Categorized | Education

Hawaii Pacific University offers course at HPA


Hawaii Preparatory Academy will offer a Hawaii Pacific University (HPU) course on the HPA campus during the 2011 fall semester. Analyzing and Writing Arguments (WRI 1100), which will run from September 6 to December 9, is open to Big Island juniors and seniors and adult community members.

“We are very excited to be working with Hawaii Preparatory Academy to offer college courses to their students and other Big Island residents who are interested in furthering their education,” said Dr. Steven Combs, dean of the College of Humanities & Social Sciences at HPU. “HPA is an ideal partner because of the school’s commitment to their students and academic quality. I hope that this is the beginning of a larger project that allows students to connect their high school experiences to what they will encounter in college. It’s great for HPU and HPA, but mostly, it is a wonderful opportunity for learning.”

The online course provides instruction and practice in college-level writing tasks, emphasizing the writing of arguments and the awareness that argument is the cornerstone of academic writing. Students will develop critical thinking skills and academic writing skills by reading, analyzing and understanding complex texts from different cultures and communities. Students will learn how to write college-level arguments and refine their writing process, develop an awareness of their audience and rhetorical context, learn to use source material effectively and properly, and expand their repertoires of rhetorical strategies and organizational techniques.

Dr. Mark Tjarks, associate professor of English at HPU, will teach the course. Tjarks’ research interests include playwriting, scripting, film, modern drama, intercultural rhetoric, and 20th-century rhetorical theory. His plays have been produced by Kumu Kahua Theatre, Lizard Loft, WIT, Kauai Community College, and Aloha Performing Arts Co. on the Big Island, including multiple productions at the Kauai Shorts and the Original Play festivals (OPF).

Students will work individually and meet twice a month on Tuesday evenings at HPA for group discussions and video conferencing with Tjarks.

“Selective colleges are searching for students who have intellectual curiosity and initiative,” said Andrew Kelsey, director of college counseling at HPA. “By enrolling in college credit courses offered through Hawaii Pacific University, students demonstrate these academic qualities and strengthen their college application profiles.”

The three-credit course fee for students enrolled in high schools on the island of Hawaii is $500 (plus a $50 application fee and materials); the fee for adult community members is $990 (plus $50 application fee and materials).

Interested students and community members can request more information by e-mail at:

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