Major Qualifying Project

The Major Qualifying Project (MQP) is a high-level research project in the student’s technical field that also utilizes their professional writing capabilities. Students get the chance to experience the real-world problem-solving and skillful communication that will soon characterize their careers. With a Professional Writing MQP on their resume, WPI students have a leg up on the competition when it comes to launching careers or gaining admission to the best graduate schools.

In addition to challenging research issues typical of a student’s scientific discipline, Professional Writing majors work in a range of media (print, digital, video) and genres (websites, brochures, online documents, feature articles, instructional material, posters, and newsletters), drawing on their study in writing, rhetoric, and literacy to analyze the context of their project, to design documents that communicate in useful and accessible ways, and to explain the significance of their culminating year’s work.

Get to know some of our students and learn more about their MQPs.

An Introduction to Retro Software Homebrew: Sustaining the Growth of an NES Homebrew Community through Online Communication

William Poirier’s MQP examined how a homebrew community can sustain membership through their technical communications, as well as the relationships between homebrew communities and video game companies. Read more about Poirier's MQP (PDF).

Framing NASA: An Analysis of How the Space Agency is Portrayed in Popular Media

Kaitlyn Kelley's MQP examined how the depiction of NASA programs in the media is related to the public support that the agency receives. Her report also determined which media portrayals were the most successful by analyzing media samples. Read more on Kelley's MQP (PDF).

Methods of Schistosomiasis haematobium Control in Adasawse, Ghana: A Case Study of Cultural Awareness in Public Health Campaigns

Following her experience working in Ghana, Victoria Mason based her MQP around creating a culturally sensitive model for communicating the health risks of schistosomiasis, a parasitic disease in the small rural village of Adasawase. Read more on Mason's MQP (PDF).