Fall 2017 Courses


100-level Courses

ENG 100 - Reading and Writing Rhetorically (4 credits)

Intensive practice in reading and writing critically and rhetorically, with attention to how those change according to purpose and situation. Introduction to rhetorical concepts and elements with application to a variety of academic, professional, or civic texts. Exploration of principles of argument and organization. Guidance in developing flexible, self-aware reading and composing processes. Practice in seeking, providing, and responding to constructive feedback. Practice with making choices about grammar, mechanics, and style appropriate to specific rhetorical situations. Extensive writing practice and individualized coaching to support ongoing development as a writer. Intended as preparation for ENG 101.

ENG 101 - Academic Writing and Research (4 credits)

Intensive instruction in academic writing and research. Basic principles of rhetoric and strategies for academic inquiry and argument. Instruction and practice in critical reading, including the generative and responsible use of print and electronic sources for academic research. Exploration of literate practices across a range of academic domains, laying the foundation for further writing development in college. Continued attention to grammar and conventions of standard written English. Most sections meet in computer classrooms. Successful completion of ENG 101 requires a grade of C- or better. This course satisfies the Introduction to Writing component of the General Education Program.

Prerequisite: A grade of C- or better in ENG 100 or placement via English department guidelines.

ENG 105 - Writing and Research in the Disciplines (1 credit)

Examination of inquiry and writing across a range of academic disciplines, laying the foundation for further writing development in college-level writing across the curriculum. Refinement of basic principles of rhetoric and how those connect to writing in disciplinary communities. Restricted to transfer students with a transferring first-year writing course Successful completion of ENG 105 requires a grade of C- or better. Together with approved transfer credit hours, this course satisfies the Introduction to Writing component of the General Education Program.

Restricted to: Transfer students with a transferring first-year writing course.

200-level Courses

ENG 207 - Studies in Poetry (3 credits)

ENG 208 - Studies In Fiction (3 credits)

Thomas P. Phillips

This section of Studies in Fiction examines various narrative forms and themes that challenge conventional modes of thought, discourse and reading. Through a selection of novels and short stories we will consider distinctions between such poles as convention and radicalism and high and low fiction to determine not only their validity or invalidity but their function with regards to the lived life of a reader. Authors include Edgar Allan Poe, Isaac Asimov, Raymond Carver, Shirley Jackson, and Don DeLillo.

ENG 209 - Introduction to Shakespeare (3 credits)

ENG 210 - Introduction to Language and Linguistics (3 credits)

ENG 214 - Introduction to Editing (3 credits)

ENG 219 - Studies in Great Works of Non-Western Literature (3 credits)

ENG 220 - Studies in Great Works of Western Literature (3 credits)

ENG 221 - Literature of the Western World I (3 credits)

ENG 222 - Literature of the Western World II (3 credits)

ENG 223 - Contemporary World Literature I (3 credits)

ENG 232 - Literature and Medicine (3 credits)

ENG 246 - Literature of the Holocaust (3 credits)

Fictional and nonfictional versions of the Holocaust, focusing on themes of survival, justice, theology, and the limits of human endurance.

ENG 248 - Survey of African-American Literature (3 credits)

ENG 251 - Major British Writers (3 credits)

Significant British authors chosen from among such figures as Chaucer, Shakespeare, Milton, Swift, Pope, Austen, Wordsworth, Coleridge, Tennyson, Browning, Bronte, Dickens, Joyce, Eliot, Woolf, and Yeats.Credit will not be given for both ENG 251 andeither ENG 261 or 262.

ENG 252 - Major American Writers (3 credits)

Significant American authors chosen from among such figures as Franklin, Emerson, Thoreau, Hawthorne, Melville, Douglass, Stowe, Whitman, Dickinson, Twain, James, Frost, Faulkner, Hemingway, and Morrison.Credit will not be given for both ENG 252 and either ENG 265 or 266.

ENG 260 - Reading Literature and Exploring Textuality (3 credits)

ENG 261 - English Literature I (3 credits)

A survey of English literature to 1660, including Old English, Middle English, and Renaissance writing, focusing on such central authors as Chaucer, Spenser, Marlowe, Shakespeare, Jonson, Donne, and Milton. Credit will not be given for both ENG 261 and ENG 251.

Credit is not allowed for both ENG 261 and ENG 251.

ENG 265 - American Literature I (3 credits)

A survey of American literature from the beginnings to the Civil War, including such central authors as Edwards, Franklin, Irving, Emerson, Hawthorne, Melville, Poe, Stowe, Douglass, Thoreau, and Whitman. Credit will not be given for both ENG 265 and ENG 252.

ENG 266 - American Literature II (3 credits)

ENG 281 - Introduction to Creative Nonfiction (3 credits)

Catherine A Warren

This is an introductory course that will instruct students in writing, editing and appreciating the professional nonfiction one finds in magazines, on issue-oriented websites, and in general interest publications, from the New Yorker-style long article to the personal columns one finds on online media outlets: writing about an issue or event in a personal, stylish way while obtaining the rigor of journalism in scrupulous research and clarity. In an ever-enlarging media universe, this is the most visible and commercial of all the creative writing genres.

ENG 282 - Introduction to Film (3 credits)

ENG 287 - Explorations in Creative Writing (3 credits)

Introduction to the basic elements and principles of three genres of creative writing: poetry, fiction and drama. Reading and class discussion of student work. Recommended for students with no prior experience in creative writing.

ENG 288 - Fiction Writing (3 credits)

Experience in writing short prose fiction. Class critiquing of student work and instruction in techniques of fiction.

ENG 289 - Poetry Writing (3 credits)

Experience in writing poetry. Class critiquing of student work and instruction in techniques of poetry.

ENG 292 - Writing About Film (3 credits)

Comprehensive study of various approaches to writing about film. Primary focus is on the critical and evaluative practice involved in writing film criticism for non-academic audiences. Film screenings, discussion of assigned readings, and in-classwriting workshops aid students in preparing a portfolio of film writing that includes film reviews of various lengths.

