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Unleash Your Writing Superpower: Crafting Clear, Concise and Persuasive Prose

2nd term
Molecular Microbiology and Immunology
3 credits
Academic Year:
2021 - 2022
Instruction Method:
Asynchronous Online with Some Synchronous Online
Auditors Allowed:
Yes, with instructor consent
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Course Instructor:
  • Brian W. Simpson
Brian Simpson

Introduction to Online Learning is required prior to participating in any of the School's Internet-based courses. none


Writing is the essential skill for advancing your education and career. If you can write clearly, concisely and persuasively, your ideas, findings and analysis will resonate with peers, leaders in your field, and the public. This course provides a systematic approach to writing that will help you in many aspects of your work as a student, a scientist, a public health professional or a policymaker. It will sharpen the skills of strong writers and boost the confidence of those who are apprehensive about writing. Regardless of where you’re coming from, this course will help you write quickly, precisely, and confidently.

Introduces a system of planning, organization, writing and revision. Emphasizes the importance of defining the message, audience and purpose for any piece of writing. Illuminates the basic elements of good writing. Focuses on clear, concise and persuasive writing. Explores the use of rhetoric and storytelling to maximize a piece of writing's impact. Emphasizes best practices in various forms of writing.

Learning Objectives:

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

  1. Apply a variety of strategies to craft clear and concise written communications.
  2. Demonstrate mastery of standard grammar and style conventions in writing
  3. Organize any piece of writing effectively.
  4. Employ rhetoric and storytelling to strengthen the communication’s impact.
  5. Integrate strategic revision into the writing process.
  6. Critique the effectiveness of peers’ writing.
Methods of Assessment:

This course is evaluated as follows:

  • 15% Participation
  • 15% Quizzes
  • 20% In-class Exercises
  • 50% Written Assignment(s)

Instructor Consent:

No consent required

Special Comments:

This course is part of the JHSPH R3 Graduate Program Series. It is distinct from and targets a different learner population from the Writing for Results course (600.612.86) in the OPAL program.