Professors Deal, Hardy, Perry, K. Weese; Associate Professors Gleason, Horne, Nace, Varholy; Senior Lecturer Schooling; Assistant Professors Euteneuer, Rouse; Visiting Assistant Professor Florczyk.
Director: Nicholas D. Nace

RHETORIC 201. (3)  STRUCTURE OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE. This course is dedicated to understanding and taking advantage of the expressive resources of the English language through an in-depth study of the language itself. Students will be introduced to the historical and theoretical study of the English language by tracing the language’s development from its earliest unstable forms all the way to its current complicated status as a globally dominant force. In taking this long view of English, students will study individual word histories, processes of phonetic and semantic change, deep syntactic structures, dialect variety, rhetorical approaches to language instruction, dictionaries and lexicography, and efforts to regularize and fix grammar and usage. After gaining familiarity with Old, Middle, Early Modern, and/or Modern English, students will engage with debates that seek to understand the concept of grammar as it relates to race, ethnicity, class, imperialism, etiquette, propriety, identity, and/or globalization. Prerequisite: Rhetoric 101.

RHETORIC 202. (3) STYLE AND EDITING. Students in this course will learn to read, write, edit, and design with greater personality and precision. The course will focus on the choices that authors, editors, journalists, and graphic designers make in order to create verbal and visual works that are lively, clear, balanced, engaging, and responsive to their rhetorical occasion. Through a mix of background readings in composition studies and visual rhetoric, stylistic case studies, and workshop-style editing practice, students will expand upon their knowledge gained in Rhetoric 102 in order to further refine their own voice, style, and tonal range. While focusing on such aspects of style as rhythm, repetition, and word choice, students will engage in editing of their own and others’ work. Practice in copy editing will take place at the level of the word, phrase, and sentence, but it will also extend all the way to the processes of preparing a manuscript for publication and to matters of text layout and design. Prerequisite: Rhetoric 102.

RHETORIC 210. (3) PUBLIC SPEAKING. A good person is a good citizen, and a good citizen is an ethical, confident speaker. Rhetoric 210 introduces students to the art of public speaking and civil discourse. Emphasis is placed on crafting intelligent and compelling arguments that unite—rather than divide—an audience. Over the course of the semester students deliver informative and persuasive speeches that incorporate foundational rhetorical techniques, theories, and figures of speech. In addition, students critique their own work and the work of their peers. Students’ final grades in the course reflect both oral and written work. Prerequisite: none.

RHETORIC 240. (3) COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES FOR CONSULTING, COACHING, AND INSTRUCTING. This course is for students across the curriculum who have demonstrated a proficiency in introductory Rhetoric courses and have an interest in tutoring, consulting, teaching, mentoring, or coaching. The course focuses on theories of learning and education and the practices of teaching, coaching, and mentoring within the broader disciplines of Rhetoric, Writing, and Communication. This course provides a theoretical overview of the work that happens in educational exchanges from the perspective of both the student and the teacher. Students will consider theory, practice, and praxis around how, when, where, and why learning happens. In doing so, students will practice the act of teaching as well as refine their own skills in learning. Students will read, write about, and discuss texts; observe educators, coaches, or mentors in their practice; and write reflectively about these experiences through a variety of assignments. This course is required for students preparing to work as Peer Consultants in the Rhetoric Studio. Offered: Fall semester

RHETORIC 302. (3) CREATIVE NONFICTION. This course is a workshop/seminar that helps students refine their writing skills. Students also read and analyze works of nonfiction prose in order to discover how one writes most effectively about complex issues and how writers develop a personal style and voice. Prerequisite: Rhetoric 102.

RHETORIC 310. (3) ADVANCED PUBLIC SPEAKING AND SPEECHWRITING. This course, which builds on the foundations students acquire in Rhetoric 210, will develop advanced students’  ability to create and support sound propositions fact, value, and policy. Through a review of the five classical canons of oratory (invention, arrangement, style, memory, and delivery) and an examination of representative classical and contemporary speeches, students will learn to support and refute claims; to analyze the rhetorical situation and tailor their message accordingly through speechwriting techniques; to employ and evaluate scholarly evidence; to recognize and avoid fallacies in reasoning; to use appropriate, effective, coherent language; and to deliver arguments with conviction and eloquence. The presentation of an argument in a public forum is an integral component of the course. Prerequisite: Rhetoric 210.

RHETORIC 350. (3) DIGITAL MEDIA AND RHETORIC. This course looks at digital media as a way of communicating complex ideas, opinions, and arguments. Students will explore a variety of digital content creation tools and research their personal and professional impacts, uses, and procedures. For example, students may engage with video production and editing, podcast recording and editing, video game design and development, remote sensing and drone flying, or interactive website development. In this way, students will engage with both the technological aspects of content creation as well as the rhetorical aspects of creating meaning and influencing an audience. Prerequisite: Rhetoric 102.

RHETORIC 360. (3)  TOPICS IN RHETORICAL TRADITIONS. This course emphasizes the historical study of rhetorical principles and practices and examines the influence of particular historical periods, scholars/rhetors, methodologies, and/or movements on the discourse of the time. Prerequisite: Rhetoric 102.

RHETORIC 370. (3) RHETORIC AND CULTURE. This course investigates the ways in which definitions of our identity (including definitions tied to class, gender, race and ethnicity, religion, and technology, among others) acquire cultural significance through written and oral expression. Prerequisite: Rhetoric 102.

updated 8/8/23