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Master of Arts in English - Rhetoric and Composition

Learn more about how to apply to the MA in Rhetoric and Composition at Ball State.

Building on Ball State’s commitment to emerging media, our rhetoric and composition program encourages students to investigate the growing fields of digital literacy and visual rhetoric alongside traditional studies in rhetorical history, research methodologies, and composition pedagogies.

Our flexible program encourages students to combine studies in rhetoric and composition with courses in other fields, both within the Department of English and outside of it, producing master’s and doctoral students with wide-ranging knowledge and skills.

In addition, students may add a second major or minor in rhetoric and composition to another master’s degree.

Vital and evolving, this disciplinary focus is both a necessary cultural practice and an important intellectual discipline, central to literacy studies, creative writing, and linguistics, as well as reading-writing education.

  • Focusing on the inclusive nature of rhetoric and composition, Ball State’s master’s and doctoral courses of study explores the production, interpretation, and analysis of discourse across genres, media, and historical eras.
  • Central to our program is the belief that rhetoric and composition as a discipline provides the necessary framework for understanding the creation of all discourse—sociopolitical, private, and literary—in whatever medium: oral, print, visual, and hypermedia. As a result, this multifaceted course of study introduces you to a range of research methodologies and methods.

Because of our commitment to technological literacy and digital rhetoric, you will also be offered both instruction and practice in the use of technology in the classroom as well as in the creation of discourse (i.e., hypermediated environments).

Whether literary, political, or private, discourse has always formed through a medium by means of a technology. So, we take into account the tools that people use to create meaning in their cultures. This course of study increases your awareness of and possibilities for various media and technologies.

Our graduate program is deliberately structured to maintain a small circle of highly motivated students. This enables a close collegial relationship between candidates and faculty already established in their areas of professional expertise. It also affords numerous opportunities for graduate students to explore the many and varied aspects of rhetoric and composition, including the Writing Program, the Writing Center, and Indiana Writing Project participation.

By working intensively with faculty members, students present at national conferences, publish within print and electronic venues, and write internal and external grants. This active participation boosts your growth as a teacher, as a member of an institutional community, and as a professional. Further support for graduate students is offered through scholarships,  grants, and assistantships.

MA in English—rhetoric and composition, 32 credits
ENG 601* Research in English Studies (3) 3
ENG 604 Technology and English Studies 3
ENG 620 Linguistics and the Study of English 3
ENG 690 Seminar in Composition 3
ENG 609 Indiana Writing Project (3) 3
ENG 693 Writing in the Profession (3)
ENG 694 The Classical Rhetoric of Composition 3
ENG 699 Contemporary Composition 3
Electives 5-11
Research requirements:
RES 697          Research Paper (3) 3-6
THES 698        Thesis (6)
Total Credits 32
*ENG 601 may be waived for students who choose the non-thesis option.

Department of English
Robert Bell Building (RB), Room 297
Ball State University
Muncie, IN 47306

Hours: Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Phone: 765-285-8580
Fax: 765-285-3765
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