English Degree Programs

The programs offered by the Department of English provide an opportunity for a truly liberal education, one that encourages both self-discovery and an exploration of enduring ideas. The curriculum includes courses in rhetoric, composition, creative writing, linguistics, and literature.

The English department’s mission is to prepare students to succeed in an increasingly diverse world. The department is devoted to an innovative curriculum that encourages lifelong learning, critical thinking and effective writing. We teach students to see textual work as an engagement with history, convention, culture and place so that they can participate responsibly in changing regional and challenging global environments. In particular, the department is concerned with Alaskan cultures, the North Pacific Rim environment and the intersection of networked technologies and forms of textuality. The English department also strives to familiarize students with a full range of literacies – written, digital and visual – so that they may become active and well-equipped citizens.

To address this mission, the department offers an undergraduate major leading to a Bachelor of Arts degree that covers the breadth of English studies. The department also provides minors in English and in creative writing. The Minor in Creative Writing allows students to explore the crafts of fiction, literary nonfiction, poetry, and dramatic writing in an intensive series of workshops taught by active writers in the genres. The Minor in English has three options: literature, which enhances the experience of students majoring in other subjects by providing a study of significant authors and literary works as well as by developing skills in writing and critical analysis; professional writing, which prepares students to interpret and present complex information in a readable form to various audiences using a variety of media; and linguistics, which is designed for those who wish to build a foundation in linguistic studies for complementary majors, such as anthropology and languages, and for those who are interested in the study and teaching of languages.