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MA Rhetoric and Communication Design

Collage of images related to English.

In the Master of Arts in Rhetoric and Communication Design (MA-RCD), students anchor their research in the foundational course of rhetorical theory (ENGL 700), and follow a program of study involving such fields as rhetoric, discourse analysis, semiotics, multimedia design and critique, composition pedagogy, and professional writing. MA-RCD graduates are employed in private industry, government, educational organizations, non-governmental organizations, and in their own businesses; others go on to doctoral programs.

The MA-RCD can also be taken in the co-op stream.

Full program information and regulations are available in the Graduate calendarMA-RCD specific requirements can be tracked with the help of our department checklists.

You can earn your MA-RCD by following any of the following streams:

  • Course work

  • Major Research Project (MRP)
  • Thesis

The following sections outline the shared requirements of all streams and the individual requirements of each.

Shared requirements

The following requirements are shared between all streams:

Academic integrity  workshop 

All students are required to complete a University of Waterloo workshop on academic integrity and sign a pledge to conduct their research with scrupulous honesty. The workshop takes place before classes begin and students will not be allowed to take classes until they have signed the pledge.

MA language requirement

Each candidate must attain or demonstrate basic competence subject to feasibility of testing by the University of Waterloo in a language other than English, excluding middle English but not Anglo-Saxon.

Proof of competence may take four forms:

  • Successful completion of two terms of beginning undergraduate study in the language.
  • Successful sitting of an exam at the appropriate level set by a department of the University.
  • Completion of degree-level study in that language at another university.
  • Evidence of other kinds that is deemed sufficient by the Departmental Graduate Studies Committee.

This milestone must be completed prior to filing the Intent to Graduate form.

Stream-specific requirements