Professional and Technical Writing at Mason

About Professional and Technical Writing at Mason

Our Professional and Technical Writing programs equip students with the knowledge, skills, and experience they need to pursue a variety of professional opportunities where writing matters. Our Undergraduate and Graduate programs connect students with the content knowledge, writing skills, and professional opportunities necessary to succeed in a career involving writing.

Each of our programs are centered around the following goals and values.

Workplace Writing Knowledge and Skills

Our students learn how to take the theoretical concepts of writing studies and apply them in different workplace situations.

For example, after completing a design course, students learn basic design principles and practice applying these principles to produce deliverables in various genres.

Although we use tools and technology that are industry standard, rather than prepare students for careers focused on those tools, we prepare our students to respond to changing industry trends. Our students learn how to identify the right tool for the job and then master that tool when needed.

Most importantly, all of courses emphasize that rhetorical awareness is key. Our students know how to analyze the audience, purpose, and resources available in a given context, so they can determine the best approach to create a compelling communication.


In addition to developing as strong, knowledgeable, rhetorically aware writers, our students develop other competencies necessary for professional environments.

While self-driven research projects and assignments help students practice working independently, collaborative writing and research projects help students enhance their leadership, interpersonal communication, and time management skills. The low-stakes environment of the classroom provides the perfect opportunity for students to learn how to recover from potential failure with quick problem solving, critical thinking, and guidance from teammates and mentors.

Graduates of our programs have gone on to work as proposal writers and managers, technical writers and editors, writing consultants, communication specialists, research associates, and project and program managers, among others.

Academic Rigor

Our program’s rigorous approach to research shapes students for future research-based opportunities, including for application to Master’s and PhD degree programs as well as teaching and research positions at universities and research institutions. Students encounter multiple research methods relevant both to professional writing careers and for academic research in writing and rhetoric fields.