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COM 61 W — Business Writing in English: The Finer Points

Quarter: Fall
Course Format: Online (System Requirements)
Duration: 10 weeks
Date(s): Sep 24—Dec 7
Drop Deadline: Sep 27
Units: 2
Tuition: $640
Instructor(s): Kristopher Geda
Limit: 24
Status: Closed
Please Note: No class the week of November 19. Online courses have a new refund policy. The full tuition refund deadline for this course is 9/27 at 5:00 pm (PT); 50% tuition refund deadline is 10/2 at 5:00 pm (PT).
Sep 24—Dec 7
10 weeks
Drop By
Sep 27
2 Units
Kristopher Geda
Please Note: No class the week of November 19. Online courses have a new refund policy. The full tuition refund deadline for this course is 9/27 at 5:00 pm (PT); 50% tuition refund deadline is 10/2 at 5:00 pm (PT).
Effective business writing is an important skill for achieving personal and organizational success. This online writing course will help advanced non-native speakers of English explore and practice the types of writing common to American business situations. Example texts may include evaluative documents such as self-assessments or annual reviews of others, and email requests for meetings and deadline extensions. Emphasis will be placed on advanced vocabulary choice, advanced grammar topics, and concise expression of complex ideas. Students will produce at least two short written texts as well as two drafts of a longer homework assignment on a topic of their choice. They will also participate in peer review and collaborative exercises focusing on written expression that fits the cultural norms of the American workplace. This course gives students an opportunity to get personalized feedback on set assignments as well as on texts specific to their own situation.


  • Course sizes are limited.
    You won't have 5,000 classmates. This course's enrollment is capped at 24 participants.

  • Frequent interaction with the instructor.
    You aren't expected to work through the material alone. Instructors will answer questions and interact with students on the discussion board and through weekly video meetings.

  • Study with a vibrant peer group.
    Stanford Continuing Studies courses attract thoughtful and engaged students who take courses for the love of learning. Students in each course will exchange ideas with one another through easy-to-use message boards as well as optional weekly real-time video conferences.

  • Direct feedback from the instructor.
    Instructors will review and offer feedback on assignment submissions. Students are not required to turn in assignments, but for those who do, their work is graded by the instructor.

  • Courses offer the flexibility to participate on your own schedule.
    Course work is completed on a weekly basis when you have the time. You can log in and participate in the class whenever it's convenient for you. If you can’t attend the weekly video meetings, the sessions are always recorded for you and your instructor is just an email away.

  • This course is offered through Stanford Continuing Studies.
    To learn more about the program, visit our About Us page. For more information on the online format, please visit the FAQ page.

Prerequisite: Advanced English proficiency by non-native speakers using English in professional settings. Students are not required to complete COM 32 W: “Business Writing in English: The Foundations” prior to this course. However, prospective students should review both syllabi to determine which course best suits their needs.

Kristopher Geda, Lecturer, English for Foreign Students, Stanford Language Center

Kristopher Geda has taught English courses in speaking, listening, vocabulary development, reading, writing, and grammar. He focuses on helping learners develop the cultural competency necessary to successfully operate with and among highly competent speakers of English. He received a PhD in linguistics from the University of Pittsburgh.

Textbooks for this course:

Please Note: The required textbook for this course has three versions, any of which is acceptable:

1. a paperback version
2. a one-year license to the online version
3. a paperback version with a one-year license to the online version

Please buy the one version that makes the most sense to you. You need only buy one copy. Please purchase online or hardcopy (not both). URL: https://elt.oup.com/catalogue/items/global/grammar_vocabulary/practical_english_usage_4th_edition/?cc=global&selLanguage=en
(Required) Michael Swan, Practical English Usage, 4th Edition (ISBN 978-0-19-420243-5)