Writing and Rhetoric Department:College of Arts and Humanities

New: B.A. in Writing & Rhetoric

On March 27, the UCF Board of Trustees approved a new bachelor’s degree in Writing and Rhetoric. The new program is the first of its kind in Florida and was designed to address workforce needs by producing graduates who are proficient in analyzing, creating, editing and adapting text.

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About the Department


The Department of Writing and Rhetoric promotes sustained writing opportunities across the university by providing a strong writing foundation in first-year writing; coordination and support of writing across the curriculum and in the community; and four upper-division and graduate-level degree and certificate programs. All of these efforts are grounded in the robust tradition of scholarship, dating back to the emergence of rhetorical study in the 5th century B.C.E. and including more recent research in writing studies.

One part of our mission is to serve UCF students, faculty, and community partners in fostering transferrable disciplinary and professional writing expertise. Students will build on the rhetorical dexterity developed in the First-Year Writing program through sustained writing and research in their discipline-specific courses. We support these opportunities through the Writing Across the Curriculum program and the University Writing Center.

A second, related part of our mission is to offer undergraduate and graduate degree and certificate programs for the focused study of and further practice with writing, rhetoric, and literacy. Students in our programs study the field's scholarship in order to communicate more effectively, persuasively, and ethically across a range of civic, professional, and educational contexts. Students graduating from our programs are prepared to work as writers or writing specialists in a variety of careers, including publishing and editing, education, the legal profession, the health professions, advertising/marketing/public relations, and government and the non-profit sector.

Faculty and curricular strengths include rhetoric and civic engagement, community and cultural literacies, professional communication, writing and digital media, rhetorics of science and medicine, transnational rhetoric and literacy, alternative rhetorics, and writing program administration.

Department Goals

The Department of Writing and Rhetoric (DWR) is focused on achieving 8 primary goals. For more information about ongoing initiatives, see below or contact the department chair.

  1. DWR's First-Year Writing Program serves as an innovative and effective entry point to writing in the university for freshmen students.
  2. DWR offers innovative writing courses and tutoring support for transfer students and for freshmen students who tested out of first-year composition.
  3. DWR's Writing Across the Curriculum Program consults with faculty in a variety of colleges to help their departments and programs create writing-related outcomes, revise curricula and assessment plans toward those outcomes, and provide appropriate support structures for achieving them.
  4. DWR offer students from all majors additional preparation for and practice in academic, professional, and civic writing through its Minor in Writing and Rhetoric and its undergraduate Certificate in Public and Professional Writing. DWR also offers specialized upper-division writing courses that complement the writing intensive courses in other disciplines.
  5. DWR educates writing professionals and writing educators for Florida's knowledge-based economy through its proposed Major in Writing and Rhetoric, M.A. in Rhetoric and Composition and the Graduate Certificate in Professional Writing.
  6. DWR's University Writing Center provides writing support for undergraduate and graduate students in all disciplines.
  7. DWR actively collaborates with non-profit, K-12, and community college partners to better prepare students for academic/professional/civic writing, to enhance Florida’s workforce development, and to address community writing-based needs.
  8. DWR is a site for research that informs and improves the teaching and practice of writing (broadly defined) across educational, professional, and civic spheres.


May 5, 2014

photoBefore UCF student Allyson Goolsby took a Rhetoric & Civic Engagement class this semester, she didn’t realize she could play such a role in confronting and solving social problems. But then, that is the purpose of this course that teaches how to use the art of persuasion and effective writing to shape outcomes. [Read More]

May 2, 2014

photoThe Department of Writing and Rhetoric hosted its first annual Awards Reception on May 1, 2014 in the Sand Key Room. Awards were given to three students and three faculty members who had demonstrated excellence in areas related to departmental goals. [Read More]

View all recent highlights.

Recent Faculty Publications

Composition Forum cover
Fall 2012 special issue of Composition Forum on the topic of Writing and Transfer, edited by Department Chair Elizabeth Wardle with contributions by faculty members Angela Rounsaville and Laura Martinez.

Stephanie Vie

“‘You Are How You Play’: Privacy Policies and Data Mining in Social Networking Games.” Computer Games and Technical Communication: Critical Methods and Applications at the Intersection. Eds. Jennifer deWinter and Ryan Moeller. Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2014. 171-187. Print.

Stephanie Vie

View more publications.

Department of Writing and Rhetoric • College of Arts & Humanities at the University of Central Florida
Phone: 407-823-2295 Fax: 407-823-1287 • Website Technical Support: cahweb@mail.ucf.edu