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Writing, Rhetorics and Literacies

Undergraduate Program

A BA in English with a Concentration in Writing, Rhetorics, and Literacies cultivates communication specialists who…

  • use writing to facilitate collaborative problem-solving so people can accomplish more together than what anyone could accomplish alone;
  • use empathetic and critical listening skills in the throes of conflict when it’s most difficult and most important to listen and to learn from those whose thinking rivals prevailing opinions and attitudes;
  •  can unveil the markers of community membership and track circuits of power to access valuable resources.

The only degree of its kind in the U.S., ASU’s BA in English with a Concentration in Writing, Rhetorics and Literacies is on the cutting edge of technology, language and design. It puts arts and sciences to work in the world, pairing intellectual agility with gritty, down-on-the-ground approaches to big ideas, abstract theory, and back-up facts. This concentration prepares students to unpack arguments; what’s underneath them; and what’s at stake for themselves, others, and the world in which they live. In a rapidly changing global economy, where professionals change jobs on average 5 to 7 times over the course of their lives, a concentration in Writing, Rhetorics and Literacies prepares graduates to assemble and convincingly perform identities they value while responding to and transforming local and global markets.

English (Writing, Rhetorics and Literacies) (BA)  Writing Certificate 

Graduate Program

The PhD in English (Writing, Rhetorics and Literacies) and the MA in English with a track in writing, rhetorics and literacies at Arizona State University promote the study of the production, distribution, and interpretation of texts (oral, written, digital, visual, discursive, material, symbolic) and the rhetorical strategies involved in such processes. Students draw on composition/writing theory, rhetorical theory, and literacy studies to examine the ideological, pedagogical, pragmatic and social dimensions of words, symbols, texts, images, and artifacts. Using theories and methods from both historical and contemporary contexts, we teach students strategies for inquiry; the ways in which communication creates knowledge, meaning and action; and how texts, meanings, and communication are constructed, circulated, reacted to, and repurposed over time and across space. Program requirements are designed to encourage students to develop a nuanced understanding of the role of critical inquiry and rhetorical analysis in framing problems, advocating for change, exploring solutions, or disrupting the status quo. With a sophisticated understanding of how words work in the world, student pursue avenues of original inquiry that have relevance and implications for the challenges and opportunities of an increasingly complex and dynamic landscape. The program encourages interdisciplinary study, and its flexible requirements enable students to pursue areas of inquiry that interest them the most and tailor those pursuits to their career goals. The program prepares students for multiple career paths including in academia, the public sector and private industry--as teachers, scholars, advocates, professionals, and public intellectuals.

PhD in English (Writing, Rhetorics, and Literacies)  Master of Arts in English (Writing, Rhetorics, and Literacies)

"I want to inspire others to understand that the way we use language can perpetuate injustice, but that it can also overturn it."

Karen Carter, PhD in English (Writing, Rhetoric and Literacies) 2016

Peter Goggin
Associate Professor

Goggin's current research includes the study of rhetorics and discourses of sustainability and globalization in oceanic islands.

Ross-Blakley Hall 343 PO Box 871401
Jacob Greene
Assistant Professor

Jacob Greene researches emerging modes of digital and location-based writing.

Ross-Blakely Hall 126 1102 S. McAllister Ave
Mark Hannah
Director of Writing, Rhetorics and Literacies; Associate Professor

Mark Hannah's research examines intersections of law, rhetoric, and expertise in complex, multi-disciplinary problem-solving contexts.

Ross-Blakley Hall 165 PO Box 871401
Kyle Jensen
Director of Writing Programs, Professor

Jensen authored “Reimagining Process: Online Writing Archives and The Future of Writing Studies” (Southern Illinois University Press, 2014)

Kathleen Lamp
Associate Professor

Lamp's primary research interest is in the history of rhetoric, specifically Roman rhetoric. She is the area director of WRL and the past president of the American Society for the History Rhetoric.

Ross-Blakley Hall 161 PO Box 871401
Elenore Long

Long's scholarship draws on a wide array of rhetorical methods to test the limits and potential of day-to-day democracy under contemporary conditions

Ross-Blakley Hall 243 PO Box 871401
Paul Matsuda

Matsuda's research centers around second language writing, a transdisciplinary field of inquiry that integrate theoretical and methodological insights from both language studies and writing studies.

Ross-Blakley Hall 153 PO Box 871401
Keith Miller
Emeritus Professor

In his research, Miller mainly focuses on the rhetoric and songs of the civil rights movement.

Ross-Blakley Hall 208 PO Box 871401
Stacey Moran
Asst Professor

Moran's current research investigates how methods in the physical sciences provide a foothold for thinking about the materiality of knowledge production in feminist theory and practice.

Krista Ratcliffe

Ratcliffe's research focuses on intersections of rhetoric, feminist theory, and critical race studies.

Ross-Blakley Hall 170E PO Box 871401
Shirley Rose

Shirley Rose's research focuses on writing program administration, archival research methods, and writing across the lifespan. She directed ASU Writing Programs in The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences from 2009 to 2019.

Ross-Blakley Hall 255 PO Box 871401
Bryan Smith

Smith teaches a wide selection of courses in areas within applied linguistics. His research focuses on computer-assisted language learning.

Ross-Blakley Hall 351 PO Box 871401
Doris Warriner

Warriner is a linguistic anthropologist of education who uses ethnographic methods to examine the educational, social, political, economic, and ideological dimensions of immigration and transnationalism.

Ross-Blakley Hall 170D PO Box 871401
Patricia Webb
Associate Professor

Boyd teaches undergraduate courses in writing, as well as the graduate seminars: Composition Theory and Compostion and Feminism.

Ross-Blakley Hall 331 PO Box 871401

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