Advising Help in Languages, Literature, and Composition
Students in Languages, Literature, and Composition work closely with faculty mentors and advisers to select courses, build writing sample portfolios, explore career, internship, and graduate school options, and generally achieve success at USC Upstate and beyond.
Prepare for Advising Appointments
- Look up Requirements for your Major or Minor in the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences section in the Academic Catalog. Remember to follow the catalog requirements for the year listed in Degreeworks. If you would like to switch to a different catalog listing of requirements for both your major and minor (if applicable), please contact your adviser to fill out a change of catalog form.
- Look up Official Course Descriptions and prerequisites in the Academic Catalog or on our list of detailed course descriptions in Languages, Literature, and Composition below.
- Make an appointment with your adviser. You can find your assigned advisor in your network in Starfish, on your Student Worksheet in Degreeworks or Self-Service Carolina under the Student Menu.
- Remember that you can also use the Schedule Planner feature in Self-Service Carolina to help you find the right combination of course times. Note: Courses with an M at the end of the section number are hybrid (meaning some face-to-face, some online). Courses with a W at the end of the section number are fully online.
- Don't forget to check Self-Service Carolina or Starfish for your mid-term grades (see all grades under Registration History) and for your overall college transcript.
- If you are planning to use grade forgiveness, please see the policy and application form under Student Forms.
- Check the Academic Calendar for deadlines for payment, add/drop, withdrawal, etc.
- Check the Final Exam Schedule posted at the top of the page for each semester under the Academic Calendar to find dates and times for your final exams.
As always feel free to contact your adviser or the chair of Languages, Literature, and Composition (864-503-5688) if you have any questions.
The detailed course descriptions below offer an example of courses offered in the English program. Please view the most recent copy of the Academic Schedule in Self-Service Carolina for complete course offerings and descriptions.
- Find Tips and Resources for English Students, including guides to literary analysis, research in English Studies, literary theory, and a full range of senior seminar checklists and preparation documents.
ENGL U208: Intro to Creative Writing
This course could be subtitled "Writing Everything." Students will work in poetry, short fiction and creative nonfiction and read models in each genre. There'll be a variety of writing exercises in addition to our workshops and reading. A portfolio of revised work will be due at the end of the term.
ENGL U252: Understanding Grammar - Marlow
Taught by someone who used to HATE grammar, students examine real sentences, apply rules to real-life errors and explore how to use (and even intentionally break) rules to strengthen their writing. Two papers are required (three and five pages). **Often offered online in summer and during regular semesters.
ENGL U275: Masterpieces of World Literature - Murphy
After their authors first invented them, Gilgamesh, Scheherazade, Odysseus, Penelope, Helen of Troy, Don Quixote and many more world-famous characters from literature around the world have influenced and shaped many cultures for centuries. Similarly, today's world authors, including J. M. Coetzee, Chinua Achebe, Salman Rushdie, Gabriel García Márquez and Isabel Allende, are offering us new ways to examine our own time. By studying world literature in English or in translation from ancient times to the present (from Africa, Asia, Europe and North and South America) students develop a new understanding of literary history and of the many cultures of the world. Readings include the Norton Anthology of World Literature Second Shorter Edition (ISBN 9780393933543), Coetzee's Waiting for the Barbarians and Achebe's Things Fall Apart. Emphasis will be placed on texts and authors of particular importance for secondary education teachers. **Often offered online in summer
ENGL U279: Survey of American Literature I/American Literature for Teachers, to 1865 - O'Brien
Survey of literature from before America became a nation through the Civil War.
ENGL U280/ENGLU380: Survey of American Literature II/American Literature for Teachers, 1865-present - Kusch
American literature has always been multicultural. Our survey of short stories, poetry, plays, novels and essays from 1865 to the present demonstrates how the most important writing engages challenges of diversity in terms of race, gender, class, ethnicity, sexuality and American national identity itself. In our course, we explore the definition of America as it transitions from a young country reeling from the trauma of civil war to today's global, economic, cultural and military superpower. We start reading American literature from a time when the world was not sure that America could produce anything called "literature" and witness the development of some of the most important international authors of the 20th century including many Nobel laureates. Texts include many selections from the Heath Anthology of American Literature, Concise Edition and Huckleberry Finn. NOTE: This is a great course for education majors in English or language arts who would like college-level instruction in many of the most commonly taught authors of American literature.
