Undergraduate ProgramsProfessional Writing Minor

Spring 2021 Courses

Spring 2021- Professional Writing Core Courses

Professional Writing: Digital Writing and Web Literacy

English Composition 130A / Prof. Juliano

Emphasis on writing for digital environments such as websites, blogs, newsletters, and social media. Common professional settings for these skills include journalism, political campaigns, Internet marketing, and corporate communication.

Professional Writing: Business and Entrepreneurship

English Composition 130B / Prof. Johnson

Emphasis on developing written, oral, and visual communication skills for entrepreneurial settings. Common tasks include pitching an idea, seeking funding for a startup, and promoting a product or service.

Spring 2021- Professional Writing Electives in English or English Composition

Public Readers, Public Writers: Writing About Books for a 21st-Century Audience

English 110C / Prof. Stephan

Students will learn the art and craft of the book review with a focus on the what, why, and how of literary criticism for a general (rather than for a specifically academic) 21st-century audience, looking at reviews of literary texts from the 18th century to the present, including a case study of a 20th-century novel (Nella Larsen’s Passing) and its contemporary critical reception. We’ll examine the recent developments in literary and cultural criticism that have led to the emergence of internet publications dedicated to those forms, including sites like Public Books and the Los Angeles Review of Books, as well as the ways in which national and global periodicals have successfully adapted their book review sections to reach a wider internet-based audience. Finally, we’ll look at the ways in which contemporary book reviews encompass other forms of culture, especially visual and digital culture. Students will compile a portfolio of criticism and other writing, as well as a critical analysis of the role of cultural criticism in historical and current contexts.

 

This course qualifies as an elective for the Professional Writing Minor. 

Specialized Writing: Law and Politics

English Composition 131A / Prof. Sussman

This course will increase students’ capacity to think analytically and write compelling legal documents. It will emphasize students’ capacity to read legal texts, organize ideas, create and refine prose, and improve editing skills to write (and argue) persuasively in a legal context. Writing genres may include law office memos, case studies, contracts, appellate briefs, advocacy letters, and pleadings.

Specialized Writing: Medicine and Public Health: Medical Narratives

English Composition 131C / Prof. Deuel

To be a good doctor, you must tell a good story. To be an excellent doctor, you might also want to understand another person’s not-so-perfect story. Life is messy. Communication is difficult. We struggle for words. Indeed, for any student intent on pursuing a career for the public good— whether it involves explaining new techniques, technologies, or solutions to the general public— it’s important to understand, recognize, and tell a good story. Some of the narratives we’ll study in this class will be hopeful, while others might strike you as dark. Many will revolve around illness but others will consider ethics, treatment, and understanding. An advanced writing course of this kind will also be a meditation on craft—a broad survey of the various techniques and practices of good storytelling, culminating in a final paper that requires students to write an original and extended “medical narrative” of their own. The intent is not only to create a group of stronger writers but to help a student entering any field to be able to explain and understand the world around them using sharp, electrifying, and powerful methods of storytelling.

Specialized Writing: Videogame Rhetoric and Design

English Composition 133 / Prof. Manojlovic

This special topics course examines video game narratives, aesthetics, and cultures to understand the expressive power of their design. Course assignments allow students to apply these analytical and rhetorical skills to writing their own video game scripts and industry – standard design documents, such as a proposal pitch outlining the characters, game world, game play mechanics, enemies, and monetization factors for your own video game.

Practical Writing and Editing

English Composition 136 / Prof. Hartenberger

Focus on developing grammatical precision and rhetorical range in professional writing combined with experience proofreading and editing one’s own writing as well as that of others.

Writing For Public Speaking

English Composition 137 / Prof. Johnson

Emphasis on careful preparation, rehearsal, and delivery of professional presentations including the design of effective visuals in a variety of multimodal forms. Student performances recorded for extensive self, peer, and instructor feedback.

Journalism for a Dark Time:
Learning From the (First) Federal Writers’ Project

Topics in Creative Writing
English Composition M138.6 / Prof. Kipen

Think your chance at a professional writing career is doomed? During the Depression, that’s what the best young writers in America feared, too. Then the U.S. government created the Federal Writers’ Project, catalyzing the careers (and friendships) of an entire generation of great American writers. Whether you’re an aspiring journalist or just a dedicated reader, this class — taught by a faculty member currently working at the city, county, state and national levels to revive the Federal Writers’ Project — will explore the art of good nonfiction writing as a way of repairing the country. Bring a notebook.

Creative Non-Fiction: Personal Writing

Topics in Creative Writing
English M138.1 / Prof. Allmendinger

Course Description:

 

In this seminar, students will focus on personal writing, including memoir, first-person journalism, autofiction, heteroglossia, and self-translation. Each week, the day before class, students will submit a 2-3 page piece, which we will discuss as a group the following day. In addition, students will be graded on attendance and class participation.

 

How to Apply:

 

Interested students should submit a 250-word personal statement about their writing goals, a list of writing and literature courses taken so far, and a 5-10 page (double spaced) sample of personal writing. Applicants should submit samples to: allmendi@humnet.ucla.edu and creativewriting@english.ucla.edu. Please include your 9-digit UID number and email address.

DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION: SUNDAY, MARCH 14, 2021.

