Beagle Riddle

Read the riddle, discuss with classmates if you wish, and post your answer as a Reply complete with an explanation of how you came to your conclusion.

Class Notes

Reminder that to earn credit for attendance, you must produce Notes during class in the form of a Reply to today’s Agenda that records and explains key information and skills.

End of Regular Drop/Add Period.

Your professor will be required to Verify Class Attendance this week, so if you’re still contemplating dropping a course and adding another or switching sections, time is just about up. Verify the precise terms with the Registrar’s office if your schedule is not yet certain.

Grade Levels Exercise

Follow the link to the Grade Levels page and leave a Reply there as instructed.

lelebxby’s LTE Draft

  • Read the article “I’m Asian American. Affirmative Action Worked for Me.”
  • Then read lelebxby’s LTE Draft, written in response to that article.
  • Leave Replies below each of your professor’s feedback segments indicating
    • Your reaction to the feedback in general
    • An item of feedback you found particularly helpful
    • An item of feedback with which you disagree, and why.


32 Responses to CLASS 03: TUE SEP 10

  1. tenere84 says:


    For a warm-up, we discussed the Beagle Riddle. The scenario is this: a shopkeeper offers you two beagles but does not know whether they are male or female. They come back and tell you they know the first is a male. The question is, “what is the possibility that the other one is also a male?” Using logic and basic math knowledge, we can deduce that the probability that both will be male is 1/3. The initial possible combinations are MF, FM, MM, and FF. Because FF is no longer possible after the shopkeeper confirms that the first one is a male, there are now only 3 choices. Therefore the chance that both will be male is 1/3.

    As Professor Hodges said, we should be more focused on becoming great writers, not being good students. Knowing what the grading standards are is a great way to know where you stand and how to get better as a writer. Four different opinion pieces were examined and graded on an A-to-F scale. The topic in question was the stance on the “don’t ask, don’t tell” debate. The first one was given an A because they used clear and concise language and had very persuasive rhetoric. They stay on topic and don’t go off on a tangent except at the last sentence. Overall, it was certainly A-worthy. The second one was as clear and persuasive as the first one. However, it was given a B because some of the claims were unconnected to the topic at hand, an error of which many students can be guilty. The third one received a C because not only were the claims unconnected, but they were ill-reasoned and contradictory. Furthermore, they had poor grammar. The last one received an F because it lacked any coherent claims. The author of the fourth was basically rambling. Knowing how these four summaries differ is necessary to inspire us to improve on our writing, especially if we have a lot of work to do.

    To become more familiar with the site and how Hodges critiques our writing, we analyzed the LTE Draft of a particular student as well as the professor’s replies. We critiqued the student’s work and though it was well-formatted, its arguments could be improved. We also gave our response as to how efficient Professor Hodges critiqued the work. Needless to say, he was quite good at it.


  2. comp0327 says:

    Beagle riddle- Confusing but I think I know it. It has to be. 50% chance, it only makes sense… Maybe not. I’m not sure.
    We then discussed “Don’t ask, don’t tell”. The policy was a part of Clinton’s administration in the military. We started reading a paragraph about the legislation and why it is wrong, why it oppressed the homosexual community and why overturning this policy was important. The paragraph is used to highlight a successful argument and the factors which make an argument so successful. We read another paragraph about the same topic, but was not an ‘A’ grade, thus further highlighting the importance of writing a strong argument.
    Finally, we read Prof. Hodges’ feedback on lelebxby’s LTE draft, and made comments about what we liked in the feedback or did not like in the feedback.


  3. Anonymous says:

    Beagle riddle- Confusing but I think I know it. It has to be. 50% chance, it only makes sense… Maybe not. I’m not sure.
    We then discussed “Don’t ask, don’t tell”. The policy was a part of Clinton’s administration in the military. We started reading a paragraph about the legislation and why it is wrong, why it oppressed the homosexual community and why overturning this policy was important. The paragraph is used to highlight a successful argument and the factors which make an argument so successful. We read another paragraph about the same topic, but was not an ‘A’ grade, thus further highlighting the importance of writing a strong argument.
    Finally, we read Prof. Hodges’ feedback on lelebxby’s LTE draft, and made comments about what we liked in the feedback or did not like in the feedback.


