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Information on Master of Professional Writing (MPW) Degree Program

Majors Overview June 27, 2015

This article talks about Master of Professional Writing (M.P.W.) degree programs and their education requirements, coursework, career choices, job and wage outlook, and continuing education choices.

Master of Professional Writing (M.P.W.) Programs

Students enrolled in a Master of Professional Writing (M.P.W.) program commonly gain expertise in evaluating and critiquing each others’ work as they simultaneously gain skills in organizational and technical writing techniques. Students learn about theory and perspectives in combination to hone their skills in identification and analysis, communication, critique, and collaboration. Occasionally, participants may be offered the choice of a concentration, such as content development for websites. Participation of an internship is in the curriculum of many programs. Students also work on the construction of manuscripts or writing of commercial media works.

Educational Requirements

Admission criteria require the submission of Graduate Record Examination scores and transcripts by applicants for admission. Submission of writing samples may also be expected of prospective students, thereby reflecting their abilities and interests. Students must also hold a bachelor’s degree.


Coursework includes classes on genres, writing, audience, criticism, and literacy. Core coursework may cover topic areas such as:

•Commercial nonfiction
•News editing
•Novel writing
•Web development
•Digital media writing
•Technical writing
•Business writing
•Mass communication

Career Choices

Program graduates may seek occupations as self-employed freelance writers with publications; alternatively, they may seek careers in media, entertainment, or education. They may pursue possible job positions such as:

•Writing workshop leader

Job and Wage Outlook

Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, a slower-than-average job growth rate of three percent has been predicted for writers and authors (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). Writers of online publications are likely to enjoy the best job prospects. In May 2012, writers and authors working for periodical, newspaper, directory and book publishers brought in an average annual wage of $55,940. During the same period, individuals employed in advertising and public relations banked $76,790, and those in the motion picture and video fields earned $102,080, respectively, per annum, on average (BLS).

Continuing Education Choices

Program graduates may opt for continued education by enrolling in a doctoral degree program in writing or a related field, such as journalism. Individual interests are typically pursued by enrollees in these programs while gaining perspectives in the field.

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