Texas Tech University

TCR Grad Courses Summer 2008

Distance Courses June 1 - ~August 4 (section 270/271 or 370/371, 6:00 – 7:30 p.m.)

Course Title Instructor Date Sections
ENGL 5361 Theories of Invention in Rhetoric Koerber Wednesdays 270 & 370
ENGL 5369 Discourse and Technology (Computers & Writing) Kemp Thursdays 270 & 370
ENGL 5377 Theoretical Approaches to Technical Communication: Digital Research Methods Rickly Tuesdays 270 & 370
ENGL 5387 Publication Management Baehr Mondays 270 & 370
ENGL 5388 Usability Testing Methods (MATC online students only) Carter Wednesdays 271
ENGL 5390 Writing for Publication Kimball Tuesdays 270 & 370

the following courses are officially as summer courses, but will be available only to students who attend the 2-week May workshop.

ENGL 5375 Document Design Kimball 1:30-5:30 Daily 270 & 370
ENGL 5388 Usability Testing Still 1:30-5:30 Daily 270 & 370

the following course will take place during the 2-week May workshop and will be available for local students by permission.

ENGL 5365 Studies in Composition: New Media Rhetoric Rice 1:30-5:30 Daily 270 & 370 & 001

Note: All online students register for section 270 or 271 except non-Texas-resident online doctoral students, who register for section 370 or 371.


English 5361 is a survey of rhetorical theories from the 5th Century B.C.E. to the present. As a survey course that aims for broad historical coverage, we will study how rhetoric has been theorized and practiced in each of the following periods: Classical, Medieval, Renaissance, Enlightenment, Nineteenth-Century, and Modern/Postmodern. For more information, you can visit the course website and log in as a guest (no password needed) at http://www.amykoerber.com/moodle. I'm still building the site, so check back frequently for updates.

ENGL 5365: New Media Rhetoric


Technical communicators often see problems in their communities that require sophisticated plans to resolve. Such problems might include using multiple media types to explain material, to instruct, or to design feasibility analysis reports. English 5365: Media/Rhetoric is designed to introduce students to theoretical and practical complexities and practicalities of working with new media. We will discuss different formulations of what "new media" might mean while reading a variety of important and mind-opening works about media, and while putting our new knowledge into practice with group projects.

ENGL 5369 Computers and Writing will explore the pedagogy and technology of using computers for writing instruction and instruction in general. As personal computers, the Internet, and Web 2.0 have revealed more and more their value as support for a great variety of human communication and guided interaction, their application to formal learning has grown more extensive and diverse. The course will ask students to investigate both the history of computer use in instruction and the applications of current digital capabilities extending from web logs (blogs) and streaming video to electronic portfolios, web chat, wiki's, mobile devices, web-page writing, webcams, podcasts, video games, and email. Texts for the course will include Richard Lanham's The Electronic Word: Democracy, Technology, and the Arts; Jay David Bolter's Remediation: Understanding New Media; Ilana Snyder's collection, Silicon Literacies: Communication, Innovation and Education in the Electronic Age; and assorted readings online. Students will meet weekly online, write weekly reading/discussion responses in the class wiki, take a final exam, and produce a longer document (4000 word) engaging a particular interest. More can be found at http://ttopic.english.ttu.edu/5369

ENGL 5375 Document Design. This course will focus on the visual and physical aspects of documents, grounding practical document design skills in theories of visual perception, visual culture, and visual rhetoric. The primary goals of the course are to broaden your awareness of the theoretical constructs we can use to develop successful document designs and to give you further practice in document design.

Because this is a graduate course, the work required will be both theoretical and practical. On the theoretical side, you will read and discuss a variety of theoretical discussions about document design and related areas of study, such as visual rhetoric, visual literacy, cognitive psychology, color theory, visual ethics, and information graphic design. You will also write an essay analyzing the design of one or more documents. On the practical side, you will complete a series of exercises and a document design project for a real client during the two-week May Workshop.


Students should be able to fulfill the following outcomes through taking this course:

  1. Analyze document designs and their contexts through a variety of theoretical and practical viewpoints. Methods of assessment: Analytical essays, project situational analysis report.
  2. Design effective and creative visual designs in response to communication situations. Methods of assessment: Collaborative design project.
  3. Articulate reasons behind design decisions. Methods of assessment: Reflective report on design project.
  4. Manage design projects. Methods of assessment: Progress reports.

