Skip to main contentSkip to footer content

Mission and Goals


Writing, Rhetoric & Communications Program designs and delivers composition, professional writing, literature, film, and public speaking courses to undergraduate and graduate students. Writing, Rhetoric & Communications Program courses develop students' communication skills with a focus on context, purpose, and audience. Through these courses, students learn to engage in a recursive, sometimes collaborative, process of writing and revision with the goal of producing clear, substantive, and meaningful communication, and become more capable communicators in academic, professional, civic, and interpersonal contexts.


  • To provide an intellectual community of writing instructors that fosters collaboration and inspires teaching excellence.
  • To assist students in developing academic literacy skills (reading, writing, speaking) as a way of understanding and communicating disciplinary knowledge and concepts.
  • To teach students to communicate effectively in academic, professional, and civic contexts.
  • To teach students to use critical thinking skills when reading and preparing texts for a range of audiences, contexts, and purposes.
  • To teach students how to use ecocriticism as a way of analyzing texts.
  • To teach students to be nimble writers, who can adapt their writing to current digital formats and changing conventions in their fields.
  • To teach students to become writers who can collaborate effectively with peers.
  • To encourage students to become lifelong learners who will continue to read widely and practice and improve their writing.
  • To collaborate with faculty across campus so that writing becomes an integral part of every student's academic experience.
  • To participate in a conversation with colleagues across the country about the teaching of writing, experimenting with innovative forms of pedagogy.