Becoming (In)Human: A Course on Interpreting Literature

Loyola University Chicago 

Spring 2020

This foundational course in literary studies will require students to read closely and analyze carefully a representative variety of literary forms and genres, master key literary and critical terms, and explore a variety of core critical approaches to conceptual questions about literature and its study. 


We will focus in particular on works of literature that explore what it means to be human—and also, implicitly, what it means not to be human. Drawing from a diverse body of writers from across time periods, we will read texts ranging from Marie de France’s medieval werewolf poem, Bisclavret, to Amy Bonnaffons’ recent short story about a woman transforming into a horse. We will also explore the ways in which our understanding of humanity is complicated by race, gender, disability, and animality through works like Louise Erdrich’s Last Report of Miracles at Little No Horse and Jesmyn Ward’s Salvage the Bones. We will ask questions such as: What does language and our identities as readers, writers, and speakers have to do with being human? How does transformation complicate what we understand to be the human form? And finally, how do critical approaches to literature enable us to frame these questions in different and compelling ways? Students will complete four major assessments—a midterm, a final, and two papers—in addition to short assignments such as reading responses and collaborative quizzes. 

Business Writing

Loyola University Chicago

Spring 2020

Business Writing trains  students to approach any professional writing task by first assessing the rhetorical situation. Students will learn to analyze genres and styles of writing commonly used in business and compose their own writing based on your assessment of audience and persuasive goals.  The course is divided into four units, including Correspondence (emails, letters, and memos), Design (formatting and document aesthetics), Group Proposals, and Job Applications. Students will complete activities, such as "Design in the Wild," in which they venture just outside the classroom to Michigan Ave in Chicago, where they will find examples of documents posted around Watertower Campus and analyze them for their rhetorical and persuasive goals. As the culmination of the course, students will complete their own set of job application materials and create a personal website.

Composition II 

Elmhurst College

Spring 2020

Composition II (English 106) is the second course in a two-part sequence designed to develop college-level writing and reading skills. Course assignments and activities with focus on the 

  • ability to use writing as a tool for learning and discovery

  • ability to articulate ideas to a variety of audiences

  • ability to analyze and synthesize challenging readings in an effectively written document

  • ability to construct a logical and persuasive argument

  • ability to properly use research materials and facilities

Over the course of the semester, students will each present a the "gist" of an article about a current event of their choosing and lead the class in discussion, engage in class debates , attend library sessions on how to conduct research and utilize resources, create their own podcast on a research topic, and compose a research paper on a topic of their choosing