Writing Certificates

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Courses

For required courses and degree plans, visit the official University Catalog. Below is a general overview of courses at Western Colorado University related to this area of study.

 CHEM 302 - Chemical Information Literacy and Communication (3 cred.)

In this course designed for chemistry majors, students learn about the organization of the chemical literature, important resources for navigating the literature of chemistry, and methods for selecting the most appropriate resources. Students will work on effective written, oral and graphical communication for chemistry and the sciences. Prerequisites: COM 202, CHEM113 and CHEM114.

 COM 241 - Media Writing (3 cred.)

An analysis and practice of the major forms of media writing, including print, broadcast and web-based publication, with an introduction to the ways that production varies the writing of each. Prerequisite: ENG 102 with a minimum grade of ÒC-.Ó

 COM 306 - Scriptwriting (3 cred.)

An introduction to the fundamental tools and skills required to craft a script for performance on stage or in film/video. Students are expected to produce play scripts and screenplays of varying lengths; they are also expected to read and respond to one another's writing. Some history of play writing and study of prevailing models of script writing are also included. Prerequisites: COM 205 or ENG 205, with a minimum grade of "C", or instructor permission.

 ENG 205 - Introduction to Creative Writing (3 cred.)

An introduction to the basic techniques of writing fiction and poetry. Models of each are studied, and students write and share pieces in both of these literary forms. Prerequisite: ENG 102 with a minimum grade of "C-".

 ENG 220 - Grammar and the English Language (3 cred.)

A study of English grammar focusing on standard English. Students are also introduced to the history of the English language. Prerequisite: ENG 102 with a minimum grade of "C-."

 ENG 230 - Environmental Literature (3 cred.)

A study of environmental literature. Students analyze the formal and thematic characteristics of the literature. To inform critical interpretations, students read relevant cultural and environmental theory. The theme or topic is announced each semester. Prerequisite: ENG 102 with a minimum grade of "C-."

 ENG 232 - Representing Race, Class, Gender, and Sexuality (3 cred.)

A focus on multicultural literature representing literal and metaphoric borders and crossings. Students examine how culture and ideology inform representations of the interconnections among race, class, and gender. Examples include literatures of migration, mixed identities, and racial and gender crossings. Prerequisite: ENG 102with a minimum grade of ÒC-.Ó

 ENG 237 - Women and Literature (3 cred.)

Critical study of selected topics, themes, or issues about women as they are interpreted in popular and classic literary works. Specific titles to be announced each time the course is offered. Prerequisite: ENG 102 with a minimum grade of "C-".

 ENG 238 - Literary Culture of the American West (3 cred.)

A study of traditional and nontraditional forms of Western literature. Specific titles to be announced each time the course is offered. Prerequisite: ENG 102 with a minimum grade of "C-."

 ENG 250 - Critical Approaches to Literature (3 cred.)

Students study a variety of genres as a basis of learning to write literary analysis. Focus is on an understanding of the varied perspectives from which a text can be approached, and how readers construct meaning based not only upon the text itself, but also the context in which it is studied. The critical approach as well as theme or topic may vary. Prerequisite: ENG 102 with a minimum grade of "C-."

 ENG 255 - Ancient World Literature (3 cred.)

A study of ancient texts and their relation to their own time, and to ours. Since an understanding of these writings is important for reading English literature, the focus of the course is on Western texts central to that tradition. However, students may also read selected works from non-Western cultures in order to give them a taste of the diversity of the ancient world. Works studied may include selections from the Bible (Hebrew Scriptures and New Testament), Homer's writings, poetry and theatre of Classical Greece, Chinese poetry from the Book of Songs, a selection from the Mahabharata, and Roman poetry, particularly Virgil and Ovid. Prerequisite: ENG 102 with a minimum grade of "C-."

 ENG 270 - Folklore (3 cred.)

A study of one or more areas of folklore with a focus on American folklore. Possible areas include folksong, folk tales and legends, customs and festivals, dance and drama, proverbs, traditions, beliefs, recipes, and games. Prerequisite: ENG 102 with a minimum grade of "C-."

 ENG 300 - Creative Writing: Fiction (3 cred.)

Models are studied, and students read and respond to one another's writing. This course may incorporate narrative theory. Prerequisite: ENG 205 with a minimum grade of "C."