ENGL U289: Survey of British Literature I, Beginnings to 1800 - Williams
This course's reading list is filled with larger-than-life figures who travel to distant lands, seek fame and fortune, fall in and out of passionate love, betray others, find themselves betrayed and attempt to define who they are by what they are able to accomplish. Texts include Beowulf, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Othello, Paradise Lost and Gulliver's Travels.
ENGL U290: Survey of British Literature II - Murphy
In everyday speech, we talk about "romantic adventures" and "Victorian morality," buildings that look "modern" and even cartoons that are "postmodern." In this class, we'll read the diverse literature from the periods that defined these now-common terms and study the larger social and cultural changes to which writers responded. The rise of the British Empire and management of its decline provide a powerful analogy to us in 21st century America, so in examining the literature from 1800 to the present, we study not just its past but our own present and how it got that way.
ENGL U291/U391: Survey of African American Literature
In this course, students will read poetry, fiction, drama and essays by African Americans from the colonial period to the present. Among the major works, we will consider are poems and stories by Paul Laurence Dunbar, excerpts from Richard Wright's Native Son, Sula by Toni Morrison and more. Taken at the 300-level, this course counts for the cultural difference and diversity requirement for English majors. Both levels count for the minority literature requirement for education majors.
ENGL U300: Introduction to the Study of Literature
Everything you need to know about the study of English (including everything you don't know you need to know). We will cover the skills and knowledge necessary to research, write and talk about language and literature: literary periods and the literary canon, literary terms, genres, criticism, literary theory basics, and research methods.
ENGL U308: Intermediate Creative Writing
English 308 is a continuation of English 208 (Introduction to Creative Writing) and will concentrate on short fiction, creative nonfiction and verse using a workshop approach. We'll complete several short assignments and each contribute a chapter to a collective memoir online.
ENGL 318: Writing in Digital Environments - Williams
Digital technology is changing writing and reading daily. Explore these issues in this course.
ENGL U345: Archives, Research, and Digital Humanities - Kusch
This course applies the principles of digital humanities research to explore a video archive from Spartanburg's Highland neighborhood. Applying research into film, oral histories, and images from Upstate's rich African American histories, students will use professional writing and new media techniques to write, develop, and launch a digital exhibition and collection of the videos, photos, and background information on the project. We will work with a community partner, White Elephant Productions, to gather the archival materials, and our work will become a lasting electronic archive for the Spartanburg community. Students will have their bios and credits attached to the online project and may use the finished project in their professional writing portfolio. For any questions about digital humanities and potential cross-listing opportunities, contact Dr. Celena Kusch, firstname.lastname@example.org.
ENGL U345: Freelance Writing and Publishing - KEEFAUVER
Have you ever dreamed of becoming a freelance writer? This course will introduce you to the wide scope of freelance publishing as a career path. We will hone pragmatic skills for pitching an idea, developing a story, collaborating with editors, managing social media, and otherwise selling your writing. Writing projects will include magazine and newspaper features, trade journal articles, copywriting, nonprofit grant writing, blogging and writing for digital publications. We will learn effective strategies for interviewing, researching, drafting, revising, editing, and marketing. The course will also include a Service Learning component to provide students with experience writing for a real client in the Upstate community. Assignments include completing several publishable articles as well as setting up a professional web-based profile to promote your work. By the end of the course, students will have a professional portfolio that may be used as writing samples for prospective leads as well as submitted for publication. This course includes a service learning component.
ENGL U348: Digital Storytelling - THOMAS
Digital Storytelling is a framework to combine digital and social media tools with traditional writing methods. Digital Stories are short, multimedia productions, which can be narrative in nature or focus on more expository and informative modes. Digital stories combine still images, video, clip art, text, music, and the spoken word to create unique messages relevant to a variety of topics. In short, this course focuses on storytelling in the 21st century aimed at a variety of audiences and purposes.
Digital storytelling is a popular method for building community, sharing diverse perspectives, publishing research, and highlighting original creative works. As such, this course is designated Service Learning, requiring students to work outside of course meetings with local nonprofit agencies and community leaders. Students will utilize skills and concepts covered in the classroom to make a difference within the community. Students will explore a range of methods, tools and software used to create digital stories. Students will build digital portfolios containing at least four major multimedia publications along with written scripts and reflections.
