English:Professional Writing


Bachelor of Arts | College of Arts and Science

What is English:Professional Writing?

Professional Writing (PW) is an ideal major for students who love to write and want to learn how to write in a wide variety of public and professional contexts. In Professional Writing, students will learn rhetorical theories and strategies that will help them write effectively in a wide range of print and digital media for a variety of audiences.

What are the features of Miami’s program?

Flexible, interdisciplinary curriculum

The Professional Writing major enables students to choose from an array of elective courses and tailor their learning for their professional goals and interests. In the Professional Writing major, students have a wide range of courses to choose from, including courses in digital media, global communications, editing/publishing, public writing, rhetoric, technical communication, etc. In addition to Professional Writing courses, students may also take for credit in the major courses from other programs, including Creative Writing, Interactive Media Studies, Journalism, Linguistics, Literature, Media and Culture, and Strategic Communication.

Corporate and community writing experience

All students have the opportunity, if they wish, to earn credit for internships as writers, editors, media specialists, for companies and organizations. In several PW courses, including in the senior capstone experience, students have the opportunity to work with community partners to create real-world communications, such as websites, brochures, and social media for local non-profits.

Individualized attention

Students in writing courses in the PW major receive individualized attention and extensive feedback on their writing at all stages of the process, from researching and drafting to revising, editing, and publishing. All majors have advisors with whom they have the opportunity to meet often to discuss course selection and career planning.

Multi-mediated writing opportunities with top-notch facilities

Students in the Professional Writing major learn how to write for a range of print and digital media. Students have in-class and out-of-class access to several computer classrooms (PC and Mac) that are equipped with high-end, industry-standard software for digital and print design, web publication, image and audio editing, animation, and online development of help systems and portfolios.

Award-winning faculty

The award-winning faculty in the Professional Writing major are a diverse and energetic group committed to helping students pursue their interests, expand their expertise, and launch their professional careers. PW faculty have been nominated for and/or won many awards including but not limited to:

  • U.S. Professor of the Year
  • Outstanding Professor Award nominee given by Miami's Associated Student Government and Campus Activities
  • national Best Book Award from The International Journal of Computers and Composition
  • Council of Writing Program Administrator's Outstanding Contribution to the Discipline Award

What are the special admission requirements, if any?

There are no additional admission requirements for this program.

What courses would I take?

Students will also have the opportunity to select from 5 tracks in the major:

  • Digital and Technical Communication
  • Editing in Professional Contexts
  • Intercultural Rhetoric and Writing
  • Public Writing and Rhetoric
  • Self-designed

In each track there are many electives to choose from. In their senior year, students choose one of 2 options for a senior capstone course, including options where they create print and digital communications for local community partners.

What can I do with this major?

The major will prepare students to do the following

  • Work as a writer, editor, or communications specialist for companies and non-profit organizations in an array of professional sectors, including business, education, government, health, marketing, publishing, science, and technology
  • Publish effective print and digital communications in a wide variety of genres and styles
  • Develop strong persuasive skills ideal for future studies in law school or graduate school
  • Participate in writing projects for community organizations that provide valuable career preparation and that provide experience with project management and user-centered design
  • Develop personal and public expression for active citizenship in local and global communities

Career prospects for professional writers are extensive and expected to continue to be so (see the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook for projections regarding, for example, technical writers, and writers and authors). In addition, the strong writing and persuasive skills you will develop in this major are considered by business leaders to be essential, as evidenced by the 2018 Job Outlook Survey conducted by the National Association of Colleges and Employers

Who can I contact for more information?

Department of English
Tim Lockridge, Director of Professional Writing