San José State University - URBP 200
Professor Asha Weinstein - Fall 2004

Personal Reflections Assignment Part A:

Planning Commission Analysis

(Due in class on 11/8/04)


This assignment gives you an opportunity to experience a planning commission meeting firsthand and then write an essay reflecting on how effective the meeting was.

How to select and attend a planning commission meeting

Writing the paper

Write an essay analyzing what happened at the meeting. You paper must cover the following items, but you don't need to do so in the order I've listed them.

1) What happened at the meeting?

Imagine that you are a newspaper reporter describing the scene and all the events. Briefly cover the following details:

2) Your analysis of the meeting

The point of the analysis is to discuss the meeting you attended in terms of its value as a form of public participation and decision making, applying concepts discussed in class to what you observe. This analysis should make up the bulk of the paper.

Make sure your paper does the following:

Here are some questions to give you ideas about what you want to discuss:


4-5 pages, typed (Times New Roman 12-point type, 1 inch margins, line spacing set at “2”). The assignment should be about 1,350 to 1,700 words in length. Please note that 5 pages is the maximum for this paper; I will stop reading (and grading) after that point.

All citations to readings should be prepared according to the directions on the course syllabus.


You will be graded on (1) the quality of your analysis; (2) the clarity, organization, and grammatical correctness of your writing; and (3) whether or not your memo covers all topics specified.

This assignment is worth 20% of your course grade.

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