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Graduate Program

The department offers a Master of Arts Degree in Rhetoric and Writing Studies. We welcome students from a variety of backgrounds whose interests include theories and histories of rhetoric, professional and technical writing, the teaching of writing, new media, and rhetorics of culture, politics and social difference.

The M.A. program offers students from a variety of educational and professional backgrounds an opportunity for intensive study of written, spoken and visual language and their relationship to knowledge, culture, and professional practice. Courses inquire into the resources of persuasion and ways in which these have been theorized historically; writing theory and pedagogy; and the social, political, and workplace frameworks in which arguments are situated.

The program prepares students for advanced study in rhetoric, and such careers as teaching at the college and secondary levels; curriculum design; technical, scientific and professional writing; public relations; corporate communication and training; publishing; document and information design; educational technology; web development; medical informatics and others.

Students in the M.A. program complete a 30-unit program of study beyond the bachelor's level. The program offers students three emphases: the General Program, the Specialization in the Teaching of Writing and the Specialization in Professional Writing. The program includes a teaching internship for students in the Teaching of Writing specialization and a technical writing internship for students in the Professional Writing specialization, or, where appropriate, special study based on work experience.

We encourage students to take advantage of opportunities for employment as Teaching Associates, Writing Fellows and tutors.

The program application deadline for Fall 2016 is January 12th, 2016.

Learn more by viewing our program brochure (.pdf)


Dr. Ellen Quandahl
RWS Graduate Adviser
Office: Storm Hall West - 109
Phone: (619) 594-6833