Degree Requirements

 
MA DEGREE
Students Seeking the MA Degree

Thirty (30) units are required for completion of the MA degree. Coursework is concentrated within RCTE, although there are opportunities to explore courses in the other English programs, as well as outside the department.

Some courses outside of English may count under RCTE. Students interested in having an outside course count as a requirement should obtain a copy of the course syllabus and consult with the RCTE Program Director.

The RCTE Program offers an MA degree designed to prepare students for more advanced graduate work in both rhetoric and composition (e.g., PhD), advanced graduate work in disciplines such as Higher Education Administration, Communication, Mexican American Studies, Gender & Women’s Studies, and LGBTQ Studies, and/or in professional fields related to rhetoric and writing studies.

 

Coursework

Thirty (30) units of coursework are required to complete the RCTE MA. This coursework is concentrated in RCTE, but there are opportunities for students to explore other research areas through coursework elsewhere at the UA.

Specifically, here’s how students will complete the MA coursework:

  • Year 1: Common Curriculum--15 units (5 courses)

Fall Semester | Year 1

  • ENGL 597R: Research Methods in Rhetorical and Composition (3)
  • Preceptorship (3)
  • Colloquium (0)

Spring Semester | Year 1

  • Inquiry & Innovation Seminar (3)
  • Either ENGL 696T: Rhetorical Theories (3) or ENGL 510: Theory and Practice of Composition (3). Courses are offered in alternating years with one course taken in Year 1 and one course taken in Year 2. Whichever course is not taken must be taken in Year 2.
  • Preceptorship (0)

 

  • Year 2 --15 units (5 courses)

Fall Semester | Year 2

  • Specialized Methods: student’s choice of one additional methods course, offered either in RCTE or in another program (3)
  • Histories: student’s choice of one class focused on histories, offered by RCTE faculty (3)
  • Elective  (3)

Spring Semester | Year 2

  • Elective (3)
  • Elective (3)

 

Of the 30 units of coursework, at least 21 units must be taken in RCTE.

 

Transfer Credits

Per the Graduate College, up to 6 hours of graduate-level transfer credit may be applied to the MA degree, but none of the Year 1 courses may be substituted for transferred courses (i.e., all of the Year 1 courses must be taken).

 

MA Exam or Equivalent

In their final semester, MA students will complete their degree with a two-hour Oral Examination or an alternative capstone experience such as a creative project, a comprehensive exam, or some other culminating requirement, such as a final portfolio, a documented contribution to a group project or outcome, or a report of internship for fieldwork experiences. The Oral Exam option will be based on the following materials, submitted to the student’s MA Exam Committee 3 weeks before the oral exam:

  • one paper or project completed by the student in RCTE coursework that best represents the student’s ability to conduct research;
  • one paper or project completed by the student in (or immediately peripheral to) RCTE coursework that best represents the student’s ability to apply research to contexts in and beyond the classroom;
  • a reading list, assembled in collaboration with an MA Advisor selected by the student and drawing heavily on materials covered in the student’s coursework.

 

The student’s performance in the MA Oral Exam will be assessed against the following criteria:

  • Has the student developed a research paper or project that indicates an ability to do advanced graduate level work?
  • Has the student demonstrated an advanced ability to apply research and theory to material contexts?
  • Has the student demonstrated an ability to step back from their work in order to recognize strengths and weaknesses as a scholar, teacher, and public intellectual?

 

 


 

PHD DEGREE
Students Seeking the PhD

The coursework in the doctoral degree serves several functions:

  • orients students to major issues, concepts, theories, and practices in areas of inquiry deemed by our faculty to be important for 21st Century scholars of Rhetoric, Composition, and the Teaching of English;
  • helps to solidify both graduate school and intellectual cohorts, which contribute to the short term and long term success of our students;
  • familiarizes students with the accepted and emerging professional practices related to academia;
  • facilitates student exploration of a variety of research areas, which thus helps students discern an area of focus for their own research; assesses students on their developing abilities to perform advanced level scholarship and function effectively in an academic setting.

Given these objectives, coursework focuses on both orienting students to major trends, concepts, and traditions in Rhetoric, Composition, and the Teaching of English and enabling students to pursue their avenues of specialization.

 

COURSE REQUIREMENTS

Total Number of Required hours to graduate with PhD: 66

Minimum Diss. Hours: 18  

Total Number of Required Coursework hours to graduate with RCTE PhD: 48

 

Common Curriculum: 15 units

Fall Semester | Year 1

  • ENGL 597R: Research Methods in Rhetoric and Composition (3)
  • Preceptorship* (3)
  • Colloquium

Spring Semester | Year 1

  • Inquiry & Innovation Seminar (3)
  • Either ENGL 696T: Rhetorical Theories (3) or ENGL 510: Theory and Practice of Composition (3). Courses are offered in alternating years with one course taken in Year 1 and one course taken in Year 2.
  • Preceptorship* (0)

Additional Course Requirements: 9 units

  • Specialized Methods: student’s choice of one additional methods course, offered either in RCTE or in another program (3)
  • Histories: student’s choice of one class focused on histories, offered by RCTE faculty (3)
  • Comprehensive Exam Workshop (taken in the spring semester of comprehensive exam. (3)
  • Other electives (24):
    • 9 hours must be taken in RCTE (Immersive Cultural Requirement is included within this requirement)
    • remaining 15 hours may be taken in any subject area offered at the graduate level anywhere on campus;
    • may be applied to the Immersive Cultural Requirement (see the ICR Proposal for details);
    • may be applied to a minor, if a minor is declared (9 hours minimum required by Graduate College).

 

Dissertation: 18 units

 

* If a student does not have a GTA position in the Writing Program and does not take Preceptorship, the student can select an alternative course to fulfill this requirement in consultation with the RCTE Program Director that aligns with the student’s outcomes and professional goals.


Transfer Credits

Students are allowed a maximum of 15 transfer credits.

 

Additional PhD Requirements

  • Qualifying Portfolio
  • Comprehensive Exam
  • Dissertation

 

Program(s): 

College of Social and Behavioral Sciences