300-level Courses

ENG 305 - Women and Literature (3 credits)

ENG 314 - Technical Document Design and Editing (3 credits)

ENG 316 - Introduction to News and Article Writing (3 credits)

Prerequisite: ENG 214, ENG 101
Techniques of writing news stories and feature articles. Components of newsworthiness, examination of evidence, interview techniques, varied writing styles. Role of newspapers and journalism in America.

ENG 317 - Designing Web Communication (3 credits)

ENG 321 - Survey of Rhetorical Theory (3 credits)

ENG 323 - Writing in the Rhetorical Tradition (3 credits)

ENG 324 - Modern English Syntax (3 credits)

Prerequisite: ENG 101

Study of Modern English at the sentence level. Analysis of grammatical structure. Consideration of language variation in English.

ENG 327 - Language and Gender (3 credits)

ENG 328 - Language and Writing (3 credits)

Jeffrey Leo Reaser

We will investigate the language and writing and the intersection of these from a descriptive point of view. We will examine English phonetics, morphology, and syntax, with an eye toward refining understanding of and approaches to teaching about writing and writing errors. Ultimately, students are asked to consider how meta-linguistic awareness helps teachers lead their students to explore and discover information about language. ENG 328 is designed specifically for students in the LTN and MSL tracks. Non-teacher-education majors are welcome to take the class, but there is some assumed knowledge of educational psychology and pedagogy. Contact the instructor if you want more information about the appropriateness of the class for you. Please note that this is not a class aimed at improving your writing or editing.

ENG 330 - Screenwriting (3 credits)

Susan Jenny Emshwiller

Through lectures, film clips, screenplay examples, collaborative brainstorming, and original writing, we will explore the craft and art of screenwriting. Students will learn about structure, characterization, creating dynamic dialogue, subtext, subplots, theme, exposition, etc utilizing established screenplay formats. The course will involve studying great films and scripts, participating in critiques, and the writing and revising of original material. At the end of the semester the students should have a clear understanding of cinematic storytelling techniques and will have completed multiple scenes.

ENG 331 - Communication for Engineering and Technology (3 credits)

Prerequisite: Junior standing
This course is aimed primarily at students in engineering and other technological fields. Students may take only ONE of the following courses: ENG 331, ENG 332 or ENG 333. In this course, students become familiar with written communication in industrial and technical organizations. Students are encouraged to adapt writing assignments to their own work experience, professional goals, and major fields of study. Instruction covers all phases of the writing process (planning, drafting, revising, and critiquing other people's work). Emphasis is placed on organizing for the needs of technical and management readers; concise, clear expression; and the use of visual aids. Typical assignments include job application letters and resumes, progress reports, proposals, technical instructions, and at least one oral presentation.

ENG 332 - Communication for Business and Management (3 credits)

Prerequisite: Junior standing
This course (formerly ENG 221) is aimed primarily at students in business-, administration-, and management-related fields. Students may take only ONE of the following courses: ENG 331, ENG 332 or ENG 333. This course introduces students to the more important forms of writing used in business and public organizations. Students are encouraged to adapt writing assignments to their own work experience, professional goals, and major fields of study. Instruction covers all phases of the writing process (planning, drafting, revising, and critiquing other people's work). Emphasis is placed on organizing for the needs of a variety of readers; concise, clear expression; and the use of visual aids. Students practice writing tasks dealing with the routine problems and details common in a work environment and more specialized writing such as problem analyses and sales and administrative proposals. Each student also gives one or two oral presentations related to the written work.

ENG 333 - Communication for Science and Research (3 credits)

Prerequisite: Junior standing
This course is aimed primarily at students who plan careers in scientific research. Students may take only ONE of the following courses: ENG 331, ENG 332, or 333. This course introduces students to the more important forms of writing used in scientific and research environments. The course explores the relationship between research and writing in problem formulation, interpretation of results, and support and acceptance of research. Students are encouraged to adapt writing assignments to their own work experience, professional goals, and major fields of study. Instruction covers all phases of the writing process (planning, drafting, revising, and critiquing other people's work). Emphasis is placed on organizing for the needs of a variety of readers; concise, clear expression; and the use of visual aids. Typical assignments include proposals, journal articles, and at least one oral presentation.

ENG 342 - Literature of Space and Place (3 credits)

Rebecca Ann Walsh

How do space and place shape and reflect the complex, shifting nature of human identity? How do humans relate to nature and the environment? These have become increasingly important questions in humanities fields, which had been dominated for so long by a focus on history rather than spatiality, and which assumed that our surrounding environments were mere passive backdrops to our lives and to the way that literature makes meaning.

This course examines spatial categories--nature, the pastoral, wilderness, the city, the region, the nation--in nineteenth through twenty-first century multicultural literature, drawing upon cultural and historical geography, critical race theory, urban studies, and environmental studies. We will consider these issues through the lens of a range of different types of literary texts, such as realism, the plantation tale, modernism, postmodernism, science fiction, gothic fiction, etc. This course fulfills U.S. Diversity and Interdisciplinary Perspectives requirements.

ENG 350 - Professional Internships (3 credits)

Directed work experience for CHASS majors including work-site mentoring and evaluation. Department supervision includes course work directed toward designing employment application materials, developing a portfolio of professional work or relevant research paper, considering a variety of career options, and reading literature on workplace socialization. Students must provide their own transportation to the internship site. Modest liability insurance fee required.

Visit the English Department Internship Program website for more information.

ENG 361 - Studies in British Poetry (3 credits)

Sharon M. Setzer

In this course we will explore relationships between poetry and the visual arts, especially drawing, painting, and sculpture. Beginning with Blake’s “illuminated printing” and ending with the poetry and painting of D. G. Rossetti and other Pre-Raphaelite artists, we will examine how verbal and visual works of art inspire, complement, popularize, idealize, critique, and / or interpret each other. Other authors studied include Wordsworth, P. B. Shelley, Keats, Felicia Hemans, Tennyson, Robert Browning, and Christina Rossetti.

