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Writing, Rhetoric and Discourse, M.A.

  • Anytime
    Application Deadline
  • 24 months
University rank #1221 (BCR) , IL,
The Writing, Rhetoric and Discourse graduate program from DePaul University is Chicago's only master's-level program with a singular focus on writing, rhetoric, pedagogy and language.


The Program

Through a solid theoretical foundation in rhetoric and discourse paired with practical training, the master’s in Writing, Rhetoric and Discourse (WRD) from DePaul University both makes you a better writer and teaches you exciting new ways to think about the history, craft and politics of writing. With the option to concentrate in Professional & Digital Writing or Teaching Writing & Language, you’ll develop lifelong skills that are invaluable to a range of careers. Read about WRD courses, events and alumni on our blog.

With an MA in WRD, you can pursue professional roles such as:

  • Writing for businesses, nonprofits and tech companies
  • Producing and managing digital content
  • Working in an instructional design role at a university or other educational setting
  • Teaching writing in a post-secondary institution
  • Continuing the study of writing in a PhD program
  • Advancing your career as a high school English teacher

Enhance your degree with graduate certificates in Teaching English as a Second Language (TESOL), Teaching English in Two-Year Colleges, and Digital Humanities.

Courses are offered on weekday evenings at the Lincoln Park Campus. The program can be completed in two years.

Programme Structure

Courses include:

  • Ancient rhetorics
  • Contemporary rhetorics
  • Multicultural rhetorics
  • Global englishes
  • Discourse and style
  • Genre theory and practice
  • Topics in rhetorical history
  • Topics in community, culture and identity
  • Topics in language
  • Sociolinguistics

Detailed Programme Facts

  • More details:

    Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. The deadline to be considered for a graduate assistantship is February 15.

  • Programme intensity Full-time
    • Full-time duration 24 months
  • Credits
    48 alternative credits
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus

English Language Requirements

  • Minimum required score:


    The IELTS – or the International English Language Test System – tests your English-language abilities (writing, listening, speaking, and reading) on a scale of 1.00–9.00. The minimum IELTS score requirement refers to which Overall Band Score you received, which is your combined average score. Read more about IELTS.

    Schedule IELTS
  • Minimum required score:


    The TOEFL iBT ® measures your English-language abilities in an academic setting. The test has four sections (reading, listening, speaking, and writing), each with a score range of 0-30, for a total score range of 0-120. Read more about TOEFL iBT ®.

    Schedule TOEFL®
  • Minimum required score:


    The TOEFL®PBT is administered in a paper format and measures your ability to use and understand English in a classroom setting at the college or university level. It accurately measures how well you can listen, read and write in English while performing academic tasks. Read more about TOEFL®PBT.

    Schedule TOEFL®

Academic Requirements

You need the following GPA score:

Required score: 2.5

Applicants for graduate programs must have the equivalent of a bachelor’s degree with a minimum GPA equivalent to 2.5 on a US 4.0 grading scale. Admitted applicants typically have an undergraduate GPA of or better on a 4.0 scale. No exam grade should be lower than 4.5 (European grade scale) or D (American grade scale).

Your GPA (Grade Point Average) is calculated using the grades that you received in each course, and is determined by the points assigned to each grade (e.g. for the US grading scale from A-F).

General Requirements

  • A graduate application
  • Official transcript(s) from all previous schools attended
  • Statement of Purpose (approximately 500 words): In your Statement of Purpose, specifically discuss the academic and professional experiences that helped shape your decision to pursue graduate work in Writing, Rhetoric, and Discourse (WRD). Explain your educational and career objectives and how these relate to the MA in WRD program.
  • Current resume or CV
  • 15 to 20 pages of your own written work.
  • Two letters of recommendation, which speak to your academic and professional abilities.

Tuition Fee

  • International

    715 USD/credit
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 715 USD per credit and a duration of 24 months.
  • National

    715 USD/credit
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 715 USD per credit and a duration of 24 months.
  • In-State

    715 USD/credit
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 715 USD per credit and a duration of 24 months.
We've labeled the tuition fee that applies to you because we think you are from and prefer over other currencies.

Living costs for Chicago

  • 1297 - 2500 USD/month
    Living Costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

The Global Study Awards: get funded with up to £10,000 to study abroad

Together with the ISIC Association and British Council IELTS, Studyportals offers you the chance to receive up to £10000 to expand your horizon and study abroad. We want to ultimately encourage you to study abroad in order to experience and explore new countries, cultures and languages.


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