This course is perfect for education majors, English majors, and communication majors. In addition, those in the business and non-profit sectors are increasingly utilizing digital storytelling as a means of communication and advertising. In short, anyone who would like to learn more about writing and incorporating the use of digital technology in publishing will enjoy this course.
ENGL U368: Life Writing Workshop
We'll read models of exemplary life writing (and students will write a short critical paper on a book-length biography or autobiography), but most of our time will be spent in workshop format critiquing student work on biographical and autobiographical projects. These works-in-progress will form a portfolio of polished compositions by the end of the semester.
ENGL U387: Topics in Literature, Culture and Difference: Gender and Postcolonial Literature - Kusch
ENGL U387: Adventures in Literature and Environment - Keefauver
What do Survivor, Into the Wild, and The Hunger Games have in common? Why is Harriet Tubman known as an abolitionist, but not as a wilderness explorer and expert orienteer? In the age of the Anthropocene, does literature matter?
We'll explore these questions and more as we brave the wild words and worlds of eco-literature, one of the most dynamic, fastest-growing fields of literary study today. While environmental scientists focus on how humans are changing the planet, we will focus on how the environment (landscapes, wilderness, plants, animals, weather, ecosystems) shapes human consciousness and its expression in literature. Readings will include contemporary works of fiction, poetry, film, essay, and biography. We will read these texts through the lens of ecocritical theory to engage intersectional issues of race, gender, sexuality, animal rights, and environmental justice. Our adventures will include outdoor field trips and creative writing as well as the study of literature.
ENGL U397: Flash Fiction Workshop - Adams
How short can a story be and still be called a story? Works of flash fiction challenge traditional answers to this question. In this class, we'll focus on maximizing narrative impact in few words as we read, write, and workshop progressively shorter stories.
ENGL U398 - Disney as Literature - KUSCH
The Walt Disney Corporation dominates the media landscape in the US and worldwide--with franchises from Star Wars and Marvel to Pixar, ABC television, Disney channels, and, of course, Disney Animation Studios, Disney has produced much of the new media, popular culture "literature" of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. So what does it mean to "read" Disney productions as literature? And what is literature in the 21st century? What is the significance of transforming fairy tales, myths, and folklore into children's literature and film and, increasingly, adult television and movie content? What is the "Disney style" of literature in the 20th and 21st centuries? And what cultural functions does the Disney literary tradition serve? Texts include Snow White, Once Upon a Time, Mary Poppins, Mulan, The Lion King, Black Panther, as well as clips from other texts. Individual projects and presentations will focus on films and television shows of students' choice. Students will have a creative or analytic option for the final paper, both rooted in critical research: analyze a recent live-action new Disney adaptation/creation of an old Disney text as an example of postmodern American literature (ex. The Jungle Book, Alice in Wonderland, Alice through the Looking Glass, The Nutcracker, Cinderella, etc.) or create a pitch, storyboard/screenplay, or story for a new postmodern adaptation of your own.
ENGL U405: Shakespeare Survey - Canino
As a survey course, this class focuses on the "infinite variety" in Shakespeare's repertoire. We will study plays from the early and later parts of his career, from an assortment of genres (comedies, "problem" plays tragedies, Roman plays, histories) and from a large range of authorial perspectives. Texts include signet editions of Midsummer's Night's Dream, Measure for Measure, Antony & Cleopatra, Romeo & Juliet, Othello and Titus Andronicus.
ENGL U417: Romanticism - Godfrey
This course will cover canonical and non-canonical works from roughly 1780-1830. As a class, we will formulate opinions about common characteristics of "Romanticism," and theorize about the ability, or inability, of this term to describe the literature of this period. We will connect texts to the unique social and political conditions in which they were constructed and students will be expected to articulate specific arguments about the works we study. Texts: Jack Stillinger and Deidre Shauna Lynch, eds. The Norton Anthology of English Literature. Vol. D. (New York: Norton, 2006); Mary Shelley. Frankenstein. Ed. J. Paul Hunter. (New York: Norton, 1996).
