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ENGW 3333.01



fall 2016


Beth Eakman Re


CM Box #998

Office: Andre Hall 302 Hours: TBA



Required: Thinking with Type (2nd Ed), by Ellen Lupton *GREAT NEWS!* Most of the book's content is now available online and free. While I strongly recommend that you purchase the hard copy edition, you should definitely get started right away by clicking on the link and reading this version while you wait for your hard copy.

Required: Sketchbook (hardbound recommended)

Print costs**

* and **, see notes below


About the Course

Print Production (formerly Desktop Publishing) builds on the skills you’ve learned in Information Design/Document Design and introduces you to the vocabulary and processes of preparing print documents. We will look at the rhetorical uses of print elements such as

  • Page design
  • Type
  • Color
  • Image
  • Graphics
  • And more....

You will learn to analyze and evaluate document design and to create rhetorically effective documents of your own. We will begin working with basic word processing programs such as Word (for Mac or PC) and move on to InDesign as the semester progresses. Your final project will be a hard back book-length collection of your design work.


Course Overview

The semester is organized around the following documents in the following order. Each will build on the previous one. Each document, with the exception of the final portfolio, will be submitted in a double pocket folder accompanied by a letter of transmittal that explains the relevance of your design choices to the document’s content (audience/purpose/occasion/text), evidence of planning (sketches, clips, notes), Peer review forms, and earlier revisions.

  • Redesign a flyer. Find a flyer on or near campus that is somewhere between awful and improvable. In light of its intended audience, purpose, occasion, and message, redesign it. Make sure that you keep a copy of the original flyer to share with the class.
  • Make an informational poster explaining a complex concept or process. 
  • Design a sales document (eg, brochure, catalog, order form, flyer, menu, product sheet, etc) that addresses a communication need of a real organization.
  • Design your own business communication materials for your business as a writer, editor, and document designer. This package will include the following components that create a strong brand identity: nameplate, logo, letterhead, business card, report cover sheet template, and invoice.
  • Color and type quote assignment.  TBA
  • Writing sample layout.  Design a series of poems (3ish), work of fiction, newspaper story, essay, or academic paper. You may use your own piece or one from another student for this assignment.
  • Final Print Portfolio: Hardback Book. The previous six assignments along with your letters of transmittal will form the content for your book. If you use a service like Blurb, you can order more copies on demand and (we hope) use them to show off your work at job or grad school interviews.



In addition to Thinking with Type, plan to do lots of supplemental reading and browsing of documents online. I recommend keeping a Pinterest board for sharing design samples and inspiration.


Why a sketchbook?


While you will learn some InDesign skills in this class, I do not recommend composing or designing in it. You should start with basic drawings—crude stick figures are just fine—so that you have a plan for your layout before you start your electronic composition. I love InDesign, but it can be a pain to undo things once you’ve got them set up. You can also use it as a “clip file,” a sort of idea book where you stick magazine pages, ads, or typefaces that you like.

There is also good evidence that writing notes by hand helps you learn and retain course content better than typing it or just hoping it sticks in your brain. Please take notes, draw pictures, and doodle in your sketchbooks. I will check them from time to time. One former student used an enormous coloring book for note-taking and it was a work of art by the end of the semester.


**Print Costs

Because this is a class on Print Production, you will need to plan to spend some money on printing. This will mean some single color print copies of assignments and a final book project.


Single assignments: I recommend using FedEx/Kinkos for most of your printing. They are quick, cheap, and usually get it right the first time. Ask me how to create nice posters for about a dollar each.


While you are welcome to use any of the websites that allow you to print books or photo books, I recommend if you want a hard cover or if you want something that looks more like a high-quality magazine or literary journal. I have samples of both in my office. Students report spending between $30 and $60 on these and have used them for job interviews. Several were featured in SOURCE and J-SOURCE.


There will be a midterm and final over vocabulary and concepts. Plan to take careful notes in class and share them with your classmates to make sure that you don't miss important information that is not clearly stated in your textbook.


Peer Editing


You will provide feedback to your classmates on their assignments on a regular basis and your final portfolio will include an analysis and evaluation of a peer’s document.


Plan to present your designs to the class on a regular basis. You will need electronic copies of the documents to share on the projector screen when you discuss your design choices.



Calculating your grade for this course is really easy. All of the assignments have point, rather than percentage, values. When you add them up, you’ll get your grade.

Deliverables: (60) Each of your documents must be submitted with a letter of transmittal and any other requested documents as detailed on the assignments page. These are essentially completion grades. If you submit your document on time, complete, and according to submission specifications, you'll get the full ten points of credit.

Documents (10 points each)

  • Flyer Redesign
  • Informational Poster 
  • Sales Document
  • Branding Package
  • Color and Type Quote
  • Writing Sample Layout

Tests: (10) Midterm vocabulary and concepts quiz

Book/Journal: (30)


Because attendance is so important to the success of the course, I may deduct points from your final average for poor attendance. It is almost impossible to make an A for the class if you have more than three absences for the semester. Perfect attendance adds three points to your final grade.



Do not contact me after a missed class and ask “what did I miss.” If you are absent, you are responsible for getting information that we covered in class from a classmate. You will be responsible for making copies of handouts and notes if you need them.



Assignments are due at the beginning of class on the due date. I do not accept late homework assignments. With permission, late formal papers may be submitted for up to 50% of the total grade points, but will be returned without feedback. Missed quizzes and in-­‐class assignments cannot be made up. Athletes must contact me at the beginning of the semester with calendars.


Check your email and my website daily. You are responsible for information that I send by email. Let me know immediately if your email address changes during the semester.


Design Software Training

I have scheduled two week-long workshops for training on Adobe InDesign, which is currently the professional standard. Even a basic understanding of how it works will make you more marketable as a professional writer. If you are already a pro, plan to help others in the class during these workshops. Attendance is mandatory and will count toward your participation grade.


The university offers additional training in Adobe Creative Suite design products. If you are interested in design, I encourage you to take advantage of these resources. They are free to you while you are a student here and they are very expensive once you are out of school.


Academic Integrity

St. Edward’s University, the English department, and I expect you to practice academic honesty in all of your work. Please consult the SEU student handbook if you have any questions about what constitutes academic dishonesty. As an upper-­‐ level student of English, you are expected to know and practice the appropriate use of sources and documentation.


SEU takes academic dishonesty very seriously. Penalties include a zero for the assignment, a failing grade for the class, and expulsion from the university.

Support Services


If you have a medical, psychiatric, or learning disability, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires that the university makes appropriate accommodations. Please bring your documentation to me as early in the semester as possible. Student Disability Services is in Moody Hall 155, in the Academic Planning and Support offices.


Your student fees entitle you to a wide range of support services. I encourage you to take advantage of these resources.



Just as I encourage you to take advantage of the other resources that SEU provides, I encourage you to take advantage of the resource that I offer as your professor. If I can help, do not hesitate to contact me. Please feel free to come by my office or send me an email. I get paid to help you learn. Use this resource.




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