Student with instructor in Writing Studies class


Our graduate students share a common interest in understanding how people use written communication (digital, visual, textual) to shape the world around them, with a particular emphasis on communication in scientific and technical areas.

On This Page:

Our Degree Programs

The Department of Writing Studies offers four graduate degrees and three graduate minors, each tailored to meet distinct educational and career preparation goals.

Our degrees are divided into two categories: 

  • Professional degrees with fully-online courses designed for individuals who wish to move into technical communication as a career and for working technical communicators who want to advance their careers. Students graduate prepared for work and leadership roles in such settings as the medical device industry, banking, higher education, online learning, and software development.
    • MS in scientific and technical communication
    • Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in technical communication
    • Scientific and technical communication graduate minor
  • Research degrees that prepare students for positions in higher education as college professors, writing program administrators, and allied careers. Students participate in a residential program with a strong emphasis on writing pedagogies, produce original research, and teach undergraduates in such areas as technical writing and communication, rhetoric and composition, writing studies and writing pedagogy, and digital literacies.
    • PhD in rhetoric and scientific & technical communication
    • MA in rhetoric and scientific & technical communication
    • Rhetoric and scientific & technical communication graduate minor
    • Literacy and rhetorical studies graduate minor

What Sets Our Programs Apart?

The Department of Writing Studies’ graduate programs are among the oldest and most highly respected of their kind in the country. Students in both tracks work with internationally recognized faculty who are leaders in national and local disciplinary communities and engaged in ground-breaking research in rhetoric and scientific and technical communication. Our graduate programs center around a strong sense of community and collaboration, with close working relationships between faculty and students.