Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Graduate Certificate in the Teaching of Writing

The Graduate Certificate in the Teaching of Writing builds on our faculty resources and answers pressing programmatic and student needs. Many of our graduate students seek positions as either full-time or adjunct faculty members at two- or four-year schools after graduation, and other students in our graduate programs currently work as secondary teachers. Both of these student populations would benefit from a credential marking them as specialists in the teaching of writing.

The Certificate consists of four courses. Students in other graduate programs and students-at-large will earn this certificate by completing these 12 credits. For students in our English graduate programs, we propose the following:

M.F.A. currently 42 hours M.F.A. + Graduate Certificate: 51 hours

Certificate Overview and Requirements
The English Department's Graduate Certificate in the Teaching of Writing is designed for those who are currently teaching in secondary schools or community colleges or who plan to teach at one of these levels, whether in literature, composition, creative writing or the humanities more generally. With this graduate certificate in the teaching of writing students will:
develop expertise in current issues in the teaching of writing
become strong and effective teachers in any writing-intensive course
earn a professional credential to complement other training
Students will work closely with faculty in English who are experts in the theory and the practice of effective writing pedagogy. Our faculty have presented and published widely in composition studies, and several have won awards for their teaching or published work.
The graduate certificate program is open to those with a baccalaureate degree as well as degree-seeking graduate students in English and related disciplines. All students (including those enrolled MFA programs) must apply to the certificate program. Applicants will be accepted into the program on review of the following:

transcript(s) from previous institutions (BA needed in English or related field)
statement of purpose (includes a description of any background or experience in teaching writing, an explanation of future goals, and a detailed description of what the student expects to gain from this certificate program)
The graduate certificate in the teaching of writing consists of four courses (12 semester hours). Courses need not be taken in a specific sequence; however, the internship course must be taken as the second or third course in the sequence.

Certificate Coursework
The Graduate Certificate in the Teaching of Writing consists of a four-course set that trains students in both the theory and the practice of composition pedagogy:

ENG 402: Topics in Literary and Critical Theory (existing course)
ENG 463: Topics in Language, Rhetoric, and Writing (new course)
ENG 467: Composition Theory (existing course)
ENG 485: Internship (existing course, with new Writing Center option)

In this four course sequence, participants will learn:

How to teach critical and analytical reading
How to teach the processes of writing
How to design an effective writing-intensive course
How to write effective assignments
How to respond to student writing
How to situate their classroom practice within the major theoretical developments of writing theory and pedagogy

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