Rhetoric and Composition

Oberlin students are expected to write and communicate well. Whether majoring in neuroscience, historical performance, or politics, we want all students to be confident, competent, and capable writers. Rhetoric courses encourage you to understand writing as a means of discovery, reflection, and critical thinking to enable you to negotiate the demands of academic and college-level writing.


Our faculty are both scholars and teachers who devote their careers to making important contributions to their disciplines through writing and research. They are committed to undergraduate education and teach everything from first-year seminars to advanced courses. Our rhetoric and composition faculty are themselves editors and published writers who value critical thinking and exceptional writing.

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Department Overview

Oberlin College values good communication and expects its students to be able to write well. This basic yet essential skill, if properly nurtured and practiced, will aid you in almost any field to which you aspire. Courses in our rhetoric and composition department can be an important component of a liberal arts education in supporting students toward this end.

We expect all Oberlin students, whether majoring in neuroscience, historical performance, or politics, to be confident, competent, and capable writers. Graduates should be able to express their ideas, opinions, research, and academic endeavors in written form, whether that form unfolds on a blog, as a proposal for a winter-term project, or as an essential contribution to a faculty research project.

Rhetoric courses take students through the writing process and often investigate interdisciplinary topics of inquiry. All of our courses are small, allowing you plenty of interaction with other students as well as with the writing professor.

Rhetoric and Composition News

Rhetoric and Composition Facilities

King Building

King Memorial Building is the main classroom building for social sciences, humanities, math, and computer science classes.
King Building

Mudd Center, Seeley G.

The Seeley G. Mudd Center houses the Mary Church Terrell Main Library, the central library facility for Oberlin College.
Mudd Center

Rice Hall

Rice Hall holds faculty and academic department offices for the social sciences and the humanities.
Rice Hall