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Upper Division Writing Courses

For students who want additional writing instruction beyond the first-year sequence, and for students enrolled in the Certificate in Professional and Public Writing, the Writing and Rhetoric Program offers a wide range of courses. Our upper-division courses are grounded in rhetorical theory and prepare students in effective and context-specific rhetorical practice.

  • ENC 3204: Advanced Business Writing

    ENC 3204: Advanced Business Writing is an advanced writing course emphasizing workplace writing and professional communication appropriate to business professions. The course also explores the ways in which technology and media help shape business writing and communication.

    ENC 3204 students will be assessed on their ability to fulfill the following learning objectives:

    • Produce documents in common business writing genres such as proposals, reports, electronic communication, and other analytical documents;
    • Develop or enhance rhetorical awareness by studying and responding to the needs of multiple audiences, including international/global audiences;
    • Design documents that maximize effectiveness for the audience and purpose;
    • Enhance critical thinking by responding to case studies and/or contemporary business issues;
    • Develop and deliver effective multi-media presentations, while integrating visuals, such as technical data in the form of charts, graphs, and spreadsheets;
    • Conduct and incorporate primary and secondary research to support rhetorical aims;
    • Edit for professional tone, conciseness, clarity, and overall fluency, with grammar and usage appropriate to the rhetorical situation.
  • ENC 3213: Professional and Technical Writing

    ENC 3213: Professional and Technical Writing introduces students to the expectations of writing in the workplace and explores the ways in which technology and media help shape professional communication. Students will hone their writing skills and study audience analysis, persuasion strategies, ethics, and working collaboratively. While students will practice communicating using traditional business genres such as memos, employment correspondence, reports, and proposals, they will also develop skills in document design, effective use of graphics, and oral presentation. Assignment topics are based on the students’ major, career goals, and interests.

    By the end of ENC 3213, students will:

    • Produce documents in a variety of professional genres such as memos, proposals, and analytical reports;
    • Produce documents that respond to the needs of multiple audiences, including international/global audiences;
    • Develop document designs that maximize effectiveness for the audience and purpose;
    • Create effective multimedia presentations;
    • Conduct and incorporate primary and secondary research to support rhetorical aims;
    • Appropriately adapt tone, style, and content depending on audience, purpose and genre;
    • Write clearly and concisely, with grammar and usage appropriate to the rhetorical situation.
  • ENC 3311: Advanced Writing and Research

    ENC 3311: Advanced Writing and Research focuses on presenting and designing advanced research, critical response, and argumentation. Students report and develop their primary and secondary research in various formats, including argumentative and investigative essays, reports, and proposals. Students are encouraged to follow their research interests, to improve writing and research abilities, and to engage in critical inquiry. The course presents a series of small writing/research assignments (such as a proposal, a progress report, synthesis of previous research, field notes, summaries, etc.), leading into a longer researched essay of 12-15 pages.

    By the end of ENC 3311, students will:

    • Generate meaningful and relevant research questions;
      Design and follow an effective research plan;
    • Demonstrate advanced ability to evaluate and analyze internet, library database, and print sources;
    • Conduct primary research (as needed) based on observations and interviews;
    • Effectively incorporate primary and secondary research into their writing, using appropriate documentation;
    • Produce documents that present research clearly and effectively, to a variety of audiences, rhetorical purposes, and genres;
    • Continue to refine their writing process, learning to revise their work according to self-assessment and reader responses;
    • Improve their writing style (word choice, syntax, and sentence structure) beyond first-year levels.
  • ENC 3354: Writing as a Social Action

    In ENC 3354: Writing as a Social Action, students will pursue writing in academic and public settings. A significant part of the course will consist of students doing writing-related volunteer work in the community. As a class, we will also reflect, discuss, and write about issues of social responsibility in the 21st century. These activities can take a number of forms, from working as a writing mentor in a public school to preparing documents (such as brochures, newsletters, grant proposals, websites) for a local nonprofit agency. Through writing for both academic and public audiences, students will enhance their capacity to make positive changes in the world — through their education, through their careers, and through their civic participation.

