About the Program
For students majoring in English, the program provides a foundation in literature, language, writing, visual literacy, and teaching. Thus students’ command of written language, their ability to analyze concepts, and their broad understanding of human nature and social realities will enable them to be competitive in a variety of fields, including education, business, and civil service or, with appropriate graduate work, in professions such as law and higher education.
The English Major may choose to declare no concentration, or the English Major may choose to declare a concentration in one of the following:
- literature, film and media studies
- secondary school teaching, leading to licensure
The literature, film and media studies concentration encompasses a range of American, British, and World literatures and film media; students examine how written texts and visual narrative media record the complex interactions between particular people and cultures in history. The curriculum explores major periods, movements, issues, forms, and innovations, as well as a large number of important authors and filmmakers of diverse backgrounds. Through the analysis of textual production in various forms and from various critical perspectives, students develop the critical skills to negotiate texts in contexts, in order better to engage with writing, with analytical tasks, and with life in the world. Because of their command of the written language and visual literacy, and their ability to deal with ideas and concepts as well as facts, English majors concentrating in literature, film and media studies are valued in many fields, including academe, law, and business.
The writing concentration major provides extensive study, practice, and opportunity for performance in various modes and genres of writing as well as a foundation in the appreciation of the literary heritage in English. The program immerses students in reading, writing, and language and helps prepare them for graduate school or vocation while clearly placing them in the tradition of the liberal arts.
The secondary English teacher licensure concentration, offered in conjunction with the School of Education, prepares degree seeking, future secondary teachers of English to understand and teach the diverse subject matter required for licensure. This program equips students with a wide variety of language principles and skills; practical experience in developing and teaching the processes of writing; sound knowledge of approaches to literature and literary genres; periods and authors (including a special focus on young adult literature); and an understanding of communication and media as used in English studies. In addition to meeting specified state and departmental requirements, this program offers students the opportunity to develop further specialization in writing, language, or literature to complement the major. The major provides student with a background in the Colorado Academic Standards for English and prepares them to pass the required content exam for licensure. This extended major does not require a minor.
Students who are considering a major in the English Department are expected to consult with faculty for advising. Students in elementary or secondary licensure programs should consult with advisors in the School of Education as well.
With completion of any of the concentrations in the English Major, students should be able to do the following:
- Produce polished writing in a variety of genres appropriate to audience and purpose
- Understand how language is used, and the factors accounting for variation in language use
- Identify and use appropriate methods in their research, assess their sources, and cite all sources professionally
- Analyze texts appropriate to the discipline, with an understanding of the ways in which texts can reflect or shape historical and cultural contexts.
- Apply appropriate disciplinary criticism or theory
- Examine diverse perspectives among the world-views, power structures, and experiences of individuals, groups, communities, and/or cultures, in historical and contemporary contexts, specifically through the lenses of race and ethnicity, global perspectives, and/or sexual and gender identities.