Summer 2013 Courses

Summer 2013 Courses

Summer 2013 Course Offerings

See past semesters' offerings in the Course Archive

A note about registration for graduate students: Unlike semesters during the school year, we will not distribute a survey for registration requests.  Thus, if you’re interested in registering for a summer class, please send the following information to

Your Name:
Your WIN#
Requested Course number:
Requested Course CRN:

We can register you beginning immediately.  Please send your requests no later than April 6, 2013.

Summer I Courses Summer II Courses
ENGL 3050: Introduction to Professional Writing ENGL 2220: Literatures and Cultures of the United States
ENGL 3210: American Literature II ENGL 2230: Afro-American Literature
ENGL 3690: Writing in the Elementary School ENGL 3060: Rhetoric, Writing, and Culture
ENGL 3830: Literature for the Intermediate Reader ENGL 3310: British Literature II
ENGL 4440: Studies in the Novel ENGL 3840: Adolescent Literature
ENGL 4790: Writing in the Secondary School ENGL 4800: Teaching Literature in the Secondary Schools
ENGL 5970: Language, Gender, and Culture ENGL 5380: Modern Literature
ENGL 5970: New Play Project  


Summer I


English 3050: Introduction to Professional Writing

CRN: 21204
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2:00—5:20; Brown 1045
Dr. Brian Gogan

Recently, 97% of over 300 Fortune 1000 executives rated the “ability to write clearly and persuasively” as “absolutely necessary” or “very important” for individuals embarking on careers. The message of these high-powered executives is clear: Writing effectively positions you for professional success.

As such, “English 3050: Introduction to Professional Writing” is a course designed to position you for success by developing your confidence and competency in the written communication that occurs in professional settings.

During this course you will:

  • Write in a variety of workplace genres including resumes, letters, emails, memos, reports, and proposals
  • Practice strategies for anticipating, identifying, and addressing the situated needs of audiences
  • Craft polished documents that demonstrate the fundamentals of reader-centered communication
  • Research the habits of writers in your discipline

This course is held in a computer lab with plenty of opportunity for personalized help with course projects. No textbooks are required for this course.


English 3210: American Literature II

CRN: 21930
Mondays and Wednesdays, 12:00—2:30; Brown 4048
Dr. Philip Egan

The summer section of American Literature II will use Volume Two of the Shorter Eighth edition of The Norton Anthology of American Literature .We will read a selection of major poets, fiction writers, and playwrights of American literature from the late 19th century to the present, including (but certainly not limited to): Mark Twain, Henry James, T. S. Eliot, Wallace Stevens, William Carlos Williams, Ernest Hemingway, William Faulkner, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Tennessee Williams. We'll fit in other authors as we can. Students will do lots of short writing, take quizzes, deliver an in-class report, write a longer paper toward the end, and take a final exam.


English 3690: Writing in the Elementary School

CRN: 21376
Mondays and Wednesdays, 6:00—9:20; Brown 3045
Ms. Christy McDowell

This course focuses on writing development of pre-school through middle school children, and on ways one can encourage and respond to student writing, assess writing growth, and use writing as a means of learning. This course also fosters a theoretical understanding of the writing process in part by writing in varied genres and forms, and emphasizes writing as an integral component of the entire curriculum.


English 3830: Literature for the Intermediate Reader

CRN: 21377
Mondays and Wednesdays, 6:00—9:30; Brown 1048
Professor Judith Rypma

English 3830 focuses on criticism of works for children in grades 4 through 8, with a focus on critical thinking and close literary analysis. Works read include a variety of novels, epics, myths, poems, biographies, etc. This a lecture and discussion class, and serves as a content course for both education and non-education majors. It also fits Distribution Area 2.

Texts will include Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Spinelli'sEggs, Nikki Grimes' Bronx Masquerade, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, The Devil's Arithmetic, The Giver, and Tuck Everlasting. A variety of handouts of myths, hero tales, and poems will also be provided.


English 4440: Studies in the Novel

CRN: 22197
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 4:00—7:20; Brown 3030
Dr. Mustafa Mirzeler

This course introduces students to the richness of literary traditions in various regions of the world. The course discusses the past and contemporary literary theories and enables students to develop research skills in the studies of novels. In addition, the course will enable students to assess the strengths and weaknesses of various theories and their relationships to the contemporary studies in the novels.


English 4790: Writing in the Secondary School

CRN: 20014
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 6:00—7:20; Brown 3037
Dr. Allen Webb

Learning to write can empower students to trust and value their own words and voice, to inquire more deeply into knowledge and ideas, to be creative, to better understand themselves and the world around them, and to speak out clearly and cogently on topics that matter.