ENGL U419: Victorian Literature - Godfrey
What do we do with a literary period that includes Oliver Twist, Charles Darwin, Alice in Wonderland and Dracula? And, despite all their clothes, why are Victorians so sexy? As a class, we will work toward developing our understanding of British literature from the beginning of Queen Victoria's reign through the early 1900s. We will investigate major characteristics (and misconceptions) of Victorians and theorize about the effects of historical and social changes on the literature of the period. We will read a wide variety of literature and reflect on the canon of 19th-century writers. By the end of the semester, students should be able to describe the general characteristics of Victorian literature and to identify specific traits and themes of individual writers and texts. Students should also demonstrate their ability to develop original theories that contribute to ongoing scholarly conversations about the literature we cover and should express them in research-supported written arguments. Texts: Christ, Carol T. and Catherine Robson, eds. The Norton Anthology of English Literature. Vol. E. New York: Norton, 2006. Bronte, Charlotte. Jane Eyre. 1847. New York: Norton, 2000.
ENGL U422: Modern Drama: Staging the New - Murphy
In this course, we will study several Modern dramatists who tried to change the way plays were written, acted and viewed. Should plays entertain or teach? Should they take familiar forms or stretch the audience's ability to understand them? Should they place recognizable characters in "real-life" situations, or should they experiment with the abstract, the dream-like, the just plain weird? In addition to posing these questions about what drama can be and do, Modern Drama reflects many of the enormous social and political changes that rocked the 20th century. A class trip to a local theater production of a modern drama will be on the program.
ENGL U424: British Literature 1950-Present - Murphy
DisUnited Kingdoms. In 2005 the London Times asked readers to define Britishness in five words. The winner was "No motto, please; we're British." How does the UK transform from the unity of its "finest hour" in WWII to the complexity of its motto-free present? We will begin with the post-war turn from military triumph to homelier realities in work by Muriel Spark and Philip Larkin. Burgess' A Clockwork Orange tests the limits of freedom in a post-industrial welfare state that may be more pathological than the novel's anti-hero, all in a vernacular as distant from standard English as the working-class Scots dialect in Irivine Welsh's Trainspotting. Both Rushdie's Midnight's Children and Angela Carter's Nights at the Circus confront us with a series of "posts"-postmodern, postcolonial, postfeminist-that suggest a radical break from a traditional British past, and yet Seamus Heaney finds the roots of the Northern Irish Troubles in ancient, even tribal identities. As we study this broader text of British culture, however, we'll be sure to scrutinize all of our readings as singular artifacts in what's still called, after all, the English language.
ENGL U426: American Literature 1830-1865 - O'Brien
American Romanticism: Free Spirits, Free Labor and Free Love. During the period from 1830 to 1865, American literature and American citizenship underwent a series of radical revisions. Believing, as Romantics did, in the revolutionary potential of the human imagination, authors including Nathaniel Hawthorne, Frederick Douglass, Frances Watkins Harper and Margaret Fuller inspired their readers and challenged authority at every turn. This course will read a variety of American authors who introduce revolutionary ideas about sex, citizenship, work and religion to a nation suffering from repression, inequality and a suffocating Puritan heritage. We will explore different genres with an eye toward their historical and cultural context-an era that witnessed political and social movements advocating free love, free labor, spiritualism, emancipation and women's rights.
ENGL U428: American Modernism - Kusch
Cultural Encounters. Modernist American authors describe their literary movements as a break from the standards and traditions of British and European literary culture. Their motto, as Ezra Pound describes it, is to "make it new," and these writers experiment with new ways to create and express a distinctly American literature and culture that can effectively describe the complicated problems of modern life. By reading texts about the cultural encounters and conflicts between rich and poor, popular and elite, masculine and feminine, immigrant and "native, and technological and traditional, students will develop skills in close reading and analytic writing They will also demonstrate those skills through class discussions, response papers, class presentations, research papers and exams. Texts include poems, novels and plays published between World War I and the Cold War, such as The Waste Land, Passing, The Great Gatsby, The Sound and the Fury, The Professor's House, After the Fall and A Streetcar Named Desire.
