Rhetorical analysis can be applied to any piece of writing or speech so that the motives of the language can be assessed with a critical eye.
Syracuse University’s study abroad brochure is no exception. Rhetorical analysis begins with the cover picture of a lovely ocean scene and the phrase “your guide to an unforgettable learning experience.” The picture that was chosen was clearly not a traditional classroom setting, speaking to how Syracuse believes that education abroad is more relaxed and possibly less serious. The unforgettable experience quote promotes the fact that education is different and more fun, enticing students to come.
Once you open up the brochure, there is a section called SU Abroad by the numbers. This section directly represents rhetorical terminology. Ethos and Logos are present in these statistics because they give reasons why Syracuse is great at sending students abroad as well as why students would want to go. Pathos is shown in how the brochure refers to the study abroad centers as your new home. This idea is comforting to read about and can help persuade the audience (student) to come. The brochure states, “SU Abroad is dedicated to helping students with health and wellness preparations, adjustment concerns, stress management, academic accommodations and other considerations.” This shows how they want to help you and that you will be alright when you leave the United States.
Syracuse also implements the five canons of rhetorical analysis. Elucutio and dispositio are shown in how the brochure opens up with reasons why study abroad makes you a better person. Before even knowing what it is, where you will go or how you will get there, it tells you that you can be more aware, engaged, marketable, involved, worldly and a better global citizen. Syracuse does this as a way to get you to keep reading in the hopes that this experience can help you improve yourself. Also the brochure is broken up by sections, with the financial aid section last. This layout emphasizes the fact that Syracuse is concerned more with getting students to come rather than if it will be possible for them.
In conclusion, Syracuse as an author is discreetly very persuasive. Their published study abroad document contains various aspects that when analyzed rhetorically, highlight ulterior motives. They are more focused on promoting their success as an organization and then fun that students will have rather than serious topics like academia and finances.