Inspired by the written word.

It’s the excitement you feel in every page written. It’s the passion you find when developing a new plot or character. It’s this creative expression that you want to engage in your future career, especially through earning your degree in Marian’s Writing program.

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The Program

Through Marian’s English writing program, you’ll enhance your skills in analytical and research writing, and be given the opportunity to write individual creative works. You will also embrace a strong foundation in critical thinking while evaluating theories and practices of literary criticism. In addition, you’ll read literature from a diversity of cultures, contexts and perspectives, as well as investigate literature’s role as an expression of or challenge to a society’s values.

For more details regarding this program, view Marian’s Academic Bulletin.

Sample Course Plan:
Download Sample Course Plan

General Education Program:

46-49 credits of University requirements.

42 credits as follows:

15 credits:

This course serves as a gateway, providing English majors, prospective English majors, and English minors with critical tools to heighten and enhance their experiences in subsequent courses in the major and their careers. The course introduces students to critical theory and to a wide variety of critical approaches to literature, enabling them to read and interpret literature with greater insight and discernment. Students also deepen their understanding of key literary periods and movements and become more knowledgeable of developments in the evolution of significant literary genres and sub-genres. Students will also gain an appreciation for the relevance and practical applications of literary studies in personal and professional development.

Prerequisites:

An introduction to the techniques of writing poetry, fiction and drama. The course is taught as a workshop, with repeated presentation and discussion of works in progress. May be repeated for credit.

Prerequisites:

A survey of Shakespeare’s major plays. While the emphasis is on close study of the individual works, students also consider Shakespeare’s artistic development and the plays’ historical contexts.

Prerequisites:

Students become more aware of principles and issues in grammar, linguistics, and rhetoric, particularly as they unfold historically, and apply this enhanced awareness to the development of their own writing. The course examines the stylistic elements of writing aimed at different discourse communities, including academic and business audiences, with emphasis on developing adaptability, expressiveness, and polish in students’ own writing.

Prerequisites:

The English Capstone course will allow students to reflect on their past work in English and prepare for graduate study or the job market. The class will integrate literary criticism, primary theoretical texts, and a student-directed final paper or research project. In addition, students will compile a portfolio of selected pieces of their work as an English major to be submitted to the English department for assessment purposes. Course will run as a small seminar or independent study, depending on student and department needs.

3 credits of Genre Studies from the following:

Prerequisites:

A genre-based study of short stories, drama and poetry; the course focuses on applying tools of literary analysis to the interpretation of specific works in order to increase insight and pleasure. A wide variety of works is read, representing a diversity of cultures, contexts and perspectives. Course objectives also include developing critical reading, thinking and writing skills and exploring the values-laden nature of literature.

A genre-based study of poetry that focuses on applying tools of literary analysis to the interpretation of specific poems in order to increase insight and pleasure. Close reading of poetry, with attention to formal elements, will provide the students with an introduction to major poets and styles. A wide variety of works is read, representing a diversity of cultures, contexts and perspectives. Course objectives also include developing critical reading, thinking and writing skills and exploring the values-laden nature of literature.

A genre-based study of fiction; the course focuses on applying tools of literary analysis to the interpretation of specific works in order to increase insight and pleasure. A wide variety of works is read, representing a diversity of cultures, contexts, and perspectives. Course objectives also include developing critical reading, thinking, and writing skills, and exploring the values-laden nature of literature.

A genre-based drama course; the course focuses on applying tools of literary analysis to the interpretation of specific works in order to increase insight and pleasure. A wide variety of works is read, representing a diversity of cultures, contexts and perspectives. Course objectives also include developing critical reading, thinking and writing skills, and exploring the values-laden nature of literature.

6 credits of Survey courses from the following:

Prerequisites:

An examination of major early British writers, with a focus on the interplay of aesthetic, social and cultural values; the development of literary forms and traditions; and historical contexts. Students will be introduced to major authors of cultural significance.

Prerequisites:

A wide-ranging investigation and analysis of British Romanticism, Victorianism, and Modernism. Students will be introduced to major authors of cultural significance. As with ENG 201, the course focuses on the interrelationships of aesthetic and cultural values, literary prose and historical contexts.

