Texas Tech University

TCR Grad Courses, Spring 2015

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Online Courses (6:00 – ~9:00PM CST)

Course Instructor Section CRN Day
ENGL 5362 Rhetorical Analysis of Text (methods) Zdenek D21 32448 Wednesdays
ENGL 5366 Teaching Technical Communication (theory, applied theory) Cargile Cook D21 32474 Thursdays
ENGL 5377 Social Media (theory, applied theory) Lang D21 32555 Tuesdays
ENGL 5381 Global Technical Communication (theory, applied theory) Dragga D01 51691 Mondays
ENGL 5383 Grants and Proposals (applied theory) Eaton D01 51684 Mondays
ENGL 5384 Rhetoric of Scientific Literature (theory) Baake D01 52852 Wednesdays
ENGL 5389 Field Methods (methods) Moore D21 32580 Tuesdays
ENGL 5390 Writing for Publication (applied theory) Koerber D01 50212 Wednesdays

On-campus Courses

Course Instructor Section CRN Time Room
ENGL 5362 Rhetorical Analysis of Text (methods) Selzer King 001 32447 MW
ENGL 5366 Teaching Technical Communication (theory, applied theory) Cargile Cook 001 50774 R
ENGL 5376 Online Publishing (applied theory) Baehr 001 51682 TR
ENGL 5381 Global Technical Communication (theory, applied theory) Rice 001 51683 TR
ENGL 5384 Rhetoric of Scientific Literature Baake 001 51685 W
ENGL 5388 Usability Testing (applied theory, methods) Still 001 32578 TR 2:00-3:20 358


ENGL 5362.D21 (online): Rhetorical Analysis of Text (Dr. Zdenek)

ENGL 5362: Rhetorical Analysis provides a general introduction to the practice of analyzing written and visual texts. We will focus on a set of enduring issues or tensions in rhetorical criticism: the purpose of criticism, the relationship between method and object, the role of theory, the influence of the critic, emic and etic approaches, adapting methods rhetorically to serve new research contexts, combining methods, the relationship between discourse analysis and rhetorical analysis, and others.Because good criticism cannot be reduced to a cookie-cutter formula, we will downplay the idea of criticism as a step-by-step procedure and emphasize instead the enduring issues and questions that every professional critic must confront. By the end of the course, students should be able to work through these issues effectively as they develop insightful rhetorical analyses of texts.

In addition to working through these foundational questions (guided by essays in The Routledge Reader in Rhetorical Criticism), we will focus on three approaches to analyzing texts: critical discourse analysis (Language and Power), visual rhetorical analysis (Reading Images), and metaphor analysis (Metaphors We Live By).

Required books

  • Fairclough, Norman (2014) Language and Power. 3rd Edition. London: Routledge.
  • Kress, Gunther and Theo van Leeuwen (2007) Reading Images: The Grammar of Visual Design. 2nd Edition. London: Routledge.
  • Lakoff, George and Mark Johnson (2003) Metaphors We Live By. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
  • Ott, Brian & Greg Dickinson, eds (2012) The Routledge Reader in Rhetorical Criticism. London: Routledge.

ENGL 5366.D21 (online): Teaching Technical Communication (Dr. Cargile Cook)

English 5366: Teaching Technical and Professional Writing focuses on pedagogical theories regarding technical and professional writing with special attention to developing course objectives, syllabi, and teaching techniques. The course will introduce you to the theoretical and pedagogical knowledge you will need to teach technical writing successfully to students across the disciplines. It is designed to prepare you teach technical and professional writing; all prospective ENGL 2311 instructors are required to complete the course or its equivalent. Online and onsite students interested in teaching ENGL 2311 are encouraged to take this course, as we anticipate adding more online sections in the near future.

ENGL 5366 is both theoretical and practical. Central questions in the course will require you to consider critical issues related to technical communication pedagogy. From this foundation, it will progress to more practical concerns ranging from what to teach in an introductory technical writing class, how to teach this information, and why to teach it. Activities in the course will require you to write a teaching philosophy statement, develop course materials and teach a lesson, compare textbook treatments, observe and reflect on the work of master teachers, and grade and comment on student papers successfully.
Your work will be assessed through a variety of short assignments during the semester including reading responses, a lesson plan and oral presentation, a comparative textbook analysis, and a classroom observation report. The final project is a syllabus proposal for an undergraduate technical writing course. With this proposal in hand, you'll find yourself well prepared to teach your first introductory course in technical and professional writing.

The course requires two textbooks:

  • James M. Dubinsky's Teaching Technical Communication: Critical Issues for the Classroom (Bedford/St. Martin's, 2004). ISBN-10: 0-312-41204-5, and
  • Stuart Selber and Johndan Johnson Eilola's Solving Problems in Technical Communication (University of Chicago Press, 2013.) ISBN: 9780226924076.

