Because of the growing demand for highly skilled, professionally competent writers in business, industry, and government, the student with training in writing, speaking, editing, and communication skills has improved job opportunities. Often the individual who possesses such skills gets a job sooner and advances faster in any profession than someone without those skills.
The Professional Writing Certificate is awarded by the TAMU English Undergraduate Office. It recognizes 18 hours of intensive training in a broad range of writing skills. Students should allow at least a year and a half to complete the schedule of courses, some of which are offered only once a year (or two!). For further information, contact Dr. Apostolos Vasilakis, Associate Director of Undergraduate Programs in LAAH 352.
Students are eligible to participate if:
- They are Texas A&M undergraduates.
- Students must request prior approval to substitute transfer courses, independent studies, or credit by exam for any of the required courses.
- Students must complete all coursework by the semester they graduate. If this is not possible, they may petition the English Undergraduate Office for an extension.
- Students must earn a grade of B or better in all courses.
- All writing must be the student’s own original work.
- Any Aggie Honor Code infraction will disqualify a student from receiving the certificate.
Students must complete the following 12 hours of coursework, earning a grade of B or better in each class:
- ENGL 210 Technical Business Writing – Focus on writing for professional settings; correspondence and researched reports fundamental to the technical and business workplace—memoranda, business letters, research proposals and presentations, use of graphical and document design; emphasis on audience awareness, clarity of communication and collaborative team-work.
- ENGL 241 Advanced Composition – Focuses on the writing of advanced academic and professional prose by integrating computer technology in the analysis and production of that prose. (NOTE: Students with AP credit for ENGL 241 must substitute an additional course from the list of electives.)
- ENGL 320 Technical Editing and Writing – Clarifying, reducing, expanding, and synthesizing such technical materials created by others as manuals, annual reports, and technical articles and reports; audience adaptation, invention, organization, style, and mechanics explored. Prerequisite: ENGL 210.
- ENGL 355 Rhetoric of Style – Fosters an appreciation for and better understanding of English prose style; the history of English prose; representative prose models for analysis and imitation; the impact of computer analysis. Prerequisite: Junior or Senior classification.
Students must complete 6 hours of coursework from the list below, earning a grade of B or better in each class. Substitutions may be needed if a course on the required list is not offered when needed, although each must be pre-approved by the PWC advisor:
- ENGL 304: Topics in Digital Research
- ENGL 353: History of Rhetoric
- ENGL 354: Modern Rhetorical Theory
- ENGL 460: Writing for the Web
- ENGL 461: Advanced Syntax and Rhetoric
- ENGL 462: Rhetoric in Cultural Context
- ENGL 485: Directed Studies (in Tech Comm)
- ENGL 489: Special Topics (in Tech Comm)
- LING 307: Language and Culture
- ENGL/LING 403: Language and Gender
Students may obtain a copy of the application from the English Undergraduate Office, or download a copy of the application form. The form should be filled out and submitted to Dr. Apostolos Vasilakis, Director of Undergraduate Programs, LAAH 352.