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Online Bachelor's Degree in Professional Writing and Communication

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Become an Expert Communicator with a Professional Writing Degree


2-4 years

41 Credit Hours (Major)

$305 per Credit

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Gain Cross-Disciplinary Knowledge for Lifelong Success

Excel in your career with the online Bachelor of Arts in Professional Writing and Communication from Southwest Minnesota State University. In this interdisciplinary online program, you’ll build the skill set you need to connect with diverse audiences using written, visual, and oral communication. You’ll also gain experience writing for new media, business communications, scientific writing, and more. When you graduate, you’ll be prepared to lead complex projects with both creative and technical expertise.

This BA in Professional Writing and Communication program is also offered on campus.

Program Details

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Grow Your Skills with Online Professional Writing Courses

120 Total Credits

13-15 Major Courses

We’ve designed our undergraduate degree in professional writing and communication to feature a combination of writing, rhetoric, and communication courses. By taking a liberal arts approach to learning, students graduate as well-rounded professionals with a balanced skill set. You can customize your program with electives in business, politics, ethics, public relations, computer science, or psychology to align your coursework with your future professional goals.

Course Highlights

  • ART 240: Concepts of Graphic Communication
  • COMM 330: Mass Media and Society
  • COMM 360: Organizational Communication
  • ENG 460: Writing and New Media
Curriculum Details

SMSU Admission Requirements

Start Date August 26, 2024 Fall Term 2024

Admission to the online bachelor’s degree in communications begins by submitting your application. Take the next step toward a rewarding career by completing your application today with support from the SMSU enrollment team.

Online Application FormApply Now
Application Fee$20 waivable fee*
Official TranscriptsSend official high school transcripts. Transfer students must send transcripts from each institution attended
Minimum GPA2.5 minimum, 3.0 recommended

International Students

Additional information and requirements may be necessary for international students. Please contact our enrollment team to learn more.

It’s always the right time to invest in your education with SMSU. Contact an enrollment counselor by calling 1-800-201-2944 to get started today.

Admissions Details

Affordable Tuition Makes Your Online Professional Writing Degree Accessible

Calculate your cost for attending SMSU Use our tuition calculator to help you estimate your total tuition costs.  

The first step toward creating a successful future for yourself is investing in your education. Whether you’re applying for a college degree for the first time or picking back up where you left off, Southwest Minnesota State University’s tuition and aid packages can assist you. With scholarships available and competitive tuition, we’ll help you earn your degree affordably.

Cost per Credit Hour$305
Total Credit Hours120
Total Estimated Cost**$36,600
Other CostsThe estimated tuition cost does not include factors such as textbooks, supplies, or additional fees and expenses

Military Benefits

SMSU proudly welcomes active military and veteran students. We accept the GI Bill™ and VA education benefits. Learn more by contacting an enrollment counselor or by visiting our military benefits page.

Financial Aid Options & Support

Southwest Minnesota State University offers a variety of solutions to help you invest in your education. SMSU offers in-state tuition rates to all students, along with a variety of financial services, including military benefits, financial aid opportunities, and scholarships for qualifying applicants.

Take your next step in financing your education by completing your FAFSA today. Use SMSU’s school code: 002375

Tuition Details
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What Can You Do with a Professional Writing Degree?

The skills you’ll gain in the online bachelor’s degree in communications are essential across industries, making this a versatile and valuable degree. Whether you are interested in advertising, publishing, corporate communications, social media, or marketing, studying professional writing can help set you up for success. Employment for writers is expected to grow 4 percent through 2032,1 keeping pace with the national average for all occupations.

Professional Writing Degree Jobs

Writer $73,150 per year1

Public relations specialist $67,440 per year2

Program Outcomes

SMSU’s online communications degree is designed to help you become a flexible thinker, writer, and communicator. You’ll be able to apply your studies in a wide range of contexts to excel in your chosen career path.

What You’ll Learn

Meet Our Faculty

SMSU employs a faculty of experts who are top-skilled in their fields. Our educators are fully committed to providing each student with personalized and thoughtful instruction to help you succeed academically and professionally.

Faculty Spotlight: Dr. Teresa Henning

Dr. Henning earned her MA and PhD from Purdue University’s rhetoric and composition program. She is the founding director of the professional writing and communication major at SMSU. She has also served as interim writing center director and assessment coordinator while at SMSU.

Her research interests include writing program assessment and administration as it relates to undergraduate writing majors, writing with technology, and medical writing. She has presented at the Council for Writing Program Administrators Conference, the Conference for Programs in Technical and Scientific Communication, the Great Plains Computers and Writing Conference, the Conference on College Composition and Communication, the International Writing Center Association Conference, the Association of Teachers of Technical Writing Conference, and the National Computers and Writing Conference.

Dr. Henning has published articles or chapters in the following: The Journal of Technical Writing and Communication; The Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks; The English Journal; The Journal of Effective Teaching; The Writing Lab Newsletter; Writing and the Generation; What We Are Becoming; Peer Pressure, Peer Power, and The New Normal. She has been a part of SMSU since 2006.

Learn Online with Southwest Minnesota State University

Whether you’re enrolling in a degree program for the first time or completing a degree you previously started, learning online with SMSU provides the flexibility you need to be successful. Our online programs offer the same rigorous curriculum delivered on campus, plus the convenience of studying on your schedule from the location of your choice.

Discover SMSU Online

Sources and Disclaimers

  1. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Writers and Authors, at (visited November 17, 2023).
  2. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Public Relations Specialists, at (visited November 17, 2023).

*Contact our enrollment team for more details!

**Tuition costs and fees will vary based on semesters of enrollment and number of transfer credits accepted. Contact our enrollment team to learn more.