Starting in Fall 2023, the former concentration in Rhetoric and Teaching Writing has been elevated to a standalone Master of Arts program in Writing Studies.  Current students can choose to remain in the previous English MA with a concentration in Rhetoric and Teaching Writing or can switch to the MA in Writing Studies.  Contact your advisor if you'd like to discuss this. 

The MA in Writing Studies provides overviews of history, research, major and emerging voices, and important questions in composition, rhetoric, and pedagogy. The theory and research base prepares students for the writing classroom and for further graduate work. Students will also have opportunities to apply to teach a first-year writing course and participate in research.

Students must take the following core courses and an additional 9-12 units planned in consultation with the program advisor:

Core Courses

ENGL 5001 History of Rhetoric and Writing Studies, 3 units
ENGL 5010 Seminar: Composition and Rhetoric (may be taken twice for credit), 3 units
ENGL 5020 Assessment in English, 3 units
ENGL 5870 Research in Composition, 3 units
ENGL 5894 Teaching College Composition, 3 units
ENGL 5941 Internship in Teaching Writing, 3 units

Culminating Experience

In addition to coursework, students will choose ONE culminating experience to complete: a comprehensive exam, an advanced project, or a thesis.

Comprehensive Exam Advanced Project Thesis
Students will have 72 hours to write in response to two questions covering a required reading list and an additional list developed in consultation with faculty based on a student's research interests. Students work closely with a faculty member to design and complete a research project and deliverable. Students work closely with a faculty member to engage in and produce an extensive written study that is then formatted and filed in the university library.  


For more information about the program and comprehensive exams, including the concentration's current required reading list, click the link below:

View the current core reading list and frequently asked questions

Updated: August 29, 2023