ENG 364 - History of Film to 1940 (3 credits)

Marsha Gabrielle Gordon PhD

This course begins with the international origins of motion pictures and traces the medium's fascinating evolution from experimental novelty to economic big business. We will study the development of form, style, narrative, and industry practices through several national cinemas, including French, German, Italian, British, Soviet, and American. Along with an understanding of major and minor cinematic movements, this course seeks to give students a sense of the cultural and historical context of cinematic production. We will screen narrative and experimental film, as well as nontheatrical film (such as home movies and educational film). The course includes readings and screenings, a creative video assignment, weekly quizzes, a series of examinations, and written assignments.

ENG 376 - Science Fiction (3 credits)

ENG 378 - Women & Film (3 credits)

Marsha Gabrielle Gordon PhD

This course will cover the rich history of women’s participation in the motion picture industry.  Focusing on female directors, we will study the ways women have gone about the art and business of filmmaking both within the context of well-established national studio systems as well as independently.  We will analyze films directed by women in a number of countries (including the U.S., France, Czechoslovakia, Italy, India, and Iran), from cinema’s earliest decades through the present day.  In addition to considering the aesthetic and formal elements of women’s films, we will discuss the range of social issues at play within them. Students will read film criticism written by women throughout film history and engage critically with contemporary essays about film history and feminism.  Course requirements include weekly screenings and readings, regular class participation, a presentation, two papers, and a cumulative final examination.

ENG 382 - Film and Literature (3 credits)

ENG 388 - Intermediate Fiction Writing Workshop (3 credits)

English 388 is a fiction writing class for students who have taken Eng 287 or 288 or have experience writing stories. Though I believe that no writer is ever beyond issues of craft, I will assume you have some familiarity with the essentials of fiction writing.

Students will be asked to read a considerable number of published works of fiction, to write exercises early in the semester, and to write two short stories and one revision. You will do written critiques of the manuscripts of your classmates and discuss them in workshop session that will take up our class time after the first month or so. Grades will be based on your critiques of other student stories, your own stories, and your revision.

ENG 389 - Intermediate Poetry Writing Workshop (3 credits)

Dorianne Louise Laux

This critique workshop will give special attention to creating new work through exercises gleaned from model poems. Submitted work will be discussed with an eye toward various modes of revision. The course expects students to be familiar with the themes, techniques and elements of poetry writing. We will read single collections of contemporary poems by a number of recommended authors. Students will choose one poem from among the course offerings for memorization and recitation and will create a handmade broadside. Interviews, essays, audio and video recordings and biographical works may be reviewed. The class may also enjoy a visit from a guest poet and participate in a class poetry reading. The course stresses reading as a writer and provides a foundation from which students can pursue further studies in poetry writing.

ENG 393 - Studies in Literary Genre (3 credits)

ENG 394 - Studies in World Literature (3 credits)

Prerequisite: Sophomore standing and above
Study of a subject in world literature: for example, African literature, Asian literature, Hispanic literature, East European literature, Comedy, the Epic, the Lyric, Autobiography, the Faust legend, or Metamorphosis. Subjects vary according to the availability of faculty. Readings in English translation.

ENG 395 - Studies in Rhetoric and Digital Media (3 credits)

This class is an introduction to User Experience (UX) and designed to help students interested in technical communication explore a set of concepts to the broader field of UX research. People who work in UX are strategists who assist in the creation of products, services, and policies across digital and physical environments. They contribute to the processes of design, research, and development of information tools. Designing rhetorical experiences requires empathy for people and an understanding of context of use.

In this class students will explore concepts from rhetoric, design, and development that are foundational strategies used by UX practitioners. Thanks to the ongoing growth and convergence of the internet and software industries, UX designers an emerging and viable professional field of study for those interested in technical communication. The content of this class capitalizes on a vital need for people-centered experiences across converging technologies, services, and processes. Students will engage in inventive problem solving and ideation of a project as well as develop products through user personas, journey mapping, and wireframing. Finally, students will learn to develop live interactive prototypes of software solutions. No previous technological experience is required to take this course but a willingness to learn new digital tools is.

400-level Courses

ENG 400 - Applied Criticism (3 credits)

W J Miller

Types and methods of literary criticism designed specifically for students intending to teach English in high school.

ENG 410 - Studies in Gender and Genre (3 credits)

Margaret Simon

Women and Comics will begin with a deep history of the representation of women in the comics medium starting in the eighteenth century. We will then spend the bulk of the course focusing both on comics and graphic novels authored and drawn by women (Jackie Ormes's Torchy Brown, G. Wilson, Adrian Alphona, and Sara Pichelli's Ms. Marvel, Emil Ferris's My Favorite Thing is Monsters, and Alison Bechdel's Fun Home, among others). While the course will focus on the increasing role of women in creating comics and graphic novels, we will also address depictions of gender, race, and class as intersectional issues.

ENG 411 - Rhetorical Criticism (3 credits)

ENG 416 - Advanced News and Article Writing (3 credits)

ENG 420 - Major American Author (3 credits)

In this course we will explore Willa Cather’s development as a fiction writer from her first “prairie novel,” O Pioneers! (published in 1913), to her final book, Sapphira and the Slave Girl (1937).  Issues to be addressed include the historical and political contexts of Cather’s fiction, questions of gender and sexuality, and her role in literary modernism.  We will focus in particular on Cather’s remarkable ability to evoke a “sense of place” in her fiction.  In order to have points of comparison for the way Cather depicts the customs, language, history, and landscape of various places, we will read a few texts by other “regional” writers such as Jewett, Chopin, Chesnutt, and Faulkner.

ENG 422 - Writing Theory and the Writing Process (3 credits)

ENG 426 - Analyzing Style (3 credits)

Helen Jane Burgess

Development of a greater understanding of and facility with style in written and electronic discourse. Theories of style, stylistic features; methods of analysis, imitation.

