perspectives in writing and rhetoric

rhetorics of mobility


fall 2005

ryan moeller, ph.d.

mwf 2.30-3.20

rwst 214


rwst 312e

an image of road signs that might be encountered while driving in Karnal, India

This syllabus and all the materials under this domain are subject to change at my discretion. However, these documents do represent the general requirements and criteria for the course to the best of my knowledge at the time they are posted.


Attendance in this workshop-style course is mandatory. Since the course will contain a good deal of in-class writing, peer group work, and conferences, students should not be late and should not miss any classes. The governing rule for attendance in this course should be that you always show up prepared to work. This means that you have read the material for that class and are prepared to discuss it or respond to it. Please do not come to class if you are unprepared, you are significantly late, or you do not plan on working on the course materials that day. All class work missed as a result of tardiness or absence is the studentís responsibility to make up.

In this MWF class, students who miss more than five classes will see their grade reduced one full letter grade for each missed class after the fifth absence. Significant and documented tardies will become absences when appropriately addressed on an individual basis.


While most mandatory discussions and materials should be covered under class time, individual or small group conferences with the instructor may be scheduled. Students should come to conferences prepared to discuss their work. A missed scheduled conference counts as an absence.

office hours

My office hours are Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 3.30-5.00 and by appointment in the Ray B. West building, room 312E. My office number is 797-8637 or you may reach me via email at I encourage each of you to attend my office hours throughout the semester as questions arise or just to discuss your writing.

university teaching fellow

We are very lucky to have secured a University Teaching Fellow for this course. Wilson Bateman will be helping me with several aspects of the course, but his primary responsbilities are facilitating writing workshops and technology access. He will hold office hours by appointment and as needed, and he will schedule some workshops at various times in the semester. Your productive relationship with our UTF will comprise the bulk of your participation grade, so get to know him! Wilson is available at: (replace the "_at_" with the @ symbol).

course texts

The required text for this course is:

Hoete, Anthony, ed. ROAM: Reader On the Aesthetics of Mobility. New York: Black Dog, 2003. ISBN: 1-901033-58-9.

I will also be assigning additional readings in class as needed. These will be made available to you in hardcopy format or in electronic format from this page. In order to read electronic documents, you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader, available free here.


To successfully complete this course, you must attend class and all scheduled conferences, complete all assignments on time, prepare for class, and participate in class activities and discussions. To receive full credit, all written assignments must be submitted on time, in the proper format (to be explained in separate assignment sheets), and with the required supporting materials. Late essays or drafts will not be accepted without penalty unless you have made arrangements for an extension at least 48 hours prior to the due date. You are required to retain copies of all of your writing throughout the entire semester.

For grading criteria of the different types of assignments, please see the assignments page. The following is a breakdown of the final grade:

writing event logs

20 pts.

mobile node field report

30 pts.

mobile agent field report

30 pts.

group presentation

10 pts.


20 pts.

mobile technology analysis

40 pts.


150 pts.

grammar and mechanics

I assume you have a standard competency in grammar and mechanics and will be able to demonstrate this to the class. You will not pass this course unless you possess such a competency. If your final projects contain multiple mistakes per page, you will not receive a passing grade. If you feel that you may need some help in this area, even more than we will cover in class, please contact me so we can make arrangements early in the semester.

writing center

I highly recommend that all students visit the writing center several times for each writing assignment. You should think of the writing center as a facility that will help you become a better writer. The writing center is located in Ray B. West, room 104. Appointments are available on their web site at:

academic dishonesty and plagiarism

You are expected to do your own original work in English 3040. Whenever you borrow graphics, quote passages, or use ideas from others, you are legally and ethically obliged to acknowledge that use, following appropriate conventions for documenting sources. To borrow someone elseís writing without acknowledging that use is an act of academic as well as professional dishonesty, whether you borrow an entire report or a single sentence. An act of plagiarism will usually result in an E for the course and be reported to the proper university administrators. All USU students are responsible for upholding the Student Code of Academic Integrity, available in electronic format at:

In addition to following the basic principles of fair use of othersí work and honesty and forthrightness in crediting the contribution of others to your work, you are expected to adhere to this basic professional principle: treat others with the respect that you would wish them to grant you. "Others" includes the people you work for and with (classmates, instructors, corporations, clients); the people you write to (audiences); and the people you write about. You are also to respect and care for the computer lab resources we have access to. Please follow lab policies.

students with disabilities

Students who require reasonable accommodations in order to fully participate in the course should document the disability with the Disability Resource Center (797-2444) and contact me within the first week of the course. Any request for special consideration relating to attendance, pedagogy, taking of examinations, etc., must be discussed with and approved by me. In cooperation with the Disability Resource Center, course materials can be provided in alternative format, large print, audio, diskette, or Braille.


I will be available in class, during office hours, and by appointment to answer any questions that you may have. Although I welcome your visits any time, I especially encourage every student to visit me at least once during the first two weeks of class.  Please feel free to e-mail me or to call me to arrange an appointment.

As a general rule, please allow me at least 24 hours to acknowledge and/or respond to your queries.