WRT 332:
The Rhetoric of Web Design
Oakland University
Department of Writing and Rhetoric
Fall 2016, CRN: 45636
Wilson 400A, MWF 10:40 a.m.–11:47 a.m.


Jim Nugent




O'Dowd Hall 378

Office Hours:

MW, 12 noon–12:45 p.m., or by appointment any time.


Course Description

An intermediate course in the rhetorical, ethical, stylistic, and technical principles of web design. Applies the rhetorical principles and research methods learned in the prerequisite courses to the effective production of web documents. Prerequisite: WRT 160. 4 credits.

Course Goals and Expectations

Although WRT 332 will extensively cover the digital tools required for web design work, it is fundamentally not a technology class. Rather, this class will focus on developing your ability to combine a broad range of visual, textual, technological, and informational literacies to develop rhetorically effective websites. In addition to practicing good web design, this will also require producing self-conscious, critical reflection on your own work.

As with all university-level classes, I expect you to approach WRT 332 with a spirit of autodidacticism: an understanding that you are the one primarily responsible for the education you get out of this class. You will be expected to spend considerable time outside of the classroom reading, reflecting, studying major concepts, and working independently with the technology.

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:


Course Policies


There will be five major assignments in this class:

  1. "Up and Running" Assignment
  2. CSS Layout Assignment
  3. Client Site Redesign Project
  4. Client Documentation Project
  5. Final Project


I will give numeric grades (0.0, 1.0–4.0) for all major graded assignments in this class.

Quizzes are graded on a percentage scale and their average will be converted to a four-point scale to calculate your final grade. Average scores less than 40% will be converted to 0.0. All others will be converted to (your average quiz score−40%)÷15%.

Your final grade is determined as follows:


"Up and Running" Assignment


CSS Layout Assignment


Client Site Redesign Project


Client Documentation Project


Final Project


In-Class Work, Quizzes, and Small Assignments


Social Practices—This grade will reflect:

  • your contributions to class discussions, peer review activities, online activities, and group projects;
  • your commitment to submitting timely and complete work;
  • your ethos as a respectful citizen of the classroom and as a thoughtful rhetor in class-related communications; and
  • your capacity for successful collaboration with others.

Needless to say, if you are not in class, you are not doing many of these things, so this grade will also be a partial reflection of your attendance.

ADA Notice

Students with disabilities who may require reasonable accommodations should contact Oakland University’s Disability Support Services office for assistance: