Analysis and use of patterns of reasoning derived from the disciplines of rhetoric, informal logic, cognitive science, and the theory of argumentation.
Arts & Letters (A&L) courses create meaningful opportunities for students to engage actively in the modes of inquiry that define a discipline. Courses are broad in scope and demonstrably liberal in nature (that is, courses that promote open inquiry from a variety of perspectives). Though some courses may focus on specialized subjects or approaches, there will be a substantial course content locating that subject in the broader context of the major issues of the discipline. Qualifying courses will not focus on teaching basic skills but will require the application or engagement of those skills through analysis and interpretation.
Literary Theory/Criticism courses teach academic and rigorous media comprehension, the major modes and schools of criticism and theory, and theories and techniques of reasoning, rational discourse, and argumentation.
Theory/Rhetoric courses teach media theory, the major modes and schools of criticism and theory, and theories and techniques of reasoning, rational discourse, and argumentation.
The interdisciplinary minor in Writing, Public Speaking, and Critical Reasoning offers students a coherent program of courses that strengthen students' abilities to write well, to speak effectively in public, and to think critically. This minor is built on courses in English, Writing, and Philosophy and is taught by professors from English, Philosophy, and the Honors College.