  4. Morra2024 says:

    This class started with the Beagle riddle, the answer to which apparently changes depending on how the data is interpreted. My answer is: the probability of the second puppy being a male puppy is 50%, as this is an independent event/fact/puppy, not in any way related to the first one given in the example. Hence, the odds do not change – it’s 50%.

    Later, having moved on from the riddle, we reviewed and thoroughly analyzed what type of written work is worthy of an “A” grade. The stance of the author in his arguments must be clear and his statements, preferably, concise; the points are to be logically connected and non-contradictory. Having got a rough idea of what constitutes great writing, we briefly skimmed through other works that received worse grades. As it turns out, much to my surprise, the professor does not care about the grades we receive. Rather, his goal is to ensure we grow and become better writers.

    The last part of the class revolved around us reading and analyzing the LTE draft by Lelebxby, as well as replying to the professor’s extensive praise and analysis of the draft, which, according to him, is worthy of an “A”. However, it was also pointed out to us that, if there is no growth during the semester, the [successful] grade we receive for the first draft is not a guarantee of receiving the same grade for the final version of the LTE.


  5. voxpopuli075 says:

    -Notes will be in many places today.
    – It is discouraged to give letter grades early in the semester.
    – Grades may be different at the portfolio level.
    -Grades are based on whether writing is competent and persuasive.
    -Good writing is brief and clear.


  6. Beagle Riddle
    – Answer: I believe the odds of the second beagle being a male is a 50/50 chance. knowing the first beagle is a male, leaves you with only two options, female and male.
    – The order in which we are given the information and what information is given determines the odds we have at hand.
    – It is important in how we receive, perceive and express information. It can make all the difference in how we understand and deal with a topic or problem. Not having concise and reliable information can divide, confuse and leave people astray.
    Grade levels exercise
    – Portfolio based grading systems can skew our perception of what we believe our work is worth. For example, say we have written an A grade first draft and make minimal to no changes because we believe since it is already an A grade it will remain one. This would be a tremendous error on our part. What makes an A grade first draft doesn’t make an A, B, or maybe even C final copy.
    – The goal is to become a better writer by the end of the semester not to become better at milking the highest possible grade we can out of a paper.
    – Grade is not based on whether someone likes your style but whether someone can recognize your style and that it is efficient
    Grade Levels
    – A grade
    – Includes reasonable claims that transition and guide the reader naturally through a persuasive argument
    – Able to tightly pack an argument
    – Supports claims logically and precisely
    Lelebxby’s LTE draft feedback
    – we should leave thoughtful replies to prof’s feedback on LeLe’s LTE draft and extract criticism needed for our own drafts
    – We talked about to receive more detailed feedback on our own drafts and work. The only way to do that is to leave our own replies to feedback given to us, submit drafts and work early for higher priority and to just ask.


  7. ajuuy7 says:

    In today’s class we discussed the Beagle Riddle and the probability of both dogs being male. This was a fun activity that made everyone have to use their brains in a fun way. We learned to never get comfortable with the first draft grade because there needs to be improvement by the final draft for the portfolio. The “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy paragraph gets broken down to see how well written of a paragraph it really is. The distinctions between all four paragraphs are very clear and will be helpful in the future to compare our work to. Afterwards, we analyzed a classmates work to help give feedback on her Letter to the Editor. Reading what each person, especially the professor, had to say about a piece of writing was very helpful in understanding how the grading system will work and how well of writers we should strive to become.


  8. 09/10 Notes
    ~We began class with a discussion on a probability riddle. Will the probability continue to be 50/50 when finding out if the beagle is male or female?
    ~Reminder: The Regular Drop/Add period is ending.
    ~We take a look into the differences between a well written and poorly written paragraph. Reasonable claims and forwardness is important if you want a good grade. *Be careful with contradictory claims. This may lead to receiving a bad score.*
    — we gave our response on how these samples may have helped us.
    ~We were shown a draft by lelebxby that fit the criteria of what a well written draft looks like. The draft is a written response to the article “I’m Asian American. Affirmative Action Worked For Me.” The professor showed exactly how this student approached the argument successfully by her use of citation and other essential components.
    –The professor advised us to look over our drafts and see the feedback written to student lelebxby and fix anything he has already mentioned in her feedback. This will help us receive better feedback for our own drafts.


