Courses Offered (Summer 2020)

Undergraduate Courses

First-Year English (UCCS Rhetoric Requirement)

1001 Foundations in Rhetoric (Foundation Tier)

101 MTWThF 8:00-9:30 Professor Amber Strother (session 2)
102 MTWThF 9:45-11:15 Professor Paul Gagliardi (session 2)
106 Online Professor Jacob Riyeff (session 1)
107 Online Professor Danielle Clapham (session 1)

English 1001, Foundations in Rhetoric

Students learn to:

  • Critically engage scholarly communication by identifying and analyzing the main rhetorical features of variously mediated texts used by scholars to express ideas in academic settings;
  • Pursue inquiry with rigor and responsibility by formulating feasible and meaningful research questions and revising them while conducting thorough, ethical inquiries using appropriate available resources;
  • Understand writing as a purpose-driven, audience-oriented, multimodal activity that involves writers in making continuous ethical and informed choices;
  • Develop writing by engaging in overlapping phases of invention, synthesis of ideas and information, and revision undertaken in response to others' feedback and self-critique;
  • Deliver writing by making full use of appropriate available media, genres, formats and styles;
  • Write with exigence by addressing issues of importance with the goal of increasing one's own and others' understanding as a foundation for future action of various kinds;
  • Develop an appropriate ethos by meeting academic audiences' expectations for credibility, consistency, and integrity.
  • For additional details, including unit-by-unit syllabi, contact either Dr. Rebecca Nowacek or Dr. Amelia Zurcher.


UCCS Literature and Performing Arts Requirements

Pre-2018 University Core Literature Courses (ENGL 2000 and 2010)

ENGL course numbers 2000, 2010, 2020, and 2030 fulfill the University Core of Common Studies requirement in Literature/Performing Arts (LPA) for students enrolled prior to Fall 2018.

2000 Literature, History and Culture (WRIT, Discovery Tier - Individuals and Communities, retroactive)

101 Online Professor Leah Flack (session 2)
102 Online Professor Leah Flack (session 2)

Course Title: The Art of War

Course Description: Nearly three millennia ago, the Western literary tradition began with Homer’s pair of epic stories about war and the agonizing return to peace. In our own era, we face the urgent problems of escalating global warfare, which prompts us to become informed citizens with a critical awareness of how war is represented and justified. To this end, we have much to learn from the literary tradition.  

This course will teach students to become empowered readers of war narratives through an intensive study of short stories, novels, and films about war and peace, most of which were written in the past 60 years. We will explore several features of representations of war in literature: the celebratory, commemorative, and protest functions of literature; representations of the body in war narratives; representations of various forms of psychological, physical, and cultural damage caused by war; the difficulty of return and recovery from war; and war’s challenges to traditional narrative forms as writers struggle to define, as Tim O’Brien writes, “how to tell a true war story.”  

2010 Literature and Genre (WRIT, retroactive)

101 Online Professor Gerry Canavan (session 1)

Course Title:
Crafting the Short Story

Course Description: “Crafting the Short Story” offers a unique version of the typical English 2010 experience that takes place entirely online, offering students the opportunity to produce creative writing alongside traditional scholarly prose. These two modes of writing, normally kept distinct in the English curriculum, are blended together here to make this intensive six-week summer course a formative intellectual experience for its students. The course is built around Tom Bailey’s short-story anthology On Writing Short Stories (2nd edition), which combines a vibrant anthology of twentieth-century short stories with writerly reflections on the mechanics of short story construction and the craft of creative short story composition. Alongside their assigned readings, forum responses, and directed creative pieces, students will also spend the summer session drafting and revising an original short story of their own devising. In the final week of class, students will share their stories with me and their peers in supportive online workshop groups, receive both due praise and constructive critical feedback, and then craft a personal reflection on the workshop and a revision of their story as their final exam.

Readings: Tom Bailey’s On Writing Short Stories (2nd Edition)

Assignments: D2L responses; short creative assignments; original short story; workshop participation; workshop reflection and revision.

2020  Texts, Social Systems, and Values (ESSV 1)

101 MTWTh 9:45-11:20 Professor Amber Strother (session 2)

Course Title: More Human than Human: Figures of the Other in Science Fiction

Course Description: What does it mean to be human? How are the lines between human and nonhuman blurred in science fiction? What does the future look like for humanity? In what ways does science fiction engage with social issues and call for action and revolution? This course will engage with these questions to better understand the ways in which science fiction is a reflection of societal fears about the shifting definition of what it means to be human in the 21st century. The texts for this course will include a variety of novels, short stories, films, comics, and television episodes that focus on figures who challenge the categories of human and nonhuman such as clones, cyborgs, zombies, and aliens. By examining the cultural and historical contexts of the works, we will consider the ways in which science fiction engages with social issues involving gender, race, class, disability, and equality/inequality.

