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Learn composition with online courses and programs

Effectively articulate your thoughts, share knowledge, and engage with the world around you through writing. Learn more about composition with edX today.

What is composition?

Composition, in the context of writing, refers to the process of creating written works, such as essays, articles, reports, stories, or any other form of written expression. It involves organizing ideas, structuring thoughts, and conveying information or messages effectively through written language.

In the process of composition, writers engage in various activities to craft their work. This includes pre-writing, drafting, revising, and editing.

Effective composition helps ensure clear communication and logical reasoning for the intended audience. Writers must consider the purpose and context of their writing, select appropriate tone and style, and structure their ideas in a way that engages and informs the reader.

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Composition course curriculum

Composition is a skill that can be developed and refined through practice and a deep understanding of the principles of effective communication. Learners who want to study writing composition can be taught how to express themselves creatively, present research, and think critically. 

Additionally, learners could study the writing of others, uncovering how language and composition is used to present themes, evoke emotion, and tell stories.

Some examples of concepts that could be covered in an introductory language and composition course include:

  • What goes into a composition (thesis statement, main idea, body paragraphs)

  • Reading and interpreting great works of fiction

  • Cultural and historical background of literature and poetry

  • Fundamentals of good research papers

edX offers online courses that allow learners to study a variety of topics including writing, English language, and much more. ‌Sign up for an accelerated boot camp or enroll in a full degree program and start working toward a bachelor's degree or (for more advanced learners) a master’s degree in a relevant subject. You can also explore executive education programs specifically designed for busy professionals.

Explore jobs related to composition

Strong writing, language, and composition skills can be effective for any career and industry. Effective communication is foundational to accomplishing work, whether that be through emails with colleagues to research papers or creative writing. Some examples of jobs where writing composition is often a primary part of day-to-day work include:

  • Content writer: Creates engaging and informative written content for websites, blogs, social media platforms, and other digital channels. They produce articles, blog posts, product descriptions, and marketing copy, relying on their writing composition skills to captivate audiences and convey messages effectively.

  • Journalist: Researches, investigates, and reports news stories across various media outlets. They write news articles, features, and investigative pieces, using their composition skills to present accurate and engaging narratives that inform and influence public opinion.

  • Copywriter: Creates persuasive and compelling written content for advertising and marketing purposes. They develop slogans, taglines, product descriptions, and promotional materials, utilizing their composition skills to craft persuasive messages that resonate with target audiences.

  • Technical writer: Produces documentation and instructional materials for complex technical subjects. They write user manuals, guides, software documentation, and technical reports, using their composition skills to present complex information in a clear and accessible manner.

Each of these roles will have different education and skills requirements. Some employers may seek candidates with a degree in English or writing, depending on the role. Before deciding on a specific learning path, research the positions you hope to pursue and align your coursework with your career goals.