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Prospective Student FAQ

If you are interested in the MATC program at Texas State and would like to know more about it, please email matc@txstate.edu to receive our Information Packet.  It contains information about the program in general, the courses we provide, and our faculty, as well as information about entering into the Graduate College, Assistantships, Scholarships, and more.  Once you have reviewed the Information Packet, please feel free to send any specific questions or concerns to us via email (matc@txstate.edu) or by phone (512-245-3733).

 

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  • Technical Communicators work in a variety of businesses, agencies, and organizations and do a wide range of writing, editing, designing, and publishing activities. These activities include documenting computer hardware and software; designing websites; producing multimedia educational training materials; writing governmental policies and regulatory rules; writing grant applications; and publishing brochures, newsletters, and magazines.

  • The amount varies by state, area of specialization, and job. You can refer to Salary.com to get average figures.

  • Course topics are continually being created, revised, and rotated. The courses are both theory-based and computer tools courses. For a current listing, see the course descriptions page.

  • Classes are mostly held online, as the program is fully remote. Some classes may meet at the Texas State San Marcos campus. Most classes meet from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. to accommodate students who work full-time. 

  • Yes, the entire program can be completed online. 

  • There are two sets of important deadlines for this program:

    Applications, transcripts, and portfolios must be received by June 15 for the fall semester, November 1 for the spring semester, and April 15 for the summer semester. Please Note: Applications and transcripts must be sent to the Graduate College, and portfolios must be sent directly to the MATC office.

    Students interested in Instructional Assistant (IA) or Teaching Assistant (TA) positions must submit complete packets no later than January 15 for the following school year. IA/TA positions are only awarded for the entire year. Please read the policies and guidelines for these positions before you apply.

  • No.  Although the Texas Common Application will ask you for a minor or cognate, you are not required to obtain a minor or cognate to complete our program.  You can leave that section of your application blank.

  • No.  The MATC program does not require taking the GRE; however, the Graduate College may require an applicant to have a GRE score on record if their GPA is below a 2.75 in their major.

  • The MATC program has been in existence since fall 1999, and now boasts many active students. The first two students graduated in summer 2001. As of 2020, there are over 200 program alumni. The students' diverse backgrounds enhance the educational experience for all. Some are already technical communicators seeking further credentials and new information, some are making lifetime career changes, and others have just completed undergraduate school.

  • Since the majority of MATC students work full-time and take classes in the evenings, most choose to take one or two courses per semester. All students should expect to spend a minimum of two years in the program but the program can be completed in three years. The degree itself consists of 30 hours; a full graduate course load is nine hours per semester.

  • Students in the thesis track work with a faculty advisor to focus their research interests and provide insights to the field. The following guidelines are designed to guide students through the thesis writing process in the MATC program at Texas State University: Thesis Guidelines

    You cannot simply register for thesis hours. First you have to find a chair among the MATC faculty to direct your thesis. You and the chair work together to come up with a committee of two other MATC faculty members and to find an appropriate thesis topic. Once the faculty member agrees to chair/direct the thesis, you need to contact the English Department Administrative Assistant to set up a thesis section in which you will register.

    You should carefully read the Graduate College Thesis Guide.

    Students in the internship track work with a client to create documents and inform practice while building marketable skills. 

    Students who are inclined to pursue a Ph.D. are encouraged to take the thesis track (a minimum of six hours), while others are directed toward doing an internship (three credit hours). However, not all doctoral programs require theses, and many students who plan to join the professional workforce find writing a thesis as a means of further researching a particular aspect of technical communication that interests them.

  • The Master of Arts in Technical Communication Program offers an internship course in which students work on a professional publication for internship credit. Students in this course have worked on Southwestern American Literature, a literary journal published by the Center for the Study of the Southwest at Texas State University,The Journal of Texas Music History, a publication of Texas State University's Center for Texas Music History, and The Bureau of Pollution Control and Prevention in Houston.

  • Yes, students are required to create and submit a Comprehensive Exam Portfolio of their best academic and practical work to demonstrate what they have learned in the MATC program. Download a complete description of the portfolio exam here:  Comprehensive Exam Information Packet

  • Our program will introduce you to new ideas, broaden your writing, editing, and designing skills, introduce you to new technology, help you to get new credentials, and help you network with other professionals.

  • The Technical Communication program is a PC-based program. You should have access to a computer and an internet connection. You will need to know how to use Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and Adobe Acrobat Reader.  Other software may be used based on individual course subject matter. 

    If you have any questions or concerns about what software you need to use for specific courses please contact the MATC GA at matc@txstate.edu

  • Contact the MATC office by phone at: 512.245.3733, or email us at matc@txstate.edu.