A Flexible, Hands-on, Liberal Arts Education

Professional Writing and Rhetoric (PWR) is built around a common set of six concentration courses, but individualized through a set (or "track") of electives and a Special Topics course carefully selected by students in consultation with their PWR advisor. Additional flexibility is achieved through the pursuit of internships and an individually designed "cognate" (an area of specialization, possibly a minor) outside of the major. 

The aim is to give students the flexibility to construct an educational experience that matches their interests while also ensuring a firm disciplinary foundation.

Just as PWR students are active in developing their studies, they are regularly engaged in hands-on work that challenges them to actively learn, implement, and reflect on course content, both inside the classroom and out. Many programmatic features support this hands-on, active-learning approach.

  • PWR courses are taught within CUPID. (the Center for Undergraduate Publishing and Information Design), a computer classroom designed to place at one's fingertips the tools of the trade, while also supporting hands-on, active, collaborative learning.
  • PWR courses include active, creative, problem-solving assignments and projects ranging from simulated case studies to real-world client and service-learning partner projects.
  • In addition to traditional "classroom courses," students are highly encouraged to include multiple internships as part of their coursework (one is required, many students have two or more).

The Curriculum

In addition to 20 semester hours in the English major core (as part of which, PWR students take English 304 - Understanding Rhetoric), PWR students take five core courses, and internship, and two electives. For complete course descriptions, click here.

  • ENG 215 - Introduction to Professional Writing and Rhetoric (offered fall)
  • ENG 217 - Professional Writing & Technology Studio (offered spring)
  • ENG 381 - Professional Writing and Rhetoric Internship (2 sh; any term)
  • ENG 313 - Special Topics in PWR (offered fall)
  • ENG 397 - Writing as Inquiry (offered fall)
  • ENG 497 - Researching Writing: PWR Senior Seminar (offered spring)

Plus two PWR electives:

  • A 200-level PWR course (ENG 206 TESOL, 211 Style and Editing, 212 Multimedia Rhetorics, 219 Writing Studies Survey)
  • A 300/400-level PWR course (ENG 310 International Rhetorics, 311 Publishing, 312 Visual Rhetorics, 318 Writing Science, 319 Writing Center Workshop)

Updated August 8, 2016.