ENGL 5377 Digital Research Methods

In their introduction to Digital Writing Research, Heidi McKee and Danielle DeVoss state that:

Digital technologies and the people who use those technologies have changed the processes, products, and contexts for writing and the teaching of writing in dramatic ways—and, at this current cultural, historical, and intellectual moment, it is imperative that our research approaches, our methodologies, and our ethical understandings for researching adequately and appropriately address these changes in communication technologies.

As researchers, then, we need to familiarize ourselves with these emerging technologies, with appropriate research approaches, and with the ethical understanding of what we do when we interact with these communication technologies and the people who use/inhabit them. This class will serve as an introduction to these issues. Structured in three parts, the first part will examine digital spaces in which scholars are and might conduct research. The second portion of the class will examine technologies and methods appropriate for researching and analyzing research conducted in digital spaces. The final third of the class will be devoted to ethical issues surrounding the gathering, analyzing, and representation of research in digital spaces.

In his foreword to Digital Writing Research, Jim Porter says, "The field of Rhetoric/Composition has yet to acknowledge, truly acknowledge, that changes and developments in writing tools have changed writing, literacy, and communication practices in fundamental ways—that, given how writing happens in the 21st century, all composition research needs to be computers and writing research" (xii). It's likely, then, that what you learn in this class will relate to your broader research scope.

Required Texts: Digital Writing Research: Technologies, Methodologies, and Ethical Issues. Ed. McKee, Heidi A. and Daniel Nicole DeVoss. Hampton Press, Cresskill, NJ. 2007.

Electronic Coursepack

Downloadable trials (free) of Atlas TI and Nvivo

English 5387: Publications Management

This course covers strategies of process and knowledge management that support the document publication cycle in a professional setting. Specific work assignments involve content development for both print and online documents, including static and dynamic Web site content. It addresses key issues in publication project management, including process maturity, content models and units, project plan development, single-sourcing strategies, and methods of tracking and assessment. Specific tools and technologies covered in this course include XHTML, XML, CSS, XSLT, and working with content management systems. Your work for the course will involve a single-sourcing project and deliverables related to the management, scheduling, progress, and presentation of this project.

ENGL 5388 Usability Testing. This course attempts to balance the theory of usability testing with the practice of actually conducting usability tests. It aims for two distinct modes. The first involves the concepts of usability testing, and will require that you do the assigned readings and participate fully in class discussion. I will expect you to ask questions, to connect ideas from various readings, and to connect these theories to our activities in the actual usability lab. The second mode of this course involves spending time in the usability lab, plugging in wires, rolling tape, positioning microphones and cameras, digitizing and editing video, and generally becoming very familiar with the workings of gathering data.

The lab experiences will take place during the May seminar for online doctoral students. Any work will be completed in class or no later than June 1.

I use Moodle, a learning management system, to manage the course (http://www.brianstill.com/moodle). I'll send enrollment information to students in the weeks leading up to the beginning of class. After enrolling you'll see the course syllabus and all the units for the course with readings assigned to each one. You should read the articles and chapters found in the first three units before arriving. All readings for the course, aside from Carol Barnum's book on Usability Testing (you can purchase this online)can be accessed as .pdfs in the "Readings" section of the site, or by clicking on links to them listed under each unit.

ENGL 5390: Writing for Publication (Kimball)

This course will help students from a variety of disciplines prepare a manuscript for submission to a journal in their field. Students must have a suitable paper in draft by the beginning of the course, usually one prepared in a previous graduate course.

Outcomes: To complete the course successfully, students should be able to meet the following outcomes:

  1. Find and assess journals in a particular field for their suitability for publishing the student's own work
  2. Analyze articles in a journal to find out what strategies, approaches, and conventions work best for submitting to a target journal
  3. Revise and edit discipline-appropriate prose in the student's own writing
  4. Practice thoughtful and sensitive peer review of other writers' work
  5. Prepare a scholarly article for submission to a peer-reviewed journal

The course website will be a password-protected content management system. For access, contact Miles Kimball at miles.kimball@ttu.edu