ENGL 200 | Prof. Daniel Scott Snelson | dsnelson @ humnet
Tuesdays | THE INTERNET | 3:00-5:50pm (?)
Office Hours: danny snelson



An introduction to the profession of literary studies. The course will cover a wide array of topics including (but not limited to): the state of the discipline; scholarly organizations and conference presentations; critical and methodological approaches to literary studies; writing and publishing for scholarly and general audiences; building a CV and a resume; developing professional skills; understanding the academic job market and humanities careers.

Everything will be made available online. 

As a general outline for the course, take note that these are broad strokes subject to change. This seminar is fully interactive, growing and responding to its users. Each week will build on previous weeks, class conversations, and the directions that our study happens to follow. The content of the syllabus will be updated regularly as a result, though the requirements will remain fixed. The syllabus will only be completed after we finish the course, and all collective research into the profession has been conducted.

Given the brevity of the quarter, unexcused absences will cut into your participation percentage. If you must miss a class, it is your responsibility to make arrangements with me both before and after the absence. Proposals for interaction commensurate with a three-hour seminar session will be accepted. 

Participants will develop strategies and tactics for navigating graduate studies at UCLA and academic professions more generally. Technical skills for research, collaboration, and scholarly production will be analyzed and enhanced. Collectively, the course participants will produce curriculum for the study of the fields, organizations, publications, careers, methodologies, genres, and communities that comprise the discipline.

Between seminar sessions, we’ll continue an ongoing conversation over Discord. An invitation and signup to the dedicated (private) server will occur on our first meeting. This is a platform for informal conversation and advance preparation for seminar meetings and course actions. Responsive posts are encouraged.

Much of this course will require hands-on interaction with websites, collaborative docs, or an expanded range of social platforms. As such, you will need access to a laptop or computer (more than a tablet or phone) for most sessions. If you have any questions or concerns on this point, please don’t hesitate to ask, we’ll find a solution!

This course aims to facilitate access to research and exploration across a variety of platforms. Please don’t hesitate to draw attention to any point of access that might be improved: from the volume of the conversation, the size of text, the mode of access to video conferencing, and so forth. All possible accommodations will be made. Additionally, or for more information, you may contact the CAE at (310) 825-1501, or access the CAE website at




Week 1 — Introduction

Collective introductions and planning out the quarter ahead. 


Quick Research: Intro to the Profession

Platforms: Discord Setup + High Fidelity

This Syllabus

Week 2 — Starting with the CV

Exploring resources for graduate planning and “field guide.” 


Jessica McCrory Calarco, A Field Guide to Grad School: Uncovering the Hidden Curriculum (2020)

Introductions Social Hour Planning

Week 5 ~ * Optional Discussion * ~   

Week 6 — Exploring the Discipline

Investigating scholarly organizations, MLA divisions, as well as groups and interdisciplinary programs at UCLA.

Johanna Drucker (GSEIS), Introductions to Visualization and Interpretation: Humanistic Approaches to Display (2020) and Inventing the Alphabet (forthcoming). Selections from Selected Critical Fictions and The Fall

Week 7 — Preparing to Teach

Preparing to teach with the Center for the Advancement of Teaching, on syllabi and curricula, writing courses and programs. 

Guest speakerElizabeth Goodhue (Associate Director for Faculty Engagement, UCLA Center for the Advancement for Teaching).  

Carrie Hyde, Civic Longing: The Speculative Origins of U.S. Citizenship (2018) (Introduction: “Citizenship before the Fourteenth Amendment” and Coda: “Wong Kim Ark and ‘The Man Without a Country'”)

Week 8 — Securing Funding

Collating potential sources of funding, both intramural and extramural, grant applications, scholarships and fellowships, summer funds, financial planning.

Graduate Student Introductions:

Andrea Acosta, “Race and Self in Digital Fandom: Interview with Andrea Acosta (Kingston University BTS Conference)” (Interview, 2020)

Chelsea Kern, “Big Data and the Practice of Reading in Super Sad True Love Story” (Arizona Quarterly, 2020)

Anthony Kim

Dandi Meng, “The Confessing Image: Trisha Low’s Screenshot Poetics” (Jacket2, 2020)

Enrique Olivares, “Zona Descarga” (Prototype, 2020)

Jesslyn Whittell, “Poetry and the Precision of Bread” (The Rambling, 2020)

Week 10 — Looking Ahead

Experimenting with digital platforms, online presence, and a variety of tools and techniques to develop collective tactics for organization and research in the PhD program at UCLA. 

Navigating UCLA with guests from the EGU. Conclusions, reflections, directions. 

English Graduate Union Officers 2020-2021

Emma Ridder, President

Peter Tasca, Vice President

Matthew Swanson, Vice President

Brenda Wang, Vice President