ENGL 5377.D21 (online): Social Media (Dr. Lang)

David Carr's 2012 column, located at http://www.informationweek.com/how-social-media-changes-technical-communication/d/d-id/1102043, forecasts particular ways in which social media is changing the work of technical communicators. We'll examine several of his claims in this course, as well as focus on the theory, integration, management and use of social media in academic and workplace settings. Topics covered include assessing readiness, social listening, developing guidelines/policies, and determining return on investment (ROI). Additionally, we'll discuss strategic and tactical communication practices and risk management issues associated with social media. Students will engage in a variety of activities which will culminate in the development of a social media playbook for an academic or workplace entity.

ENGL 5381.D21 (online): Global Technical Communication (Dr. Dragga)

Learning Outcomes

In this course students will learn to:

  • recognize the nature, varieties, and challenges of intercultural discourse
  • identify various definitions and theories of intercultural discourse
  • analyze salient traits of discourse communities
  • cultivate appropriate research methodologies for the study of intercultural discourse
  • determine possible solutions to intercultural discourse challenges pertinent to technical communicators
  • develop abilities in intercultural discourse
  • explain the applicability of theories of intercultural discourse to the field of technical communication


20% = live and asynchronous class discussion

20% = interview and report

15% = presentation of a case

35% = profile of a culture: a review of literature

10% = final examination

Live and asynchronous class discussion

Compose a 500-word commentary (questions, insights, observations) on each of the assigned readings, posting it to the online discussion. After you have posted your commentary on the assigned reading, comment on the two postings immediately following yours, doing so by 5 p.m. (CT) on Wednesday. In your comments on the two postings, try to answer their questions, challenge or reinforce their thinking, and identify possible resources. In the following live class session we will address the questions raised in the asynchronous discussion. You are expected to be a vigorous contributor to this live conversation.

Slide presentation

Adapt information about a nation of your choice (but none in which English is the primary language) from the CIA World Factbook (www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/) as a 12-slide self-guided training presentation (including cover slide and final slide) for US technical communicators who will be working with English-speaking individuals from the nation in question. From the available information, choose wisely to offer a lucid and pertinent characterization of the nation in a manner that will be instructive and engaging for the communicators-in-training. Include with your slide presentation a 500-word memo explaining your rhetorical choices in creating this slide presentation (i.e., why you included/excluded the information you did, why you organized and designed the information in the way that you did).

Class presentation of a case

Find a case in the news related to intercultural communication and lead a 15-minute class discussion of this case. In leading the discussion, you might offer background information, analyze key documents in the case, direct us to pertinent resources, raise provocative questions, and/or identify various perspectives for viewing the case or achieving a satisfactory resolution.

Profile of a culture: a review of literature

Prepare a literature review of at least 5000 words that synthesizes and analyzes the existing research on the principles and practices of a specific culture (national, religious, professional, organizational, etc.) in order to 1) advise technical communicators about appropriate rhetorical tactics and strategies and 2) advise researchers regarding ambiguous findings and unanswered questions. That is, your review will summarize, categorize, and evaluate existing knowledge, apply this knowledge to intercultural communication practices, and identify directions for new research. In preparing your review, assume that your audience already recognizes the importance of intercultural communication, but might be insensitive to the implications of certain practices or behaviors or might be uninformed regarding pertinent theories and research methods.

Final examination

The final examination will ask you to demonstrate your understanding of the principles and practices of intercultural communication that you have studied in this course by addressing a specific case in the news. A satisfactory answer will discuss theories of intercultural communication, cite pertinent sources and offer a persuasive explanation


  • Ron Scollon, Suzanne Wong Scollon, and Rodney H. Jones, Intercultural Communication: A Discourse Approach, 3rd edition (Wiley-Blackwell, 2012).
  • Geert Hofstede, Gert Jan Hofstede, and Michael Minkov, Cultures and Organizations: Software of the Mind, 3rd edition (McGraw-Hill, 2010).
  • Arjun Appadurai, "Disjuncture and Difference in the Global Cultural Economy," Theory, Culture, & Society 7 (1990), 295-310.
  • Claudio Baraldi, "New Forms of Intercultural Communication in a Globalized World," International Communication Gazette 68 (2006): 53-69.
  • Additional readings supplied as pdfs

ENGL 5390.D21 (online): Writing for Publication (Dr. Koerber)

English 5390 (Writing for Publication) will address theoretical and practical issues related to scholarly publishing in the 21st century. A broad array of genres will be covered, including peer-reviewed articles, scholarly monographs (books), edited collections, webtexts, and book reviews. Students can expect to learn practical advice on how to get published, to receive detailed feedback from instructor and classmates, and to discuss recent trends in scholarly publishing across the disciplines.

