ENGL101 Proficiency in Writing (3 semester hours)

Playing third base doesn’t come naturally to most folks; instead, it requires dedication to become good at it. In the same way, learning how to cook or developing a new app takes a lot of time and commitment. As with any new skill, perseverance and consistent daily practice lead to success. And so it is with writing. It’s not the mystery most people make it out to be; in fact, when you get right down to it, writing is pretty formulaic. It’s a series of skills that, once learned, require a commitment to practicing them. In other words, no one is born a great writer; instead, writers learn their craft through hard work. ENGL101 identifies the basic building blocks of writing, and as each new skill is learned, it is practiced in a safe and supportive environment. Come take the mystery out of writing in ENGL101: Proficiency in Writing.

ENGL110 Making Writing Relevant (3 semester hours)

Martin Luther King, Jr, said, “If you can’t fly, then run. If you can’t run, then walk. If you can’t walk, then crawl. But whatever you do, you have to KEEP MOVING.” Making Writing Relevant is a composition course that will definitely keep you moving. It is not merely a required course; it is the type of course you will want to take because it moves you onto the path to success. Over eight-weeks, we will help you learn the most important components of a successful writer-communicator. We will teach you how to research properly, knowing you will need this skill in every course you take here at APUS and also in interactions in your professional and personal life. We will teach you the formatting style you will use in your field. We will provide a supportive community to strengthen and encourage you, and by the end of this nearly-all-you-need-to-know-about-writing course, you will be able to fly.

ENGL112 Writing the College Essay (3 semester hours)

ENGL112 is an elective course designed to help students navigate the college level essay. The course will work through all aspects of the writing process, from choosing topics and preliminary research, to effectively revising and editing a final draft. The course will also review fundamentals of grammar, including punctuation, correct sentence structure, and parts of speech. This course will help those students with limited experience writing academic essays as well as those in need of a refresher, as they prepare for academic writing in other courses.

ENGL115 Argumentation and Rhetoric (3 semester hours)

Presidents winning elections, countries declaring war, spouses saving a marriage, students earning scholarships—all of these have something in common: argumentation. Mountains have been moved by masters of this craft. Just think of what such people as Martin Luther King, Jr., Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln achieved with the power of their words. There is, as Horace says, harmony in discord. We will explore that harmony and why Fredrick Douglass said there can be no progress without struggle. In this class, we will examine argument strategies and structures, interrogate assumptions, explore moral arguments with complex empirical questions, and analyze a variety of texts—popular culture, websites, advertisements, etc. Be prepared to work with a variety of evidence and opinions, cultures, counterclaims, evidentiary quality, and more, as we study and practice the art of argumentation. (Pre-requisite: ENGL101 or ENGL110)

ENGL125 Introduction to Creative Writing (3 semester hours)

Everyone has a story to tell. Our lives are filled with characters, are rich in texture, and have plots and storylines screaming to be told. Within each of us is a writer yearning to share that story. This course is designed to reach into you and pull that writer into the wonderful world of creative writing. You will learn how to build memorable characters, write incisive dialogue, and craft scenery that will make your readers want to buy a ticket to go there. If you have ever dreamt of being published or just want to flex your creative brain cells, this is the course for you. As one writer, Rodney White, so succinctly wrote: It takes nothing to dream and everything not to. Start your writing dreams today. Who knows where they might take you? (Pre-requisite: ENGL101 or ENGL110)

ENGL210 Introduction to Literature (3 semester hours)

Do you enjoy horror, romantic, adventure, or science fiction stories? Do you find song lyrics poetic? Have you ever fancied yourself a director, debater, or film critic? Many APUS students have been enthralled with ENGL210 – a special course that gives students access to many worlds, plots, themes, and voices. You will enter the deep catacombs of Italy, feel the thrill of detective work, relish in the beauty of lyrical poetry, and experience historical events through a first-person perspective. Also, in ENGL210, you will feel what it is like to be a critic, director, author, and audience member. Come join an entertaining way to gain insight into the human experience!

ENGL220 Technical Writing (3 semester hours)

ENGL220 introduces students to several different forms of technical writing while challenging them to engage regularly with the field at a scholarly level. Major concepts include collaboration, audience, document design, persuasion, the use of mobile technologies, and revision. In this course, readings are discovered by students in relevant technical writing journals in the AMU/APUS Trefry Library. As students hone their academic research skills, they are tasked with reporting back to their peers regarding the found articles that are relevant to that week’s writing objectives. Weekly class discussions are set up to simulate the technical writing work groups that are routinely found in companies and organizations, and should offer students a place to brainstorm and refine ideas for their larger assignments. Students will compose product proposals, instructions, labels, and a final web-based product manual. These assignments are designed to build on one another and culminate in the final project which can be included in a professional portfolio. (Prerequisites: ENGL101 or ENGL110)

ENGL221 Scientific Writing (3 semester hours)

