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The Writing and Rhetoric Studies program is a popular choice for students interested in developing their writing skills and understanding the theories and practices behind effective written argument. Students in the Writing and Rhetoric Studies program can expect to develop critical thinking skills, gain a deep understanding of the writing process, and hone their ability to communicate effectively in a variety of contexts.

Rhetoric is the art of effective or persuasive speaking or writing. If you’re interested in studying communication across different audiences, contexts, and purposes, then Writing & Rhetoric Studies at the U is a great fit for you. Studying rhetoric helps you become a successful writer in personal, professional, and social contexts across a range of media. Courses focus on histories of writing and rhetoric, contemporary literacy studies, research and publishing practices, and writing in specific areas such as business, law, medicine, social sciences, science, and activism. This course of study will give you tools to write effectively and confidently in many situations. You will also learn the rhetorical strategies and skills that make writers effective while exploring how texts are shaped by social practices and cultural values.

Writing and Rhetoric Studies is an ideal double major which complements a variety of other majors and can be a valuable addition to any resume. This major allows you the flexibility to “choose your own adventure.” Examples of classes include cultural, professional, scientific, digital, and sound rhetorics. Courses in the major are diverse, small, with most enrolling fewer than 30 students. Students receive individual attention and are encouraged to develop as writers.

At the University of Utah, our courses combine the flexibility of online teaching with the advantages and direct engagement of traditional teaching. Enjoy the benefit of studying online at your own pace while still engaging with classmates and instructors. This flexible way of teaching improves your overall experience and your ability to retain what you learn.

Interactive learning comes in a variety of ways:

  • Group assignments, where you collaborate via email or a discussion forum to answer a problem set.
  • Contributions to a discussion forum, where you directly respond to previous posts.
  • Peer reviews, where you review and comment on assignments from other students.

Our classes also offer multiple routes to stay connected and get help:

  • Communicate directly with the instructor via email.
  • Participate in and guide online discussions.
  • Attend online office hours in discussion threads or on the phone.
  • Instructors are available in “real” office hours for students on or near campus; for some courses we offer Q&A sessions in a classroom.

36 Credit Hours: Program hours only. Does not include any general education or prerequisites.

This program offers a Bachelor of Science degree, providing students with a wide range of options to tailor their education to their individual interests and career goals. You can receive a Bachelor of Arts if you have already finished the BA language requirements before starting your online program.

Once you have the general education courses and electives you can complete the degree in 3 semesters. There are 2 required courses* that will be offered alternating Spring and Fall semesters, the Senior seminar and 3 other categories. A course of study could look like this.

Fall: WRTG 3870 Writing as a Social Practice*
WRTG 3012 Writing in the Social Sciences
WRTG 4001 Grant-writing
Topical Course Elective

Spring: WRTG 3875 Histories and Theories of Rhetoric
WRTG ****
WRTG****
Topical Course Elective

Fall: WRTG 5900 Senior Seminar
WRTG 3890: Critical Methods
WRTG****
Topical Course Elective

Topical course electives function like Allied Hours. They can be fulfilled with Writing classes, internship credits, courses within your major or minor, or a combination. You will select these classes with your advisor.

$260/credit*

*Subject to change without notice
For an estimate of the full course, use the TUITION Estimator

If you have already earned an associate’s degree, which is typically 60 credit hours, and want to complete a WRS major, which is 36 credit hours, that totals 96 credit hours. This means that you would need 26 more credit hours to complete the 122-semester- hour graduation requirement for a bachelor’s degree. Remember, 40 of those 122 credits must be upper-division (3000-level or higher).

This flexibility makes WRS an ideal double major or a good major to combine with other minor(s), pre-professional concentrations, or participating in the honors program. WRS pairs well with disciplines in the humanities, social sciences, sciences, and professional programs. All WRS majors graduate with an e-portfolio that showcases their writing experiences and abilities for employers and graduate admissions committees.

The Office of Admissions determines the acceptability of transfer credit toward the 122-semester-hour graduation requirement as well as awarding credit general education requirements. Academic departments determine if courses are considered equivalent to courses offered at the University of Utah and their applicability towards a bachelor's degree.