Prerequisites:

A study of American literature from its beginning to the Civil War, tracing the development of American writing in its cultural contexts. In lectures and discussions, students are introduced to a broad range of critical methods for approaching major American authors.

Prerequisites:

A continuation of ENG 211, tracing the evolution of American literature from the Civil War to early Postmodernism in the contexts of the social and intellectual forces that shaped it, including the impact of minority writers. In lectures and discussions, students consider critical approaches to the rise of Realism, Naturalism, Modernism, and the beginnings of Postmodernism in American letters.

Prerequisites:

A study of major writers of Europe, Africa, Asia, and the New World, with emphasis on writers of international stature and influence. The course offers students a broad perspective on literary history from classical times to the 17th century. A chronological survey of significant work leads to discussion of problems in the historical examination of literature: the definition of movements, the relationships between society and literature, and the evolution of literary genres.

Prerequisites:

A study of major writers of Europe, Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the United States, with emphasis on writers of international stature and influence. The course offers students a broad perspective on literary history since the 17th century. A chronological survey of significant work leads to discussion of problems in the historical examination of literature: the definition of movements (such as neoclassicism, romanticism, realism), the relationships between society and literature, and the evolution of literary genres.

Prerequisites:

A study of important myths and legends from a variety of times and places, with emphasis on writers and works that have influences Western thought, arts, and culture. Using methods of formal and structural analysis, students will study works of literature, such as epics, plays, and poetry that employ mythological allusions and deal with universal symbols and themes.

3 credits of Minority Literature from the following:

Prerequisites:

A topical study of literature written by women, dealing with contemporary issues and concerns. This course will focus on fiction and nonfiction texts as they are emerging in modern and contemporary times. Discussion will center upon language, form, and themes as they relate to women. The course remains open-ended, in that any specialized concerns of class members will be welcomed as texts are chosen.

Prerequisites:

A survey of the evolution of women’s literature. The course will focus upon literature of the Middle Ages and Renaissance, 17th and 18th centuries, 19th century and turn of the century, and Modernist and Contemporary eras written by female authors. This material will be integrated across genres and geographical contexts.

Prerequisites:

Students will analyze the work by ethnic minority writers in the United States. Doing so, they will examine the experiences of inequality, struggle, and triumph from diverse and often unheard voices.

Prerequisites:

A generally chronological survey of African-American literature from its inception to the present time. The course is designed to include a diversity of themes, styles, authors and values. Students are challenged to examine their own attitudes and understanding regarding the relationship of African-American literature to American literature and culture as a whole.

3 credits of Creative Writing from the following:

Prerequisites:

Students will investigate the techniques of composing short stories and other forms of fiction, research the stylistics of fiction and present original works in a seminar setting.

Prerequisites:

Students will investigate the techniques of composing poems, research the stylistics of poetry and present original works in a seminar setting.

3 credits of Professional Writing from the following:

An application of contemporary communication theory to practical business situations, and an application of traditional rhetoric and communication theory to oral presentations. Students study communication theory; practice basic forms of business writing; write, deliver and evaluate public speeches; and explore communication systems in modern corporations.

This course introduces students to the principles of writing news in text from for web-based publications and as scripts to be used in broadcast-style reports via the web, television or radio. In addition to news, public relations writing – in the form of news releases and public service announcements (PSAs) – and advertising writing is covered.

Students will be introduced to the profession of public relations – its practice, history, and legal and ethical issues. This includes how to communicate with various publics (community, consumers, employers, government, the media) for various purposes (education, political and social action, community relations, issues and crisis management). Students will be encouraged to explore how public relations is practiced in their own disciplines.

Prerequisites:

Students will learn the theories and principles of good public relations writing and practice. This includes how to develop, write and present press releases, reports, speeches, newsletters and brochures, advertisements, papers and letters, and give interviews. Students also will learn theories of persuasion, practical legal and ethical concerns, and how to conduct and evaluate research. (Course may serve as a journalism upper-level writing elective.)

Prerequisites:

Students will write, edit and create content for the digital communication world. This course provides an advanced-level opportunity to practice and polish the related skills of reporting, writing and editing for multimedia platforms. Students will learn advanced newswriting with a focus on feature writing and investigative reporting, as well as advanced-level digital production skills for creating websites, social media tools and working with different file formats.