Here's a link to the syllabus from a recent offering of the course: https://www.academia.edu/8336950/5390_Writing_for_Publication_syllabus_. Also feel free to contact the instructor Dr. Amy Koerber (amy.koerber@ttu.edu) if you have any questions.

ENGL 5362.001 (on campus): Rhetorical Analysis of Text (Dr. Selzer King)

This is a how-to class. Our core questions will be: how do rhetorical scholars select artifacts to study? And, how do they conduct rhetorical analysis?

To explore these questions, we will be experimenting, drafting, revising, expanding, refining, and generally muddling about in four rhetorical contexts, each of which will be the topic of its own unit: written and spoken text, visual culture, organizational discourse, and the texts of new media.

This is a strategically broad interpretation of what counts as a text. It engages with developments in contemporary rhetorical scholarship that have dramatically enlarged the scope of rhetoricians' interests. At the same time, tracing rhetorical analysis through these four contexts focuses us on the methodological nuances that different approaches to rhetorical analysis generate.

Will you craft one elegant, polished, and vivid rhetorical analysis of one artifact in this class? No, not really. Instead, we will invest our time together confidently failing forward to try different approaches to rhetorical scholarship and develop ourselves as curious and resourceful critics.

The course's main assignments reflect this approach to learning rhetorical analysis. In place of a term paper, students will write one mini-paper and will take one in-class exam for each of our four units. This means that by the end of the course students will have developed their own approaches to at least four modes of analysis. Further, these four mini-papers may function as valuable springboards for developing complete manuscripts for conference presentations and publication in the future.

The reading list will include the following books, as well as some selected articles available through the TTU library:

  • Brummett, B. (2010). Techniques of close reading. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
  • Hoffman, M. & Ford, D. (2010). Organizational rhetoric: Situations and strategies. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
  • Selections from Olson, L., Finnegan, C. & Hope, D. (2008). Visual rhetoric: A reader in communication and American culture. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
  • Warnick, B. & Heinman, D. S. (2012). Rhetoric online: The politics of new media. New York: Peter Lang.

Please contact Dr. Abigail Selzer King (AS.King@ttu.edu) with any questions about the course.

ENGL 5376.001 (on campus): Online Publishing (Dr. Baehr)

This graduate level course will provide an overview of the practical and theoretical aspects of designing effective online documents and Web sites. Specifically, our work will focus on process and planning, content development, site structure, navigation, visual design, interface design, usability, and accessibility. The course will cover practical skills with various software tools and scripting languages, including HTML, CSS, JavaScript and DHTML. Assignments will primarily focus on developing Web sites and online content using a variety of tools and development methods. And finally, the course will cover important theoretical issues in online publishing, including hypertext theory, digital literacy, content management, and technology theory.

ENGL 5381.001 (on campus): Global Technical Communication (Dr. Rice)

Global communication encompasses a wide range of communication problems in workplaces involving different religious, ethnic, educational, and social backgrounds. The course examines how people from different countries and cultures communicate and perceive the world. As cultures around the world are increasingly impacted by globalization, it is important that technical and professional communicators understand complexities of cultural communication. As such, this course provides an overview of how differing worldviews, values, attitudes, and behaviors can influence our work through reading such theorists as Hofstede, Appadurai, Baraldi, St.Amant, and others. The course will also engage with students at the English Language Services of Lubbock program.

ENGL 5384.001 (on campus and online): Rhetoric of Scientific Literature (Dr. Baake)

English 5384 is for anyone who has been curious about the language that scientists and writers of science use to develop and spread scientific knowledge. Technical communicators who make daily decisions about language will find this course useful. Others who would benefit include scholars of rhetoric, writing teachers, and scientists interested in unraveling the role of language in what they do.

Since Aristotle, a picture has emerged of science as a method of inquiry leading to certain objective truth about reality. On the other hand, rhetoric is seen as the art of arguing to secure judgment or a course of activity in an uncertain world. This split has continued through the 20th century, with science and language arts said to be occupying separate realms of understanding—a world that C.P. Snow described as "two cultures."

After World War II, scholars in the humanities attempted to reverse their marginal status, blurring the line between rhetoric and science. Taking its cue from contemporary work in philosophy, a new field of inquiry has arisen in English departments; it goes by the name "the rhetoric of science." In this course we will ask how science is rhetorical. The course will involve reading and responding to each other's short essays, class discussions and activities, and a final research project. The course will sharpen your analytical skills and ability to integrate theories of rhetoric and technical communication into your understanding of the scientific world.

We will begin by considering several key works in science and examining the ways in which language makes them work as scientific arguments. We will read passages from Darwin's Origin of Species, which he called "one long argument." Other likely books include Thomas Kuhn's The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Latour and Woolgar's Laboratory Life: The Construction of Scientific Facts, and the instructor's book, Metaphor and Knowledge: The Challenges of Writing Science. Articles may explore special topics such as the rhetorical issues involved in climate change science.