The Department of Writing Studies and Rhetoric houses two distinct disciplines.
The discipline of Writing Studies develops students’ facility with written communication on multiple levels: first-year writing; a major in Writing Studies; a minor in Writing Studies; and a minor in Professional Writing. The department also administers Hofstra University’s Writing Proficiency Examination.
First-Year Writing Learning Goals and Objectives
The goals for these courses are consistent with the HCLAS General Education Goals and Learning Objectives for Written Communication:
Goal 1. Students will demonstrate proficiency in written communication.
1a. Apply principles of clarity and coherence to sentences and paragraphs.
1b. Write an effective expository or argumentative essay using appropriate style, structure, and voice.
Major/Minor in Writing Studies and Minor in Professional Writing
Goal 1. Students will critically analyze a variety of texts.
1a. Read texts critically with close attention to author's use of rhetorical strategies
1b. Respond to texts using appropriate academic written conventions
Goal 2. Students will respond effectively to a variety of rhetorical situations
2a. Compose effective expository essays responding to specific rhetorical situations
2b. Understand the role of writing in civic engagement
2c. Contribute to public discourse
Goal 3. Students will compose written texts using appropriate style, structure, and voice
3a. Express ideas with clarity and style
3b. Produce a clear, supple style adaptable to various rhetorical situations
3c. Use various sentence forms to modulate style
3d. Employ correct grammar
Goal 4. Students will revise written texts effectively
4a. Compose constructive responses to the written work of peers
4b. Apply local and global revision strategies appropriately
Goal 5. Students will understand how different genres and disciplines shape and disseminate knowledge
5a. Describe characteristics of academic discourse within various genres and disciplinary contexts
5b. Compose an academic essay consistent with specific disciplinary convention
Goal 6. Understand the history and theory of field of Writing Studies
6a. Demonstrate familiarity with theories of Writing Studies
6b. Understand contributions of major figures and significant texts in the field of Writing Studies
The discipline of Rhetoric develops students’ oral and nonverbal communication skills through a major in Rhetoric and Public Advocacy, with concentrations in Political Communication and Health Communication. Students can also minor in Rhetoric and Public Advocacy and/or Organizational Communication.
Major(s)/Minor(s) in Rhetoric and Public Advocacy and Minor in Organizational Communication
Goal 1. Students will develop increased sensitivity to ethical issues in communication.
1a. Demonstrate the ability to identify and evaluate ethical issues in communication situations.
1b. Propose strategies for responding appropriately to ethical problems.
Goal 2. Students will demonstrate the ability to think critically.
2a. Identify fallacies in argumentative discourses
2b. Interpret and evaluate the use of evidence in created and received messages
2c. Recognize different forms of reasoning in oral and written discourses
Goal 3. Students will be able to distinguish various approaches to the study of communication.
3a. Identify important issues and developments in the history of communication theory.
3b. Apply communication theories in the performance and/or analysis of
Goal 4. Students will attain competence in oral communication.
4a. Prepare and deliver an informative or persuasive speech on a variety of topics.
4b. Prepare and present an aesthetic performance.
4c. Evaluate the impact of a speech or a performance on various audiences.
4d. Integrate, focus, and enhance communication skills from everyday life for use in public performance.
Goal 5. Students will develop greater awareness of the social and cultural context in which communication occurs.
5a. Apply the transactional model in the analysis of communication to an actual or hypothetical communication situation.
5b. Enact the transactional model when communicating with others.
5c. Practice appropriate audience behavior.
5d. Analyze the interplay of cultural factors in communication situations.
5e. Explain the social and political implications of strategies used in historical and contemporary communication situations.