Undergraduate Courses: Fall 2016

Fall 2016

ENG 205 | Business Writing

Sally Stanton
Sections 232 & 233 | Online

This fully online course is an excellent introduction to the much-in-demand writing skills essential for success in the workplace today, as well as a great refresher for professionals returning to update their skills or complete degrees. Individually, students will complete weekly online readings and quizzes on communication theory, writing strategies, and the practical application of both, receiving immediate feedback for greater comprehension.

A weekly online discussion forum involves students in small groups applying their knowledge as well as learning from one another. A required collaborative writing project also within these small groups allows students to practice the research, editing, and teamwork skills needed in the business field. Periodic writing assessments provide detailed feedback and further hands-on practice in relevant business writing tasks.

For more information, contact Sally Stanton at stanton@uwm.edu.

ENG 207 | Health Science Writing

Sonia Khatchadourian
Sections 1, 2, & 3

This course is particularly appropriate for students in the College of Health Sciences, the College of Nursing, Pre-Medicine, and the Professional Writing Program. As this course is intended for students from a variety of disciplines, it focuses on writing professionally and effectively within medical fields, rather than on writing tasks or formats particular to any one medical specialty.

Course Goals/Learning Objectives
The primary learning objectives of this course are to:

    • Address various purposes
    • Adapt to various audiences
    • Organize documents based on types of messages
    • Format professional documents
    • Construct sentences that are precise and concise
    • Use medical databases effectively to conduct research
    • Analyze and evaluate sources
    • Incorporate research into documents
    • Document sources
    • Convey written data orally

Types of Assignments
The types of assignments that students may be asked to write to achieve the learning objectives include: writing short professional documents (such as memos, letters, email) that provide instructions, policies and procedures, patient information brochures and a literature review; researching and writing a report based on a current health issue; and, giving an oral presentation based on the report.

Completion of the English Proficiency Requirement with a final grade of ‘C’ or better in a second-semester first-year Composition course or a score of 4 or higher on the English Placement Test.

For more information, contact Sonia Khatchadourian at soniak@uwm.edu.

ENG 210 | International English

Laura Ambrose
Section 1 | MW, 12:30 p.m. – 1:45 p.m.

In this course, we will discover that as the English language has made–and continues to make–its way around the globe, radical changes to local languages and cultures have occurred. At the same time, however, English itself has been modified, adapted, and expanded, sometimes in unfamiliar and unrecognizable ways.

We will start with the origins of English in the British Isles and move onto its introduction and development in North America, Australia, Africa, Asia, and Europe. We will study several principal examples in detail. In doing so, we will also investigate many issues that accompany language globalization; such as, language change, loss of language and identity, language policy and standardization, and teaching and learning English.

Most of the reading assignments will be provided electronically. (It is possible that a textbook will be added at a later date.)

This course is three credits in English and satisfies the GER requirements for Humanities.

For more information, contact Laura Ambrose at lambrose@uwm.edu.

ENG 212 | Grammar and Usage

Laura Ambrose
Section 1 | MW, 2:00 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.

Improve your understanding of grammar: Become a better writer.

Good writing does not happen at random. The best writers understand the structure of the language and know how to work it to their advantage. Like professional auto racers, not only do they know how to clutch and brake, they also know what is going on under the hood.

In English-212, you can learn to master the fundamental building blocks of English. In this course, we study the grammatical terms and concepts that are key to sentence structure. We also explore how this knowledge can be used to create and edit texts more effectively.

Many examples and practice exercises are provided to help you succeed in this course. The material is presented at a steady but accessible pace.

Optional Textbooks:

  • English Grammar: Understanding the Basics. (E.P. Altenberg & R.M. Vago. ISBN: 0-521-73216-6)
  • Grammar for Language Arts Teachers. (A. Calderonello, et al. ISBN: 0-205-32527-0)

For more information, contact Laura Ambrose at lambrose@uwm.edu.

