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Rhetoric and Civic Life

A new first-year honors course sequence that offers comprehensive training in oral, written, visual, and digital communication

In partnership with both the Schreyer Honors College and the Paterno Fellows Program, the CDD helped to develop and deliver Rhetoric and Civic Life, a first-year honors course sequence that offers comprehensive training in the oral, written, visual, and digital communication skills necessary for the twenty-first century.

statue of cicero

This course unites these various means of delivery, framing the course in terms of rhetorical theories applicable to all communication situations and emphasizing the need to both strengthen communication skills and sharpen critical awareness of the various means of communication.

After reading about, discussing, and applying rhetorical concepts to specific situations, students in RCL (1) analyze civic rhetoric on campus and in their real and virtual communities, (2) research current political issues, and (3) develop and present arguments using a variety of mediums.

The course director for RCL is CDD Co-Director Debra Hawhee (English). Jessica O'Hara (English) is the course's assistant director. CAS lecturer Veena Raman oversees the ongoing assessment of RCL. To learn more about the course sequence, please visit the RCL website.

group of people at deliberative discussion

RCL in Action - Deliberative Discussion