UCSB Minor in Professional Writing Overview

The Professional Writing Minor is an opportunity for undergraduates to expand their communication skills through two capstone courses and a writing internship during their senior year. You should think of the Professional Writing Minor as an apprenticeship in the world of professional writing and not simply as a set of courses in which someone will tell you what to do.

The Professional Writing Minor is separated into distinct tracks, each with its capstone courses and emphasis: Professional Editing, Multimedia Communication, Business Communication, and Writing and Civic Engagement. When applying, you will indicate a first, second, and third choice and explain the reasons for your first choice selection.

Professional Writing Minors must be more than good students. They must be excellent writers and editors. They must be able and willing to function in a professional internship environment, to accept responsibility, to demonstrate initiative, to complete assignments, to meet deadlines, and to work collegially in group projects.

What are the tracks of the Professional Writing Minor?

Professional Editing (Writing 150, 151 A-B):

Conceptual and technical editing of a wide range of documents for diverse audiences, with attention to genre, tone, and style. Students will learn the responsibilities of the professional editor, including interaction with authors, revision strategies, and the grammatical and mechanical requirements of The Chicago Manual of Style. The final portfolio will include the resume, edited assignments from the course, notes to the author, and edited documents from the internship. 

More information about the Professional Editing track.

Writing and Civic Engagement (Writing 150, 153A-B):

This recently approved track gives students the opportunity to learn how to act upon their passion for civic issues through the study and practice of writing related to governance, citizenship, and civil society.  Students study and practice communication that: 1) Aims to influence public understanding of civic issues, such as op-ed pieces, policy briefs, and political campaigns; 2)    Functions within a civic organization to meet its mission, such as grants, educational brochures, and marketing documents. Learn more at the Writing and Civic Engagement web site

More information about the Writing and Civic Engagement track.

Multimedia Communication (Writing 150, 155 A-B):

Evaluation, design, and production of effective multimedia content for professional audiences. Advanced computer skills are not required, but willingness to learn new software is essential. The final portfolio will include individual and collaborative multimedia projects as well as traditional documents such as memos, proposals, progress reports, and a résumé.

More information about the Multimedia Communication track.

Business Communication (Writing 150, 157A-B):

Development of written, visual, oral, and collaborative skills for the workplace (business, government, non-profit, or other organizations), with a focus on design, development, and re-purposing of hardcopy and new media documents. A final portfolio will include examples of a variety of professional genres--such as letters, e-mails, status reports, proposals, press releases, feasibility reports, policies and procedures, brochures--presented in both print and digital form. Read more at the website for the Business Communication track.

More information about the Business Communication track.

Professional Writing Minor Mailing List

Receive updates on information sessions, deadlines, and requirements by subscribing to the Professional Writing Minor Mailing List. Email our Undergraduate Advisor, Tyler Gardner, at tgardner@hfa.ucsb.edu to be added to the list.


Email Tyler Gardner at tgardner@hfa.ucsb.edu or call (805) 893.2613.