Gabriele Bechtel, Director of Professional Writing
Professional Writing is an ideal first or second major for students who love the written word and want to learn how to write in a wide variety of public and professional contexts. As a Professional Writing major, you will study rhetorical theories and learn how to make effective arguments to persuade a variety of audiences.
As a Professional Writing major, you have a wide range of course choices. In addition to Professional Writing courses, you can also take courses from other programs, including Communication, Creative Writing, Interactive Media Studies, Journalism, Linguistics, and Literature.
The 42 credit hour major offers four tracks, allowing you to tailor your studies to match your professional and academic interests and aspirations. You can choose the following tracks:
- Editing in Professional Contexts
- Digital and Technical Communication
- Public Writing and Rhetoric
- Self-designed Track
See the Professional Writing Curriculum page for a complete list of required and elective courses for the major.
Opportunities for Majors
The program allows you to develop sound professional knowledge, skills, and experience. A considerable number of courses in the Professional Writing major include client-based or community-based projects; internships can be eligible for course credits.
Professional writing prepares you to:
- Work as a writer or editor in business, government, medical, education, or nonprofit organizations;
- Publish effective print and digital communications in a wide variety of genres and styles;
- Develop strong persuasive skills ideal for future studies in law school or other graduate studies;
- Participate in community and corporate writing projects that provide valuable career preparation;
- Develop personal and public expression for active citizenship in local and global communities.
Career prospects for professional writers are expected to grow—see the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014, for projections regarding Technical Writers. The strong writing and persuasive skills you will develop are considered by business leaders to be essential, as evidenced by the national study “Writing: A Ticket to Work, or a Ticket Out. A Survey of Business Leaders.”
As you explore careers and areas of expertise, be sure to consult with many resources, including your classmates, professors, Miami’s Career Services, and other print and digital resources, including the many professional organizations listed on the Professional Resources page.