Course Syllabus

 English 598: Internship in Applied English Studies

Summer 2015 

Contact Information


Colleen Reilley, PhD; email:; Office: MO 157; Office Phone: 910. 962.7548

Sarah Hallenbeck, PhD; email:; Office: MO 152;Office Phone:910.962.3714

Jeremy Tirrell, PhD;; Office: MO 161; Office Phone: 910.962. 2866                                            

Anirban Ray, PhD;; Office: MO 164; Office Phone: 910.962.3703.


Students who take part in this innovative internship experience will be guided by multiple faculty mentors to produce a variety of multimedia documents for commercial and nonprofit client partners. Working at the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, students will employ sound rhetorical principles as they engage in practices such as document usability studies, website user experience (UX) analysis, search engine optimization (SEO), grant proposal writing, and promotional material production.

Faculty mentors will assist students to develop professional materials for use by client partners, who will provide feedback throughout the production process. Students will undertake client projects independently and in teams, bridging business goals with user goals, and will be equipped with specialized professional resources, including eye tracking hardware, a usability testing package, a comprehensive grant research database, and open source design software. Students who participate in this experience will contribute to the MA program by determining the feasibility of creating a self-sustaining Professional and Technical Writing lab that would offer document analysis and production services and would be staffed by English graduate students working in close consultation with English faculty.

 Student Learning Objectives:

  • Gain practical work experience in an area of professional interest
  • Learn to work independently and produce professional quality writing
  • Acquire skills in writing and communication applicable to other organizational contexts
  • Develop a broader awareness of the types of available workplace positions related to language use, writing, and communication

Required Work:

Although each student enrolled in this summer’s inaugural Professional Writing Lab will engage in 1-2 separate unique independent projects, several common threads will tie your work together and expose you to a wider range of work than you would otherwise do. Please expect to complete the following tasks during Summer Session II:

  1. Meet with your faculty supervisor three times during the summer session and client as needed.
  1. Contribute at least five annotated entries to the course wiki. These entries should reflect the independent reading you’ve done that will support your client work, and they must fall into two categories: resources (instructional material, sample documents), scholarly research (peer-reviewed articles or scholarly books related to the work you’re doing (usability, editing, grantwriting, web design, etc). You must have at least one entry in each category (resource/scholarly research); your entries should be 200-300 words in length, summarize the content of the source, and indicate the source’s possible uses and limitations. These may be sources recommended to you by a faculty member involved in the lab, or they may be sources you locate through your own searching.

Your sources may not be immediately useful to the other students, but they will be available as resources for future investigations.

  1. Submit a weekly progress report via email to your faculty supervisor, due on Monday. This should be in the form of a memo, with a concise summary of your project (introduction), followed by a body reviewing your weekly goals, a description of what you actually did, and a list of goals for the following week. You should have 3 progress reports: June 29, July 6, July 13.
  1. Submit a final reflection to the PW lab blog, due Monday, July 20. This should be in the form of a letter to your colleagues in the PW lab, professors and students. Reflect on how well your initial expectations for the work you did matched what you actually did; consider the challenges and opportunities you encountered through your efforts (what do you wish you knew more about? What skills were required and which ones are you especially glad you had?). Indicate what resources, readings, and work strategies you might recommend for future students engaged in a similar project. Your letter should be 250 – 500 words in length. Type directly into Discussion Board so that your readers can easily access your material.
  1. Submit reflection responses to each colleague in the class, using the response box to offer any areas of overlap or discontinuity you see between his or her work and your own. Responses should be between 100 and 200 words, and should be posted as replies to previous entries.
  1. Deliverables: Submit to the client and to your faculty supervisor by midnight Tuesday, July 21st.


We will assess your work in consultation with your client partner(s); all internship grades are pass/fail.


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Mon Jun 29, 2015
Mon Jul 6, 2015
Mon Jul 13, 2015
Tue Jul 21, 2015
Wed Jul 22, 2015