Professional Writing

Do you have a passion for words and language? Do you find excitement in the way writers convey information and capture the imagination with their written work? If yes, then taking your education in the direction of Professional Writing is something to consider. You will be challenged creatively and will hone your skills at researching, writing and editing for book publishing, periodical publication and professional communications.

Career Options in Professional Writing

This list is not exhaustive but provides an idea of the options graduates have and what they have gone on to do. Some options are more directly associated with a Professional Writing degree than others.

  • Author
  • Advertising Representative
  • Archivist
  • Bibliographer
  • Business Writer
  • Copy Editor
  • Corporate Communications Manager
  • Cultural Interpreter
  • Editor
  • Editorial Assistant
  • Event Coordinator
  • Fiction Writer
  • Film Researcher/Consultant
  • Foreign Correspondent
  • Freelance Writer
  • Fundraiser
  • Historian
  • Historical Researcher
  • Journalist
  • Lawyer
  • Legislative Aid
  • Librarian
  • Lobbyist
  • Media Correspondent
  • Paralegal
  • Policy Researcher
  • Political Advisor
  • Politician
  • Press Agent
  • Public Affairs Consultant
  • Public Policy Researcher
  • Public Relations Specialist
  • Public Speaking Consultant
  • Publicist
  • Radio Host
  • Radio Producer
  • Researcher
  • Script Supervisor/Editor
  • Speech Writer
  • Sports Writer
  • Teacher
  • Technical Writer
  • Translator
  • Travel Writer

Some of these career choices may require additional education or preparation in the form of graduate studies, experiential education or professional formative courses and exams. For a more in-depth description of some of the careers mentioned above visit Career Cruising (login information can be found on the home page of the Career Centre's online system) or the National Occupational Classification website.

Skills Developed through a Professional Writing Degree

The ability to master and wield any language is a powerful tool. Here are just a few of the skills a Professional Writing degree can help you develop:

Core Professional Writing Skills

  • An understanding of the historical and theoretical analysis of written expression
  • The development of practical expertise in creating, managing, coordinating and presenting written information in a constructive and dynamic fashion
  • The ability to gather various types of information, assess them, analyze and incorporate potential linkages from different fields, put them into writing and efficiently convey your message and the goal of your work, be it individual or in the context of group work in any professional environment
  • Advanced skills developed by specializing in book writing and editing, professional periodical writing, or professional institutional communications

Data Gathering and Organizational Skills

  • Deduction of information from various sources and the ability to concentrate on relevant resources
  • An ability to prepare insightful oral and written presentations and reports using current data and technology
  • The ability to learn new information and apply this to professional demands
  • The ability to explain complex ideas clearly to others and to apply theoretical concepts to everyday practice and professional dilemmas

Management and Teamwork

  • The ability to interpret and analyze information presented by peers and efficiently and constructively support or challenge their proposals, theories, ideas and reports in order to achieve a project's intended and successful end result
  • Skills enabling you to work effectively in group situations, partaking in decision-making, leading and contributing in various capacities to the ultimate success of the team and task
  • The ability to debate, persuade, mediate and present your thoughts and opinions clearly to others, as well as the capacity to recognize and incorporate other potential solutions or applications to given problems
  • The capability to identify priorities and proper courses of action, to plan the execution of tasks and to determine and delegate responsibilities to group members to most effectively carry out projects

Professional Associations and Organizations

Knowing the industry and how to excel in it after receiving a degree are key elements of future success. University study sets up the building blocks you will need to develop and enhance your understanding and knowledge in your career. Being part of a professional organization or network and gaining further insight through training are excellent ways of increasing your knowledge of the field.