Apr 23, 2024  
2019-2020 Undergraduate Catalog 
2019-2020 Undergraduate Catalog This is not the most recent catalog version; be sure you are viewing the appropriate catalog year.

Professional Writing [BS]

Revised Program | Fall 2019

Professional Writing is an adaptable advanced writing degree where students get hands-on experience with the problem-solving, design, and digital writing technology needed for life-long professional practice. Students need not be exceptional writers to begin with, as writing is something we all learn and develop our entire lives, and it is continuously adapted to different academic, industry, and cultural environments. Our students go on to a wide range of careers and graduate school opportunities (see below). The degree is a Bachelor of Science.


Students in PRWT learn the theory, design, and production processes of the field that make it applicable and adaptable for an incredibly wide range of work in almost every industry. Majors in Professional Writing learn how to:

  • Draft effective text or content, correspondence, proposals, and other textual genres;
  • Design and build websites and interfaces, web/print/mobile layouts or visuals, videos, new media, social media, and more;
  • Analyze the audience, context, and situation;
  • Strategize rhetorically to create goals for communicating ethically and effectively;
  • Work through design and production processes, learning project management;
  • Learn how to learn new tools and technologies;
  • Test and revise drafts of texts, prototypes of layouts, visuals, and websites;
  • Work with others effectively whether writing collaboratively or researching and interviewing subject matter experts or members of different communities;
  • Strategize and write social media and manage digital content.


Students have opportunities to further develop their written communication skills through client projects, internships, and the Undergraduate Research Symposium.

Our alumni have gone on to challenging positions as: technical author/writer, science writer, proposal writer, content strategist/developer, information designer, instructional designer, eLearning developer, training manager, librarian, knowledge management, web designer, user experience (UX) designer, digital content manager, digital marketing specialist, social media coordinator, design manager, business analyst, editor, content coordinator, lawyer, digital help developer, content marketer/writer, sports information director, travel writer, teacher, professor, ESL (English as Second Language) instructor, digital communication analyst, knowledge base editor

Department Information

English Language & Literature | Joseph Csicsila, Ph.D.Interim Department Head | 612 Pray-Harrold, 734.487.4220, jcsicsila@emich.edu

Advisor Information

Chalice Randazzo, Ph.D., Program Coordinator, crandaz1@emich.edu

Program Advisors

Logan Bearden, Ph.D., lbearden@emich.edu

Steve Benninghoff, Ph.D., sbenningh1@emich.edu

Cheryl Cassidy, Ph.D., cheryl.cassidy@emich.edu

John Dunn, Ph.D.,  jdunnjr@emich.edu

Rachel Gramer, Ph.D., rgramer@emich.edu

Bernard Miller, Ph.D., bmiller2@emich.edu

Steve Krause, Ph.D.skrause@emich.edu

General Education Requirements:

For specific requirements, see General Education  or print a worksheet .  

Major Requirements: 30 hours

Minor Requirement:

This major requires a minor. Please see Programs  for a list of available minors or contact your major advisor.

Program Total:

Students must earn a minimum total of 124 credits at the 100-level or above.

Beginning in Fall 2022, all baccalaureate degree programs for all undergraduates (regardless of catalog year) will require a minimum of 120 credit hours for completion.

Critical Graduation Information

Each undergraduate student will be responsible for the fulfillment of the requirements or their equivalents of the Eastern Michigan University catalog in force at the time of their initial registration at a college or university or a subsequent catalog including the one in effect at the time of their graduation.

In the event an undergraduate student does not complete the degree requirements within seven years of the date of their original registration at a college or university, the student may be required to have their credits re-evaluated by the academic department(s) of their major/minor in keeping with catalog requirements in force during the year of their graduation.

The following are minimum requirements for all bachelor’s degrees awarded by Eastern Michigan University. Some majors and minors require more than the minimum in one or more of the areas below; students are urged to consult the online catalog for the requirements of their particular programs.

  • Earn a minimum total of 124 credits at the 100-level and above. Courses with numbers below 100 will not be counted toward this degree requirement. At most 8 credit hours of physical education (PEGN) activity courses will be counted toward this requirement.
  • Meet the requirements of the General Education program (see information below).
  • Complete a Writing Intensive (GEWI) Course in your major.
  • Earn a minimum of 60 credits from a four-year college or university; courses taken at community colleges cannot be used to meet this requirement. (Some formal program-to-program articulation agreements modify this requirement. See specific agreements for details.)
  • Earn a minimum of 30 credits from courses taken at EMU.
  • Complete 10 of the last 30 hours for the degree from courses taken at EMU.
  • Have a minimum of 30 unique credit hours in their major and 20 unique credit hours in their minor for a total of at least 50 unique credit hours between them. Some majors that require 50 or more hours themselves do not require a minor; students should check requirements of the selected major in the undergraduate catalog to see if a minor is required.
  • Earn no more than 60 credit hours in one subject area (prefix). Credits in excess of the 60 maximum will not be counted toward the minimum of 124 credits required for a bachelor’s degree.
  • Earn the minimum number of credits in 300-level and above courses in each major and minor as specified below - these credits must be earned in distinct courses; that is, no course can be used to fulfill this requirement in more than one major or minor.
    • Earn a minimum of 6 credits in 300-level or higher courses at EMU in each minor
    • Earn a minimum of 9 credits in 300-level or higher courses at EMU in each major that requires a minor.
    • Earn a minimum of 15 credits in 300-level or higher courses at EMU in each major that does not require a minor
  • Transfer credit will be awarded for courses taken at colleges and universities that are accredited by one of the recognized regional accrediting bodies only if the courses are college-level (equated to 100-level or above at EMU) and the student earned a “C” (or 2.0 on a 4 point scale) or better. Transfer credit may be awarded on a case-by-case basis for college-level courses in which a “C” (2.0) or better was earned at institutions outside the U.S. or at non-accredited U.S. institutions; individual departments/schools conduct the internal review of such courses within EMU, and additional documentation may be required. Please note: EMU awards only credit for transferred courses; grades are not used in the calculation of an EMU GPA.
  • Earn a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 in courses taken at EMU in order to graduate. In addition, a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 must be reached in each major and minor. Only courses taken at EMU and those applied to a student’s major or minor will be used in the calculation of their major and minor cumulative GPAs. (Note: some programs may require a higher GPA - check with your program advisor.)

General Education Requirements EMU’s General Education Program requires students to choose from a menu of approved courses in several different areas; do not assume that other courses in the same department or with similar names will fulfill these requirements. A detailed description of General Education requirements is available in the General Education  section of the catalog.

Students who transferred to EMU may have modified general education requirements based on Michigan Transfer Agreement (MTA) or articulation agreements; consult your academic advisor for additional information.