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Rhetoric and Professional Writing


Welcome to the Department of Rhetoric and Professional Writing (RPW). Students can pursue a major or minor in Professional and Technical Writing (PTW).

The goal of the PTW program is to prepare our students for taking their place in the local, regional, national, and global community. While students learn technologies to support their workplace and career goals, it is their engagement with theoretical concepts, diverse perspectives, and critical thinking skills that will enable them to adapt to the everchanging expectations of the future. We also expect and demand that our students look beyond themselves and contribute to the well-being of all peoples.

Our curriculum allows students to explore the myriad of opportunities in the technical writing field, through writing for specific audience needs within differentiating purposes, while effectively applying rhetorical strategies in various contexts.

PTW students study theory in the classroom, apply methodolgy in exploring concepts and ideas, and practice and share their skills in workplace contexts throught internships and service learning opportunities. Take a look through our site to see what PTW has to offer you.

RPW Faculty speak

“The Professional and Technical Writing Internship program provides an opportunity for students to engage in workplace situations. It is this component of our curriculum that allows students to take their classroom instruction and deftly apply it in challenging workplace environments.”

~Dr. Fenobia Dallas, chair


“We analyze human symbolic action in context to produce documents which motivate audiences toward desirable actions.”

~Dr. Beth Jorgensen


“Using theoretical perspectives, design conventions, and communication technologies, professional writers solve problems, imagine possibilities, evaluate opportunities, and help form alliances across and beyond institutional boundaries. Professional writers get things done. They articulate a shared vision, translate ideas into practice, and find answers to questions that others have not thought to ask.”

~Dr. Brad Herzog


"Professional and Technical Writing students learn that when you need to get something done, you learn how others think, how they solve problems, how they view the world, and you find a way to create the possibility for entering into productive partnerships with them."

~ Dr. Bill Williamson

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Saginaw Valley State University


SVSU students address the needs of local and global communities through the integration of meaningful service and traditional instruction that incorporates reflection and critical thinking to enrich the learning experience. 

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