ENG 439 - 17th-Century English Literature (3 credits)

ENG 468 - American Romantics (3 credits)

Anne Baker

This course will examine major literary works and movements in the United States from 1820 to 1860.  We will focus on the relationship between cultural contexts (Romanticism, nationalism, Westward expansion, industrialization, debates over slavery, etc.) and the remarkable formal and stylistic innovation that characterized this period in American literary history. Authors will include Melville, Hawthorne, Douglass, Stowe, Emerson, Thoreau, and Whitman.

ENG 481 - History of the Book (3 credits)

ENG 488 - Advanced Fiction Writing Workshop (3 credits)

John J. Kessel

Eng 488 is a writing workshop class for students who have demonstrated competence in writing short fiction. The goal of this course is for you to write successful short stories, to improve your ability to identify in your own work and in others' just what is working and what is not, and to learn how to improve it.

In the course of this workshop your will turn in two complete short stories, and revise one of those stories. You will do written critiques of the manuscripts of your classmates. In the first month there will be readings on fiction techniques and of exemplary published stories. Grades will be based on your critiques of other student stories, your own stories, and your revision. 

ENG 489 - Advanced Poetry Writing Workshop (3 credits)

Dorianne Louise Laux

This critique workshop will give special attention to creating new work through exercises gleaned from model poems. Submitted work will be discussed with an eye toward various modes of revision. The course continues to explore the themes, techniques and elements of poetry writing. We will read single collections of contemporary poems by a number of recommended authors. Students will choose one poem from among the course offerings for memorization and recitation and will create a handmade broadside. Interviews, essays, audio and video recordings and biographical works will be reviewed. The class may also enjoy a visit from a guest poet and participate in a class poetry reading. The course stresses reading as a writer and provides a foundation from which students can pursue further studies in poetry writing.

ENG 491 - Honors in English (3 credits)

James M. Grimwood

“The Lottery” and Mid-Twentieth-Century American Culture

Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” (1948) is one of the most widely read—and most frequently censored—stories in American literature. This course will explore the contemporary sources of its power and its relationship to various features of American (and Western) culture. We will place the story within the contexts of Jackson’s other fiction, the psychology of agoraphobia, the history of public lotteries and town meetings, the post-World War II Red Scare, the creation and deployment of game theory, the Civil Rights movement, the philosophy of public space, the anthropology of ritual violence, and the popularity in the 1940s and 1950s of literary and cinematic narratives of war, assassination, and ancient gladiatorial conflict. Deep attention to such matters should enhance our understanding of the Great Shift from Modernism to Postmodernism. We will address methodologies of textual analysis and contextual research, and we will practice habits of interdisciplinary connectivity. Assignments will include European as well as American fiction, drama, philosophy, journalism, and film; a short paper analyzing some aspect of “The Lottery”’s narrative structure or its relation to Jackson’s career; a longer paper investigating some aspect of mid-twentieth-century American cultural history; seminar presentations.

ENG 492 - Special Topics in Film Styles and Genres (3 credits)

Ora Gelley

This course examines one of the cinema’s most persistent genres: the crime film. Why has crime been such a compelling subject for filmmakers since the invention of the medium in the late 19th century? What are the conventions and limits of the genre? How have various national cinemas depicted crime in ways that comment on and reflect particular historical moments and contexts? How do films represent distinctions not only between male and female positions of control and aggression, but also between the differences in male and female experiences of or responses to violence action, either as as victims or as witnesses? This course will also use the detective story (films about how crime can or cannot be solved) to introduce theories of analyzing films. In other words, just as there are methods which investigators follow in reconstructing a crime, or the scene of a crime, film analysis itself involves certain modes of identifying, collecting, analyzing, and interpreting evidence. Students should be aware that some of the films we will be looking at contain graphic, potentially disturbing depictions of violence. The course includes films by Robert Bresson (Pickpocket, 1959), Martin Scorsese (Goodfellas, 1990), Francis Ford Coppola (The Godfather, 1972), Fritz Lang (M, 1931), Howard Hawks (Scarface, 1932), Alfred Hitchcock (The Shadow of a Doubt, 1943 and Blackmail, 1929), Michael Haneke (Caché, 2005), Stanley Kubrick (The Killing, 1956), The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (2011), Marcel Ophuls (Hôtel Terminus, 1988), Harmony Korine (Spring Breakers), Elle (Paul Verhoeven, 2016), Jonathan Glazer (Sexy Beast, 2000), and Joel and Ethan Cohen (Miller’s Crossing, 1990), among others.


Michelle Rene Eley

This course explores conceptions of racial and national identities and their interactions through the lens of German cinema and television movies. From early, silent horror (The Golem: How He Came into the World, 1920) to revamped, melancholic romance (Ali: Fear Eats the Soul, 1974) to contemporary, transnational drama (The Edge of Heaven, 2007), German film broadly reflects the instrumental role of race in German identity discourse. It is through this lens that we will examine how perceptions and representations of three significant, marginalized ethnic and racial populations -- Blacks, Jews and Turks -- have influenced shifting conceptions of the German nation and cultural compatibility amidst ethnic diversity. Are Jewish, Turkish, Muslim or Black identities, whether notional or factual, necessarily oppositional to German identity? How have images of these "Others from Within," as well as "Others from Without" intersected with gender and sexuality to inform a German identity in transition? How do filmmakers reflect and comment on the tensions and correlations within diverse communities? Theoretical texts, scholarly analyses and our own close readings will provide us with the tools to investigate these and many other questions. In English, w/German requirements for FLG, and German-language discussion opportunities for all interested. 

ENG 498 - Special Topics in English (3-6 credits)

Brian Blackley

Shakespeare, Resources, Revisions

If Shakespeare were writing today, no doubt he would be the subject of many lawsuits contesting his right to use source material from various authors. Consistent with the Renaissance ideal of imitatio, Shakespeare freely borrowed from, mixed, and re-visioned material from short stories, history books, poems, and dramas to create his stage plots. Likewise, many contemporary film producers and directors have made their own adaptations, mixing the modern and the Elizabethan to re-create and re-invigorate the plays. This study proposes to examine carefully the various source materials – from Ovid’s Metamorphoses to Holinshed’s Chronicles – that Shakespeare used in some of his most esteemed plays. Most importantly we will examine what he left out of the source materials, and ask how those decisions and revisions make the plays uniquely Shakespearean. As a final consideration for each play we will examine what contemporary film adaptations have deleted or revised in order to entertain audiences. Students will have regular reading quizzes, make in-class presentations, and write one long essay.