 ENG 301 - Creative Writing: Poetry (3 cred.)

Instruction is given on the techniques and terminology of poetry writing. Models are studied, and students read and respond to one another's writing. Prerequisite: ENG 205 with a minimum grade of "C."

 ENG 302 - Technical Writing (3 cred.)

A study of technical writing demands and techniques, with an emphasis on the professional setting. This course covers technical communication by examining and practicing written documents and presentations for multiple rhetorical situations. Professional etiquette and communication for the workplace, client-customer communication, and user-oriented instructions are core to this curriculum. This course will emphasize collaboration, different technological mediums, presentation skills, technical accuracy, and critical thinking. A research project is required. Prerequisite: ENG 102 with a minimum grade of "C-"

 ENG 305 - Creative Writing: Non-Fiction (3 cred.)

Models are studied, and students read and respond to one another's writing. Prerequisite: ENG 205 with a minimum grade of "C."

 ENG 337 - Women Writers (3 cred.)

Analysis of the poetry, drama, or fiction of women writers. Emphasis is on 19th century, 20th century, or contemporary writers. Prerequisite: ENG 250 with a minimum grade of "C."

 ENG 370 - Myth and Culture (3 cred.)

An introduction to the role of myth in literature and in our contemporary world.Examining myth from various perspectives, including the archetypal, the course focuses upon myth as a means for understanding aspects of our society's cultures. Offered in alternate years. Prerequisite: ENG 250 with a minimum grade of "C."

 ENG 372 - British Literature: Medieval and Renaissance Texts (3 cred.)

A study of British Literature focusing on the major genres for the Anglo-Saxon, Middle English, and Renaissance periods, ending with the Metaphysical poets (800 A.D. to early 1600s). Prerequisite: ENG 250 with a minimum grade of "C."

 ENG 373 - British Literature: Milton through the Romantics (3 cred.)

A study of British works of poetry, fiction, drama, and essay produced from 1660 to1830. Prerequisite: ENG 250 with a minimum grade of "C."

 ENG 374 - British Literature: The Victorian to the Present Day (3 cred.)

A study of British works of poetry, fiction, drama, and essay produced from 1830 to the present day. Prerequisite: ENG 250 with a minimum grade of "C."

 ENG 384 - American Literature: Early to Civil War (3 cred.)

An exploration of authors and texts in American literature up to 1865. Prerequisite:ENG 250 with a minimum grade of "C."

 ENG 385 - American Literature: Civil War to Present (3 cred.)

An exploration of authors and texts in American literature from 1865 to the present. Prerequisite: ENG 250 with a minimum grade of "C."

 ENG 445 - Literary Magazine Submission and Production (3 cred.)

Focus alternates between literary magazine submissions and literary magazine production. Submission discussion includes aesthetics and techniques for revising and polishing work for submission. During the production focus students participate in the editorial production of a fiction anthology including acquisition and proofreading of manuscripts. Prerequisite: ENG 250 with a minimum grade of "C"; ENG 300, ENG 301, ENG 303, or ENG 305 with a minimum grade of "C"; or instructor permission.

 ENG 463 - Major British Authors: (3 cred.)

An in-depth study of selected, significant authors that approaches works from similar or cross-historical periods of British literature. Course may be repeated once for credit when taken with a different emphasis. Prerequisite: ENG 250 with a minimum grade of "C" and junior standing.

 ENG 464 - Major American Authors: (3 cred.)

An in-depth study of selected, significant authors that approaches works from similar or cross-historical periods of American literature. Course may be repeated once for credit when taken with a different emphasis. Prerequisite: ENG 250 with a minimum grade of "C."

 ENVS 200 - Writing the Environment (3 cred.)

Students develop communication skills through presentations and writing on a variety of environmental issues appropriate to a wide variety of audiences. Through environmental essays, writing for nonprofit websites, grant proposals, and other forms of environmental writing, students are introduced to a broad range of skills needed for effective communication. Focus throughout the course on the analysis of arguments and texts further develops students' analytical and communication skills. Prerequisite: ENVS 100; COM 202 is recommended.

 GEOL 302 - Geoscience Writing (2 cred.)

