Jo Doran, Ph.D., M.F.A.

Assistant Professor & ESL Coordinator, Northern Michigan University

EN 205

Welcome to English 205

Winter 2013

I look forward to meeting each one of you and working with you in this half-semester course!

EN205-02-11451 – Gries 165

Instructor: Jo Doran

Office: 226 Gries Hall

Office Hours:

  • Monday 1:30 – 3:00
  • Thursday 10:00 – 1:00 & 1:30 – 3:00
  • ~ And by appointment if possible


“An orientation to areas of study in the field and to employment possibilities; includes discussions of technical and professional writing, journalism, radio and TV writing, public relations and advertising, drama, poetry, fiction and nonfiction” (NMU Bulletin, 2007).

Disclaimer: Since we only meet seven times, we will not cover all of the above genres. If you desire to speak to someone about a genre that is not covered in this class, please contact me and I will give you contact information.

Exams and Textbooks: There are no exams for this class. There are no required textbooks. All readings are included in this syllabus (class web page) via live links. All readings included (via links below and/or Readings on the course website) are required reading.

Document Formatting: Required Reading


This class offers an overview of the following genres:

  • Poetry
  • Journalism
  • Non-Fiction
  • Radio/TV Writing
  • Grant Writing
  • Fiction


  • No rudeness, racism, arrogance, etc. allowed in class
  • Attendance:
    • No unexcused absences are allowed. Because this class meets only seven times, there is no room for absences.
    • If you are absent and miss a speaker, you will receive zero points for the missed class and for the response for that week.
  • Tobacco: No tobacco, in any form, is allowed in class or my office
  • Cell phones and MP3 players must be turned off and zipped in your backpack/bag. If you do not abide by this, I will ask you to leave during the speaker visits.
  • Professionalism during speaker visits. I will ask you to leave if you do any of the following:
  • Stretch and/or yawn
  • Crack your knuckles
  • Dig through your backpack
  • Talk to other students
  • Talk on or check your phone
  • Listen to music
  • Surf the Internet

You will earn a zero for that day and for the assignments for that class period.

  • Email attachments must include the following attachment name: 205_YourName_Document Title.  If you do not abide by this rule, I will not open your emails and/or read your emails and documents.
  • Emails must include the following subject line: 205_YourName_Purpose for email. Emails must also include a salutation, body paragraph with complete sentences, and a closing – or I will not read your email or open your attachment.
  • Response Assignments/Rubrics: I will provide you with a hard copy of the Speaker and Genre Reading Response Assignment Sheet. You are to print out more of these if you need them – OR – you may pick up more copies on the desk outside of my office.
  • Food/Beverage: You may bring in beverages, but due to the professional nature of this class – with speakers – do not bring in any food.
  • Formatting: Please read this if you have any questions about left-block justification.


REQUIREMENTS (Total of 245 points)

Description Points Total Points
Writing Prompt Posted on website Deductions only:- 20 points if not emailed/turned in; -10 points if not emailed by due date / time … or if it does not include answers to all prompts
Speaker and Genre Reading/Writing Responses Six 20 points each 120
Memo One 15 points 15
Informational Interview (with notes) and Essay One 50 points 50
Attendance and Tardies Deductions only
Open-Ended Questions for speakers Six 10 points per speaker (60 points total) 60
Reading Assignments Your personal responsibility
90% – 100% A 220 – 245  Loss of up to 25 points = A
80 – 89% B 196 – 219  Loss of up to 49 points = B
70 – 79% C 171 – 195  Loss of up to 74 points = C
60 – 69% D 147 – 170  Loss of up to 98 points = D
59% or below F 146 or below  Loss of 99 points or more = F


Each week, we will have a speaker (see calendar below) on one, specific genre. Associated with each speaker, there are three requirements (and I will use the poetry week as an example).

  1. You must come to class with open-ended questions for each speaker. If you do not ask at least one question per week, you will lost 10 points per week.
  2. You must read any related links that I post on each speaker before coming to class.
  3. You will read a text – of your choice – in that week’s genre. So… for example… after listening to Cate Terwilliger  speak next week on journalism, you will find a piece of journalism and read it. This can be any piece of journalism you wish to read. It can be a piece you love or a new piece.
  4. You will write a Speaker/Genre Response paper and turn it in to me the following week. In this Response, you must cover the following:
  5. Each response must be a minimum of 850 words – and must include the word count in the heading.
  6. Formatting must adhere to the formatting rules for this class (See Formatting on the Readings/Links Page on the class website).
  7. Second person is not to be used. I will deduct points for use of second person. Use the Find/Replace tool in Word. Use first person in your Response.
  8. An Assignment Rubric must be stapled to the back of each weekly response. You will receive one rubric in class the first day. After that, you may print one out here or find extra copies on the desk by my office.
  9. All Responses must be turned in as hard copies. Do not email me your responses. If you need to turn in a response late, please put it in your folder that week or slip it under my office door.

