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SPAN 5301 - Writing for the Profession

Dr. Scarborough
4:30 – 5:50 MW

This course is required for students in the MA program and highly recommended for those in the PhD program who did not have a similar course during their MA studies. PhD students exempted from this course must have the approval of the Graduate Advisor and the Course Instructor. Please provide both a transcript and syllabus for any course you have already taken that may fulfill this requirement.

This course provides you with hands-on experience with all types of writing required in the academic profession of Hispanic language and literature. A major part of the course will be devoted to writing/polishing an academic paper—developing a thesis statement, compiling a working bibliography, review of research materials, outlining, and producing a finished paper ready for presentation at a conference. We will also work with basic concepts of literary analysis and vocabulary appropriate for academic writing in our discipline(s). The class will include a visit to the library and presentations to the class by CMLL professors in various fields of linguistics, Latin American literature, and Peninsular literature who will present research sources pertinent to their areas of expertise. We will learn how to identify conferences, write an abstract for a conference presentation, and basic principles of conference paper delivery. We will also work with very practical types of writing pertinent to the job market such as compiling a professional CV, writing a letter of application, and compiling other materials required for application (such as a teaching philosophy, sample syllabi, writing sample, etc.). We will learn how to identify job openings, read job announcements, and present yourself in the best light possible when applying for a job. We will practice writing in both Spanish and English since the latter will be important in communication related to the job market and for certain speaking and publishing venues. By the end of the class, each student will have prepared a mock-conference paper that he/she will present orally to the class for critique and feedback. Much of the class will consist of peer- and professor-review of writing samples. The goal of this course is to make the student an effective writer in his/her academic courses and in the larger profession as a whole.