About the Department
With the department's small class sizes and nationally acclaimed faculty members, students studying English at Utah State University acquire the skills needed to thrive in a technologically and culturally complex world. Students learn how to present their ideas persuasively and communicate effectively with others, conduct cultural and historical analysis, create literary works, and formulate well-reasoned conclusions. By studying language, students develop competency in the areas most valued by employers, including critical thinking, teamwork, and oral and written communication. Our graduates frequently go on to successful careers in writing, editing, law, teaching, journalism, and advertising, among others.
The English department is the largest humanities unit in the university, offering undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degrees covering a broad curriculum in literature, creative writing, English education, folklore, and technical writing. English majors at USU have several pathways to engage in writing and research opportunities on campus and to gain individualized attention from scholar-teachers. For instance, the department houses several scholarly and creative publications, research labs, writing contests and performances, as well as student clubs and organizations.
Faculty in the department contribute extensively to University Studies by offering English 1010 (Introduction to Writing: Academic Prose) and 2010 (Intermediate Writing: Research Writing in a Persuasive Mode) in both face-to-face and online formats as well as an array of Breadth and Depth courses in literature, writing, and humanities for non-majors.
The twenty-first century has seen significant shifts in everyday life, ranging from more technology and digital media to greater global and cross-cultural dependence and interactions. To borrow a phrase from the novelist Anthony Trollope, "the way we live now" has changed dramatically. USU's English degree is designed exactly for the way we live now. Drawing on research done by the Association of American Colleges and Universities, we know that both educators and employers think that college graduates should have knowledge and skills in:
1. Inquiry and analysis
2. Critical and creative thinking
3. Written and oral communication
4. Information literacy
5. Intercultural knowledge and competence
6. Foundations and skills for lifelong learning
Therefore, USU's Department of English prepares its students for the way we live now by providing coursework that allows students to develop knowledge and skills in the above six areas through their study of a variety of texts. The means by which they develop these abilities range from analyzing and creating literary work to presenting ideas in the classroom to composing professional and digital documents to conducting cultural analysis. Whatever the means, we are a department united in the work of preparing students for the kind of critical thinking that the current century demands.