing. How? By writing on it in the academy. It's that simple!

    Now you can create a persuasive piece of writing for our final essay with a few minimal requirements:

    Make your listicles at least 10 items long.

    Write at least 750-1000 words of total text.

    Oh, and here are a few more tips for your writing process!

    5. A Meme is Worth a Thousand Words Double-Spaced.

    (which makes this article over 20,000 words long!)

    Why waste your time on paragraphs, when you can simply write 5 Words in Impact font across an ironic photo? Speak the Lingua Franca of our day and return to the kind of communication, the power of picture books.

    6. Auto-Generate a Thesis that Foregrounds the Shape of your Argument

    Give your brain a rest. Check out this Handy Thesis Generator posted by the University of Phoenix! It builds thesis sentences automatically!

    7. Replace Peer Workshops with Likes and Favorites

    Your peers are an important resource, but why task them with giving you comments on your paper when you can just crowdsource it? Post it on Buzzfeed and see who gives it a LOL and OMG or even a WTF! Then revise accordingly.

    8. Remember to Get Your Internet Vernacular right!

    nuff said.

    9. Take the "What Citation Style Are You?" Quiz

    @allysonseber / Via Twitter: @allysonseber

    Try on the Sorting Hat of Citation Styles.

    Citation styles exist primarily to indicate which kind of person you are. You choose your style to match your personality.

    APA = Ravenclaw; Chicago = Gryffindor; MLA = Hufflepuff. {Slitherin don't cite sources.}

    Hate to be a Buzzkill, but...

    it is still a paper. Yes, a graded writing assignment. For school. So you'll have to do a few of those things that papers require. But never fear. All of that is MUCH easier and nearly painless in this new literary genre of the Internet age.

    10. Overwhelm readers in a plethora of sources

    or puppies

    11. Include perspectives and reactions from a wide range of people

    12. Explicate all of your quotations with clear prose

    13. Weave your sentences together for seamless flow

    14. Be sure to create a nuanced position on the issue.

    But Listicles Can Do More!

    Listen, I'm sorry about bringing up the whole grade thing. As they say, NO WORRIES!

    In the world of Listicles, there's always a way out of a conventional essay writing pinch!

    15. Need a counterargument? Try an eye roll

    16. Still stuck? Let Beyoncé make your point

    17. Don't Understand the theory? Use a theorist Meme

    Derrida clarified.

    18. Uncertain what to say next, LOLcat

    19. Develop your position with an ancient heuristic on YouTube

    View this video on YouTube

    20. Look up "Heuristic"

    And, PRESTO! You're done!

    No need to worry about some intricate structure. The Listicle makes an order for you automagically, streamlining thought and taking the scariness out of the writing process!

    Throw your writing handbooks in the trash. The future of teh writing is here!

    And have no fear about this ruining your love of Buzzfeed because we all know that all it takes is a super cool writing instructor to make something trendy even cooler!

    (This post's title was inspired by Kathy Albury).

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