UWM Home PageUWM Graduate School UWM logo Grad School graphic
Quick Links

Prospective Students

Contact Information

Phone: (414) 229-4870
Fax: (414) 229-2643
E-mail: dclark@uwm.edu

Request Information

Graduate Certificate in Professional Writing and Communication

The Graduate Certificate in Professional Writing and Communication is designed for students who wish to pursue professional careers in technical writing, communication, corporate training and instructional design, or user interface and Web-document design.


Students must have completed a bachelor's degree with a minimum GPA of 2.75 and are required to complete and submit an application and fee to the Graduate School.

In addition, send the following items directly to the Department of English:

  • a portfolio of writing samples;
  • two letters of recommendation from persons knowledgeable about applicants' recent academic or work experience;
  • a statement of purpose that identifies the applicants' knowledge of workplace communication practices and business operations, their professional experience, or basic undergraduate coursework in business writing, technical writing, and communication; and
  • a statement describing the applicants' access to and operational knowledge of online communication technology, including a PC or equivalent computer system with Internet access and other applications sufficient to participate in the program's online learning activities.

MAILING ADDRESS: Department of English, Attn: Certificate Program, UWM, P.O. Box 413, Milwaukee, WI 53201-0413.

Applicants must declare their intent to pursue the Certificate program before completion of six credits in the Certificate sequence.

Credits and Courses

Students must complete 15 credits of course work as outlined below. The Certificate will be awarded when students achieve the following:

  • complete 9 credits in required courses in English;
  • complete 6 credits from a choice of courses in Communication; and
  • earn a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 in the courses that apply to the Certificate.

With the consent of the Certificate Coordinator and subject to the Graduate School transfer policy, students who have completed appropriate courses for graduate credit at other institutions may transfer up to three credits into the Certificate Program, provided that the courses were completed within the last five years with a grade of B or better.

Required Courses in English, 9 credits

Students will take 9 credits selected from the following required English courses:

Advanced Professional Writing (English 708) or Professional Writing (435)
Rhetoric, Writing, and Information Technology (English 709) or Writing for Information Technology (English 436)
Advanced Project Management for Professional Writers (English 710) or Project Management for Professional Writers (English 437)

Students who within the past five years have successfully completed courses equivalent to these required English courses may, with the approval of the Certificate Coordinator, substitute alternate English graduate courses.

Required Courses in Communication, 6 credits

Students, in consultation with the Program Coordinator, will take 6 credits selected from the following Communication Courses:

Designing and Developing Communication Training Interventions (Commun 627)
Studies of Communication in Organizations (Commun 810)
Seminar in Mediated Communication (Commun 813)
Seminar in Small Group Communication (Commun 823)
Seminar in Programs of Adult Communication (Commun 827)

Students who intend to enroll in both the Certificate program and a graduate degree program must apply for admission to both the Certificate program and to the graduate degree program of their choice. With the approval of the graduate coordinator of the student's graduate program, up to six credits completed in the Certificate also may satisfy graduate program requirements.

Students not concurrently enrolled in a UWM graduate degree program later may transfer credits completed in the Certificate to a UWM graduate degree program, subject to Graduate School transfer policy and subject to the guidelines and approval of the graduate coordinator of the respective degree program.

Students seeking admission to the Certificate and to graduate degree programs are advised to seek the advice of graduate coordinators of each program.

Time Limit

A student must complete all requirements for the Certificate within 3 years of his/her initial enrollment.

Page last updated on: 02/16/2015