Program Overview

The Master of Arts in professional and technical writing offers a wide variety of courses in workplace and technical communication, nonfiction writing and publishing, and the teaching of writing from elementary school through college. The program welcomes applicants from all disciplinary backgrounds. Students may choose to complete a 36-hour degree that culminates in a traditional academic thesis or a 42-hour degree that culminates in an online portfolio.

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Program Details

Admission Requirements

Students who wish to pursue this program must meet the following requirements:
• Regular admission: Hold baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution with a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or greater (4.0 scale) or 3.0 or greater in the last 60 hours.
• Conditional admission: Hold baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution with a cumulative grade point average of 2.7 or greater (4.0 scale)
• Along with their online application to the Graduate School, applicant must submit: statement of purpose, explaining applicant’s interest and background in writing and outlining the applicant’s expectations and goals with regard to the program; current résumé; three-four writing samples indicative of applicant’s range, ability, interests, and style (may contain work completed in college courses, writing from the workplace, and/or freelance work); and three letters of recommendation.

More details about the program may be found in the program’s academic catalog entry.

Read more about the UALR Graduate School’s admissions process here.

Graduation Requirements

Graduation requirements for this program include:
• GPA of 3.0 or better for all required coursework
• Successful defense of master’s thesis or master’s portfolio

Program Advisor

Dr. Heidi Harris| 501.569.8327 |
Professor in the Department of Rhetoric and Writing


UALR is fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, affiliated with the Electronic Campus of the Southern Regional Education Board, and designated as “doctoral/research intensive” by the Carnegie Foundation.


UALR makes every effort to meet special accommodation and access needs. For information on specific accommodations for individuals with disabilities, you may contact the department sponsoring the class you wish to attend, call eLearning at 501.569.3003 or the Office of Disability Support Services at 501.569.3143. The Disability Support Services website,, provides information about the accommodation process and online forms to apply for services.

Cost per credit hour: $383

Required Courses (9-15 hours)

Elective Courses (6-18 hours)

Cognate Courses (Choose 6 hours)

Applies to both THESIS and PORTFOLIO options;
May be chosen from the following:
• writing courses outside the student’s concentration area
• independent study or internship courses
• graduate-level courses in other departments

Portfolio Electives (Choose 12 hours)

Applies to PORTFOLIO option only; must be completed in addition to cognate courses.
Student may choose 12 hours of electives from any concentration within the MA program with the approval of the student’s portfolio supervisor.

Program Concentration Courses (15 hours)

Applies to both THESIS and PORTFOLIO options;
Students must choose 15 hours of electives in either the NONFICTION concentration or the TECHNICAL concentration.