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ERIC Number: EJ1184370
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 31
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0007-8034
Technical Writing and Literature in Dialogue in the Undergraduate English Classroom
Forsa, Catherine Q.
CEA Forum, v46 n2 p3-34 Sum-Fall 2017
Students often ask why technical writing and literature courses are in the same department. Many students also share that technical and professional communication (TPC) courses are new to them. They are more familiar with high school literature courses and first-year composition courses. And given these experiences, they are often unsure about why TPC is in an English department that studies Shakespeare or research essays. Often, students' attitudes toward studying English and writing changes quickly. They show new-found excitement as they discover connections between English courses, business or STEM courses, and internships. Many share that they would have benefitted from taking this type of course earlier in their studies. This experience led Catherine Forsa to consider an approach that emphasizes these connections earlier in students' academic careers with a first-year writing course (or equivalent early-career course) that studies TPC alongside literature. In the course described here, students read and write about medical documents, legal contracts, business letters, maps, and public reports in addition to poems and short stories. Students work to understand how and why texts are produced with special attention to genre and audience. The course has four units: (1) an introduction unit that sets up key concepts related to studying literature and TPC, (2) a literature-focused unit, (3) a TPC-focused unit, and (4) a capstone reflection unit that encourages students to consider the transfer of knowledge to other contexts.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A