500-level Courses

ENG 506 - Verbal Data Analysis (3 credits)

Jason Swarts PhD

Whether to coordinate teamwork, teach a class, manage relationships, rally support, frame an issue, or sway opinion, people rely on words to do things in the world. Often, the effectiveness of those words relies on the typicality of their expression, on settings, on the affordances of form, on genres, and on uptake. The patterned ways that words do work in the world can be systematically studied and expressed in ways that characterize both the strength of those patterns and the richness of their rhetorical character. This course teaches just such a method, what Janice Lauer and J. William Asher have termed a "quantitative descriptive" study of language.

ENG 508 - Usability Studies for Technical Communication (3 credits)

Douglas M. Walls PhD

ENG 508 aims to examine usability testing of various types of technical communications, including documents, web sites, instructions, and non-instructional texts. We will discuss the nature of design and usability and how they interact to create an easy or difficult experience.

We will examine a variety of testing methods, including inquiry, inspection, and lab-based testing. We will discuss the trade-offs among these various types of tests and will analyze which ones are most appropriate for various rhetorical and developmental situations. You will learn multiple methods for conducting tests when time and funding preclude lab-based testing.

ENG 511 - Theory and Research In Composition (3 credits)

English 511 provides a broad survey of the histories and philosophies of composition studies and composition research. This seminar is a prerequisite for students who wish to teach composition at North Carolina State University. English 511 will help students become familiar with the theories and voices which frame composition studies; understand the development of composition as a research site; become acquainted with the major resources in the field, in order to conduct independent exploration; assemble professional-level materials and apply reading knowledge so as to join disciplinary discussions; and develop frames for the evaluation of sound, ethical research in writing studies.

ENG 512 - Theory and Research In Professional Writing (3 credits)

Huiling Ding

English 512 will help you to understand professional and technical communication as a discipline. It focuses on how the field produces knowledge through various types of research and how it utilizes specialized discourses and practices.  In a way, this course is an introduction to what it means to be a part of a community of practitioners of professional communication, what resources are available for professional communicators, and how we can navigate through these resources to invent solutions to challenges we encounter in the workplace on a daily basis.

ENG 514 - History Of Rhetoric (3 credits)

Jean Goodwin

With a focus on the classical period, the subject matter of this course is equally distant, and thus equally relevant, to everyone! We will:

  • explore in their original sources the rhetorical perspectives that dominated composition instruction for millennia
  • review the rhetorical techniques that were the common property of authors in the Elizabethan era
  • consider the perennial "big questions" about communication, such as

Do new media make people stupid?
Is rhetoric an instrumental art, that helps more important endeavors like science and religion get things done--or is it an "architectonic art"--one art to rule them all?
Do tyrants rule by rhetoric--or does rhetoric liberate? (A timely question)
What is rhetoric, anyhow?

ENG 517 - Advanced Technical Writing, Editing and Document Design (3 credits)

ENG 520 - Science Writing for the Media (3 credits)

Catherine A Warren

This three-credit hour course, an elective for the master's in technical communication, is designed to teach you how to write a variety of science articles for a variety of mass media; how to think critically about how the media cover science; and how to think critically about science itself. There are no prerequisites for this course.

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  1. understand the basics of science journalism;
  2. distinguish a variety of scientific writing across websites, newspapers, magazines, and broadcast outlets;
  3. analyze science coverage and understand its strengths and weaknesses;
  4. communicate scientific ideas to a general audience through a variety of media.

The fourth goal is clearly the raison d'être of the course: that is, a hands-on, pragmatic, "how-to-do-it" approach to science writing. Throughout the term, you will be creating a science blog and writing news articles of varying lengths and complexity. You don’t need to have either a reporting background or a science background to succeed in this course. You do need to love reading and thinking critically.

Good science writing cannot occur without context. The goals of the course are to help you learn how to critically analyze science coverage -- by learning the history of science journalism, by studying a variety of approaches to covering science, and by learning how to critically analyze not only your own work but the work of others.

ENG 524 - Introduction to Linguistics (3 credits)

Jeffrey Ingle Mielke

Linguistics is the study of language as a cognitive, biological, and social system. This course is an introduction to the interrelated elements and processes that constitute language, including speech sounds and their mental representations, words, sentence structures, the meanings of words and relationships between words, contextual meanings, and language variation and change. After discussing the fundamental questions that drive inguistic inquiry, we will adopt a "bottom-up" approach, beginning with the smallest units of language -- speech sounds -- and working up to units as large as conversations. We will use naturally occurring language data to analyze linguistic structure. Our central conclusions will include the following:

  • Every aspect of language -- phonetics, phonology, syntax, etc. -- is a system that can be studied from a scientific perspective.
  • Language complexity still far outpaces linguists' understanding of it.
  • All language varieties are equal in structural complexity and communicative potential.
  • Language is unique to humans, and, as such, it a biological phenomenon. But it is also a social phenomenon; therefore, languages change over time.

ENG 525 - Variety In Language (3 credits)

Walter A Wolfram

The course offers an overview of English language variation in the United States from a current sociolinguistic perspective. Social, regional, ethnic, gender, and stylistic variation are examined, along with models for describing, explaining, and applying sociolinguistic knowledge. Students are exposed to a wide range of data on language variation focused on vernacular varieties of American English in general and prominent exemplars from North Carolina in particular. Open to all graduate students and upper-level English majors. 