    In ENC 3354, students will:

    • Hone specific writing skills, such as argumentation, researching, ordering, and presenting large amounts of information about a complex social issue;
    • Write for different audiences, and for different purposes;
      Practice considerate, deep reflection and higher-order thinking;
    • Engage in questioning and critical analysis;
    • Strengthen their interviewing skills, as the student explores what is expected of them at a given site;
    • Have multiple opportunities for the development and practice of good research skills.
  • ENC 3363: Writing About the Environment

    Because discussions about the environment frequently appear in a variety of sources at present (TV, newspapers, magazines, web sites, scholarly journals, film, and literature) the amount of "information" about environmentalism may at times seem overwhelming. ENC 3363: Writing About the Environment will help students analyze environmental issues through reading, writing, and research. Writing projects may include rhetorical analysis, argument, and multi-media texts geared towards specific audiences.

    In ENC 3363 students will:

    • Analyze a variety of sources in order to recognize solid argument, author credentials, bias, logical fallacies, etc.;
    • Evaluate various sources on how useful they might be to other members of the academic community;
    • Develop original arguments related to environment-related issues;
    • Hone writing, research, and publication skills;
    • Create effective multimedia presentations.
  • ENC 3371: Rhetorical Theory and Practice

    Rhetorical theory informs many of the decisions writers make on a daily basis. ENC 3371: Rhetorical Theory and Practice uses both ancient and contemporary rhetorical theories as a lens through which students can understand discourse practices at school, work, and in other local or technological spaces. Students will analyze their own rhetorical choices and those of professional and public writers.

    In ENC 3371 students will:

    • Demonstrate knowledge of leading rhetorical principles, ideas, and terminology;
    • Analyze rhetorical principles, ideas, and terminology in local discourse practice;
    • Evaluate the impact local issues have on professional and public discourse, including those related to technology;
    • Use rhetorical skills to write for various genres, meeting the needs of multiple audiences; and
    • Use rhetorical theory to inform research practice in public and professional writing.
  • ENC 3378: Writing Across Borders

    ENC 3378: Writing Across Borders prepares students to write for culturally and linguistically diverse audiences for various purposes. By investigating the similarities and differences among rhetorical traditions—especially Eastern and Western traditions—and by reading texts that manifest these traditions, students will learn how experienced writers navigate different rhetorical traditions as they develop their own ability to write for global audiences.

    This is a Global Learning Course.

    By the end of the semester, students will be able to:

    • Identify basic concepts of contrastive rhetoric and intercultural rhetoric;
    • Discuss how intercultural variables structure and correspond to rhetorical practices in written communication;
    • Identify and analyze different rhetorical patterns and strategies in writing across cultures;
    • Develop rhetorical strategies that meet the needs of world audiences and “target” language communities;
    • Assess the effectiveness of local and global written communication;
    • Develop written arguments on rhetoric and culture, supported by sound primary or secondary research;
    • Write in a style that is clear, concise and appropriate to different rhetorical situations.
  • ENC 3416: Writing and New Media

    ENC 3416: Writing and New Media focuses on composing for the web using established web-based technologies. Students will build on the skills they have developed in ENC 1101 and 1102 to produce polished, published nonfiction work native to new media formats. The primary media may include blogs, wikis, video compositions, or other developing formats. Students will also learn to support composing in these primary media with other kinds of networked communication.

    An advanced ENC course, the class assumes that students are familiar with writing in different genres and can address the needs of various audiences in their writing, understand how to support ideas with reasons and evidence, can use research to develop and explore ideas, can participate effectively in peer review, and understand how to analyze rhetorical strategies. Furthermore, it is assumed that students can produce clear, grammatically correct prose using standard spelling and punctuation. Instruction will focus on building on this foundation to develop advanced rhetorical skills appropriate for new media compositions.

    By the end of ENC 3416, students will:

    • Understand the ways media affect messages
    • Develop sensitivity to genres of Internet composition
    • Understand why and how networks are fundamental to Internet-based communication
    • Produce work that responds to the rhetorical demands of established (and growing) networked media. Students will learn:
      • How to develop appropriate arguments/ideas
      • Effective arrangement of ideas based on medium
      • Appropriate and effective style;
    • Evaluate reliability and effectiveness of new media compositions;
    • Use networked media for research; understand and use developing documentation conventions for that research; understand the current advantages, opportunities, and limits of research in print and web-based environments.


