English - BA

St. Kate's English majors engage with literature, language and writing to enhance their imagination, improve their writing and hone their critical thinking. The curriculum offers range and flexibility, with intensive advising that helps each student claim her own focus based on her interests and aims. Visit the English Department's website for more information, opportunities and events.

English students benefit from a rich learning experience. They develop and share their thoughts in discussion-based seminar classes; they meet distinguished visiting authors such as Maya Angelou, author of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings; Wang Ping, author of The Magic Whip; and the Nobel Prize-winning South African anti-apartheid novelist J. M. Coetzee; they develop their own voices and professional skills in small, workshop-based writing classes; and they build a strong portfolio for job and graduate school applications. Students may also pursue Honors in English during their final year.

St. Kate's English majors have access to great campus and community connections. Students may join the English Club; work on The Wheel, the campus newspaper; submit their work to Ariston, the annual literary and visual arts magazine; or become a research or teaching assistant for an English professor. Students may also visit local museums and attend performances at acclaimed local theaters. Most English students also pursue advanced study in another language to deepen their overall language skills.

Before the end of the student’s academic career, she should also consider an internship at a publishing house, business or non-profit institution. St. Kate's English majors have interned at KTCA-TV, the Minnesota Zoo, Coffee House Press, Greywolf Press, the Guthrie Theater, MPR, and 3M.

St. Kate's English majors have pursued careers in education, writing, publishing, advertising, management, public relations, medicine and law. Some start their own businesses. Some become college professors. Others author books, edit anthologies, or write for magazines, newspapers and trade publications. Distinguished graduates include Kelly Barnhill ('96), whose novel The Girl Who Drank the Moon won the Newbery Medal in 2017, and Anne McKeig ('89), the first American Indian justice on the Minnesota Supreme Court. 

See also: Communication

The English department offers a major in the College for Women and the College for Adults. The requirements for the major differ. This page describes the English requirements for students enrolled in the College for Women.

Curriculum

The English department recommends that all English majors in the College for Women begin their studies with ENGL 2200 Literary Theory and Practice, a prerequisite for upper division literature courses. 

All English majors must take 10 English courses:

ENGL 2200Literary Theory and Practice4
Two writing courses (at least one at the 3000 level or above)8
Two language studies courses (at least one at the 3000 level or above)8
Two literature courses (at least one at the 3000 level or above)8
Two other English courses (at least one at the 3000 level or above)8
ENGL 4860WSeminar4
Students must also complete a Final Portfolio of writing.
Total Credits40

English Major Focuses

With the help of an advisor, students can fulfill the above required courses while claiming a particular focus. Specific pathways will vary, but see inspiring focus possibilities below. 

Professional Writing Focus

Select at least four writing courses of the following:16
Writing for Life: Developing Skill and Confidence
Writing as a Career
Rhetorical Grammar
Writing for the Digital Age: Compelling Content for Blogs, Websites and Social Media
Intermediate Writing: Writing with Power, Purpose and the Perfect Word
Advanced Writing: Cultivating Your Style
The Editorial Process
Recommended
ENGL 3400WLanguage as Power4
Recommended Supporting Course Work
Communication studies courses8
ART 3200Graphic and Web Design4
Extra-Curricular Activities
The Wheel
Tutoring in the O'Neill Center

Creative Writing Focus

Select at least three creative writing courses of the following:12
Introduction to Creative Writing
Intermediate Creative Writing: Poetry
Intermediate Creative Writing - Fiction
Creative Nonfiction
Advanced Workshop in Creative Writing
Recommended
Living Writers Live
Internship at a publishing house
Recommended Supporting Course Work
PHIL 2900Philosophy of the Arts (courses in art, music or theater)4
Extra-Curricular Activity
Ariston

Literature Focus

Select at least three 3000 level literature courses of the following:12
British Writers I
British Writers II
Literary Movements and Eras
Global Writers in English
American Writers I
American Writers II
Recommended
Select one of the following:4
Global Shakespeare
History and Structure of English
Introduction to Linguistics (as one of the required language courses)
Highly Recommended
Advanced study of a second language
Recommended Supporting Course Work
Art history, history, music
Extra-Curricular Activities
Ariston
The Wheel
AMP
English Department TA programs

Language Studies Focus

Select at least four of the following language studies courses:16
Language in Society
History and Structure of English
Language as Power
Introduction to Linguistics
Topics in Language Studies
Recommended
ENGL 3265Global Writers in English4
ENGL 2350Rhetorical Grammar (internship)4
Highly Recommended
Advanced study of a second language
Supporting Courses
PHIL 2150Logic4
SOCI 3250Cultural Anthropology4
Extra-Curricular Activities
TA program (in language studies course)

Portfolio Requirement

All English majors must compile a final English portfolio.

Students begin to develop their portfolio as soon as they declare their intent to major (usually after completing ENGL 2200 Literary Theory and Practice). 

The portfolio includes the following:

  • one paper from each of the following four courses:
    • ENGL 2200 Literary Theory and Practice
    • a 3000-level literature course
    • a writing course
    • ENGL 4860W Seminar
  • a summary reflective essay that reviews the student's educational progress in the English major
  • a resume or CV (prepared with the assistance of the Career Development Office)
  • a list of courses completed in the major
  • a portfolio checklist  

Students are responsible for developing the portfolio with the guidance of their advisor and for submitting it to the department chair at least two weeks before they graduate. 

English majors satisfy the Writing Requirement for Majors by completing ENGL 4860W Seminar.  They complete the Liberal Arts and Sciences Core Writing Requirement with three other writing-intensive courses (CORE 1000W The Reflective Woman or CORE 2000W The Reflective Woman, CORE 3990W Global Search for Justice, and any other writing-intensive course in this or another department).

Liberal Arts Requirements

NOTE: Writing courses do not fulfill the liberal arts and sciences core literature requirement.  Courses that meet the core literature requirement are identified in the course description.

The English department offers a major in the College for Women and the College for Adults. The requirements for the major differ. This page describes the English major requirements for students enrolled in the College for Adults (CFA).

Curriculum

The CFA English major consists of 32 credits.

NOTE: Students who transfer English courses worth fewer than four credits may need to take more than eight English courses to reach the 32 credit minimum.

Two writing courses (at least one at the 3000 level or above)8
Two language studies courses (at least one at the 3000 level or above)8
Two literature courses (at least one at the 3000 level or above)8
One additional English course in language studies, literature or writing4
ENGL 4860WSeminar4
Students must also complete a Final Portfolio of writing.
Total Credits32

Portfolio Requirement

All English majors must compile a final English portfolio.

Students begin to develop their portfolio as soon as they declare their intent to major. The details of this requirement will be posted in early fall of 2016.

Students are responsible for developing the portfolio with the guidance of their advisor and for submitting it to the department chair at least two weeks before they graduate. 

English majors satisfy the Writing Requirement for Majors by completing ENGL 4860W Seminar.  They complete the Liberal Arts and Sciences Core Writing Requirement with three other writing-intensive courses (CORE 1000W The Reflective Woman or CORE 2000W The Reflective Woman, CORE 3990W Global Search for Justice, and any other writing-intensive course in this or another department).

Liberal Arts Requirements

NOTE: Writing courses do not fulfill the liberal arts and sciences core literature requirement.  Courses that meet the core literature requirement are identified in the course description.