ENGL U430: American Postmodernism - Kusch
Students will read contemporary U.S. texts from the beats like Allen Ginsberg to the confessional Sylvia Plath and Nobel Prize winner Toni Morrison in order to explore ways that literature can still intervene and inspire in our postmodern world. We will explore the ways these post-WWII, post-civil rights and postmodern writers attempt to shape the direction of literature and society today. Texts include Lin-Manuel Miranda's Hamilton, Toni Morrison's Jazz, Colson Whitehead's The Intuitionist, Rachel Kushner's The Mars Room, Don Delillo's Silence and several short works. Students earn a Design Thinking Badge to publish to their resumes, LinkedIn, or Handshake accounts.
ENGL U437: Women Writers - Godfrey
Working from the understanding that much has changed about what it means to be a "woman," this course considers the psychological, cultural, historical, political and economic implications of this gendered identity through the lens of literature. Analyzing texts written from vastly different experiences of womanhood in light of multiple feminist critical perspectives, students will contemplate the complexity of this body of literature. Readings will include novels by Mary Wollstonecraft, Jane Austen, Kate Chopin, Charlotte Perkins-Gilman, Alice Walker, Maxine Hong Kingston, Susanna Kaysen and Azar Nafisi as well as poetry by Marge Piercy, Adrienne Rich, Emily Dickinson and Sylvia Plath. Course requirements include reading quizzes, short essay, two longer essays and two exams. This course is also approved as part of a minor in Women's and Gender Studies.
ENGL U451: Introduction to Linguistics - Marlow
Language is the basis for all science, literature and communication, and linguistics is the study of the basics of how language works. The format is interactive and designed to allow you to apply information from the text to your life.
ENGL U473: The Teaching of Writing - Herr
Would you love to teach writing but are not sure how you would go about it? Would you like to have an introduction to what writing scholars have to say about the writing process? Would you like to have some hands-on practice with preparing lesson plans and giving feedback to students' writing? Would you enjoy taking part in a training workshop with other aspiring English teachers? Then ENGL473, The Teaching of Writing, is for you. In this class, we will combine writing theory with practice in order to help prepare you for teaching writing in middle and secondary schools. We will focus especially on designing writing assignments, preparing lesson plans to teach them and practice giving feedback to students, all in a teaching workshop atmosphere.
ENGL U483: Theories of Literary Criticism - Kusch
The course will cover various theories of literary criticism with the aim of establishing standards of judgment and providing a framework for advanced literature students to identify their own place within contemporary theory debates. Consider the underlying assumptions of literary studies–What is literature? What core questions guide the methodology of literary study? What are the implications for the field in assuming one critical framework over another? Students will become familiar with major theoretical movements and core primary theory articles and will practice applying theories to original criticism of literary texts. This course is recommended for all English and English Education students considering graduate school or anyone who enjoys thinking philosophically about words and the world.
ENGL U485: Adolescent Literature - O'Brien
This course explores themes in adolescent development and issues in teen lives including but not limited to sexual identity, disability, and heroic quests such as the coming-of-age narratives in the Harry Potter and Hunger Games series. We also explore adaptations from book to film, teaching strategies, and digital storytelling. Since this class is cross-listed with African American YA literature, you have the option to choose from a menu of novels, books, and assignments so that you can tailor this highly interactive class to your best interests.
ENSL U353: Principles of Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages - Marlow
This undergraduate course is designed for potential teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages--either in classrooms, online, or in unconventional environments abroad. Many of our English, Spanish, French, German, and education alumni have explored careers teaching English in Latin America, Europe, Africa, and Asia. Many others have taken on responsibilities as ESL teachers in K-12 classrooms in the US. This is also great preparation for students interested in the Peace Corps Prep program.
- Are you prepared for senior seminar and the Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI)? Your OPI rating can be used to show employers that your Spanish skills add to your career-readiness. Majors in Spanish or Secondary Education-Spanish should aim for an Advanced Low rating, so take opportunities to practice conversation with each other, at conversation tables or cultural events on campus or in the community, and any opportunity you can get. Review the OPI preparation materials from the Center for Open Educational Resources and Language Learning at the University of Texas at Austin for tips and practice exercises.
- Don't forget to ask your advisor for career advice--explore internships, prepare your resume and cover letter, research graduate schools, and more with the help of your Spanish faculty and USC Upstate's Career Management.