  9. lg102015 says:

    In the beginning of class we went over the beagle riddle. The riddle asks if you have 2 puppies what are the odds that the other one is a male. As a class we all seemed to have the same answer, we thought that the odds would stay 50/50

    We then went over how as the semester goes on the grading will get harder. So if the paper you have written now is an A, if there are no changes to them by the time that they are in the portfolio the grade for that paper can end up being a C. As we talked about this we went over examples of different types of writing with different grades. We thoroughly went through what an A paragraph would look like. Which was very brief and clear. It got to the point as well as being just a well written paragraph. After that we quickly went over the other examples of other grades and learned what it is that makes those paragraphs get the grades that they did.

    To end off class, we looked at lelebxby’s Letter to the Editor rough draft. I already posted my feelings towards this but just to sum it up, I feel like the feedback was great. It allowed her to see exactly how she can fix her article and make it even better then it already is. Seeing the feedback made me excited to get some on my article so I can come back and fix it and make it better, so I can become a better writer as the semester goes on.


  10. Jayv23 says:

    In class we discussed a riddle and all the possible outcomes to see what the probability of the second beagle being a male. we clarified that to earn our attendance we will have to take notes throughout the blog. grades aren’t normally posted early on in the semester because it allows the students to become comfortable rather then working harder in the class to get a better grade. Today we broke down what an A grade writing would be vs other letter grade writings. We broke down each line and explained why the way the writer wrote this deserves to have an A grade. An A will be given if everything in the writing connects together and doesn’t go off task of what the point of the writing is. at the end of class we read an article and LTE response and we looked at the feedback to let prof. know what our reactions to the feedback were.


  11. yankeefan25 says:

    We started off class with the Beagle Riddle and posted our responses to its own page. Following this we went on to look at four different paragraphs of different qualities. We analyzed them and wrote our feedback on its own separate page as-well. The last thing we did was look at a Letter to the Editor and talk about what comments you made we thought were good and bad.


  12. ahntkd99 says:

    Beagle Riddle
    – I think it will be a 50% chance (female or male)
    – Professor Hodges thinks it will be a 33% (M/F,F/M,FF)
    Grade Levels
    – He doesn’t care about grades
    – He wants us to improve writing skills
    – He showed us A grade paragraph example: A grade should show reasonable claims, nicely transitioned to guide reader through a persuasive argument.
    – He wants to write it BRIEFLY and CLEARLY
    lelebxby’s LTE Draft
    – Read the article “I’m Asian American. Affirmative Action Worked for Me.”
    – Read lelexby’s LTE Draft
    – Leave replies each of professor’s feedback (reaction to the feedback, particularly helpful feedback, feedback with which you disagree, and why)

    A word about title
    – write your own letter
    – Capitalize


  13. 9/10 NOTES:
    Discussed method of grading, first draft grades versus portfolio grades, and not to rely very heavily on first draft grades
    What makes an A grade paragraph?
    -make sure audience knows what you’re talking about!
    -use certain diction to take a clear stand on the topic, (brevity, conciseness, clarity)
    -appeal to popular point of views
    We discussed what makes an objection subpar as well:
    -Unclear or misleading word choice
    -introducing unrelated sub arguments or ideas that do not really apply to your argument


  14. Class Notes
    When going through the letter grades, A shows how to create a brief and clear letter with just 3 sentences. Although it was given an A there is still a little flaw but other then that it is considered strong. When looking at the other letter grades the others just were not as brief and clear as letter A. You don’t need to overwrite as well. When talking about a topic do not use the word it.


  15. 9/10
    Class Notes
    Beagle Riddle:
    – Argued the beagle riddle and what our opinion is
    – Gave support to what we believed the chance of the puppy being a male was
    – Commented our personal opinion on what we think the percentage of the puppy being a male was
    Letter Grade:
    1. Learned what would earn a solid A letter grade on a paragraph
    – Would need to be severely clear and possible to understand, while using a great packed argument
    – Valid argument that can be split into two divided sides
    2. Learned a B grade
    – Decent argument
    – Support doesn’t exactly relate to the argument necessarily
    – Uses “It” rather then what they are talking about which may confuse the reader
    3. Learned what a C and D grade may look like also
    – These argument are either not there or not clear
    – Gives no solid support on there argument
    – Should not be anyone’s baseline for work in writing
    Lele’s LTE:
    – Commented on Prof’s feedback for Lele which was very impressive
    – Prof gave great feedback and I look forward to obtaining that feedback from the class in the near future also


  16. mpsj13 says:

    Notes are written throughout the blog today in the grading page and the LTE draft attached to the page.
    Giving early grades is discouraged because it causes students to become comfortable with their work rather than leading them to improve their writing.
    To achieve higher grades writing intentions should be clear.
    The grading scale page was helpful and it could be beneficial to return to the page in the future.
    Viewing an example of a letter to the editor and observing feed back on said letter was helpful and it would be beneficial to utilize the feedback given in terms of my own essay.
    A title should be added at the top of an assignment in the body of work.