ENG 527 - Discourse Analysis (3 credits)

Agnes Bolonyai PhD

This course focuses on how language functions in maintaining social actions, relations, and identities and how the way people communicate both shapes and is shaped by social structure, culture, and the choices they make as individuals. You will be acquainted with the major theories, concepts and approaches in the field of discourse analysis: pragmatics, ethnography of speaking, interactional sociolinguistics, conversation analysis, critical discourse analysis, narrative analysis, positioning theory, and politeness theory. For each approach, we will learn its assumptions and distinctive characteristics, methods of analysis, and the important questions for investigation.  In specific, we will examine, in theory and in practice, how the tools of discourse analysis can be put to use to investigate fundamental questions about identity: how we communicate to each other who we are in and through discourse. We will also explore a wide range of issues including how speakers use language to create meaning and negotiate interpersonal relations in everyday talk; what are the linguistic structures and strategies social agents deploy in discourse to achieve their communicative and social goals; how speakers draw inferences about one another’s intended meanings; what is the relationship between the ‘orderliness’ of interactions and ‘naturalized’ social beliefs; how relations of power and conflict are enacted in face-to-face interactions, cross-cultural conversations, and public discourses; how ideologies are acquired, expressed, and reproduced through talk and text; what role language use plays in struggles to impose or resist the new world order of globalization. 


ENG 534 - Quantitative Analysis om Sociolinguistics (3 credits)

Robin M Dodsworth

This course is an advanced survey of quantitative methods in variationist sociolinguistics, to be taken after ENG 523. We will look in detail at the quantitative methods used most often to evaluate language variation and change: multivariate linear and logistic regression, mixed effects models, and PCA. Whereas ENG 523 gives a practical introduction to these and other methods, this course delves into the math and also takes a more nuanced practical approach. In addition to statistical techniques, the course involves detailed graphical analysis of linguistic data using R. As such, basic proficiency in R is required.

ENG 549 - Modern African Literature (3 credits)

Juliana Makuchi Nfah-Abbenyi PhD

This course will focus on twentieth and twenty-first century African narratives by male and female authors such as Buchi Emecheta, Assia Djebar, Adaobi Nwaubani, Ferdinand Oyono, Tayeb Salih, Phaswane Mpe, Imbolo Mbue, Chimamanda Adichie, Ngugi wa Thiong’o, Birago Diop, etc. We will address the concept of “the empire writing back to the center,” paying close attention to discourses of empire (colonialism, nationalism, and postcolonialism); to issues of language, subjectivity, hybridity; to questions of gender and sexual politics. We will further examine how (Third World) feminisms, postcolonial theory, transnationalism and globalization are imbricated in critical readings of modern African literature and contemporary postcolonial cultural studies.

This course fulfills the needs of students in American/British Lit and in World Lit. It also fulfills the need in any concentration as an elective. 

ENG 551 - Chaucer (3 credits)

Timothy Linwood Stinson

This course is a detailed introduction to the 14th-century English poet Geoffrey Chaucer through The Canterbury Tales and Troilus and Criseyde, his most famous works. We will read selected tales alongside excerpts from Chaucer’s sources as well as associated historical and literary works from 14th-century England. We will work together to understand how Chaucer drew upon a wide range sources, both English and Continental, to create a new form of English poetry, as well as how The Canterbury Tales and Troilus and Criseyde reflect literary culture, social upheaval, linguistic change, and political turmoil in late medieval England. We will also focus on critical reception of Chaucer's literature, including how his works have been read through a variety of critical and theoretical frameworks.

ENG 558 - Studies In Shakespeare (3 credits)

Christopher James Crosbie

I wish to kill you, so I give you a poisoned cup. Not thirsty, you pass it along to a third person, who drinks the poison and dies. Am I guilty of murder or of something lesser? After all, while I had the intention to kill, I did not have the intention to kill the person who actually died, nor was I the one who gave that person the cup. The intuitive response may be that I am indeed a murderer, but, at the same time, both my internal disposition and the actual sequence of events trouble the logical process required to reach that outcome.

How we answer this question -- one adapted from a foundational legal case from early modern England -- depends heavily on a whole host of interrelated concerns. Are we narrowly asking a legal question or more broadly an ethical one? And, if the latter, through what ethical framework are we examining this question? The consequentialist assumptions of most post-Kantian ethics might lead us to one set of possible answers, but, in Shakespeare's era, Aristotelian virtue ethics -- synthetized in various ways with Catholic and Protestant theologies -- reigned supreme. How are we to understand the relative weight to place on one's intention when evaluating the culpability or innocence of an agent?

Shakespeare writes at a time when one's interior disposition toward external acts takes on especial importance in theological, legal, and, more generally, ethical discourses. Often, his plays (or key moments within his plays) hinge on the very question of intention. Did Ophelia commit suicide or did she die accidentally? What is the moral state of Hamlet when he fatally stabs Polonius, thinking he's killing the murderous king? Why does Iago hate the Moor, and why do all his declarations of motive ring hollow? When Angelo sleeps with the willing Marianna but only because, under cover of darkness, he thinks he's in fact raping a novice about to enter a convent is he, in the end, innocent or morally culpable? How should we think of the complex interplay between interior disposition and actual performed deed in Shakespearean drama?

This course will focus on the ethical quandaries represented within six Shakespearean plays (to be determined) with an eye toward understanding how intention mattered (or didn't) in Renaissance England. Along the way, we'll consider how such ethical concerns not only made for great theater but also, perhaps surprisingly, fashioned the early modern stage as a unique space for doing a kind of informal, vernacular, and public ethical philosophy.

Seminar participants will do substantial reading in primary and secondary sources, engage in vibrant online and in-class discussion, develop an extensive mid-semester Annotated Bibliography, and produce a final research paper on a topic of their choice related to the course theme.

ENG 580 - Literary Postmodernism (3 credits)

Jon F Thompson

Postmodernism, History, Truth

Postmodern literature has often been accused of being obsessed with looking at itself—with being overly concerned about how literature works, how it comes into being, and so on. But there is a strong tradition of writing from the 1960s through the contemporary moment that addresses itself directly to the relationship between texts and history. These texts—novels, essays, and poems—dedicate themselves to interrogating the ways in which literature thinks about history and the ways in which conventional narrative constructs history. History books offer one version of truth and veracity while literature, particularly postmodern literature, challenge those claims and offer a very different version of veracity. Famous for its audacity, invention and willingness to break taboos, postmodern literature offers a way into reading some of the most groundbreaking, compelling and provocative texts around, including: Allen Ginberg’s Howl, Graham Swift, Waterland, Michael Herr’s Dispatches, Tim O’Brian, In the Lake of the Woods, Susan Sontag, Regarding the Pain of Others and Anne Carson’s Nox. We will finish by reading the new novel by Colson Whitehead, Underground Railroad.

