Upper-Division Writing Courses
ENG 4**: Writing in Digital Spaces
This syllabus is designed as an upper-division English course about composing in digital spaces. This is a course that benefits from having a hybrid (or blended) format with one weekly face-to-face meeting, and the remainder of course activities taking place online, predominantly within the Learning Management System. This hybrid format is perfect for a course that is focused on the composing process. As you will see in the course calendar, I have skewed this class heavily to workshopping—emphasizing the writing process and allowing students time (both in person and online) to compose, try new things, make mistakes, and gain feedback from both their peers and me. Students first compose a digital literacy narrative— the concepts of digital literacy and out relationship with technology ground the rest of this course. In the second project, I ask students to reimagine a traditional text as a hypertext. We challenge the linear study in this project and examine the nonlinear possibilities of composing in online spaces. The third projects asks students to observe current online genres, specifically video genres. After choosing a genre and conducting some primary research, students define the parameters of the genre before creating their own version of a video in their chosen genre. Finally, the final project puts students in the driver’s seat. The project is to be defined entirely by the students, and they are given creative license to apply materials and techniques learned during the semester in their final multimodal composition.
ENG 301: Writing for the Professions
In this 6 week ENG 301 class, my goal was to help students gain knowledge not only of the genres of professional writing, but also some of the power dynamics that can occur between customer/employee and employee/supervisor. Beyond this, we worked on elements of good document design and persuasive business writing. Their business correspondence project asked them to write correspondence in response to situations such as an upset customer, and an e-mail to a boss informing them that a team member was not pulling their weight. The employment project focuses on the resume and cover letter. Students create a job skills inventory and a rhetorical analysis of a job advertisement that helps them to create a cover letter and resume that respond to a specific employment situation. Our course wiki works to help students develop organizational skills, team working skills, and online writing principles as they summarized information from our class. Finally, the grant proposal project asks students to pick a grant, scholarship, or graduate school application and create all the necessary application materials. At a minimum, students were asked to write an application letter and a personal statement (regardless of the application requirements). Each student presented on their application essays, treating the presentation as a 5-minute pitch to a board who would be judging their applications.
Lower-Division Writing Courses
ENG 215: Strategies of Academic Writing
In Strategies of Academic Writing, students develop an in-depth approach to academic writing. For this course, I focused on helping students to learn the genre conventions of their particular discipline. Towards this end, students first researched several scholarly articles within their field. They compile this research into an annotated bibliography and include an article from one Arizona State University faculty member they were interested in interviewing. From their bibliography, the students work on a genre analysis that examines some of the common writing tropes and types of evidence used in those articles. Following this, students conduct an interview with a professor at Arizona State University in their discipline and write a critical reflection on the interview data and from the process of completing the interview. The culminating project is a research proposal based on their previous research and the methods (primarily ethnographic) that we discussed in class.
This work by Abigail Oakley is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.