Teaching Writing (GC)


This certificate enables current and prospective teachers (Grade 5-College) to develop expertise in teaching writing. Students will gain theoretical, practical, and experiential knowledge about the teaching of writing that will strengthen their confidence and understanding as writing teachers. 

Catalog Year




Major Credits


Total Credits




Career Cluster

Languages and Literature

Program Requirements

Common Core

ENG 555 is offered as variable credit, but in order to complete the certificate students must take 18 credits. Certificate students must take ENG 555 for at least 3 credits.

Advanced interdisciplinary writing emphasizes critical reading and thinking, argumentative writing, library research, and documentation of sources in an academic setting. Practice and study of selected rhetorics of inquiry employed in academic disciplines preparing students for different systems of writing.

Prerequisites: none

Introduction to the major theories of the nature of composition and their pedagogical application.

Prerequisites: none

This course will introduce methods of inquiry-based research for investigating writing practices and pedagogy; this research could be conducted in classrooms for the purpose of improving teaching practices, students' learning, and/or institutional curricular design and practices.

Prerequisites: none

Restricted Electives

Choose 9 Credit(s). Special topics courses are subject to approval based on the focus of the course when offered. Please note ENG 622 or ENG 623 may be taken, with the permission of the instructor, as a substitution for ENG 655. ENG 622 and 623 are only offered face-to-face.

This course familiarizes students with various approaches and strategies to the teaching of creative writing. Discussions of classroom practices and pedagogical theories as well as teaching demonstrations prepare students to plan and develop an introductory-level creative writing course.

Prerequisites: none

Students will examine a current area of interest in the field of Writing Studies, including the topic's theoretical, scholarly, and pedagogical implications for writing and/or the teaching of writing. This course can be repeated for credit as the topic changes each time it is offered.

Prerequisites: none

This course is designed to familiarize students with current theories and practices of writing centers as well as to provide training in working with writers one-on-one. During the course, students will discuss best practices for teaching writing and examine the roles writing centers play in helping students negotiate the terrain of college literacy. The focus of the course will be to prepare students in the history of writing centers, to discuss the current scholarship and theory on best practices in writing centers, and to outline and provide interactive opportunities into the pedagogy of writing center tutoring.

Prerequisites: none

Introduction to theory and best practices of teaching second language grammar and vocabulary to a variety of English learners in multiple contexts - specifically focusing on content based teaching practices.

Prerequisites: none

Introduction to theory and best practices of teaching second language reading and writing to a variety of English learners in multiple contexts.

Prerequisites: none

This course aims to develop students┬┐ understanding of the interdisciplinary field of second language (L2) writing and, more specifically, the unique characteristics and instructional needs of L2 writers across multiple contexts.

Prerequisites: none

Exploration of second language literacy as a situated social practice. Current second language literacy theories and practices are studied and applied to a variety of second language reading and writing instructional contexts.

Prerequisites: none

This course examines the teaching of literature across collegiate levels and is designed for English graduate students. It is both practical and theoretical, examining topics such as: the purposes for teaching literature and teaching critical thinking; pedagogical approaches for teaching literature; and designing syllabi, lesson plans, and assignments. We will explore these topics through a variety of texts and perspectives. Assignments will include creating syllabi and lesson plans, reviewing scholarship on a particular topic related to the teaching of literature, and a conference paper on some aspect of the teaching of literature.

Prerequisites: none

This course will examine current instructional practices used to teach writing in academic settings. This course can be repeated for credits as the topic changes each time it is offered.

Prerequisites: none

This course will explore the theoretical and practical implications of integrating literature into the composition classroom.

Prerequisites: none

Examination of instructional design principles and models, including research in theory and practice of instructional design for technical communicators in academic and industry settings.

Prerequisites: none


Language Requirement

  • Students whose first language is not English must have a minimum TOEFL score of iBT 80, IELTS 6.5, or Duolingo of 110 to be admitted to the program.

Application Requirements

  • A personal statement, not to exceed two pages, describing the applicant’s (1) relevant background information and (2) current teaching and research interests, as well as (3) how MNSU’s graduate Rhetoric and Composition program will support their academic and professional goals.
  • Resume


  • Students pursuing the Teaching Writing Graduate Certificate who have a 3.5 GPA or higher and have completed at least 9 credit hours can petition the Graduate Studies Coordinator of the English Department to transfer to the MA in Literature and Composition without filing a new application.

For additional policies relevant to all Minnesota State University graduate programs, consult the College of Graduate Studies.