ENG 215 | Introduction to English Studies

Andrew Kincaid
Section 3 | MW, 12:30 p.m. – 1:45 p.m.

In “Introduction to English Studies,” we will learn about literature via a number of different approaches: through understanding its social context, by learning about the author, by studying its formal language, and through reading language in order to decipher what lies beneath the initially apparent and obvious meaning. The focus of this course will be on close reading and critical analysis of texts. The aim is to show literature’s ability to shed light on some of the most important social questions of our time: how does progress get defined; what use is literature in today’s society; how can the full purpose and quality of our lives be enhanced; what limits our freedom?

Required Texts
You must obtain the same editions of the texts that I have ordered.

  • Alexie, Sherman. The Absolutely True Story of a Part-Time Indian (Hachett, 2009. ISBN: 978-0316013697)
  • Beckett, Samuel. Waiting for Godot (Perseus, 2011. ISBN: 978-080-214-442-3)
  • Defoe, Daniel. Robinson Crusoe (Dover, 1998. ISBN: 978-048-640-427-1)
  • Munro, Alice. Runaway (Random, 2004. ISBN: 978-140-007-791-5)
  • Cooper, Helene. The House at Sugar Beach: In Search of a Lost African Childhood (Simon and Schuster, 2009. ISBN: 978-0743266253).
  • Yeats, W. B. Collected Poems (Simon & Schuster, 1989. ISBN: 978-068-480-731-7)
  • Various critical articles, a selection of poetry, and a series of short stories will also be uploaded to D2L.

For more information, contact Andrew Kincaid at akincaid@uwm.edu.

ENG 215 | Introduction to English Studies

Gregory Jay
Section 6 | TR, 3:30 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.

English 215 is designed to be an introduction to university-level English studies. Students will get practice at (among other things): (1) textual explication, (2) the use of biographical and historical context, (3) comparison to film adaptations, (4) the application of various critical theories of interpretation, and (5) techniques for scholarly research. The syllabus includes works from a wide range of genres, writers, and literary movements. Our writing assignments will offer you a chance to work directly with texts to formulate your own unique claim or argument. The research assignments will allow you to become familiar with library resources to ]ind credible, peer-reviewed scholarly sources, to summarize and critique those sources, and to join in academic conversations with your own line of critical inquiry.


  • Reading and Writing About Literature: A Portable Guide by Janet E. Gardner
  • The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • Adrienne Rich’s Poetry and Prose: Norton Critical Edition
  • This is How You Lose Her by Junot Diaz
  • Kindred by Octavia E. Butler
  • Between the World and Me by Ta-Nheisi Coates
  • Othello by William Shakespeare

For more information, contact Gregory Jay at gjay@uwm.edu.

ENG 302 | Survey of English Literature 1500-1660

Gwynne Kennedy
Section 1 | MW, 9:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.

This course offers a general introduction to the literature and culture of early modern England, from Thomas More’s Utopia to John Milton’s Paradise Lost. We will read several plays, different types of prose (fiction, travel narratives, advice books, political works), and many forms of poetry. Among the readings will be the first English play by a woman, The Tragedy of Mariam by Elizabeth Cary.

The class provides important context for other courses in the early modern period, such as Shakespeare, as well as courses on later literature from England, Ireland, and North America. No prior familiarity with the writers or the times is required; secondary materials and criticism will help contextualize the readings.

Writing assignments are designed to enhance close reading skills and literary analysis and to refine students’ abilities to assess critical positions and incorporate them into an argument. There will be a number of short responses due throughout the semester, several short papers (2-3), and a final exam.

For more information, contact Gwynne Kennedy at gkennedy@uwm.edu.

ENG 306 | Survey of Irish Literature

José Lanters
Section 1 | TR, 11:00 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.

