Professional Certificate Program

Professional Certificate Program in Writing and Teaching

The Professional Certificate Program in Writing and Teaching offers students an integration of professionalism and humanistic studies. It is designed to offer M.A. English candidates additional opportunities for professional development and thereby further enhance their preparation for careers in teaching publishing, or advanced graduate study. By foregrounding processes of writing and learning, the program equips students for their increasingly competitive markets of community college teaching and independent publishing. It also enhances students? visibility as applicants to Ph.D. programs that value candidates? ability to teach and tutor writing.

The certificate program seeks to fulfill three interrelated needs: (1) to update the M.A. curriculum so that it better reflects recent intellectual and scholarly developments in the field of English studies and to ensure that it remains competitive with programs at other, comparable universities; (2) to offer graduate students a systematic course of study that enables them to develop their writing and teaching skills; (3) to provide M.A. candidates with training attuned to the demands of the current job market.

The Discipline of English has, for the past fifteen years, been moving away from a literary field-coverage model and toward a more expansive paradigm based on desired learning outcomes. Practically speaking, this paradigm shift reveals an increasing concern with how students demonstrate active learning through diverse projects in writing and rhetoric. Nationally, this development has led to changes in curricula that seek to better integrate reading and researching with writing and teaching and, through this integration, provide focused training for prospective teachers, writers, and publishing industry professionals.

Program Description

In order to complete the certificate requirements, students will have to successfully engage in creative, analytic, expressive and persuasive writing. They will be required to use both print and digital media.

A total of twelve units, which may be applied simultaneously to the M.A. program in English, are required for completion of the certificate. Students may select these units from the following courses; a minimum of three units must be designated as practical application (PA).

Study Plan Requirements





Practical Application Course
(minimum: 3 units)
Eng 402(S), 515, or 590(S)





Eng 402(S): Theories of Response in Composition





Eng 515: Professional Editing and Journal





Eng 590(S): Writing Theory & Practice for TAs





Other Coursework:
Eng 404T, 509, 510 525T, 575T, or 591T





Eng 404T: Advanced Creative Writing





Eng 509: Creative Writing Workshop





Eng 510: Rhetorical Criticism & Discourse Analysis





Eng 525T: Proseminar in Rhetoric or Writing





Eng 575T: Topics in Teaching





Eng 591T: Seminar: Topics in Rhetoric &





Total Units Required






In addition to completing twelve units from the courses listed above, students will be required to attend the Workshop Series in Professional Development, which will consist of three meetings offered annually under the direction of the Certificate in Writing and Teaching Program Coordinator. At these two-hour long workshops, invited guests from the Department, University, and local region will introduce students to the practical components of finding employment, continuing graduate studies, and creating and expanding a professional network in writing and teaching.

For further information, contact
Dr. Bonnie Williams
Program Director