Facilitating the power of writing will be the focus of this section of English 4790 Teaching Writing in the Secondary Schools. Aspiring and practicing teachers will write about their own experiences learning to write, learn about leading writing workshops, effective ways to improve student writing, and help make writing meaningful. We'll think about how to help secondary students meet Michigan and national standards.
We’ll focus, too, on writing in the digital age and using new tools for composing, collaboration, revision, and publication, and draw on research in teaching of writing.
The work we do will help you develop your pedagogical content knowledge in English education.

Class will be held in a wireless, laptop classroom in Brown Hall specifically designed for English education courses. This room will allow us to integrate technology into language arts teaching in a "classroom of the future." Our class will be organized by our on-line syllabus that also serves as an electronic, hyperlinked, textbook. Students will work extensively with new digital writing platforms.

Technological change is reshaping the world our students will be living in. Course discussions will be significantly extended in the class on-line discussion forum on the English Companion Ning, a remarkable resource with, at the time our course begins, over 20,000 English teacher members.

As the capstone experience for English Education majors, this course entails an exciting variety of professional activities and responsibilities. You should join NCTE and MRA and read regularly the English Journal or Voices from the Middle.


English 5970: Studies in English - Language, Gender, and Culture

CRN: 20707
Mondays and Wednesdays, 6:30—9:00; Brown 2045
Dr. Lisa Minnick
Fulfills: MA-level elective;PhD requirement for English Language or Linguistics Course

Language, Gender, and Culture explores internal (linguistic) mechanisms in relation to external (social) structures, the result of which interaction is our language, a complex human tool constructed as much by our most deeply held beliefs and attitudes as to meet our communicative needs.

In English 5970, we will consider the social and academic contexts that gave rise to ‘language and gender’ as an area of inquiry and analyze its theoretical and methodological developments from early research to the present. We will also consider the influences of culture, power, and ideology on language and on the complex ways that speakers deploy the linguistic options available to them in the construction and performance of identity. Additionally, control of and authority over language in its public and private uses will be explored, along with the tradition of linguistic rebellion in response to prevailing attitudes and ideologies about gender, sexuality, and culture, as well as about language itself.

In addition to learning about theories and practices of research into language, culture, gender, and sexuality, students will also learn general linguistic terms, concepts, theories, and methods. No previous coursework in linguistics is required (although it is welcome), but curiosity and interest are essential.


English 5970: Studies in English - New Play Project

CRN: 21703
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:00—11:30 a.m.; Gilmore Theater Complex 2015
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 7:00—9:00 p.m.; Gilmore Theater Complex 2015
Dr. Steve Feffer
Fulfills: MFA or PhD CW workshop requirement

The New Play Project's information page has been updated for Summer 2013.

Summer II


English 2220: Literatures and Cultures of the United States

CRN: 31661
Mondays and Wednesdays, 4:00—7:20; Brown 1048
Dr. Casey McKittrick

The course is designed to provide alternative views and narratives of American literary and cultural history. We will address the issue of literary canon formation, with an eye toward authors and artists who write from outside the mainstream (heterosexual, white male East Coast Protestant) canonical literary tradition in order to get a fuller view of how American writing and cultural production has evolved. Literary texts may include, but are not limited to, The Awakening by Kate Chopin, The Bread Givers by Anzia Yeszierska, For Colored Girls by Ntozake Shange, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz, The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven by Sherman Alexie, Two or Three Things I Know For Sure by Dorothy Allison, and Angels in America by Tony Kushner. We will be watching some excerpts from Big Love and True Blood, and we will also be watching the film Latter Days and some episodes from the miniseries Tales of the City. In addition, we may watch part of a documentary on blues, rock & roll, and the Civil Rights movement. Students will produce a 2-page journal entry for each text we do. There will also be reading quizzes, one 10 minute presentation on a topic of your choice, and a final 5-7 page paper. There are no exams.


English 2230: African-American Literature

CRN: 31683
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 12:00—3:20; Brown 4037
Dr. John Saillant

This course surveys African-American literature from the era of the slave trade to the present. Written work includes three essays.


