Composition and Rhetoric is a field of study that focuses on the role of literacy (reading and writing) in peoples' lives and communities. An identified area of strength within the English department, UNL's Composition and Rhetoric program is committed to:
- extending students' capacities to read and write purposefully and effectively,
- studying how people use reading and writing in the world,
- researching and advocating for community and classroom practices that best support literacy learners at any stage of life or learning.
Graduate and undergraduate students of Composition and Rhetoric at UNL have studied reading and writing in a variety of contexts, including rural women's uses of literacy to sustain the social and economic fabric of their town and students' negotiation of religious identity in their writing for college. UNL students in Composition and Rhetoric have organized writing groups for teenage girls, produced publications for workplaces and non-profit organizations, and conducted internships in professional writing and literacy tutoring.
Students engage in this kind of writing and research via the department's first-year writing courses, the undergraduate concentration in writing and rhetoric, coursework specific to English/language-arts education, and the Composition and Rhetoric Graduate program.
Undergraduate and graduate students pursuing programs of study in composition and rhetoric are prepared for a wide array of professional and personal opportunities including
- writing intensive careers,
- community and workplace literacy work and activism,
- teaching, research and administration in postsecondary and secondary education,
- further graduate study.