Marlene Clarke earned her Bachelor's and Master's degrees in English from San Francisco State University and her Ph.D. in English from UC Berkeley. While completing her doctoral studies and writing her dissertation on Middle English romances, she taught first-year writing and basic writing classes.
Since coming to UC Davis in 1983, Dr. Clarke has taught a range of writing classes at both the lower-division and upper-division levels. She maintains an active interest in teaching at the lower division but in recent years has most frequently taught upper-division classes in the English 104 (Writing in the Professions) series, including Business Reports and Technical Communication (UWP 104A), Legal Writing (UWP 104B), Writing in Elementary and Secondary Education (UWP 104D), and Writing in the Health Professions (UWP 104F).
Dr. Clarke has co-authored two textbooks. Currents of Inquiry (with Nancy Morrow) is designed for use in first-year writing classes; Retellings (with A. G. Clarke) is designed for use in introductory literature classes or classes in literature and composition. Her work on Retellings also led Dr. Clarke to design a new course, Humanities 8, which focuses on the retellings of narratives from a variety of cultural, ethnic,gender, and temporal perspectives. She was one of the early editors of Prized Writing , an anthology of some of the exceptional writing done by UC Davis students, and was until recently an editor for Writing on the Edge, a journal about writing and the teaching of writing that is published at UC Davis and that has a national circulation.