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Writing Studies is an interdisciplinary field that focuses on the role of written words and language in shaping who we are and the world around us. In Writing Studies at UC Merced, we explore how a wide range of “writing”—from print-based genres, creative writing, and professional documents to digital technologies, generative A.I., and even live performance—can offer us access to self-knowledge, sense of belonging, agency, and social impact. 

Why study writing? The answer is simple: writing study simultaneously gives you skills to navigate our increasingly “connected” lives and draws out what is already inside you. 

We pose 4 fundamental questions:

What are you thinking? Writing is thinking made visible. Writing offers opportunities to explore ideas, analyze problems, reinforce concepts, apply new concepts, and synthesize knowledge. 

What are you feeling? Writing reveals emotion. Writers appeal to readers when they make a human connection, when they create the feeling that someone somewhere “gets it.” Writing offers opportunities to explore our emotions and to act with empathy in the world. 

What will you create? Writing constructs new worlds and new identities. Through writing, we learn about not only what we think and feel, but also who we can become. Through writing, we imagine different futures.   

What will you transform? Writing transforms us. In a world filled with complex problems, the 21st century needs solution seekers who can communicate effectively to identify critical issues, ask questions, deal with ambiguity, take risks, find stakeholders, test options, and revise interventions based on effects. Writing can get us there!

We are family with the Karen Merritt Writing Program and the University Writing Center.