Mansfield University 2021-2022 Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]
English, Bachelor of Arts
Offered by the Department of Art, Communication, English and World Languages
Depending on the concentration choice, the English major provides students with a strong grounding in literary studies, or professional writing with an emphasis on developing excellent analytical, critical thinking, writing, and research skills. Students pursuing the B.A. in English choose from two concentrations: Literary and Cultural Analysis or Professional Writing. Both concentrations offer students extensive exposure to the various forms of literary expression, methods of literary interpretation, and intensive attention to thinking and writing for specific contexts. A background in the analysis and interpretation of literature, coupled with strong research and writing skills, provides the B.A. major with a strong basis for further graduate study in literature, as well as for careers in writing, editing, the law, public relations, communications, politics and government, industry, and library science. Students in the B.A. English/Literary and Cultural Analysis concentration develop strong research and writing skills while mastering the techniques of textual analysis and interpretation. They receive training in literary analysis and are offered a broad background in the history of English and American literature and language. In addition, students study selected authors of diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds and employ various critical methods when interpreting texts. This concentration is designed to afford students extensive exposure to various forms of literary expression and the methods of literary interpretation. Students in the B.A. English/Professional Writing concentration learn to write for professional contexts, including business writing, technical writing, editing, writing for the Web and social media, and creative writing. With its strong career orientation, this concentration is designed to prepare students for careers in a variety of professional fields. Students pursuing the English curriculum in both concentrations receive training in literary analysis and gain a broad understanding of literature from a diverse set of cultures written in a variety of genres. In addition, students learn to situate works in their literary historical and cultural contexts, and to employ various critical methods when interpreting texts.
The English Program of the Department of English and World Languages provides students with the opportunity to study and develop life-long interest in the appreciation of literary works from a variety of cultures and with the opportunity to develop their skills as writers in a variety of genres. Acquisition of skills in writing coupled with the knowledge of literary critical methods and our literary heritage gives students a keener insight into human life and society, a principle goal of a liberal arts education. Understanding the form of expression in literature is essential to a full realization of our hopes, values, and convictions. As liberally educated persons, we seek not only to perfect our powers for intellectual thought, but also to refine our powers of perception, to encourage creativity, and to foster an appreciation of the aesthetic dimensions of life and culture so that we come to recognize the significant imaginative expressions of the human spirit.
- English graduates will demonstrate that they understand and can employ the techniques of textual analysis and interpretation.
- English graduates will demonstrate that they understand and can employ humanities-based research methods.
- English graduates will demonstrate that they can write clearly and effectively.
Students will be taught to
- Critically analyze texts;
- Contextualize literature and language;
- Write research papers of varying lengths;
- Understand and apply the writing process;
- Recognize and apply English writing conventions;
- Plan and produce professional documents. (Professional Writing Track).
Students who complete the English major will demonstrate the …
- Ability to analyze and interpret texts critically and convincingly.
- Ability to situate literature and language in various contexts, including literary, cultural, and historical.
- Ability to conduct research effectively and document sources appropriately.
- Ability to understand writing as a process, to assess rhetorical contexts, and to revise written work effectively.
- Ability to write clearly and purposefully, with attention to the grammar, mechanics, and other conventions of the English language.
- Ability to write effectively for specific professional contexts. (Professional Writing Track)
Policies and Procedures
English and World Languages also offers minor programs in Creative Writing, English Literature, Professional Writing, and Women’s Studies. Students may wish to complete a minor to complement their course of study.
In planning a course of study, English majors must consult with their English faculty advisor on a regular basis. English B.A. students will compile a portfolio of their written work to serve as evidence of their progress through the English curriculum and for the purpose of program assessment. The portfolios consist of the following:
- The final essay from ENG 2130: Introduction to Literary Studies
- The original version and a substantial revision of an essay written in an upper-division English course (excluding the final essay ENG 4401) to be completed as required in ENG 3333: Advanced Writing for English Majors
- The final research essay from ENG 4401: Seminar in Literary Studies
Students will submit their portfolio essays electronically to the department chair. The English Program Assessment Committee reviews completed portfolios annually to assess the effectiveness of the English degree program.
For more information on the English program, go to http://www.mansfield.edu/english