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About Us

The Syracuse University Department of Writing Studies, Rhetoric, and Composition has been a national leader in the field of rhetoric and composition for almost 30 years. Chartered in 1987, our department was at the forefront of a national trend of establishing independent academic units focused entirely on writing research and instruction. Since then, we have maintained our strong focus on introductory writing and professional communication, while expanding our scope to create an innovative curriculum that engages with writing studies at every level.


The Composition and Cultural Rhetoric Ph.D. program was launched in 1997, the first doctoral program housed in an independent writing and rhetoric department. The CCR Program continues to be one of the top doctoral programs in the country, and we are proud that so many prominent scholars and teachers in our field are CCR graduates.


A second milestone was the development of our writing and rhetoric major, which was officially launched in 2009. Our major prepares students to adapt genres, technologies, and styles to respond confidently to varied professional, personal, and civic contexts. Our nearly 200 alumni are skilled and agile writers who have pursued a wide range of established professions, such as business, education, public relations, publishing, and law, as well as emerging careers in digital writing. We also work with advanced undergraduates through our writing minor, established in 2004, which nicely complements a wide range of majors.


The Department of Writing Studies, Rhetoric, and Composition is also a leader in supporting student writing across campus. Our Writing Center offers one-to-one consultation to thousands of SU and SUNY-ESF students annually. The Nonfiction Reading Series features prominent writers who demonstrate the power of creative nonfiction in personal expression, community formation, and social and political commentary. Each year, students in WRT 340 publish Intertext magazine, which features outstanding writing produced in our courses. The Writing Program also regularly sponsors the Reimagining Student Writers series, engaging our colleagues across disciplines in conversations about effective strategies for working with student writers.


Community engagement projects enhance our department’s effort to help students appreciate the complexity of writing in varied contexts. For more than a decade, we have maintained a sustained community presence through our internship program, service-learning partnerships with public schools and community agencies, and community engagement projects such as the Gifford Street Community Press and the Nottingham Senior Writing Group. Our Veterans’ Writing Group, established in 2010 for military veterans and families, is the first veterans-oriented initiative in the humanities at Syracuse University.


The Syracuse University Department of Writing Studies, Rhetoric, and Composition is committed to continued growth that will build on our established reputation for innovation and educational excellence. This site will provide you with detailed information about our nationally-recognized introductory writing program, writing major and minor, doctoral program in Composition and Cultural Rhetoric, and special projects and events. Thank you for your interest in our department and programs.




The Writing Program's Vision and Mission Statement