An introduction to the proper methods and accepted formats of written, graphical, and oral communication in the geological sciences. These skills are addressed through critical evaluation and discussion of the geological literature, by writing reports, review papers and research proposals, and giving oral presentations. Prerequisites: ENG 102 with a grade of "C-" or above and GEOL 201. Corequisite: GEOL 310.

Faculty & Staff

Faculty

Christine Jespersen, Ph.D. headshot
Professor of English
Phone: 970.943.2088
Office Location: Taylor Hall 218

Scholarships

Institutional Scholarships

Common Scholarships

Western offers approximately 70 common scholarships for which a wide variety of students are eligible (e.g., locals, veterans, transfers). Apply for any number of these common scholarships using Western’s Common Scholarship Application, which is due April 1. For more information, visit western.edu/scholarships.

Early Action Credit

If a student is accepted to Western by Nov. 1 and qualifies for a merit scholarship, the student will receive an additional $500 for the first year. Use our Net Price Calculator to determine whether you qualify for a merit scholarship.

Mountaineer Alumni Recommendation Scholarship

Western Colorado University alumni can nominate prospective students for a $500 scholarship ($250 per semester) for first year only. Application deadline is typically June 1. For more information, visit western.edu/mars.

Neighboring States Program

Students with a permanent address from one of the seven contiguous neighboring states to Colorado who have demonstrated financial need are automatically considered for a special $1,000 per year grant, totaling $4,000 over four years.

The Western Neighboring States program can be added to WUE, CP or merit scholarships. So, if you are a permanent resident of one of those seven states—and show financial need—you are eligible.

For more information about the Neighboring States program, visit Western’s Tuition Discount Programs Page.

Presidential Promise

The Presidential Promise is guaranteed to students who have received a scholarship through the Denver Scholarship Foundation (DSF) and/or GearUp—and are eligible for a Pell Grant.

For students who meet these criteria, Western will cover the cost of tuition and fees through the combination of federal, state and institutional aid. For more information on the Presidential promise, visit western.edu/scholarships.

Tuition Discount Programs

Western Undergraduate Exchange (WUE) or Central Plains (CP) tuition represents a substantial savings relative to normal, out-of-state tuition. Students eligible for the WUE or CP program will be charged 150% of Western’s total in-state tuition. For 2018-19, total in-state tuition was $8,934. WUE/CP tuition was $13,401. The WUE/CP discount is valued at $4,695.

For more information about the WUE and CP geography-based programs, visit Western’s Tuition Discount Programs Page.

Western Merit Scholarship

Immediately upon acceptance at Western, every student is considered for a merit scholarship worth between $2,500-$4,500 per year for in-state students and $8,000-$10,000 for out-of-state students. The amount is based on the student's GPA and ACT/SAT scores. Visit our Net Price Calculator at western.edu/cost to determine whether you qualify for a merit scholarship. 

For more information about merit scholarships at Western, visit western.edu/scholarships.

Get Involved

A college education is more than just taking courses. Meet new people, apply your skills and stretch beyond your comfort zone. Make your education an experience.

  • Contemporary Writer Series: Emerging and established literary artists visit campus and community venues.
     
  • Playwriting: Script plays for the Theatre program.
     
  • Sigma Tau Delta: Join the international English honor society.
     
  • Teaching Assistantships: Students help fellow students in challenging writing courses.
     
  • Wordhorde: This group hosts slam poetry and fiction at open-mic nights.
     
  • Writing Center: Work as a writing consultant for the greater campus community.

Western’s Writing Certificates build versatile skills in writing and analysis alongside more specialized forms of technical and professional writing. A complement to any major, a certificate signals expertise to employers and graduate programs in professional writing.

The 12-credit Writing Certificate offers foundational courses in English where students learn to write clear prose that conveys complex ideas. At the same time, elective courses give students a wide variety of options. The Writing Certificate is flexible enough that students may take courses in their areas of interest, whether that be creative, argumentative, media or scientific writing.

The 15-credit Professional Writing Certificate builds on the Writing Certificate by focusing more intensely on technical and professional writing, while developing a range of written rhetorical skills. The Professional Writing Certificate establishes that graduates write well for a range of occasions with an added emphasis on professional settings.

Learn More

Reach out for more information about the program.

Christine Jespersen
Professor of English
Phone: 
Office Location: 
Taylor Hall 218

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