Irish literature is as rich and varied as the country’s history. Irishness is not an innate quality, but a cultural and political construct that is constantly re-invented. Beginning with the earliest poems and legends, and moving via the Anglo-Irish perspective of the eighteenth and nineteenth century, and the Irish Literary Renaissance of the early twentieth century, to a more urban and cosmopolitan contemporary perspective, this course offers an introduction to Irish writing and an exploration of several varieties of Irishness as they are expressed through the literature.

For more information, contact José Lanters at lanters@uwm.edu.

ENG 326 | The Development of the Novel

The Novel and the Sea
Andrew Kincaid
Section 1 | MW, 9:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.

From Homer’s Odyssey to Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, from The Love Boat to Star Trek, the ocean voyage has long served as a laboratory of social relations. Disparate populations (“the motley crew”) are thrown together at sea and forced into self-reliance and co-existence: nations and economies writ small.

Modern literature plays with the idea that landed identities – gender, nationality, individualism— are often best illuminated at sea. Melville’s Billy Budd, for example, with its background of hierarchy and mutiny, individualism and cruelty, exposes the emerging order of modern America. Conrad’s The Secret Sharer, with a ship’s captain and a stowaway mirroring each other, illustrates the doubts of many in Britain about aggressive imperialist behavior. Later, in the twentieth century, when the ship becomes a space ship, as in Stainislaw Lem’s Solaris, we understand that literature and society are always compelled to seek out the edges of known world and imagination. And the Internet, from surfing through Yahoo to Internet Explorer and the term “navigation,” employs oceanic language to chart this vast new territory.

In this class, we will read a number of classic maritime novels in order to trace the themes and styles of both modern fiction and literary theory.

Themes to be explored:

  • Isolation, existentialism and the self (alone at sea)
  • Society and labor (the crew)
  • Piracy and legality (from buccaneers to hackers)
  • Mutiny and social hierarchies
  • Adventure
  • Exploration and imperialism (from Homer’s Odyssey to interstellar travel)The language and insights of critical theory (from “the sublime” to “streams of consciousness”)

For more information, contact Andrew Kincaid at akincaid@uwm.edu.

ENG 327 | Development of the Short Story

William V. Van Pelt
Section 1 | R, 5:00 p.m. – 7:40 p.m.

This course engages major artistic, social, cultural, and intellectual events in the history of American short stories from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, covering the Romantic through the modern period in American Literature. We will study selected short stories from these periods as literary experiences, as historical markers of our evolving American ethos, and as cultural signifiers of what we are and who we might become. Students will develop interpretive and analytical skills by engaging the literary and rhetorical aspects of the short story, including: the social contexts that shape the authors’ representations of fictional events, the complexity of the characters and social values they struggle with in the stories, the audiences’ reception of these representations, the authors’ use of imagery and metaphor, and the impact these stories have on our contemporary understanding of American literature, history, and culture. The course requires substantial reading, regular in-class quizzes, group work, and written exams.

Prerequisite: Junior standing; satisfaction of GER English Composition competency req.
Required Book: Major American Short Stories, edited by A. Walton Litz, Third Edition, Oxford University Press, 1994.

For more information, contact William V. Van Pelt at vanpelt@uwm.edu. Please put “327 Short Story” in the subject line to help identify your email.

ENG 414 | Special Topics in Creative Writing

Texts for Performance
Brenda Cárdenas
Section 2 | W, 12:30 p.m. – 3:10 p.m.

In this course, we will compose texts intended for live performance, such as spoken word/performance poems, dramatic monologues, ten-minute plays, and experimental performance art works. Some will be solo pieces and others will be collaboratively written and choreographed. To achieve this purpose, we will complete various in-class writing and improvisatory performance exercises (including image theater and voice exercises), as well as read, view, and listen to published/produced pieces by professional performance poets, artists, and playwrights. We will also draft poems, scripts and “performance plans” as assignments and bring them to class to be critiqued by peers who will offer suggestions for how we might best craft our pieces to achieve the desired effect. Although no previous experience is required, you will be expected to actively participate and present your pieces to the class.