    Course materials vary, and much reading will be internet-based. Students may be assigned a print text as well, including Craig Baehr and Bob Schaller, Writing for the Internet: A Guide to Real Communication in Virtual Space (Santa Barbara: Greenwood, 2010).

  • ENC 4260: Advanced Professional Writing

    ENC 4260: Advanced Professional Writing builds upon the foundational practices and theories of professional writing established in ENC 3213. Students continue to develop as professional writers by applying the rhetorical skills learned in ENC 3213 to an expanded array of genres such as report, proposal, and grant writing; information design; blogging and web writing; technical editing; writing for professional journals; and writing end-user documentation.

    By the end of ENC 4260, students will:

    • Understand advanced professional genres such as long proposals, grants, journal articles, instructions/procedures, and digital formats such as blogs and wikis;
    • Write for audiences having varying levels of technical and subject matter expertise, including international/global audiences;
    • Develop document designs needed to repurpose content for multiple delivery modes (for example, by developing print, web, and presentations of the same report);
    • Appropriately adapt tone, style, and content to suit the needs of print and digital audiences
    • Conduct and incorporate primary and secondary research to support rhetorical aims, documenting according to the conventions of the genre;
    • Write clearly and concisely for print and digital genres.
  • ENC 4331: Writing, Rhetoric, and Community

    This is a course about writing and community. We will discuss and write about what civic role students can and should play in local, national, and global communities, and how they can use writing and rhetoric to advance both their professional goals and the goals of various communities that matter to them. Students will research and write about contemporary civic issues, explore different ways to move an audience to action, and analyze the effectiveness of real campaigns to remedy social problems. Students will also develop a real project to make an impact on an issue of their choice.

  • ENC 4356: Writing About the Exile Experience

    In this advanced writing course, students will analyze how exiles have used rhetorical strategies to accomplish specific goals and reach out to specific audiences practice using those strategies in their own writing. The class may also provide a service learning component which will allow students to hone their writing and research skills through a sequence of research, team and web-based writing projects.

    By the end of ENC 4356, students will:

    • Identify and analyze how writers use rhetorical principles and devices to accomplish their goals;
    • Compose a variety of texts to further their own goals and engage diverse audiences;
    • Read and respond critically to various texts, including those of their peers;
    • Develop effective writing strategies and processes for completion of complex writing projects;
    • Use reflective writing to gauge strengths, weaknesses, and growth as writers;
    • Understand and apply rhetorical strategies and persuasive appeals;
    • Gain knowledge of exile literature and the exilic condition.
  • ENC 4357: How to Go Public

    In the Information Age, one might say that “going public” has become easier than at any previous time in human history. Anyone with access to a computer and an internet connection can broadcast to the world. However, just because you can get your ideas into a public forum does not mean anyone will pay attention, especially when millions of other people are constantly publishing their own ideas. Consider, for example, how many videos on YouTube never receive more than a handful of views. To put it another way, publishing one’s message is not the same as circulating it. In light of these evolving affordances and constraints regarding what it means for people to “go public,” this course helps students learn how to increase the likelihood that their own message is not “silenced” amid the noise of so many competing messages. Students will explore the costs and benefits of using different genres, mediums, and rhetorical tools to reach different publics in different contexts for different purposes. They will also work to make some kind of intervention into the public sphere on an issue of their choice.​

  • ENC 4373: Alternative Writing and Rhetorics

    Alternative discourse mixes or meshes language, form, genre, and meaning in ways that are either not accepted or are unexpected in “standard” academic writing. In ENC 4373: Alternative Writing and Rhetorics, we will push against the boundaries of academic writing to determine how academic conventions can be manipulated and to what ends. In our reading, we will consider the ways writers inside and outside of the field of Rhetoric and Composition play with alternativity. We will also enter into the theoretical conversation surrounding alternativity, including recent scholarship on multilingual/translingual and multimodal approaches to writing. In our writing, our goal will be to test alternative approaches in our everyday writing practice at FIU to become better writers inside and outside of academia.

  • ENC 4930: Special Topics in Composition

    While rhetoric and writing remain the center of each section of ENC 4930: Special Topics in Composition, the focus of the course varies and it can be taken twice by students in the Professional and Public Writing Certificate. Recent special topics courses include Food Writing, Writing about the Exile Experience, Alternative Rhetorics, Legal Writing, and Women's Material Rhetorics.