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English Department Program Goals

Writing Goal: Students will become writers who know how to employ a wide range of strategies as they write and to use different writing process elements appropriately to communicate with different audiences for a variety of purposes.

Critical Reading and Analysis Goal: Students will become accomplished, active readers who value ambiguity and complexity, and who can demonstrate a wide range of strategies for understanding texts, including interpretations with an awareness of, attentiveness to, and curiosity toward other perspectives.

History and Theory Goal: Students will develop a comprehensive knowledge of the variety of texts in diverse time periods and in diverse locations, as well as know the critical and historical principles behind the construction of literary, linguistic, and cultural histories, in order to demonstrate an active participation in scholarship.

Research Goal: Students will be able to follow a research process from proposal, research, drafts, to final projects.

Collaborative Learning Goal: Students will learn that the ability to communicate their ideas to a larger audience is as important as having the ideas themselves, and that sharing and coordinating ideas sustains and develops the larger intellectual sphere, of which they are a part. Students will understand the connection between collaborative learning and their intended professional field(s), including but not limited to their future professional roles and responsibilities.

Learning Outcomes
Writing Goal:

  • Students can write texts informed by specific (as is appropriate for the discipline and course contexts) rhetorical strategies.
  • Students can write in several modes and for different audiences and purposes, with an awareness of the social implications and theoretical issues that these shifts raise.
  • Students can revise for content and edit for grammatical and stylistic clarity.


Critical Reading and Analysis Goal:

  • Students can apply a wide range of strategies to comprehend, evaluate, and interpret texts. These strategies may include, but are not limited to: drawing on their prior experience, their interactions with other readers and writers, reflection, intertextuality, their knowledge of word meaning and of other texts, their word identification strategies, and their understanding of textual features (e.g., sound-letter correspondence, sentence structure, syntax, context, graphics, images).
  • Students can evaluate the aesthetic and ethical value of texts.
  • Students will demonstrate an ability to recognize how formal elements of language and genre shape meaning. They will recognize how writers can transgress or subvert generic expectations, as well as fulfill them.


History and Theory Goal:

  • Students can demonstrate knowledge the terminology of literary and/or cultural periods in order to be active participants in a variety of literary and/or cultural fields.
  • Students can identify and employ theoretical approaches to literary and/or cultural study (including, but not limited to, film studies, linguistics, and professional and technical writing).
  • Students demonstrate an ability to read texts in relation to their historical and cultural contexts, in order to gain a richer understanding of both text and context, and to become more aware of themselves as situated historically and culturally.


Research Goal:

  • Students can identify and formulate questions for productive inquiry.
  • Students can evaluate sources for credibility, bias, quality of evidence, and quality of reasoning.
  • Students use citation methods and structures appropriate to their field of study.


Collaborative Learning Goal:

  • Students can effectively peer review.
  • Students can engage in thoughtful and critical debate.
  • Students can produce quality collaborate projects.


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