Writing Out Loud: Journalism and Personal Essay Writing

Spring 2019 quarter

Taught by

creative writing, sustainability, public policy

How do we, as writers, cut through the overload of information confronting everyday people in order to get them thinking and acting on critical issues? This one-quarter program is suited to students interested in affecting public policy and educating the broader public about complex issues. As writers, how do we educate ourselves and others in order to break through “confirmation bias,” or the human tendency to interpret any information as affirming one’s pre-conceived perspective? We will gain understanding of foundational concepts of writing the longer journalistic feature, as well as a personal essay that is primarily intended to educate.  We will leave the “rant zone,” and learn to layer writing that informs and allows readers room to adjust seemingly hardened points of view.  Students will gain skills in interviewing, research, layering, and using creative writing techniques that make journalistic feature pieces and essays more engaging.  We will have a basic introduction to adding quantitative information to make writing clear. Students will write and substantially revise two major pieces, including a journalistic feature and an essay/personal essay.  We will read several examples of excellence to ground us in learning structures and techniques. This program will be useful to students interested in communications, writing, advocacy, and non-profit work.

Program Details

Fields of Study

communication writing

Preparatory For

communications, writing, advocacy, and non-profit work


Spring Open

Location and Schedule

Campus Location


Time Offered


Advertised Schedule

Mon/Wed 6-9:30 p.m.

Online Learning

Hybrid Online Learning < 25% Delivered Online