Rhetoric & Composition Graduate Certificate

The Composition Program is proud to offer courses related to the Graduate Certificate in Rhetoric and Composition. Taught by specialists in the field, these courses prepare students to participate in the scholarly conversations developing in the field of Rhetoric and Composition. Students interested in obtaining the certificate will complete 12 hours of course work. The certificate is open to students currently enrolled in MA programs and students who are not.


The Program of Study includes the following:

  • ENG 5300: Studies in Rhetoric and Composition (3)
  • Choose one of the following courses
    • ENG 5100: Composition Theory, Practice, and Pedagogy (3)
    • ENG 5400: Appalachian Writing Project (6)
  • Choose one of the following options
    • ENG 5990: Capstone Project (3)
    • ENG 5999: Thesis (6)
  • Completion of three other hours of course credit related to the Capstone Project (see description below)


ENG 5100. Composition Theory, Practice, and Pedagogy/(3).F. An introduction to composition theory and relevant rhetorical, reading, and psycholinguistic theory with an emphasis on the connections among theory, practice, and pedagogy. Required of teaching assistants.

ENG 5300. Studies in Rhetoric and Composition/(3).S.Alternate years. A critical study of issues in rhetoric and composition. Content to vary; may be repeated for credit when content does not duplicate. Prerequisite: ENG 5100 or ENG 3450 (Writing Center Theory and Practice) or permission of the instructor. Offered alternate years with ENG 5200.

Students will also complete a selection of courses related to the student's capstone project adding up to three hours, such as ENG 5300 repeated with different course material, 5120, 5121, 5122, 5124, 3 hours of the Writing Project, 5200, or an appropriate course in another department (with the permission of advisor).

Capstone (ENG 5990): Working with a faculty mentor in the area of specialization, a student taking this three credit hour course will write a substantial piece of writing addressing a specific concern in rhetoric and composition. Some areas of investigation might include: the teaching of writing, rhetorical approaches to literature, composition theory and practice, writing center scholarship, electronic discourses, etc.

Thesis: Students electing to write a thesis for 6 hours of credit will work with a director in Rhetoric and Composition to investigate a question in the field and contribute to the conversation. Students can receive thesis credit toward an MA as well as the certificate.


Students interested in the certificate should email Dr. Jessie Blackburn (blackburnjb@appstate.edu) and confer with their MA program advisors, if they are enrolled in an MA program.