Course Description

Course Description

In this course, we will think about place and knowledge ecologically—how multiple factors comprise and shape places. Approaching critical inquiry ecologically will help us think about how knowledge about place is created, our roles in that process, how we are affected by place, and how we are unavoidably interconnected with other people and places. We will consider several questions: How can we better recognize the ways that places are shaped—the ways discourses shape the world and vice versa? What roles do we have in the shaping of places, and how are we shaped by them? How do local actions and decisions affect other places and vice versa? As we work through these questions, we will gain a deeper comprehension of local places like UK and Lexington and our own relationships to them.

Overview and Goals

Composition and Communication I is a course in speaking and writing emphasizing critical inquiry and research.  Throughout the course, I will encourage you to explore your place in the broader community and take a stance on issues of public concern—that is, to begin to view yourself as an engaged citizen.  You will engage in reflective thinking and analysis, conduct primary research in the community and secondary research using Library resources, and learn how to write and speak effectively about a local issue not only for your classmates but also for audiences beyond the classroom.  A significant component of the class will be learning to use visuals and online resources to enhance writing and oral presentations.  Over the course of the semester, class members can expect to work independently, with a partner, or with a small group of classmates to investigate, share findings, and compose presentations of their research, as well as to practice and evaluate interpersonal and team dynamics in action.

Student Learning Outcomes

By the end of the semester, students will be able to

  • compose written texts and deliver oral presentations that represent a relevant and informed point of view appropriate for its audience, purpose, and occasion in an environment that reinforces the recursive and generative nature of the composition and delivery rehearsal processes.
  • demonstrate an awareness of strategies that speakers and writers use in different communicative situations and media, and in large and small groups; learn to analyze and use visuals effectively to augment their oral presentations; to employ invention techniques for analyzing and developing arguments; to recognize and address differing genre and discourse conventions; and to document their sources appropriately.
  • find, analyze, evaluate, and properly cite pertinent primary and secondary sources, using relevant discovery tools, as part of the process of speech preparation and writing process.
  • develop flexible and effective strategies for organizing, revising, editing, proofreading, and practicing/rehearsing to improve the development of their ideas and the appropriateness of their expression.
  • collaborate with peers, the instructor, and librarians to define revision strategies for their essays and speeches, to set goals for improving them, and to devise effective plans for achieving those goals.
  • engage in a range of small group activities that allow them to explore and express their experiences and perspectives on issues under discussion.