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Our graduate program has a lot of great opportunities available for students. Check some of them out below!


Here is what former students have to say:

MA, Composition/Rhetoric (2011)

What was your research focused on:
 My MA thesis was titled “Collaborative Argumentation: Toward a More Civil Rhetoric.”  The issues in this project occupied a lot of my attention during my time in the MA program, and many of those issues continue to interest me.

Having said that, during my time in the MA program, I wrote papers on a variety of topics: the classical canons of rhetoric and process theories of composition; graduate teaching assistants and their role in the university and discipline of English; Simone de Beauvior’s negotiation of feminism and existentialism in her travel narrative, America Day by Day; teaching literature in composition classrooms; epistemological assumptions of post-process theory;  the rhetoric of naming cars; etc.

What are you doing now: I’m currently working on my PhD in rhetorical studies at Penn State University. If all goes well, I should be done by the end of this semester and I should graduate in May 2015. My interest in civility—and public deliberation more generally—has continued into the PhD program, and I’ve written course papers, delivered conference presentations, and published articles on this topic. My dissertation will push this research in a slightly different direction: I plan to examine public deliberation in gun debates of the last several decades, with particular attention to how widely known gun violence has shaped these debates. I’m still teaching, and I still love it. Once I graduate, I hope to get hired as an assistant professor so that I can continue writing and teaching. 

How did a graduate degree in English help you get to where you are now: Graduate school is tough. I do not think I would still be in graduate school if I had not begun my graduate education at NDSU. The faculty there fostered an atmosphere that was rigorous yet incredibly supportive. In addition to the course content I learned in graduate seminars, I learned how to read like a scholar. The feedback I got from faculty helped strengthen my skills as a thinker, researcher, teacher, and writer. The preparation for new teachers really is first rate. There were also opportunities for professional development, beyond the wonderful “Graduate Scholarship” class that Dr. Miriam Mara taught. During our first year, two other graduate students and I worked with Dr. Kelly Sassi on a book chapter. In addition to teaching first-year writing, I did a field experience where I got to co-teach a writing studies class with Dr. Andy Mara and a travel literature course with Dr. Gary Totten. I also had the chance to work as a graduate writing consultant in the writing center and assist the directors of the first-year and upper-division writing programs.

Funding opportunities: Most full time MA & PhD students get a Teaching Assistantship and teach English 120 or an undergraduate writing (UDW) course for a tuition waiver and stipend. Also, a few graduate students who are interested in Writing Center theory work as writing tutors in the Center for Writers.  Our department also offers a flying out stipend and travel money.

MA, Composition/Rhetoric (2012)

Research Interests:
 I am interested in studying feminist rhetorics and pedagogies, as well as community-engaged scholarship. My MA thesis was an archive research project on abortion legislation in North Dakota titled, "'Who Are You and I...?': The Rhetoric of Identity in the Aloha Eagles Letters." 

What I am doing nowI am currently working on my PhD in Rhetoric and Writing at Michigan State University, where my research continues to focus on queer and feminist rhetorics and community-engaged scholarship and pedagogy. 

There are plenty of opportunities to get involved in the department.  For instance, check out the English Graduate Organization or the Red River Graduate Student Conference.


Our library has great resources for students, check out the website here


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If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Dr. Miriam Mara, Director of Graduate Studies.

Craig - Graduated from NDSU with his MA in Composition/Rhetoric in 2011

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Published by the NDSU Dept. of English

Last Updated: Friday, September 04, 2015 8:59:41 PM
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