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Rhetoric, Minor

The rhetoric minor offers students the opportunity to acquire competence in the history, theory, and criticism of civic discourse and cultural practices.

  • Academics
  • Experiences
  • Interests

It brings together courses from both the communication studies and English departments, from which students may learn about the nature and function of rhetoric in politics, the professions, and the media. As in most universities, rhetoric has a home in two departments at Northeastern: in Communication Studies and in English. The rhetoricians in both departments have designed this interdisciplinary minor to offer students a way of exploring their interest in the field across departmental boundaries. The ancients theorized and taught rhetoric as the art of speaking and as a necessity for the participation throughout diverse forums in democratic societies. Contemporary rhetorical education extends this investigation beyond the spoken to include exploration of any form of human discourse that persuades others to change their minds or to take action; creates knowledge; and/or shapes identity and culture. The minor gives students a foundation in the classical tradition as well as vast opportunities to consider theories and critical practices The minor in rhetoric is appropriate for any student interested in the ways that symbols work to influence thought and action. Students from any major are welcome, although it is typically most attractive to students majoring in communication studies, English, history, political science, philosophy, and psychology. The minor consists of five courses. To ensure an interdisciplinary experience, at least two courses must come from Communication and two from English.

View University Course Catalog

Interests of Rhetoric, Minor Students

  • advertising
  • audio
  • communication
  • digital
  • entertainment
  • health
  • intercultural
  • interpersonal
  • law
  • marketing
  • mass communication
  • oral
  • oratory
  • organizational
  • political
  • production
  • public relations
  • public speaking
  • rhetoric
  • social media
  • speech
  • strategic communication
  • television
  • video

Co-op Opportunities

  • Zipcar
    Boston, MA
  • Wayfair
    Boston, MA
  • TJMaxx and HomeGoods
    Framingham, MA
  • Strong Women Strong Girls
    Boston, MA
  • Southwest Airlines
    Dallas, TX
  • Liberty Mutual
    Boston, MA
  • Johnson & Johnson
    Boston, MA
  • John Hancock
    Massachusetts, US
  • Institute of Contemporary Art
    Boston, MA
  • Eaton Vance Management
    Boston, MA
  • Donna Karan International
    Boston, MA
  • Dana Farber Cancer Institute
    Boston, MA
  • Constant Contact
    Waltham, MA
  • Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
    Boston, MA
  • Arnold Worldwide
    Boston, MA
  • Amazon
    Seattle, WA
View all co-ops for Communication Studies

Career Opportunities

  • Multidisciplinary Skills
    • ability to work under pressure
    • creative problem-solving skills
    • critical thinking thinking
    • leadership skills
    • listening
    • performance and presentation skills
    • project management skills
    • verbal and written communication skills
  • Careers of Tomorrow
    • account executive
    • brand manager
    • campaign manager
    • campaign worker
    • creative director
    • development officer
    • human resources professional
    • lawyer
    • legislative assistant
    • lobbyist
    • media planner
    • meeting/event planner
    • personnel recruiter
    • public information officer
    • public relations specialist
    • sales representative
    • social media manager
    • speech writer
    • researcher
    • health educator
    • writer

Rhetoric, Minor Requirements


Note: For English majors, only one course from the major may also count toward this elective section of the minor.

*For complete program course listing, visit the University course catalog.

Resources for Current Students

Course Catalog

Visit the Registrar website for a course catalog and information on university core requirements.

View University Course Catalog

Department Chair:

Dale Herbeck

Department Chair, Professor

[email protected]


Angela Chin

Administrative Officer

[email protected]

Alexandra Kilgore

Administrative Officer

[email protected]

Academic Advisors:

Valerie Falasca, M.Ed

Academic Advisor

[email protected]

Co-op Advisors:

Bill Jackson

Co-op Faculty Coordinator

[email protected]

Jacqui Sweeney

Co-op Faculty Coordinator

[email protected]

Emily Hornsby

Assistant Co-op Coordinator

[email protected]

View Communication Studies faculty and staff