Because employers consistently rank strong writing as among the most important capabilities in their employees, a degree in Writing & Rhetoric Studies will prepare you for many careers and a variety of graduate school options. You will not only become a better writer, you’ll also be empowered with the understanding that texts are powerful cultural products and important tools for social change.

Writing is fundamentally important in a number of workplace settings such as business, law, medicine, government jobs, non-profits, engineering and the sciences. Students who minor will improve their writing and gain and understanding of how and why writing works.

At the University of Utah, our courses combine the flexibility of online teaching with the advantages and direct engagement of traditional teaching. Enjoy the benefit of studying online at your own pace while still engaging with classmates and instructors. This flexible way of teaching improves your overall experience and your ability to retain what you learn.

Interactive learning comes in a variety of ways:

  • Group assignments, where you collaborate via email or a discussion forum to answer a problem set.
  • Contributions to a discussion forum, where you directly respond to previous posts.
  • Peer reviews, where you review and comment on assignments from other students.

Our classes also offer multiple routes to stay connected and get help:

  • Communicate directly with the instructor via email.
  • Participate in and guide online discussions.
  • Attend online office hours in discussion threads or on the phone.
  • Instructors are available in “real” office hours for students on or near campus; for some courses we offer Q&A sessions in a classroom.

18 Credit Hours

Minor in Writing & Rhetoric Studies

2 Foundational Courses:

WRTG 3870 - Writing as Social Practice

WRTG 3875 - Histories & Theories of Rhetoric

Choose 1 of the following:

WRTG 3011: Writing in the Arts & Humanities (CW)

WRTG 3012: Writing in the Social Sciences (CW)

WRTG 3014: Writing in the Sciences (CW)

WRTG 3015: Professional Writing (CW)

WRTG 3016: Business Writing (CW)

Choose 3 of the following:

WRTG 2040: Intro to Writing Studies

WRTG 2310: Digital Writing

WRTG 2905: Special Topics

WRTG 3010: Critical Thinking and Writing (HF; CW)

WRTG 3018: Writing about Popular Culture (HF)

WRTG 3019: Writing about War (HF; CW)

WRTG 3020: Write 4 U (CW)

WRTG 3030: Writing across Locations

WRTG 3040: Digital Storytelling (HF)

WRTG 3420: Environmental & Sustainability Studies (HF; CW)

WRTG 3430: Language of the Law

WRTG 3440: Digital Research Methods

WRTG 3510: Grammar and Stylistics (LING 3510) (CW)

WRTG 3610: Internship

WRTG 3705: Rhetoric, Science & Technology Studies (BF; HF)

WRTG 3830: Research in Professional Communication

WRTG 3890: Under-Represented Rhetorics (DV)

WRTG 3900: Advanced Literacy Studies (ENGL 3690) (HF)

WRTG 4000: Writing for Scholarly Publication

WRTG 4001: Business Plans and Proposals

WRTG 4010: Writing Across Borders (IR)

WRTG 4020: Writing Center Colloquium: Theory and Practice

WRTG 4030: Visual Rhetoric: Word/Image/Argument (CW; QB)

WRTG 4040: Digital Rhetoric

WRTG 4050: Cultural Rhetorics (DV)

WRTG 4060: Public Writing in the 21st Century

WRTG 4070: Rhetorics of Gender

WRTG 4090: Materiality of the Book

WRTG 4200: Writing Popular Non Fiction (CW)

WRTG 4830: Designing for Usability (CW)

WRTG 4850: Technical Editing

WRTG 4890: Writing, Persuasion, and Power

WRTG 4905: Studies in Professional Discourse (Law, Med) (CW)

WRTG 5010: Medical and Health Science Discourses

WRTG 5770: Research in Rhetoric and Writing

WRTG 5830: Digital Publishing

WRTG 5905: Special Topics in Writing & Rhetoric

ENGL 5970: Discourse Analysis

See more information on degree requirements.

$260/credit*

*Subject to change without notice

Because employers consistently rank strong writing as among the most important capabilities in their employees, a degree in Writing & Rhetoric Studies will prepare you for many careers and a variety of graduate school options. You will not only become a better writer, you’ll also be empowered with the understanding that texts are powerful cultural products and important tools for social change.

 
Last Updated: 2/6/24