Here are two sample responses and an informational interview assignment response from Jackie Taves, a previous student of EN 205 who has written excellent responses in the correct format. She received extra credit for these responses/assignment


  • Day 1 – March 12: Introductions, Syllabus, Assignment Explanation, etc.
  • Day 2 – March 19: Journalism – Cate Rastall
  • Day 3 – March 26: Poetry – Janeen Rastall
  • Day 4 – April 2: Non-Fiction – Josh MacIvor-Andersen: Notes
  • Day 5 – April 9: Grant Writing – Chanomi Maxwell-Parish
  • Day 6 – April 16: Television and News Writing – Cody Boyer
  • Day 7 – April 23: Fiction – Matt Bell

Notes from previous speakers:

Journalism – James McCommons: Notes

Non Fiction – Josh MacIvor-Andersen: Notes

Radio/TV Writing – Cody Boyer: Notes




Required Readings for this week

1 –3.12
  • žIntroductions
  • žWebsite, Syllabus, and Calendar
  • Speaker/Genre Responses
  • Informational Interview
  • Genre and Discourse Communities
  • Rhetorical Situation
  • Rhetorical Appeals
  • Bloom’s Taxonomy
  • žDuotrope and Poets & Writers
  • žResumes
  • žYour “Writing Prompt Assignment” is due by Friday, March 15 by midnight.
  1. Informational Interviewing
  2. Memos
  3. Query Letters
  4. Rhetoric & Rhetorical Appeals
  5. Plagiarism
2 –3.19 Cate Terwilliger – Journalism    
  1. Speaker/Genre Response (under Assignments)
  2. Email: Class Email and Email Attachments
  3. Formatting
  4. Genre & Discourse Communities
  5. Informational Interview Assignment (under Assignments)
  6. Rhetoric & Rhetorical Appeals

Pieces by Cate Terwilliger: Please Read!

  1. Hyperthryoid Cats
  2. Bedeviled by Weight
  3. A Futile Fight
  4. Alma Murders
3 – 3.26 Janeen Rastall – Poetry Janeen Rastall lives in Marquette, MI. She received a BA in English from Penn State University, but spent decades as a computer analyst. She is a member of the Marquette Poets Circle. Her poems have appeared in The Raleigh Review, The Blue Lake Review, Apparatus Magazine and Short, Fast and Deadly.Memo for Informational Interview is due today. Janeen’s WebsiteBlue Lake ReviewOther links I found:

4 – 4.2 Josh MacIvor Andersen – Nonfiction
5 – 4.9 Chanomi Maxwell-Parish – Grant Writing  La Op PDF 2005 Annual Report
6 – 4.16 Cody Boyer – Radio and TV Writing Public Eye News
7 – 4.23 Matt Bell
Due Date You may revise your Speaker/Genre Responses as many times as you wish before the end of the semester. These revisions are not due until the end of the semester.You will turn in a Speaker/Genre Response the week after the speaker’s visit. For example, for Poetry – with Janeen Rastall – you will turn in your Speaker/Genre Response the Monday after Cate Terwilliger speaks to our class – on Monday, March 26.All of your work (all revision work and your Informational Interview Assignment) are due by Tuesday, April 30 in my office between 4:00 and 5:50If you wish to turn your work in early, you may either slip your papers under my door or ask the secretary to place them in my mailbox.


Speaker and Genre Response Assignment/Rubric

Interview Assignment: Includes the following

  • Research on potential interviewees
  • Professional contact/emails to potential interviewee
  • Memo to instructor regarding chosen interviewee: This memo will be emailed to me. Please note that I will not read your emails, open your emails, or read your attachments unless you follow the email rules.
  • Detailed Interview Notes – NOTE: If your interviewee approves, record your interview.
  • Essay (with complete interview questions/notes and response – see assignment)

Writing Prompt  (see calendar for due date)


Please note that unless stated otherwise, reading assignment links include all readings on the assigned page.


  • Staple a copy of the Response Assignment Sheet to each of your responses: I will not grade your Responses without an attached rubric sheet. Additionally, I will not accept an email copy: Turn in a hard copy of this assignment when due.
  • Do not use second person in your genre and speaker responses: I will lower your grade at least one grade if you use second person.
  • Use correct formatting rules: Refer to “Formatting” to learn how to format your documents. I will deduct points each time for improper format.
  • Include the following subject line with each email: 205_YourFirstName_Email Topic, otherwise I will not read your email. You will be emailing only your writing prompt and the memo for your informational interview. You may email me anytime if you have any questions or concerns.
  • Include a salutation, body paragraph (with complete sentences) and closing with each email. Otherwise I will not read your email – and consequently I will not read/accept your attachment.
  • Include the following attachment name with each attachment: 205_YourFirstName_Assignment Name. Otherwise I will not open/read your attachment.

Student Codes and Academic Integrity

Please refer to the above links to find specific details on Student Codes and Academic Dishonesty, and please read my guidelines, below:

  • Student Code
    • I have no tolerance for displays of rudeness, racism, crudeness or disrespect to any peers, the instruction, and/or visiting speakers.
    • You have earned the right to be in this class. To remain in this class, you must maintain a high level of professionalism throughout the semester.
  • Academic Integrity
    • Err on the side of giving too much information if you are unsure of how/when/where to document a source.

    • Use KnightCite or another professional (and free) online citation machine

    • All sources/works used must be documented using APA, MLA, or another major citation style.

ADA Statement

If you have a need for disability-related accommodations or services, please inform the coordinator of Disability Services in the Disability Office at 2001 C.B. Hedgecock (227-1700).  Reasonable and effective accommodations and services will be provided to students if requests are made in a timely manner, with appropriate documentation, in accordance with federal, state, and University guidelines.

If you have need of special consideration related to academic, physical and/or mental disabilities, you must present me with registration proof, or I will not be able to help you academically.

Please note that I require that you read the links on the Plagiarism page (Readings and Links).

NMU Tutoring Services

All Campus Tutoring

Writing Center

NMU Registrar’s Page

Please refer to this site for important information related to you – as a student.