This committee should:
Charge 1: Document the variety of writing majors across the country in diverse institutional types and in diverse units, working with NCTE staff to incorporate/add data into its database.
Charge 2: Identify and describe a common set of learning outcomes for writing majors.
Charge 3: Identify and describe specific courses/curricula that may be adapted to other majors.
Charge 4: Track what writing majors do after graduation and report these findings to the CCCC officers and EC and membership in various venues.
March 2010 Update
The Committee on the Major in Writing and Rhetoric is developing a searchable database of majors in composition and rhetoric broadly defined (none are actually named this way). This database will include information available in the list currently downloadable, but programs will also be able to upload and update information about their majors and career outcomes of their students. Those seeking to explore the varieties of majors in rhetoric and composition will be able to search the database in multiple ways. We hope the database will be available by Summer 2009. The committee also hosted workshops at WPA 2007 and CCCC 2008 for those revising or developing majors in rhetoric and composition, and individual members have presented conference papers drawing on our findings. Several articles are underway.
Our first list of writing majors and tracks within a major in 2005-06 included 45 institutions with such a major. The 2008 update included 68 majors and tracks in 65 different institutions, and the most recent update (Feb 2009) includes 72 majors and tracks in 68 different institutions. Although some of those added since our 2006 count were ones that we did not identify earlier, more than a dozen were brand new majors, and at least three of the majors that were on that list have recently been completely revised with a greater focus on writing. Our data suggests what many people have claimed anecdotally, namely that the number of writing majors is increasing rapidly and writing studies is becoming more central with each revision.