Required Texts:

  1. Garrison, Gary. A More Perfect 10: Writing and Producing the Ten-Minute Play. Newburyport: Focus Publishing/R. Pullins Company, 2009. $19.95. This text can be purchased through the UWM Virtual Bookstore.
  2. Print-outs of PDFs uploaded to our course D2L site: These will include the published texts of performance poems, monologues, and plays, as well as articles about performance art.
  3. Print-outs of student work uploaded to our course D2L site for workshop sessions.

Prerequisite: Junior Standing, satisfaction of GER English Composition competency requirement, English 233(P), 234(P), 235(P), or 236(P); or grad standing

For more information, contact Brenda Cárdenas at cardenab@uwm.edu.

ENG 415 | Fiction Workshop

Valerie Laken
Section 3 | R, 4:30 p.m. – 7:10 p.m.

Telling stories seems such a natural human activity that it’s easy to presume no one needs to take a class to learn how to do it. Yet when we read and listen to the stories of others, it’s clear that some stories move us much more than others. Some stories transport us and stick in our memories for months or years or lifetimes. That kind of story-telling is not just the result of talent or luck; it requires the careful use of a range of skills that writers call craft. In this class we will study fundamental craft skills such as characterization, plot, detail, and setting, and move toward the more advanced strategies of pacing, structure, voice and counterpoint. We will do experiments to generate and develop new stories, learn the best ways to give and use feedback, and learn the art of revision.

For more information, contact Valerie Laken at laken@uwm.edu.

ENG 426 | Professional and Technical Communications Research

Rachel Spilka
Section 1 | MW, 11:00 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.

Especially in this era of unprecedented growth in technology and proliferation of digital information products, research has become a critical, foundational skill for professional and technical communicators, who need ways to understand increasingly complex and “messy” workplace problems in addition to tools for evaluation the quality of documentation used to resolve them.

This hands-on project course will be held in an Active Learning Classroom (in the Northwest Quadrant), so that you can learn about practitioner writing research by doing it yourself in an informal work environment similar to what you might encounter in postgraduate jobs.

Throughout this course, some classes will begin with a brief overview, lecture, or discussion and then students will apply what we just discussed to workshop exercises or actual client work done right in the classroom or sometimes in other locations. Other classes will consist of student workshops or actual client work, only.

Overall, this course will introduce undergraduate students to how enjoyable and rewarding it can be to do research on documentation, to discover their own strengths and talents with this type of work, and to prepare to present themselves effectively as research specialists when on the job market. I will be emphasizing – throughout this course – the critical need to keep users in mind when doing research, along with the great value of striving for “quality,” which we will define in ways that center on what each work context, and its target audiences, consider most important. These are “ways of thinking” that will position each student well to “add value” to any work site lucky enough to hire that person.

I will be requiring students to purchase one research textbook; other readings, lectures, and resources will be available for free on our D2L course site.

For more information, contact Rachel Spilka at spilka@uwm.edu.

ENG 427 | Writing for Nonprofits

Sally Stanton
Section 201 | Online

This course explores the theory, practices, lore, and written communication used by professional writers in nonprofit or social sector workplaces, such as theatres, museums, libraries, social service agencies, art centers, humane societies, and other community organizations.

Students will:

  • Learn the purpose and defining characteristics of the nonprofit sector.
  • Understand the role of written messages in communicating social sector values and results.
  • Explore persuasive writing strategies for nonprofits (including case statements, donor and constituent messages, and proposal-related communications).
  • Adapt business communication theories and strategies to the nonprofit sector.
  • Apply sector-specific theory and approaches to producing annual reports, websites, social media, grant reports, and unique documents such as artist statements and resumes, exhibition catalogs, and advocacy materials.

Students will gain practical experience in researching, designing, and writing several documents commonly prepared by nonprofit professionals. Assignments will also require learning effective strategies for managing writing projects, audience analysis, and collaboration.

Note: Course includes a hands-on group service-learning project

For more information, contact Sally Stanton at stanton@uwm.edu.

