Composition Notebook

Attribution: Jimmie Quick, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://www.flickr.com/photos/jimmiehomeschoolmom/5988283441>

ENGL2089: Intermediate Composition Honors

Honors section(s) only

Class-specific information is available on Catalyst. Visit our UHP Seminar page for directions to search for honors seminars on Catalyst.


This course invites students to reflect on their experience of how they learn to communicate effectively with others, whether in written form, orally, visually, or otherwise. In other words, how do we acquire literacy within any of the numerous systems of communication that exist around us?

Examining discourse communities -- groups of people who share particular communication practices -- allows us to consider a range of complex societal issues. For example, what do the ways that a group uses language tell us about the group's priorities, values, and beliefs? How does a group's discourse allow the members to define and maintain their identity? To what degree are the conflicts that members experience among themselves and with others related to the discourses that these groups employ? And how do literacy and illiteracy within certain discourses relate to power, privilege and social difference? In considering these questions, students will research discourse communities at a variety of levels -- locally, nationally, and, perhaps, even globally. We will pay special attention to the specific forms -- the genres -- through which communities express their literacy, describing the features of those genres and articulating what purposes they serve.

Honors sections will incorporate challenging readings regarding communication, discourse community, and genre, and will move at a more rapid pace than the typical 2089 offering. These sections will typically also offer opportunities for students to publish their writing or otherwise present their ideas publicly.

Important to Note

To take this course, you must be at least a sophomore and have earned a minimum grade C- in one of the following courses: 15ENGL102, 15ENGL102H, 15ENGL112, 28ENGL102, 32ENGL102, 34ENGL102, 34ENGL102H, ENGL1001, ENGL1002, ENGL1012, ENGL1902.

Past Offerings

This seminar is offered each fall, spring, and summer. Students must register for the specific sections designated for UHP students. To find these specific sections, visit our UHP Seminar page for directions to search for honors seminars on Catalyst.