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Saint Catharine College Classroom

Bachelor of Arts in English

Read it, interpret it, appropriate it, and write it— effectively!

The Bachelor of Arts in English degree at St. Catharine College is designed to prepare students for careers in writing, communications, public relations, business, law, and government, among others, or to prepare students for graduate study. More importantly, the degree prepares students to become critical thinkers and participants in society. Students will learn how to read closely, think critically, and communicate persuasively.

Graduates of the St. Catharine College Bachelor of Arts in English complete a personalized program of study that ensures they have essential skills in interpreting difficult texts, creative texts, and cultural texts, as well as expressing their ideas through written and oral communication. The degree program accomplishes this through its two-pronged approach consisting of a literature component and a writing component. Three minors are also available through the English Department: Creative Writing, Professional Writing, and Literature.

Special program highlights and features:

  • Students learn to read, interpret, and analyze difficult texts that address issues with which humankind has wrestled since its inception, such as the meaning of life, what humans should do with their lives, what death means, etc. Works of literature are located within their cultural context to aid student understanding.
  • Guest speakers visit campus and classrooms to share their understanding and experience of writing, including creative writing, professional writing, and publishing.
  • Students complete both a literature component and a writing component within the degree program to ensure their skills are fully developed in both areas as preparation for graduate study or field experience.
  • Students may choose one of three guided concentration areas: literature, creative writing, or a student-designed course of study. Students work closely with a faculty mentor through their choice of courses as preparation for graduate school or professional work.
  • Students defend their work throughout the program in the Capstone course for the program. Students compile a portfolio of written work in conjunction with a faculty mentor and present it before a faculty committee.
  • The English Department conducts a yearly English Program Read in which all students enrolled in the degree program read a literary work and discuss it.
  • Students may participate in the St. Catharine College Drama Club or Fine Arts Club to present their works to the public.
Interesting Courses:

ENG 185/285/385/485: Special Topics courses. The English Department offers at least one Special Topics course per semester. These courses are designed to present students with the opportunity to explore themes/works/authors in more in-depth than addressed in a general survey course. Topics have included Stephen King, Shakespeare, and Gothic Literature and Film. Courses are also planned in Women’s and Gender Studies.

LAR/ENG 330: Contemporary Voices. This course will acquaint students with “voices” from various cultures in America by exploring cultural artifacts of those cultures in three of the following areas of the Liberal Arts: social science; philosophy; art; music; literature; film and other popular entertainment; music; and dance. Prerequisite: ENG 101 or permission of the instructor. Co-requisite: ENG 102. 3 credit hours.

ENG 350: Writing for Professional Publication. This course is designed for students anticipating graduate school studies or careers in Creative Writing. Students will examine a variety of academic publications and journals reflecting their own program of study and write and submit an academic article for publication. Prerequisite: ENG 3XX (Advanced Writing). 4 credit hours.

ENG 310: Advanced Creative Writing. This course focuses on the continued practice of creative writing, including analysis of professional pieces and student writing. Students may structure longer and more ambitious works. Class discussion and individual conferences. Prerequisite: ENG 101, 102, and 210, or permission of instructor. 4 credit hours.

ENG 326: Women in Literature. This course focuses on how women are represented in literature including short stories, drama, poetry, novels, and non-fiction, including philosophical and historical documents, and includes techniques of feminist explorations of literary works. and ENG 101; Co-requisite: ENG 102. 3 credit hours.

ENG 323 Literature and Medicine: Disease, Death, Doctors, and Healing (3) This course explores, through critical reading and discussion, evolving attitudes and perceptions of disease, death, doctors, and the healing process as expressed in literature. Ancient, scriptural, and contemporary texts are utilized.  Prerequisite: English 101 and 102.

ENG 324 Kentucky Literature (3) A survey of literature by Kentucky authors in the 19th and 20th centuries. The course will provide both a survey of themes and trends in Kentucky literature and an in-depth examination of works of selected authors. Use of library and internet resources to conduct literary research will be stressed. Students will complete several short papers on assigned themes. Prerequisite: ENG 110 or permission of the instructor.

ENG 420: Independent Study in Creative Writing. This course is designed for students pursuing the Bachelor of Arts in English degree with a concentration in Creative Writing. Students polish their Creative Writing works with the guidance of a faculty mentor. 6 credit hours. Prerequisite: ENG 210, ENG 3XX (Advanced Creative Writing).

ENG 430: Independent Study in the Great Books. This course is designed to be taken the student’s senior year, and includes great books by an author of the student’s selection. Readings are guided by a faculty mentor. A final academic paper that addresses all of the works read is required. Prerequisites: ENG 101 and 102 and 210. 3 credit hours.

ENG 490: Senior Capstone and Portfolio. This course is designed for students pursuing the Bachelor of Arts in English degree. Students prepare a semester-long project and presentation based upon their individual degree plans. This course focuses on one piece of writing that will be included in each student’s Senior Portfolio. Students also prepare a portfolio of polished writing with the aid of their project advisor and their faculty advisory committee. The course culminates in a final defense of the student’s work before the advisory committee. 4 credit hours.

Meet the Instructors:

Instructors for the English program include Dr. Becky Lee Meadows, Program Coordinator; Dr. Tara Tuttle and Mr. Bob Akin.

Each instructor brings his or her own area(s) of expertise to the classroom, in particular applying cultural and popular cultural studies to material addressed. Instructors routinely present their own academic work at national and regional academic conferences, and instructors have published in the area of their academic discipline.

Career Outlook for Major:

In today’s technology-savvy world, it is important to be able to communicate precisely and persuasively. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (2010), from 2008-2018, the employment of writers, editors, journalists, public relations specialists, advertising specialists, and others who work closely with language is expected to increase eight percent, about as fast as the average for all occupations. Online publications are growing, as are opportunities for self-publishing, creating new market opportunities for freelance and creative writers.

What Students Say

“The English major really lets students get involved in a wide variety of interests, from creative writing to British literature.  For those similar to me who have difficulties deciding what they want to study regarding the English program, there are classes geared to help the undecided discover what is specifically meant for them."            Catherine Bohn 

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