WR 415

BU has a long tradition of connecting what goes on in our classrooms, labs, and libraries to some of the most pressing concerns in the wider world beyond. This class will prepare you to do just that. You will learn about the growing call for scholars to communicate with the public and, through course readings and regular short writing exercises, study and practice the genres that academic researchers and other serious thinkers use to shape public discourse. You will also have the opportunity to explore the immediate relevance of academic subjects and ideas you are passionate about and “translate” them to reach a public audience. You will read and write in several public genres (Quick Study, Wikipedia entry, TED Talk, commentary article), workshop drafts, incorporate digital elements, and pitch a story. We will consider: How are the scholarly and the public complementary? Why does your area of growing academic expertise matter to the public? How can you use different modes of communication to reach diverse audiences?

This course fulfills a single unit in each of the three BU Hub communication areas: (1) Writing Intensive, (2) Oral/Signed Communication, and (3) Digital/Multimedia Expression.