ENG 435 | Professional and Technical Communications

Sonia Khatchadourian
Section 1 | MW 12:30 p.m. – 1:45 p.m.

This course is intended to provide a foundation for students to become effective communicators, particularly effective writers, in their future professions. We will focus on such concerns as: using language that is appropriate for professional communication, adapting to an audience, providing instructive, informative, and convincing content, gathering and citing reliable research data, correctly formatting various documents, illustrating data, and working effectively with others.

Course Goals/Learning Objectives

    • Writing for various purposes and audiences
    • Developing an effective and professional tone and style
    • Using language that is mechanically and grammatically correct
    • Conducting primary and secondary research for writing
    • Gaining proficiency in document design (content, organization, format, style, visuals)
    • Using appropriate elements for documentation
    • Understanding principles of usability
    • Collaborating effectively on projects
    • Analyzing and evaluating writing (one’s own and others’ work)
    • Preparing for a professional career

Types of Assignments
The types of assignments that students may be asked to write to achieve the learning objectives include: short professional documents (communication memo, report proposal, website analysis and evaluation memo, instruction manual, employment documents), a collaborative project, a formal research report, and an oral presentation based on the report.

The course prerequisites, according to the UWM Schedule of Classes, are: Junior Standing and English 205, 206, or English 207; or, consent of instructor.

For more information, contact Sonia Khatchadourian at soniak@uwm.edu.

ENG 443 | Grant Writing

Sally Stanton
Section 201 | Online

Grant Writing combines richly descriptive storytelling and subtle persuasion within technical limits established by potential charitable funders of these organizations. The practical skill of preparing clear, concise grant proposals is valued and desired by employers in higher education, engineering, science and medicine, human services, the arts, and cultural institutions.

In this course, students will learn the basics of researching and writing effective, persuasive grants, and will then develop and apply that knowledge in a writing internship with a community-based nonprofit organization. They will learn how to find and research the sources of charitable funding information available to nonprofit community organizations and how to effectively organize and present that information for writing grants. Students will learn about charitable foundations, professional grant writers, and the nonprofit sector to develop their knowledge of the nonprofit-funding world and successful grant writing. Students will leave this course with marketable skills and a greater understanding of the ways in which effective communication adds value to the workplace.

Note: Course requires an integrated, individualized service-learning experience in the community.

For more information, contact Sally Stanton at stanton@uwm.edu.

ENG 547 | Studies in Theory and Criticism

Feminist Literary Theory
Jane Gallop
Section 1 | MW, 12:30 p.m. – 1:45 p.m.

We will read seven books by feminist literary intellectuals that have had a wide impact. Our reading will continually have a double focus: what is being said about literature? what is 
being said about gender? Trying to think through the relation between literature and feminism, we will be trying to think the connections between aesthetics and politics, culture and society, story and life. Although we hope to consider many of the major theoretical issues at these crossings, we also will think about the stylistic strategies of the books. Our emphasis will continually be on attentive reading, careful analysis, and close writing.

For more information, contact Jane Gallop at jg@uwm.edu.

ENG 615 | Advanced Workshop in Fiction

Valerie Laken
Section 2 | W, 4:30 p.m. – 7:10 p.m.

In this course you will discover what it is like to live as a writer. You will do this by writing and reading every day, sharing your work and feedback with your peers, and doing the difficult work of revision. We will review the craft skills essential to fiction writing, such as characterization, plot, conflict, and setting, and will begin to develop a more sophisticated understanding of the ways in which successful stories can defy convention, manipulate expectations, and expand the art of fiction. We’ll study published stories that model strategies such as point and counterpoint, nonlinearity, adapted and experimental forms, rhyming action, and more. We’ll do experiments to help generate and develop stories and to refine our sense of what a story should do and be. Each student will write and workshop two new stories and carefully revise one of them. Other assignments include written peer critiques, reading assignments, and writing exercises.

For more information, contact Valerie Laken at laken@uwm.edu.