ENG 582 - Studies in Literature (3 credits)

Laura R. Severin

New British Literature

How do we as literary critics decide what new literature is “good” and worth preserving? This course focuses on contemporary British fiction and poetry since the year 2000 and explores the many and varied conversations that lead to a book being considered “canonical.” We will read Zadie Smith’s White Teeth (2000), Ian McEwan’s Atonement (2001), Kazuo Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go (2005), Jackie Kay’s Life Mask (2005), Don Paterson’s Rain (2009), Alice Oswald’s Memorial (2011), and Kei Miller’s The Cartographer Tries to Map a Way to Zion (2014), as well as some theoretical pieces on canon formation. Some of the specific issues we will discuss are how imaginatively these texts recreate traditional genres (such as the epic or science fiction), how creatively they re-envision the conventions of storytelling, and how compellingly they contribute to the dialogue on national identity. Both MA and MFA students are encouraged to enroll. Students will have the opportunity to research and write about a novel or collection of short stories and a collection of poetry of their choice.


Barbara A Bennett

Contemporary Southern Novel we will cover ten novels starting from around 1970, including authors such as Lee Smith, Anne Tyler, Randall Kenan, Dorothy Allison, Jessmyn West, and Wylie Cash. Students will, along with reading and discussing, give a presentation on a scholarly article on one of the novels read and complete a long paper based on an in depth study of a novel.

ENG 585 - Studies In Film (3 credits)

Marsha Gabrielle Gordon PhD

ENG 585, Studio Era Hollywood                                             

Tuesdays 6:00-10:00pm

Dr. Marsha Gordon

This course will explore the economics, politics, and aesthetics of the Hollywood Studio System during its amazing Golden Age from the 1920s-1950s.  We will study each of the “major” and “minor” studios that thrived (and struggled) during the era, including representative producers, directors, stars, designers, and of course the movies themselves.  Students will leave the course with an understanding of the business of Hollywood during this era, especially the industry’s capacity for producing publicity and creating/feeding a star-hungry public.  Time will also be devoted to those filmmakers who managed to work outside of the powerful studio system despite the difficulties involved in such endeavors.  Directors will likely include John Ford, Alfred Hitchcock, George Cukor, Michael Curtiz, Orson Welles, Tod Browning, Vincente Minnelli, Dorothy Arzner, Preston Sturges, Howard Hawks, Edgar Ulmer, Ida Lupino, and Sam Fuller.  Assignments will include in-class presentations, an archival fan magazine project, a digital exhibition project, and a final research paper (which my draw upon some of the earlier projects).  

Ora Gelley

This course focuses on mostly films (though we will also consider a limited number of works of performance art, video, and digital media) from the last twenty-five years or so marked by their relationship to violence and transgression. The films of the course–covering a diverse range of genres and national and transnational contexts–all in some way deal with what Teresa de

Lauretis has referred to as "en-gendered" violence. Thus we will be looking at the audiovisual and cinematic techniques and strategies by which gender is constructed and hence how the representation of violence committed against or by women in film is en-gendered.

The course will also consider the concept of "counterviolence," which includes but is not limited to the symbolic appropriation by women of male positions of control and aggression, and is in the work of some feminist filmmakers and artists explicitly directed at breaking down representational codes that have privileged male subjectivity and possession of the "gaze" in cinema, photography and other media. The course includes consideration of what many see as a shift in contemporary critical discourse, from a focus on trauma, melancholy, and victimhood to the issue of violence, and of the ceaseless images of violence with which we are continually being bombarded (in the news, in film and television, in video games, on our smartphones, etc.). Some of the questions we will be considering are: What can the cinema and other forms of visual media teach us about violence and its history? How do women and men experience, witness, and internalize violence differently, and what are the distinctions between masculine and feminine expressions of violence, both on the level of representation as well as its exercise in real life? Theorists we will be reading include: Jean-Luc Nancy (The Ground of the Image), Gilles Deleuze (Cinema 1: the Movement-Image and Cinema 2: the Time-Image), Judith Butler (Precarious Life: The Powers of Mourning and Violence), Slavoj Žižek (Violence: Six Sideways Reflections), Jennifer Doyle (Hold It Against Me: Difficulty and Emotion in Contemporary Art), Debarati Sanyal (The Violence of Modernity: Baudelaire, Irony, and the Politics of Form), and Elaine Scarry (The Body in Pain: The Making and Unmaking of the World), among others. We will watch films as well as consider works in other media by Denise Gonçalves, Marina Abramović, Aliza Shvarts, Emma Sulkowicz, Chantal Akerman, Cristian Mungiu, Lina Wertmüller, Harmony Korine, Catherine Breillat, Virginie Despentes, Coralie Trinh Thi, Paul Verhoeven, Jean-Luc Godard, Michael Haneke, Lars Von Trier, Park Chan- wook, David Fincher, and others.

CRD 791 (Special Topics in Communication, Rhetoric, and Digital Media), cross-listed with ENG 585 (Studies in Film).

ENG 588 - Fiction Writing Workshop (3 credits)

John J. Kessel

A writing workshop, exclusively, for the graduate students in the Master of Fine Arts program. Expect to produce (at least) three fiction submissions over the course of term.

ENG 589 - Poetry Writing Workshop (3 credits)

This course offers individual practice in the craft of poetry.  Each student will be asked to write a minimum of 150 lines of poetry in addition to several formal exercises such as translating a poem from a foreign language or writing a poem in an arbitrarily chosen form.  Class meetings will be devoted to student work as well as to essays on craft and discussions on published poetry. 589 is the graduate course intended for MFA students or others advanced enough in their poetry. Admission is by portfolio or by MFA poetry program status; anyone not in the MFA poetry program should talk to me about enrolling in the class.

