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Academics / Graduate Certificate in Professional and Technical Writing

Graduate Certificate in Professional and Technical Writing


The University of Kentucky Department of Writing, Rhetoric, and Digital Studies Graduate Certificate in Professional and Technical Writing


WRD offers a graduate certificate in Professional and Technical Writing that provides immediate workplace skills and knowledge. All courses are online, and the certificate can be completed in a flexible and timely manner. The certificate is designed for non-traditional and/or non-resident students who are interested in continuing their education in professional and technical writing. The certificate is designed for 

  • active military personnel interested in advancing their skills in legal writing, organizational writing, manual writing, policy writing, and other areas relevant to their work;
  • scientists interested in advancing their skills in technical writing, grant writing, organizational writing, and writing for publication; and
  • active technical writers interested in learning new skills and advancing in their current place of employment.

Technical Writing jobs can begin at $30-$40 an hour. Data management, project management, science based industries, government agencies, manufacturing, and other related industries need technical writers with appropriate skills in writing and design. This certificate helps prepares students for such jobs.

The certificate requires 9 credits.  Students must take WRD 702, but can choose from two of the remaining three courses.  Courses are offered on an accelerated 8 week schedule. 

Courses Offered

  • WRD 702 Professional and Technical Writing (required). This course teaches the genres of professional and technical writing. 
  • WRD 612: Ethical and Legal Issues in Technical Writing. This course teaches the genres of legal writing – briefs, advocacy letters, petitions – by asking students to focus on important legal and ethical issues relevant to their workplace (military personnel file such documents on a regular basis regarding injury, death, lost equipment, policy issues; scientists must address ethical and legal concerns of their work).
  • WRD 614 Visual Rhetoric and Persuasion. This courses teaches the fundamentals of visual expression  - essential to all technical and professional writing -  including document design, video, presentation skills, and the usage of specific visual information tools such as infographics.
  • WRD 704 Technical Editing. This course offers students extensive work in the editing aspects of technical writing which include attention to style, format, grammar, and punctuation.
  • WRD 750 Writing with AI. This new course provides students with experience thinking through the practical and theoretical implications of generative AI in the workplace. 


1-2 courses are offered each semester.

Students do not need to take the GRE for admission. 

A transcript of a BA or BS is required by the Graduate School.

To apply, please visit the Graduate School's application page.

Further information regarding Graduate School applications can be found here

Information regarding fee policy and tuition appeals can be found here.

Additional information can be found here.


Tech Writing Commercial V4 from UK College of Arts & Sciences on Vimeo.