  17. bmdpiano says:

    NOTES: (Comments were left in on many pages)
    -We started off with a Beagle Riddle which demonstrates possibilities and probability. Does it matter what order in which we are given information? Does that change answers?
    -We spoke about how grade levels evolve as the rewrites come. A grade “A” draft could be a lesser grade moving towards the portfolio since the requirements get more demanding. We were given examples using the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy for each grade level paper to show the differences between each. Tightly packed sentences that are brief and clear can get the author’s point across well.
    -Regarding the LTE’s, revisions can be made at anytime after they are reviewed. We reviewed the draft that was linked above to see the comments and how they can improve the paper. We were given the opportunity to read the feedback and comment about our thoughts. The feedback was very helpful and could help many more students.


  18. kraemercali says:

    9/10 notes
    Beagle riddle
    grade levels are different as the semester goes on and individual writing improves
    don’t ask don’t tell for gays enlisted in the army so they didn’t lose their rank or face other sanctions
    grade level examples allow for self evaluating of my own writing
    professors feedback on the lte draft was very informative and provided a good basis for improving ones work


  19. -Started with beagle riddle.
    -Talked about grades and grade disputing
    -How grading will work/how to get the best grades
    -Learned “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy and the background of it.
    -Talked about writing feedback
    -Went over lelebxby’s LTE draft as it’s a strong work.
    -Replied to Professor’s feedback


  20. roses0102 says:

    9/10 notes
    Beagle Riddle
    Grades aren’t the most important aspect of this class. It is most important that the students are becoming a better writer by taking feedback from Mister Hodges
    “Don’t ask don’t tell”- Government policy saying if you are homosexual in military services, just keep quite about it and it wont be and issue. If you are to tell you can be un enlisted or moved down in rank. This law is discriminatory law and denies freedom of speech. This argument not only represented a strong argument but a brief one as well
    Writing should be direct, robust and clear, stating your argument clearly will strengthen it. Do not contradict your claims


  21. Valcom says:

    9/10 Notes
    Today’s notes will be all over the place.
    However in today’s agenda we worked on a beagle riddle, discussed grade level writing, and looked at and responded to LTE writing drafts.


  22. athenapup4 says:

    9/10 Notes
    Beginning of class
    Discussed the Beagle probability riddle

    “Dont ask, dont tell”
    –Reviewed what an ‘A’ grade piece of writing would have included in it
    Reasonable claims, nicely transitioned to guide the reader through a persuasive argument, had supporting details.
    –Reviewed what a ‘B’ grade piece of writing would have included in it
    Unconnected yet reasonable declarations.
    — Reviewed what a ‘C’ grade piece of writing would include include in it
    Poorly connected unclear or contradictory claims
    –Reviewed what a ‘D’ grade piece of writing would include in it.
    Simply no clear claims.


  23. bestbaker123 says:

    Class Notes:
    – Beagle Riddle: confusing and tricky because the population is up for your interpretation.
    – Grades don’t matter to the prof. He wants us to be better writers not star students.
    – Looked at good examples of persuasive arguments from students letters to the editor.
    – A GRADE: What makes it good is that it accomplished a lot in every sentence…author proves themselves to be judgmental, provide information about the overturning of the law cuz its “wrongheaded” and unconstitutional, author thinks more needs to be done “good first step”, targeting “ religious jealous zealots” which are the smaller than majority portion, circles back to their main point with the same words like “constitutional and freedoms”
    – 3 sentences managed to make a convincing argument
    – Other letter grades: used rhetorical questions instead of making a strong declarative claims, not precise enough and leaves a lot to the imagination of the reader, relevance?
    – The samples really help you to see which cases are clear and concise and which ones are confused and lost.
    – Grading scales were really helpful!!!


  24. 9/10 Class Notes
    – Beagle Riddle
    – Discussed and looked at different samples of grade level writing
    – became aware of the feedback on Lele’s LTE draft and replied to your feedback


  25. smellycat23 says:

    Today in class we discussed the Beagle Riddle. What’s the chance that the second beagle is a male given that the first one is a male? I said it was 50% but I think that is wrong.