Taking a service-learning approach, the course will explore approaches to communicating with various publics, legal issues and mandates for public knowledge, ethical issues and extensive understanding of strategies, planning and implementation of crisis communication efforts.

9 credits of writing electives (200–400 level):

ENG Electives (at least 6 credits must be at the 300 level or above)

Foreign Language requirement, 12 credits or equivalent:

Language requirement for BA

17-20 credits:

University electives

Mission

The English Program of Marian University provides opportunities for students to become critical readers, writers, and thinkers by asking them to write in a variety of genres and to analyze literature from a diversity of cultures, contexts, and perspectives.

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Effective Communication: Writer effectively organizes discussion, supports the ideas, and uses standard conventions in all learning contexts to express self clearly in writing.
    • Organization: Ideas are expressed in a well organized manner, and paper exhibits sophistication in structure, such as the capacity for making choices about organization that are informed in part by the content.
    • Support: Ideas are very well supported. (through examples, quotes, statistics, etc.)
    • Grammatical Conventions: Writing observes the grammatical conventions of standard written English and exhibits sophistication in diction and sentence structure (e.g. exhibits effective sentence variety). Paper is free from distracting mechanical errors.
  • Critical Thinking: Develop logical, well-supported conclusions.
    • Link between evidence (support, data, information) and conclusion (inference) is clear, present, and follows logically. [If appropriate, evidence shows detailed understanding of material presented in course.]

Graduates of the English writing program stay one step ahead of the competition, and are equipped with the essential skills that ensure success in the working world. An English writing degree from Marian University prepares you for a variety of career possibilities, including positions in advertising, business, education, law, ministry, public relations, publishing, writing and social justice work. Many graduates also go on to graduate school.

To help students become critical readers, writers, and thinkers, the English Program assesses knowledge acquisition, effective communication, and critical thinking in ways that are essential to the broader liberal arts education Marian University provides. The English Program demonstrates its effectiveness in the areas of learning outcomes, quality assurance, capstone assessments, employment, graduate education, academic rigor, and teaching excellence.

  • Learning Outcomes: In 2014-2015, students in courses offered in the English Program demonstrated the following learning outcomes:
    • Knowledge Acquisition: 93% students met or exceeded expectations
    • Effective Communication: 83% students met or exceeded expectations
    • Critical Thinking: 86% of students met or exceeded expectations
  • Quality Assurance: The English Program ensures common standards across multiple courses by establishing shared criteria between instructors through normed assessment.
  • Capstone Assessments: To help students transition into their profession the English Program is developing and assessing major courses like Introduction to Literary Study, Advanced Study of Grammar, Internship, and the English Research Capstone.
  • Employment: 100% of graduates are employed within six months of graduation from the English Program.
  • Graduate Education: 100% of graduates who elected to pursue an advanced degree were accepted into a graduate school within six months of graduation from the English Program.

 

English program video

Hear what students and faculty have to say about the opportunities awaiting you in our English program!

Marian University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

At Marian University, you’ll find committed faculty and staff aiming to help you reach your fullest potential. Through an applied learning approach, you’ll find Marian’s English writing program prepares you to share your passion for creativity and expression through writing.

Admission to university per university standards. For more details regarding this, view Marian’s Academic Bulletin.

Christina Kubasta, M.F.A.
Associate Professor
920.923.8792
ckkubasta60@marianuniversity.edu

Justin Ponder, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
920.923.8627
jcponder43@marianuniversity.edu

Jodi Wagner-Angell, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
920.923.7674
jlwagner79@marianuniversity.edu

John Walser, Ph.D.
Professor
920.923.7172
jwalser@marianuniversity.edu

 

As part of the English writing program, you will find personal, one-on-one support from faculty who are eager to share their knowledge and passion for writing. In addition to challenging coursework, you’ll engage in hands-on learning experiences, including internships and a capstone project. To enhance your classroom learning experience, English writing majors can become a member of Sigma Tau Delta, the English International Honor Society.

Apply Now

For more information, please contact:

Office of Admission
920.923.7650
admission@marianuniversity.edu