I'll be your instructor for English 3140 (Technical Writing) during Minimester C (June 21 - July 11) at Clemson. As you know, the section in which you are enrolled is an online course, so all of your coursework and our communication will occur virtually. I wanted to send you this brief note before the course starts to let you know how to acquire the required text, where to get the (free) Adobe Creative Cloud software you’ll need for the course, and when you'll be able to learn more about the course.
You should get the course text as soon as possible and definitely before the class begins on Tuesday, June 21 so that you don't miss any coursework. We have a very short, three-week semester, so if you fall behind out of the gate, you won't be able to catch up. The text is available at the Clemson University Bookstore and can also be purchased online (for those not in the area). I'd recommend the digital version (much cheaper), but some people might prefer having a printed copy.
Blakesley, David, and Jeffrey Hoogeveen. Writing: A Manual for the Digital Age, 2e. Boston: Cengage, 2012. [Be sure that you get the Brief, 2nd Edition only; the print and digital (PDF) versions are identical. I would not recommend getting the Kindle version because the layout isn’t great.]
Cengage (print and digital options)
The course calendar, available just before the course starts, will detail what you should read and when. If you want to get a head start (and learn more about writing in online courses generally), read Chapter 22, "Writing for Online Courses."
I will send everyone a link to the primary course website two days before the class starts. We won't be using Blackboard for the class but instead a site that I've created using Drupal, a well-known content management system used in many contexts where technical writing plays an important role, from business and industry to entertainment and government.
3. Adobe Creative Cloud Software: All Clemson students have free access to Adobe’s Creative Cloud software. If you don’t have the Creative Cloud desktop app, start here: https://www.adobe.com/creativecloud/desktop-app.html. Download and install this app. Then, login using your Clemson email address (e.g., firstname.lastname@example.org; called your “Enterprise ID”). DO NOT use your g.clemson address! After you enter your Clemson email address (“Enterprise ID”), you will need to login via Clemson (only this first time). Your Adobe ID password doesn’t have to be the same as your Clemson password. For complete directions, look here: http://www.clemson.edu/ccit/software_applications/adobe.html. You’ll use Adobe InDesign, Behance, Photoshop, Portfolio, Acrobat, and possibly other software during the course.
The course will consist of both modular (self-paced) and interactive work, so while some assignments can be completed in advance of their due date, other "work in progress" (such as project drafts) will require that you respond to or interact with your peers and me as the work is completed.
In the meantime, please contact me privately by email if you have any questions or trouble getting the course text. Most of your questions will likely be answered on the course site when it's available.
I'm looking forward to e-meeting all of you very soon!