ENG 590 - Studies In Creative Writing (3 credits)

Miriam E Orr

Memoir Writing Workshop

This is a course for students who wish to expand their writing repertoire by spending a semester immersed in memoir. At the beginning of the semester, we will read a broad array of classical and contemporary memoirs (excerpts or short pieces) for inspiration in style, content, and form. Writers to be covered will include Proust, Coetzee, Ondaatje, Dillard, Didion, Nabokov, Karr, Kingston, and Ndibe, among others less well known. In addition, each student will select (in consultation with the professor) a book-length memoir to report on to the class. Students will submit work in progress within the genre for in-class work-shops. One workshopped piece (essay/chapter/a series of flash memoirs) will be revised at the end of the semester. Approximately forty-five to fifty pages of new writing is expected. The course invites experimentation with structure and style as well as hybrid forms. Students should feel free to speak with Professor Orr about their interest (elaine@ncsu.edu).

ENG 592 - Special Topics in Film Styles and Genres (3 credits)

600-level Courses

ENG 624 - Teaching College Composition (3 credits)

Casie J Fedukovich

Preparation for Graduate Teaching Assistants teaching college composition. Introduction to pedagogical principles and practices. Practice in setting course goals, designing writing assignments to meet those goals, developing instructional activities to support assignments, and evaluating student writing. The course is scheduled as a 5-day workshop before classes begin, followed by weekly meetings and mentoring during the fall semester.

ENG 626 - Advanced Writing for Empirical Research (3 credits)

Ann M. Penrose


ENG 626 is a 3-credit-hour seminar and workshop for graduate students in empirical research fields who are working on grant proposals, theses and dissertations, papers for professional journals, conference proposals, or other significant research texts. The course provides intensive practice and feedback on writing, grounded in an introduction to rhetorical principles and analysis.

In consultation with the instructor, each participant develops a writing plan specifying 3-4 projects to be completed during the semester. Students analyze model texts from their respective fields, identifying the distinctive features of these texts and the writing practices common in each field. The expectations of readers, editors, and reviewers are discerned through analysis of RFPs, review criteria, editorial policies, style guides, and other supporting materials. Students review each others’ work and receive feedback on their writing from the instructor and from other members of the workshop. Course readings on writing theory and research provide a context for this feedback and practice. Based on the writing conventions and principles they discover, students prepare a final mini-lesson in which they analyze and illustrate a writing principle, convention, or practice appropriate for new members of their fields.

NOTE: ENG 626 is not designed to provide intensive language study for non-native speakers of English. Students interested in language instruction are advised to enroll in FLE 402 before taking ENG 626.

ENG 669 - Bibliography and Methodology (3 credits)

John D Morillo

Methods and the Profession

This course introduces you to the world of research; the current profession; your department and our research and writing expectations for you. Class lectures and discussions will include expanding domains of current research materials available in both print and electronic media; the variety of methods in current English studies. You will become familiar with some of the intellectual endeavors that make up modern research in the humanities, begin your own research, and refine the formal, professional oral and written presentation of your information.

ENG 676 - Master's Project in English (3 credits)

ENG 685 - Master's Supervised Teaching (3 credits)

ENG 688 - Non-Thesis Masters Continuous Registration - Half Time Registration (1 credit)

ENG 699 - Master's Thesis Preparation (1-9 credits)


700-level Courses

CRD 701 - History and Theory of Media Technologies (3 credits)

Andrew Robert Johnston

How have scholars grappled with the ways different technologies shape structures of knowledge, cultural practices, and aesthetic experiences? What theoretical and conceptual frameworks have been employed to write the histories of those mediations? How are technological landscapes shaped by social and cultural influences or by contemporaneous ideas about media? Furthermore, how do communication technologies from the past continue to exist and inform the ways we develop and use new ones?

This seminar will explore historical and theoretical approaches to these questions that have shaped research into media and communication technologies. We will move through different historical periods, from early writing practices to 19th century optical devices and communication networks, to recording and storage technologies like film and the phonograph, as well as more contemporary media like the floppy disk and IP network. This episodic and archaeological approach will allow us to examine the constellation of political, social, and technological operations that influence one another at those junctures. It will also allow us to critically examine theoretical perspectives on those formations that have influenced historiographical perspectives, from hermeneutics and marxism to the public sphere and materialism. Throughout the seminar we will explore these engagements with media landscapes of the past in order to better understand contemporary engagements with technologies as well as the aesthetic and cultural practices tied to them.

CRD 791 - Special Topics in Communication, Rhetoric, and Digital Media (3 credits)

This seminar will explore theories of animation and media in moving image culture. While animation is many times considered children’s entertainment, this course situates it as the technical coincidence of life and movement and examines its relation to the nature of different media and their embedded landscapes. Though cinema is one form we will study, it will be placed in a long history of moving images that we will interrogate along with the roles different techniques and technologies play in that history’s formation. The course will begin with an examination of nineteenth century optical devices like zoetropes and phenakistoscopes and then study handmade and industrial animation practices before focusing on digital animation, effects technology, and animation's relationship with video games. Particular attention will be paid to the role of movement in media aesthetics and the sense of vitality objects and figures take on in animation. How is life attributed to this illusion of movement? How is the threshold between the animate and inanimate used to define our understandings of media and mediation?

800-level Courses

CRD 809 - Colloquium in Communication, Rhetoric, and Digital Media (1 credit)

CRD 890 - Doctoral Preliminary Exam (1-9 credits)

CRD 893 - Doctoral Supervised Research (1-9 credits)

CRD 895 - Doctoral Dissertation Research (1-9 credits)


200-level Courses

HON 202 - Inquiry, Discovery, and Literature (3 credits)

HON 290 - Honors Special Topics - Humanities/US Diversity (3 credits)

300-level Courses

HON 313 - Reading Machines (3 credits)