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Degree Requirements

The Master of Arts in English with a major in Rhetoric and Composition is a 33-hour degree program. All students take 9 hours of core courses in rhetoric and composition, 12-15 hours of prescribed electives in rhetoric and composition, 6 additional hours in rhetoric and composition or a related cognate area (technical communication, for example). To complete the program, students write a thesis (6 hours over two semesters) or produce a portfolio and take a written comprehensive exam (3 hours during one semester).


When enrollment is high, MARC students may be required to reserve their courses prior to registration through a form sent out by the MARC graduate assistant ( In such cases, the MARC graduate assistant will notify students and send a link to a Google form asking students to indicate which MARC classes they intend to register for the following semester. Dr. Flore Chevaillier, Graduate Programs Coordinator, will then open the course so that students may register. MARC courses tend to be popular among students in other English programs, so confirming your intention to enroll in a course helps the MARC department ensure that MARC students are able to enroll in the courses they need. Please keep in mind that reserving courses does not officially register you for those courses; it simply allows you to register for them once registration opens.

Students who wish to enroll in a course in another program (whether in English or another department*) should consult first with the MARC program director. Once approved, students should email Dr. Flore Chevaillier ( who will open the course for registration. Be sure to include the CRNs of each course and, if applicable, the section number of the course. 

*Students who wish to enroll in a course outside of the English department should contact the professor teaching the course to make sure the course is available to graduate students outside the program/department.

The following is a breakdown of required, prescribed, cognate, and thesis or portfolio requirements and hours:
Required Core Courses (9 hours)
________  ENG 5383 Topic: Rhetorical Theory (offered every fall)
________  ENG 5326 Composition Theory (offered every spring)
________  ENG 5327 Research Methods (offered every spring)
Prescribed Elective Courses in Rhetoric and Composition (12-15 hours) 
Thesis students will take 12 prescribed electives; portfolio/written comprehensive exam students will take 15 hours of prescribed electives. 
_______  ENG 5300 Problems in a Multicultural Environment
_______  ENG 5310 Studies in English Language and Linguistics
_______  ENG 5313 Topic: Computers and Writing
_______  ENG 5313 Topic: Visual Rhetoric
_______  ENG 5314 Topic: Teaching Technical Communication
_______  ENG 5316 Foundations in Rhetoric and Composition (topics vary) (repeatable for up to 9 hours of credit)
_______  ENG 5317 Specializations in Rhetoric and Composition (topics vary) (repeatable for up to 9 hours of credit)
_______ ENG 5383 Studies in Rhetoric (topics vary) (excludes ENG 5383 Topic: Rhetorical Theory) (repeatable for up to 9 hours of credit) 
Additional Electives in Rhetoric and Composition or Cognate Area (6 hours)
_______  Course number and title
_______  Course number and title
Thesis (6 hours) OR Portfolio (3 hours) 
_______  ENG 5399 Thesis A (Prerequisite: 18 hours) AND
_______  ENG 5399 Thesis B (Prerequisite: Thesis A)
_______  ENG 5328 Directed Portfolio
Printable Version of Course Plan Worksheet


Students can monitor their progress towards their degree by viewing their Degree Audit. The Degree Audit displays the graduation requirements for a student's particular program, the requirements the student has already completed, and the courses and number of hours the student has yet to complete. 

Accessing Your Degree Audit 

If you have further questions about the requirements or progress of your degree, feel free to contact the MARC Graduate Assistant at If you would like to make an advising appointment, please contact the MARC program director, Dr. Eric Leake, who handles advising for all MARC students (