Requirements & Course Content

Satisfactory completion of the certificate program requires: 

  • Completion of five courses and pass each with a grade of "C-" or better. 
  • An overall GPA of 2.0 or better for all courses

The two required courses in editing and technical document design address editing, revision, planning, drafting, and designing documents for publication. Students choose three additional elective courses for the program based on their interests, and may focus their elective courses in journalism, technical writing, or creative writing.

Required Courses

It is advisable, but not necessary, to take the required courses before the elective courses.

ENG 214 Introduction to Editing is the student's first exposure to the professional treatment of written work.  Students learn to edit, revise, and proofread copy.  Assignments acquaint students with typical editorial practices, problems, and resources.

ENG 314 Technical Document Design and Editing introduces skills needed by professional writers in workplace environments, including planning, drafting, organizing, and editing documents.  It also covers visual aspects of professional writing, such as document design, creation and use of graphics and desktop publishing.  Assignments include production and evaluation of various forms of workplace and technical writing.

Elective Courses

For specific course descriptions of the elective courses, refer to university catalogs. Please note that for some of the elective courses, you must obtain permission from the instructor to enroll.

You may choose to concentrate in journalism, technical writing, or creative writing by choosing three courses within your field of choice. You are not required to do this; however, you may take courses in two different concentrations. 

Choose any three courses from the list.

ENG 317 Designing Web Communication
ENG 323 Writing in the Rhetorical Tradition 
ENG 331 Communication for Engineering and Technology 
ENG 332 Communication for Business and Management 
ENG 333 Communication for Science and Research 
ENG 350 Professional Internship
ENG 426 Analyzing Style 
ENG 316 Principles of News and Article Writing (1)*
ENG 416 Advanced News and Article Writing (1)*
ENG 417 Editorial and Opinion Writing (1)*
ENG 421 Computer Documentation Design (2)*
ENG 425 Analysis of Scientific and Technical Writing (2)* 
ENG 517 Advanced Technical Writing (2)*
ENG 518 Publication Management (2)*
ENG 288 Fiction Writing (3)*
ENG 289 Poetry Writing (3)*
ENG 330 Screenwriting (3)*
ENG 381 Creative Nonfiction Writing Workshop (3)*
ENG 388 Intermediate Fiction Writing Workshop (3)*
ENG 389 Intermediate Poetry Writing Workshop (3)*
ENG 430 Advanced Screenwriting (3)*

*1 Suggested for students with an interest in journalism
*2 Suggested for students with an interest in scientific and technical writing
*3 Suggested for students with an interest in creative writing

These are regular undergraduate and graduate offerings of the English Department taught by regular faculty members. No transfer credit or credit by exam may be applied toward the certificate program.

Course Availability

Courses are offered during the day fall, spring, and summer semesters, and sometimes at night during the fall and spring.  Not every class may be offered at night every semester, but the selection usually permits a student to complete the certificate program at night within two years. Students who can attend during the day may be able to complete the program faster.