In the subject line of your email, please include your last name and the course and section number in the subject line (example: “Vonnegut M138.1”). YOUR APPLICATION MUST BE SUBMITTED BY EMAIL AND MUST CONTAIN YOUR LAST NAME AND “M138.1” IN THE SUBJECT LINE. YOUR SUBMISSION MAY NOT BE READ IF YOU OMIT THIS TAG IN THE SUBJECT LINE.

 

Acceptance notifications:

Accepted applicants will be notified before the first class meeting. Unfortunately, due to the volume of submissions, the professor will be unable to provide feedback or suggestions on the students’ submitted work.

This course is an eligible non-fiction topic for Professional Writing Minor credit.

Writing About Food

Topics in Creative Writing
English M138.2 / Prof. Huneven

Course Description:

In writing about food, we write about so much more than what’s on a plate, including customs, cultures, family, culinary techniques, cooks, farmers and farming, the environment, restaurants, animal husbandry, markets (local to global), food laws and legislation, and globalization—for starters!

In this class, we will read some classic writing about food and then try our hands at personal essays, reported articles, profiles, recipe writing, and restaurant reviews.

How to Apply:

  1. In 100 words or less tell me why you are interested in writing about food.
  2. Please submit a very short narrative (NO MORE than 2 pages) about a memorable meal OR about a specific food (or dish) that is of some significance to you. I will be looking for how you tell a story based on food.
  3. Please list any writing classes you’ve taken in the past.
  4. Also, please tell me your class standing (sophomore, junior, etc.), include your 9-digit UID number and your email address. Submissions must be e-mailed to huneven@me.com and creativewriting@english.ucla.edu. When e-mailing submissions, please include your last name and the course topic/section number in the subject line:

(example: “Gold FOOD WRITING/M138.2”)

DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION: SUNDAY, MARCH 14, 2021

YOUR APPLICATION MUST BE SUBMITTED BY EMAIL AND MUST CONTAIN YOUR LAST NAME AND “FOOD WRITING/M138.2” IN THE SUBJECT LINE. YOUR SUBMISSION MAY NOT BE READ IF YOU OMIT THIS TAG IN THE SUBJECT LINE. Acceptance notifications:

Acceptance notifications:

Accepted applicants will be notified before the first class meeting. Unfortunately, due to the volume of submissions, the professor will be unable to provide feedback or suggestions on the students’ submitted work.

This course is an eligible non-fiction topic for Professional Writing Minor credit.

Experimental Life Writing

Topics in Creative Writing
English M138.4 / Prof. Calder

In this workshop, we will read and produce texts that re-conceive life writing in collective and more-than-human terms through the use of formal and theoretical experimentation. Texts under consideration will include works by ASCO, Billy Ray-Belcourt, Maurice Blanchot, CAConrad, Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari, Hervé Guibert, Bhanu Kapil, and Claudia Rankine. Participants will complete a series of writing experiments and workshop two of the works produced.

 

This topic is eligible for credit on the Professional Writing minor

 

How to Apply:

 

To be considered for admission, please send 5-10 pages of your writing and a few paragraphs about your interest in the workshop. Include your name, 9-digit UID number, and email address.

 

DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION:             SUNDAY, MARCH 14, 2021.

 

In the subject line of your email please include your last name and the course and section number in the subject line (example: “Mazer M138.4”).

 

YOUR APPLICATION MUST BE SUBMITTED BY EMAIL AND MUST CONTAIN YOUR LAST NAME AND “M138.4” IN THE SUBJECT LINE. YOUR SUBMISSION MAY NOT BE READ IF YOU OMIT THIS TAG IN THE SUBJECT LINE.

Acceptance notifications:

 

Accepted applicants will be notified before the first class meeting.

 

Unfortunately, due to the volume of submissions, the professor will be unable to provide feedback or suggestions on students’ submitted work.

Professional Writing Capstone

English/English Composition M185 / Prof. Cairns Watson

This course is intended to allow students from any major, and in any officially designated or personally constructed areas within the Professional Writing Minor, to begin and complete a significant capstone project. As of Fall 2020, the five formal and broadly defined specializations in the PWM are Digital Writing and Web Literacy, Business and Entrepreneurship, Science and Technology, Non-Profits and Public Engagement, and Arts and Entertainment. But the actual areas of specialization are broader, including literary options such as creative nonfiction, journalism, and memoir, and more targeted options that align with specific student interests (for example, the feminist rhetoric of medicine and climate change, modes of communication to policy makers, or news literacy).

 

Students are likely to have taken several PWM courses already, in which they have encountered the genres and rhetorical methods used within their specialization. Because of the breadth of experience and the varied interests that students are likely to have, this course will focus on helping students develop their own voices. While experimenting with and making decisions about voice in this course, students will engage with and produce a wide variety of forms, genres, and modes of writing and communicating. These include idea journals (aka 2 writing notebooks), exercises mimicking other voices, short columns on writing or writing advice, discussion forums, rhetorical analysis, capstone project proposals, annotated bibliographies or literature reviews, presentations, digital portfolios, and the capstone project itself.

Spring 2021- Professional Writing Extra-departmental Electives

Please consult the master list of eligible extra-departmental electives here, then refer to the UCLA Schedule of Classes for Spring 2021 availability.