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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Jun Xu
ENGL 199
Seattle Campus

Interdisciplinary Writing/Natural Science

Expository writing based on material presented in a specific natural science lecture course. Assignments include drafts of papers to be submitted in the specified course, and other pieces of analytical prose. Concurrent registration in the specified course required.

Class description


As a linked course to BIOL 180, Biological Science, ENGL 199B of the Interdisciplinary Writing Program in the Department of English teaches you to approach biological knowledge by its textuality. The goal of this course is to make it explicit that texts do not only contain knowledge, but are a part of knowledge. In other words, knowledge production includes text production, such as scientific publications. Furthermore, only through its texts can knowledge specify to whom it is intelligible; for instance, scientific publications are comprehensible to scientists but not to general public, and textbooks are written for students with different level of knowledge. Acquiring knowledge requires comprehending its texts, and this comprehension involves vocabulary, concepts,terms, genre-specific syntax, and also the reasoning of hypotheses and the disciplinary methodology of experimental design and procedure.

The theme of the course is the research on domestication. The scaffolding has two main parts: on one hand, you are trained to analyze the research papers according to their hypothetical reasoning, research methods, data collections, and the validity of their conclusions. On the other hand, you learn the skills of textual analysis by comparison research and popularization papers in domestication so that you are able to characterize a piece of text and indicate to whom the text is comprehensible. Moreover, you are also introduced to scholarly arguments with respect to the differences of scientific publication and its popularization. In doing so, you acquire the skills to produce the kind of clear and precise writing required in science, and more importantly, you understand why and how writing in science differs from that directed to general readers, as well as the purposes of reading.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading

The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Class Website
Last Update by Jun Xu
Date: 03/23/2013