May 23, 2024  
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog 
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Department of Writing and Rhetoric

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(248) 370-2746
Fax: (248) 370-2748

Department Website


Chairperson: Felicia Chong

Professors emeriti: Wallis May Andersen, Barbara Hamilton, Alice S. Horning, Margaret Pigott, Ronald A. Sudol

Professor:  Lori Ostergaard

Associate professors: Elizabeth G. Allan, Felicia Chong, Greg Giberson, Marshall W. Kitchens, Jim Nugent, Megan Schoen, Crystal VanKooten

Assistant professors: Felicita Arzu Carmichael, Roger Chao, David Hammontree, Megan Schoen

Special instructors: Bernadette Dickerson, Kasia G. Kietlinska

Special lecturers: Glen Armstrong, Reema Barlaskar, Benjamin Bennett-Carpenter, Allison Bohn, Marilyn Borner, Karen Brehmer, Matthew Burkett, Jennifer Coon, Jason Dodge, Rachel Dortin, Colleen Doyle, Emily Francis, Emily Freeman, John Freeman, Charlie Gragg, Christina Hall, Corey Hamilton, Tara Hendin, Lisa Hine, Jenna Katz, Laura Klein, Amanda Laudig, Kathleen Lawson, Adam Malinowski, Cindy Mooty, Jessica Rico, Lauren Rinke, Rebecca Rivard, Cathy Rorai, William Rouster, Sheryl Ruszkiewicz, Craig Smith, Melissa St. Pierre, Michaele Tomrell, Jason Torrente

Lecturers:  Sherry Wynn Perdue

Chief adviser: Jim Nugent


Major and Minor Programs

Students of writing and rhetoric gain practical experience writing within academic, workplace, and digital contexts. The department offers a minor in writing and a major in Professional and Digital Writing that prepare students for careers in technical writing, editing, social media, web design, and digital media production. The professional and digital writing major also prepares students for graduate study and careers in higher education, law, and other fields.

First-Year Writing

The department’s first-year writing program helps students to develop fundamental skills in producing and understanding written texts, to gain fluency in writing for a variety of audiences and situations, and to become critical readers and skilled writers of print, digital, and visual texts.

Writing Foundations

Most students satisfy the university general education requirement in the writing foundations area by completing WRT 1060  with a grade of C or higher. Please consult the Writing Requirements section in the general education area of the catalog for alternate ways of fulfilling this requirement.


The SAT score is the main mechanism used to place students in the writing foundations course (WRT 1060 ), and in any courses that students might need as a prerequisite to WRT 1060  as follows:

SAT Writing or Evidence-based Reading and Writing score of 620-800 (or ACT equivalent) or higher place students in WRT 1060  Composition II.
SAT Writing or Evidence-based Reading and Writing score of 410-610 (or ACT equivalent) place students in WRT 1050  Composition I.
SAT Writing or Evidence-based Reading and Writing score of 200-400  (or ACT equivalent) or below place students in WRT 1020  Basic Writing.

Placement by test scores does not yield any course credit regardless of where students are placed.

Students with questions about placement in first year writing should consult the Department of Writing and Rhetoric, 378 O’Dowd Hall, 248-370-2746, prior to the beginning of the semester in which they plan to enroll in first year writing. Students are responsible for knowing registration deadlines and understanding the implications of schedule changes for their financial aid.

Departmental Honors

Professional and digital majors with a combined GPA of 3.6 in courses taken within the major may qualify for departmental honors.

Schedule of classes

Specific offerings for each semester may be found in the Schedule of Classes.



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