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Overview of Program

Program Objectives

The Master of Arts in Technical Communication (MATC) prepares students to write and communicate effectively in technical, scientific, and professional environments and to pursue doctoral work in Technical Communication. Our program objectives are to:

  • Strengthen your ability to write clear technical and scientific information
  • Build and refine your technical editing skills
  • Teach you to create end-user and developer documentation
  • Help you to design and create web content for specific audiences
  • Provide access to a state-of-the-art usability lab to conduct qualitative research
  • Acquaint you with the ethical and cultural issues in Technical Communication

The MATC requires 30 hours of graduate coursework.  In addition to your coursework, you will submit a comprehensive portfolio of your best work to the faculty during your final semester.  

The MATC has two tracks: internship and thesis, both consisting of 30 semester hours.  Students who currently work full time or students who will work as technical communicators typically choose the internship option.  Internship classes are pass/fail.

Students who plan to pursue a doctorate in technical communication (or other doctoral program) typically choose the thesis track, which consists of two thesis courses.

Degree and Course Offerings

Course offerings provide students opportunities to learn theory and applied communication and technology skills. Such course topics include technical communication, rhetorical theory, intercultural communication, technical editing, software documentation, usability testing, social media, and web design.

Click this link to review many of our current and past course offerings.

Comprehensive Portfolio Exam

As mentioned above, the M.A. in Technical Communication has two tracks: internship and thesis.  Regardless of which track majors choose, all students must complete a portfolio comprehensive exam to show mastery of their studies.

See the Prospective Student FAQ for more information about the program.

Admission Requirements

All applicants must hold a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited university. A minimum of a 2.75 GPA on the last 60 undergraduate semester hours of letter-grade work earned at a four-year college or university before receipt of their Bachelor's (plus any previously completed graduate work) is required.

In addition, you must have a minimum of a 3.0 GPA in 12 or more hours of undergraduate English courses or writing, editing, web design, and technical communication/professional writing courses. Other courses may be approved by the MATC Graduate Advisor.

Portfolio Requirements

Applicants must document their mastery of undergraduate writing skills by submitting for evaluation a portfolio of their own writing.  The portfolio must consist of at least two nonfiction documents totaling a minimum of 15 typed double-spaced pages or the equivalent in single-spaced pages.  Applicants can choose a range of documents to submit from undergraduate research papers to professional pieces such as newsletters, brochures, memorandums, hardcopies of web pages, and instructional materials.   


Graduate students in the English M.A. programs may apply for appointments of up to two years as Instructional or Teaching Assistants.  Applications are available from the Technical Communication program; completed applications, together with supporting materials are due January 15th for appointments beginning in the fall semester.  However, for students not applying for Teaching or Instructional assistantships, the deadlines for admission are the same as those in the Texas State Graduate Catalog for the Graduate College and for the Technical Communication program.


Graduate students may apply for a number of departmental scholarships and University graduate student scholarships. Contact the Graduate College for more information about University scholarships and the Director of Graduate Studies in the English Department about departmental scholarships.