Volcanoes. Biochemistry. Space studies. Whether pursuit of scientific knowledge is for personal interest or career progression, ENGL221 gives you the knowledge and skills to understand how and why scientific writing is different from other writing styles. As a launch pad to study rocket science or gather data to advocate for environmental protection policies, this course will provide the groundwork for presenting relevant data to all scientific disciplines. We will learn the basics and practice writing various sections of a scientific paper, including the abstract, introduction, materials and methods, results, discussion, conclusion, and references. ENGL221 will explore the unique structure, style, process, and documentation found in scientific writing. (Prerequisites: ENGL101 or ENGL110)

ENGL226 Effective Business Communication (3 semester hours)

In the modern workplace driven by technology, business is about relationships, and the written word connects us. This course teaches us how to build those relationships, efficiently and effectively, through composing common types of business messages. We will focus on writing emails, memos, and letters as well as social media content, presentations, and personal resumes and cover letters. Develop professional communication skills to articulate your ideas and purpose to diverse business audiences in clear, concise, correct, coherent, and credible ways. (Pre-requisite: ENGL101 or ENGL110)

ENGL235 Take on the World: An Introduction to Linguistics (3 semester hours)

Would you like to be a better writer? Are you interested in learning a second language? Have you ever wondered how some people can write great speeches or read a literary passage, easily understanding the deeper, hidden meanings? Were you aware that languages comprised of gestures or sounds all carry their own unique structure (for example, American Sign Language or Khoisan in Africa, consisting of series of clicks)? Did you know that even animals have a linguistic structure through their calls, and insects like bees and ants use body movement to structure their communication? This course is your key to unlocking these questions and some of the best secrets of the English language. (Pre-requisite: ENGL101 or ENGL110)

ENGL320 Freelance Writing (3 semester hours)

Have you ever wondered where magazines, newspapers, websites, and blogs find the content they deliver? In our current age of information, there is an increasing reliance on freelance writers to take on articles of interest and to fill the gaps in both online and print publications. ENGL320 will teach you how to successfully pitch an article or idea via an industry-standard query letter, write hooks and ledes that will capture an editor’s attention, and execute a variety of non-fiction articles for unique audiences. Additional topics include performing market research to determine the best home for your article, how to handle rejection gracefully, and how to fine-tune and polish your writing for publication. In ENGL320, you will learn practical skills that can be immediately applied to help advance your non-fiction writing career, so whether you’re ready to find an audience for your work or you just want to see what freelance writing is all about, this is the course for you! (Prerequisites: ENGL101 or ENGL110)

ENGL322 The Personal Essay (3 semester hours)

Whether we realize it or not, we encounter unique characters, settings, circumstances, and situations nearly every day in almost every way we interact in the world. These encounters are filled with meaning that can only be unlocked through deep processing of the events and an evaluation of their effects on our lives. In ENGL322, we learn how to process our encounters and interactions. In order to become compelling first-person narrators, then, we will study what forms a personal essay can take. We will read a wide variety of essays that will act as models of good writing and choose from among them those that resonate with us. Then, we will write our own personal accounts, using the components of voice, setting, structure, theme, and style. In this way, we will develop a richer understanding of the world in which we interact. (Pre-requisite: ENGL101 or ENGL110)

ENGL402 WordPlay: A Biography of the English Language (3 semester hours)

Mysterious ancient runes carved into a sword hilt, fierce Germanic kingdoms, and Viking marauders—the history of our language is rooted in artifacts of breathtaking power and the spirit of warriors who came to the British Isles. Civilized by the French courts, seeking adventure along the Silk Road, and embracing democracy in the Americas, English would eventually reign in the world’s corridors of power. Now, a sophisticated tool in the hands of wordcrafters, English is a language of strength, beauty, and caprice. Continue the adventure with us in ENGL402 WordPlay: A Biography of the English Language where we will explore English from its oral roots right up to its modern-day artistry. (Pre-requisite: ENGL101 or ENGL110)

ENGL420 Advanced Creative Writing (3 semester hours)

Writing is an expression of self. It is the process of putting yourself, your thoughts, your ideas, your deepest fantasies, and your greatest fears on paper. Nobody writes the way you do! And nobody can write what you choose to write in the same exact way! ENGL420 will focus on maximizing self-expression in writing; in other words, together, we will discover the voice inside longing to be heard, longing to sing out. We will hone your writing ability using tried and true techniques so that you can tell your stories in a way that is accessible to others. In ENGL420, we will explore fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, songwriting and screenwriting, and develop the tools and the methods necessary to know the differences among them. Bring your creative spirit, your imagination, and your willingness to risk to write the story of your life. (Pre-requisite: ENGL101 or ENGL110)

ENGL498 Senior Seminar in English (3 semester hours)

So the end is in sight … now it’s time to show us what you can do. In this course we will work through the process of creating a formal thesis in the form of a literary analysis essay that demonstrates the critical skills you have developed in your years as an English major. You will pick one literary work and dive deeply into it to engage the critical conversation surrounding it. The 10-15 page essay you produce will not only demonstrate your skills, but also serve as a formal writing sample for those of you intending to pursue graduate education. (Prerequisite: Completion of a minimum of 105 hours towards your program)