Readings: Possible texts may include Kazuo Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go, M.R. Carey’s The Girl with All the Gifts, Alex Garland’s Ex Machina, Jonathan Luna and Sarah Vaughn’s Alex + Ada, and Nnedi Okorafor’s Binti

2030 Global Literatures (ESSV 1)

102 Online Professor Gerry Canavan (session 1)

Course Description: Greg Tate has said that "Black people live the estrangement that science fiction writers imagine." This ESSV1 course takes up the constellation of intersections between black history and the radical black imagination that is commonly called Afrofuturism, focusing in particular of figurations of Africa as a space of science fictional possibility from both sides of the Atlantic. If Afrofuturism has been, as Kodwo Eshun has said, "a program for recovering the histories of counter-futures created in a century hostile to Afrodiasporic projection," how does the rise of Africa as a global economic powerhouse in the twenty-first-century transform our understanding of black futurity? 2018's smash hit Black Panther is only the most vivid registration of the ongoing global importance of the Afrofuturist imagination; from comics to film and television to literature to music videos to social media we will trace Afrofuturism across the twenty-first century cultural landscape, in both the U.S. and in Africa.

Readings: Texts will likely include Black Panther (2018 film and Marvel comics, 1966-present), Octavia E. Butler’s Wild Seed, Nnedi Okorafor’s Lagoon, Abdourahman Waberi's In the United States of Africa, short stories from across the African diaspora, the music of Sun Ra and Janelle Monáe, and Get Out.

Assignments: Weekly forum posts; short response papers; creative or curational final project 


Writing Courses

3240 Introduction to Creative Writing (WRIT, Discovery Tier - Individuals and Communities)

101 Online Professor Jacob Riyeff (session 2)
102 Online Professor Sherri Hoffman (session 1)
103 Online Professor Tyler Farrell (session 2)
104 Online Professor Tyler Farrell (session 2)


4250 Creative Writing: Fiction (WRIT, Discovery Tier - Cognition, Memory, and Intelligence)

101 Online Professor Sherri Hoffman (session 1)

Course Description: Flash Fiction is the study of the shortest form of fiction. Its essence is an exactness of language. Its form is more defined by conciseness than a specific word count. At its best, it is fine-tuned storytelling honed to a single page or a few short lines in which universal emotion and the strength or frailties of being human are revealed. The workshop structure allows for an active discussion of student work. Readings are a diverse selection of authors as examples of craft and the diversity of voice. Supporting craft materials include essays, film, and excerpts of craft books, which invite the study of language and story reimagining our world in a quick flash. 

Readings: Steering the Craft by Ursula Le Guin; New Micro: Exceptionally Short Fiction (Paperback), eds. James Thomas, Robert Scotellaro. Additional materials will be provided on D2L or online. 

Assignments: Over the course of the semester, students will give a class presentation, write workshop reviews, and produce a portfolio of flash fiction pieces.

Required reading:

Steering the Craft: A 21st-Century Guide to Sailing the Sea of Story, Author: Ursula K. Le Guin, $15.00, Paperback: 160 pages, Publisher: Mariner Books; Reprint edition (September 1, 2015), Language: English, ISBN-10: 0544611616, ISBN-13: 978-0544611610

New Micro: Exceptionally Short Fiction, 
Editors: James Thomas, Robert Scotellaro, $11.00, Paperback: 288 pages, Publisher: WW Norton & Company (August 28, 2018), Language: English, ISBN-10: 0393354709, ISBN-13: 978-0393354706 

Upper Division Literature Courses

4951 MU Led Travel/Study Abroad--CANCELED

101 Professor Tyler Farrell (Session 2) 

Course Title: Literature, History, and Culture of Ireland

Course Description: This month-long summer program and course takes an in-depth look at Ireland and the literature, culture and history upon which the country is built. Students will see Ireland through the eyes of famous Irish authors. The combination of classroom learning and hands-on excursions allow students to have a fresh and more comprehensive learning experience. The course will consist of author discussions and involve short day trips to places of note in relation to authors, including: James Joyce, W.B. Yeats, Frank O’Connor, Samuel Beckett, James Liddy, and Michael Hartnett. Students will look deeply into James Joyce and visit historical Martello Tower, the setting for the first chapter of Ulysses and travel to Yeats’ grave and the city of Sligo while also experiencing walking tours of some the country’s most famous residents. Students will also experience a play at the historic Abbey Theater along with museums, cultural attractions, tours, and educational experiences. While Galway (NUI-Galway) and Dublin (UC-Dublin) will serve as the primary homes for this program, travel to other parts of Ireland are a vital component to the program’s curriculum.

Assignments: Include daily readings, in-class discussion, presentation, tours, daily writing assignments, 4 short critical papers and 1 final project including both critical and creative writing components.

For more information see:

Or Contact Dr. Tyler Farrell 


Graduate Seminars

8953 Pre-Dissertation Seminar

101 Online Professor Angela Sorby (session 2)

Course Description: Students prepare for ENGL 8830 and for the process of writing their dissertation proposals by designing a summer reading list and reading calendar. They also learn to write the various components of a dissertation proposal (including an annotated bibliography, an abstract, a statement of the problem, a methodology section and more). Students engage in ongoing dialogue with one another and the instructor during the course about their work, their projects, and the skills they are learning.