Department of English, College of LAS, University of Illinois


English Course Descriptions: Spring 2012

Business and Technical Writing Courses

BTW 250 PRINCIPLES OF BUSINESS WRITING

This course teaches students to apply the principles of successful professional communication to business writing tasks.  Students will also practice editing and supervising the writing of others.  Assignments replicate typical business cases, scenarios, situations and cultures; they also deal with multiple audiences.  They range in complexity, length, formatting demands, and the manipulating of genre.  This course features an extended section on writing longer reports based on information collected, interpreted and compiled from several sources.  This course fulfills the campus Advanced Composition requirement.

BTW 261 TECHNICAL AND SCIENTIFIC COMMUNICATION

This course teaches students to apply the principles of successful professional communication to a range of realistic cases in technical communication.  It emphasizes flexible problem-solving skills and a clear style for communicating technical information to a range of readers.  Students will also practice editing and supervising the writing of others.  Assignments will include correspondence, instructions, proposals, and a technical report or similar project. This course fulfills the campus Advanced Composition requirement.

BTW 263 M WRITING IN THE DISCIPLINES AND THE PROFESSIONS, Larabee.  TUTH 9:30-10:45

TOPIC: Business 2.0: Social Media and Viral Marketing

In this course, we will examine the affordances of popular social media platforms like Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and YouTube and how they can be most effectively deployed at both a personal and an organizational level. How is Facebook generally used in business, and how can it be used in more interesting and effective ways? What is the Twitter-ness of Twitter, and how can we take advantage of it? How and when does viral marketing work?

        Tech savvy is not a prerequisite for this course, but be prepared to exercise both your analytical and your creative sides. Graded assignments will include social network use (blog posts, tweets, YouTube videos, etc.), short analytical reports, a class presentation, and a final group project in which you will design a social media campaign for a small business. This course fulfills the campus Advanced Composition requirement.

BTW 271 PERSUASIVE WRITING

This course teaches students to apply the principles of successful persuasive communication to the writing of advertising, marketing, and public relations documents.  Students will analyze, design, and write a range of persuasive documents, including media releases, print advertising, direct mail, promotional materials, and recommendation reports.  Students will also practice editing and supervising the writing of others.

BTW 290 INDEPENDENT STUDY

This independent study course is best suited to students who have already completed either 250, 271, or 272 and would like to do special work in a topic not covered in these courses.  Before attempting to enroll, students should identify a topic for study and talk with the instructor with whom they wish to work.  Students should consult the Director of B&TW if interested in an Independent Study.

402 1U/1G DESCRIPTIVE ENGLISH GRAMMAR, Prior.  MW 3:30-4:45

        same as ENGL 402

This course introduces approaches to studying and analyzing English language and language practices. We will consider traditional and modern systems for describing English grammar, how registers form and operate, relationships between talk and text, the interaction of visual and linguistic dimensions of texts, approaches to grammar instruction, some sociological dimensions of language use, and language practices in everyday environments. Course requirements include a language log, inquiry-oriented projects that will be either written up or presented orally; and in-class and final exams.

Texts:      Readings on e-reserve; Deborah Tannen, Talking Voices: Repetition, Dialogue, and Imagery in Conversational Discourse (3rd edition); and Anne Curzan and Michael Adams, How English Works: A Linguistic Introduction (2nd Edition).