Spanish U300 Topics in Conversation - MEGGAN BURTON (Spring)
Welcome to Spanish 300 – Telenovelas! The purpose of this course is to provide students with intensive listening practice and directed speaking practice with intermediate and advanced structures. To that end, we will be
watching El cuerpo del deseo, a popular recent telenovela, and using it and other materials to frame our class discussions. Research on language acquisition tells us that learners need extensive language input to help them speak. The goal of this course is to expose students to Spanish input that is, in the words of Andy Trimino and Nancy Ferguson, “comprehensible,” and “copious” (Intensive Input in Language Acquisition); half the challenge of the class consists of listening comprehension practice with the series and video clips, while the other half will be discussing related topics in class. While the dialogue is quick, the characters and their motivations are consistent, so students can learn to infer from context the meaning of new vocabulary. Some students will find the listening very challenging at first, but each episode will be easier to understand than the last. Conversely, students who find it very easy to understand the content will be expected to stretch themselves by analyzing the program on a more sophisticated level, in terms of themes, symbols, accuracy/inaccuracy of cultural representations, etc.
Spanish U310 Advanced Conversational Spanish--GABRIELLE DRAKE (Fall)
¡ Bienvenidos! –Este curso es un curso de español avanzado que está destinado a desarrollar principalmente sus habilidades orales en el idioma.
Para el final del curso los estudiantes deberán haber mejorado su pronunciación y su habilidad para escuchar; deberán ser capaces de entender la mayor parte de lo que ven en televisión y deberán ser capaces de sostener conversaciones interpersonales extendidas y eficientes, cuando se refieran a temas personales y cotidianos; también deberán incrementar su vocabulario y haber empezado a desarrollar su habilidad para expresar ideas y opiniones acerca de temas generales. El curso desarrollará el uso del lenguaje en el mundo moderno, visto atravesé de los Estrenos de Cine. El
curso es esencialmente comunicativo y no se detendrá mucho elementos de
gramática, aunque si escribiremos sobre los temas.
Spanish U309 Advanced Spanish Language I (Fall)
This is the first of two writing courses designed to improve students’ writing skills in Spanish. Intended Audience: Spanish majors and all students with a knowledge of Spanish and those interested in understanding the nature of writing, seeing writing as a process rather than a product and as a communicative act. By the end of this course, you should be able to present information, concepts and ideas on a variety of topics utilizing various modes of writing such as description, narration, exposition, and argumentation. In
addition, you should be able to use some complex structures of Spanish grammar in a contextualized written form; use traditional sources for research (books, journals, newspapers); and take notes in Spanish from oral and written sources for use in expressing your own ideas on various topics.
Spanish U314 Advanced Spanish Language II--Spring
This course exposes students to intermediate to advanced grammatical concepts and to different kinds of writing. Students use grammar correctly in a variety of writing styles with different purposes and intended audiences.
Translation, Interpreting and Professional Applications
Spanish U311 Introduction to Translation--MARIA FRANCISCO MONTESO
This course provides students with both the theoretical and practical problem-solving skills necessary for professional translation between English and Spanish. Translation of legal, medical, technical, and commercial texts in their linguistic and cultural context and an overview of the translator profession are studied throughout the semester. The course emphasizes the appropriate use of the tools available for producing quality professional translation. Students will practice using dictionaries, glossaries, thesauri, and computer resources in both languages. Freelance project management, ethics, billing, and liability of professional translators will be studied. The majority of class time will be dedicated to practical activities and translating texts individually or collectively, including service learning activities with area non-profit organizations.
Spanish U312 Introduction to Interpreting--MARIA FRANCISCO MONTESO
This course deals with the theoretical and practical foundations of interpreting in community settings, including health, education and social settings. It also provides an overview of the interpreting activity and profession by focusing on the different interpreting modes (especially consecutive interpretation and sight-translation), settings and techniques; professional role and professional ethics, standards of practice, decision-making and dilemma-solving strategies and other tools to help students grasp and practice interpreting. Additionally, students will increase their knowledge of health literacy by studying medical terminology and other relevant facts about health care. This introductory interpreting course will focus on the Spanish-English language pair.
Spanish U315 Spanish for the Professions: Business Professions--MEGGAN BURTON
This course in Spanish for Specific Purposes exposes students to the cultural conventions and specialized language and forms of expression used in doing business with Spanish partners.