English 3060: Rhetoric, Writing, and Culture

CRN: 31659
Mondays and Wednesdays, 3:00—5:30; Brown 3045
Dr. Brian Gogan

Rhetoric is the study of the various signs and symbols that make human communication possible. In this course, we’ll investigate rhetoric’s relationship to communication by practicing several different methods of rhetorical criticism. We’ll use these methods of criticism to see how rhetoric gives significance, meaning, and value to day-to-day practices in consumer, corporate, organizational, and popular culture. We’ll consider what particular methods give rhetoric and, conversely, what rhetoric gives particular methods. In the process, you’ll better understand and appreciate human communication in a way that provides you with knowledge about your own communication practices. 

During this course, you will:

  • Define rhetoric in multiple ways, according to multiple critical perspectives
  • Apply methods of rhetorical criticism to a variety of texts, objects, and events
  • Conduct research on rhetoric in a variety of contexts and cultures
  • Synthesize and evaluate your research activities in writing


English 3310: British Literature II

CRN: 31660
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 12:00—2:30; Brown 4045
Dr. Christopher Nagle

This course provides an intensive introductory survey of British literature from the past two centuries. This era can be divided into three distinct periods: Romantic, Victorian, and Modern. Writers of the Romantic period (roughly 1780 to 1830) were inspired by dramatic social change in the American and French revolutions and initially sought to revolutionize literature by adopting what poet William Wordsworth called the "language really used by men."

The Victorian era, named for the Queen who ruled Britain from 1837 to 1901, was also revolutionary, even though it has become associated with tradition and repression. Advances in science, industry, and trade made Victorian Britain the most powerful nation on earth, but writers and artists also lamented its staggering poverty, gender inequality, declining morals, and increasing sense of uncertainty. This uncertainty came to a head in the twentieth century with a host of changes—the rise of cities, shifts in gender dynamics, the psychological devastation of world war, and the steady decline of Britain‘s empire. Major writers from each of these eras will be covered and the contexts of their writing explored, so that students emerge from this course with a strong sense of the most important literary and cultural influences in the British tradition during these centuries.


English 3840: Adolescent Literature

CRN: 31211
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 6:30—9:00; Brown 1048
Professor Judith Rypma

This course examines literature for 9th- to 12th-grade readers. Thus we will read young adult novels, poems, and one play. Emphasis will be on culturally, socially, and globally diverse literature, with readings including the following: Lovely Bones, True Story of Hansel and Gretel, Forgotten Fire, Macbeth, Crank, Bottled Up, Catherine the Great (Royal Diaries series), The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian, etc. Much of your grade will be dependent on keeping up with the reading, thinking critically about the texts, and expressing your analytical skills both verbally and on exams. All students will be required to attend at least one outside event.


English 4800: Teaching Literature in Secondary Schools

CRN: 30066
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 6:00—9:20; Brown 3037
Dr. Karen Vocke

English 4800 is a capstone course which considers fundamental questions of why and how to teach literature; we will also focus on recent waves of reform, reader response, cultural studies, and the impact of the internet. Using both reader response and cultural studies approaches, we will examine the ways that culture and literature intersect to inform--and transform--our practice. We will use a thematic approach to explore a variety of themes in a problem-posing, student-led format.

Of special emphasis in this section of 4800 are the following: examining the reading process—how effective readers engage texts and use strategies to make the most of their reading experiences; understanding the history, current state, and influence of the English literary canon; examining issues of censorship, and designing curriculum and lessons sensitive to students of diverse abilities and backgrounds.

A variety of technologies are examined in this class: digital storytelling, website creation, wikis, webquests, and podcasting, to name a few. Guest speakers will include area teachers and administrators.

For additional information, contact Dr. Karen Vocke.


English 5380: Modern Literature

CRN: 31866
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 4:00—6:30; Brown 2045
Dr. Todd Kuchta
Fulfills: Ph.D. distribution requirement for Modern British literature; M.A.-level elective

Literature of the early twentieth century is usually dubbed “modern” or "modernist," adjectives that have come to mean brashly experimental, highly self-reflexive, and notoriously complex. This course will examine the range of stylistic innovations heralded by modern writers, considering how their writing both reflects and responds to the dramatic cultural and historical changes of the early twentieth century. While we will focus on writers from the British canon, they represent a broad range of contexts. As critic Terry Eagleton once put it, “the seven most significant writers of twentieth-century English literature have been a Pole, three Americans, two Irishmen and an Englishman.” We will focus on most of these authors—Polish-born Joseph Conrad, American expat T.S. Eliot, Irishmen James Joyce and W.B. Yeats, and Englishman E.M. Forster. We will also consider works by Rebecca West, Virginia Woolf, and Samuel Beckett. Students will write regular brief responses, 1-2 essays, take a final exam, and be expected to participate actively and regularly.



Department of English
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Western Michigan University
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