Course Spotlights

There are many wonderful writing courses offered to those in the professional writing minor at UC Davis. Check out some of the seasonal offerings below, which satisfy the Group B and Group C requirements for professional writing students!


Course Flier

UWP 112A: Introduction to Professional Editing 

Fall 2023 - Carloyn Gubala / Winter 2023 - Angela Morris / Spring 2024 - Rebekka Andersen

UWP 112A acts as an introductory course to the practices and principles of editing, with an emphasis on editing in professional and organizational contexts. Students will focus on developing skills in areas such as comprehensive editing, copymarking, copyediting, proofreading, and illustration editing. Additionally, students will gain skills in the creation and utilization of style sheets and style guides. Collaboration with team members and writers on projects allows students to implement useful editing techniques in their own writing, as well as prepare for future employment.

UWP 111A: Special Topics in Journalism (topic = Diversity Reporting)

Fall 2023 - Steve Magagnini

The specialization for this UWP 111A course is diversity reporting, in which students will seek to provide nuanced and balanced reporting on current societal topics such as race, gender, and ethnicity. Concepts students will practice include analyzing the audience, practicing investigative journalism methods, and identifying elements of style and tone in writing. Influenced by sociological perspectives, students will not only write reports and enhance their perspectives on these topics, but will also seek to understand and answer questions on when and why race and diversity matter in news stories. Furthermore, common mistakes and assumptions that reporters make when reporting on differences will be evaluated as it pertains to effective diversity reporting.


Course Flier


Course Flier

UWP 115: Writing Center Research, Theory, and Practice for Peer Writing Tutors
Fall 2023 - Trish Serviss

This course is uniquely designed for students who are interested in becoming peer writing tutors and educators, with an emphasis on the theories, practices, and research done by writing centers. Students shall analyze the theoretical approaches and practices (e.g. the role of feedback) conducted by writing centers (such as the AATC Writing Support Center) to design an instructional framework as a guide for future writing center practices.

UWP 106: English Grammar
Fall 2023 - TBA / Winter 2023 - Dana Ferris / Spring 2024 - TBA

This course alternates across the English, linguistics, and professional writing departments on a quarterly basis. By focusing on English grammar through the lens of contemporary linguistic theories, students will analyze the topics and developments  of dialects, inflectional morphology, and information structure within sentences and paragraphs. Students will correlate these topics to the broader analysis of English grammar and syntax, as found in literature and writing. This course is not only for students who seek a career in editing or teaching, but is open to those who seek to improve their writing skills and abilities with the foundations of grammar.


Course Flier


Course Flier

UWP 120: Rhetorical Approaches to Scientific and Technological Issues
Winter 2024 - Erika Strandford

Students in UWP 120 will focus on the application of rhetorical theories in relation to current scientific and technological issues. Combining scientific topics with philosophical approaches, media literacy, and academic writing, students will examine philosophical concepts such as epistemology, incommensurability, and demarcation in order to understand and conceptualize relevant scientific issues. Other topic areas include understanding the implementation of  “scientific voice” in writing and theorizing implications for risk communication.

UWP 111B: Investigative Journalism

Winter 2024 - Sasha Abramsky

UWP 111B focuses on the systematic and thorough investigation of student-chosen topics, forming the criterion of investigative journalism. Students will use investigative research skills and methodology (interviews, analyzing public records) to write stories pertaining to the public interest, culminating in multiple research projects throughout the course. Notable features of investigative journalism that students will actively utilize and develop include various narrative techniques, summarization, evaluation of reporting accuracy, and assessment of the legal and ethical considerations behind sources.


Course Flier


Course Flier

UWP 111C: Science Journalism

Spring 2024 - Katie Rodger

UWP 111C focuses on strategies for “writing science” for feature articles in newspapers and magazines, as well as for digital media outlets. In particular, students will practice the journalistic techniques of identifying and developing ideas for articles, finding the story within the facts, and developing effective angles and leads. By combining professional writing with scientific topics, students will develop skills in reading and synthesizing scientific articles, in addition to gaining a fundamental understanding of the professional science writing career and the scientific writing market.

UWP 110: Genres in Professional Writing (topic = User Documentation)

Spring 2024 - Rebekka Andersen

The specialization for this UWP 110 course is user documentation, where students will be introduced to common processes and technologies used for creating and publishing user documentation. Materials such as modular documentation, screencasts, and infographics will be evaluated and produced by students to recognize their role in helping people effectively use products and services. Students will learn prominent theories, research methods, and practices guiding the design of usable and accessible information. The objective of the course is not only for students to improve their overall writing skills, but also to gain communication skills and multimedia experience that may be used in future employment settings.


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