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English 482: Writing Technologies
Spring 2010
Monday/Wednesday 3:30-4:45; Oregon Computer Lab


Imagine yourself writing. What do you see? Are you glued to your laptop? Writing by hand, perhaps with crumpled sheets of paper by your side? Are you sending a text message or posting an image to Facebook? Are you contemplating ideas long before you begin, or sitting behind your desk writing rapidly?

This course has two main components:

  1. The exploration of historical and theoretical accounts of how writing technologies have shaped and continue to shape what and how we compose.
  2. ”Writing” using a variety of technologies, some old and some new, in order to explore the possibilities afforded by and limitations of each.

By integrating practical “how-to” guidelines with broader theoretical issues of what it means to write (and read) with different media, we will work on developing effective strategies for creating multimedia presentations, podcasts, and dynamic web pages. Our class sessions will be a combination of class discussion and technology workshops. You will learn (and sometimes relearn) how to use a variety of technologies including Photoshop, Dreamweaver, PowerPoint, and Audacity. In addition, we will consider writing practices using other technologies such as Twitter, blogs, and more traditional course management programs. No prior experience is necessary.

Course readings are available on e-reserve or will be provided. You will need a USB flashdrive (4GB or larger).


Patrick W. Berry
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Office: English 338
Office Phone: 244-1391
Office Hours: Mondays, 11-12, or by appointment