    Mr. Dodges told us that he does not care about our grades, but if our writing gets better by the end of the semester. He showed us different letter grades for the LTE we completed by today. A grade “A” described the problem with the policy of “don’t ask, don’t tell.” It included reasonable explanations, transitioned well, identified the group the policy described, and it was persuasive. The sentences included information in a short paragraph and emotion with one word-wrongheaded.

    Being clear and direct is important. One should not say “I’m not sure that…” because it is a rhetorical question and received a D letter grade.

    We dissected a classmates article which was very persuasive and passionate. The opportunity Mr. Hodges gave us to look at her article was beneficial because now I know more of what is included in a good LTE.


  26. The start of the class began by a riddle being given about the gender of two new puppies. To say the least, I feel my math is correct, but the way it is worded confuses me a little bit. I still feel that the chance of a new puppy being born is about 50/50 for it to be a male. Grades were then discussed. According to Professor David, grades are not important to him, because he just wants to see us all improve. Letter grades were given with an example of paragraphs to show students what he expects from us to do well in a class. The “A” graded paragraph was broken down and explained through as to why the author earned that grade. Other letter grades were shown and explained through as to why they are not as good as the first paragraph was. I think it is very important to visually see what he is expecting. Just explaining sometimes does not get the point across as well as seeing it in front of you.


  27. iamsleepy01 says:

    – Discuss about the goals of the class and went over the grade levels. Went over what writing is considered a certain letter grade.
    – Write about the effectiveness of the grade scale
    – Read the article lelebxby’s draft was on
    – Read and react to the feedback of lelebxby’s LTE draft.


  28. hershey515 says:

    Comp 1 Notes

    Beagle Riddle
    – [ ] Riddle about the shopkeeper and her two p uppies figuring out what the probability of the puppies is a male. We then replied to the answer of the riddle under comments on the beagle page.
    Discussion on Grades
    – [ ] Professor discussed how he wants us to be able to reflect 15 weeks from now to know that are writing has tremendously improved throughout the course
    – [ ] “Don’t ask,Don’t tell” Grade A example of what a nicely transitioned persuasive argument is written like. The author uses vivid vocabulary to show his argument clearly. The author was able to write a 3 sentence brief argument including all points to writing a sting argument. We then commented online what we got out of the examples shown
    – [ ] We read the LTE DRAFT of Lelebaby. She wrote her draft and Prof. H. was able to give incredible feedback to boost the writing even more. We then reflected on what we liked about the feedback the most and what we disliked. Also how we felt about the feedback that was given to the draft. Most of the feedback that was given I found myself guilty of the same mistakes and must revise my draft also.


  29. Anonymous says:

    -We started class with a riddle to warm up our brains to be able to complete and retain more work.
    -During the riddle we used the leave a reply section to put our educated guess to the answer of the riddle
    -We discussed how to get many points and main points into one paragraph in relation to proper grammar use for our future writing
    -Its important to include the writers point of view in a brief short sentence
    -We went over different examples of writing pieces and what grade they received for their work to give a guide on the final goal of the class
    -We replied to the helpfulness of the grade level examples and how we would use it in the future
    -We read and replied to an article a classmate of ours wrote in the last week. Using the tools we learned for writing the letter to the editiors we commented with praise as well as things that could make the writing piece better


  30. lelebxby says:

    As simple as it may seem, finding out the gender probability of two beagle puppies is quite puzzling.
    When it comes to writing a successful, well-grades essay, it’s vital to understand that writing persuasively is much more that proper grammar and good citations. You must be reasonable and clear, stating your opinions as strong and passionately as you feel about them. Because of the grade level examples and analyzing my LTE and reviewing Mister Hodges’ feedback, I now understand the proper techniques of writing a powerful persuasive essay.


  31. lelebxby says:

    I appreciate all the feedback of my work. Your critiques were very informative and helpful, genuinely making me aware of my mistakes, whether it be grammar or the writing itself. The feedback I value most was the fact I wasn’t precise enough when stating my points. I understand that in order to get my opinions across I must be clear and specific instead of being vague and open with my arguments. I don’t disagree with any of your notes and look forward to hearing more of them for any and all future essays I write.


  32. iamsleepy01 says:

    50% chance that the second puppy is male

    Liked by 1 person

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