Department of English at Winthrop - Goals for the Undergraduate Program

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Goals for Undergraduate English Majors

The student who majors in English studies at Winthrop University will develop familiarity with a broad range of texts, understanding of critical and analytical strategies, skill in critical thinking, and ability to write well. To these ends, we offer a wide range of courses dealing with content in literature, writing, and theory. The recently redesigned major allows students to apply their textual analysis and written communication skills in a global economy that is dynamic, information based, communication focused, and technologically driven.

English majors analyze and synthesize various forms of traditional, digital, and non-print texts.

Our students read the works of authors from a broad range of cultural, ethnic, racial, and gendered backgrounds, and they develop a nuanced understanding of how historical and cultural context affect literary/textual production. Majors learn to engage in literary and rhetorical analysis, as well as demonstrate knowledge of theory, criticism, research methods, and documentation techniques.

English majors compose carefully crafted texts and construct persuasive arguments based on analysis and deliberation.

Their writings may take the form of critical essays, fictional or poetic works, and professional documents. All majors learn to write sustained texts that contain the following: researched material, appropriate awareness of audience and purpose, and mastery of grammar, mechanics, and usage. Students provide proper documentation of primary and secondary sources and demonstrate effective use of existing technologies to research, prepare, and present information.

English majors gain knowledge of the English language arts.

Majors explore topics such as the teaching of literature and the structure and historical development of the English language. They become familiar with various approaches to grammar, gaining recognition of dialects and patterns of usage, the digital humanities, and the purposes of language from theoretical and technological approaches.

In short, our major produces competent and skilled citizen-scholars who are well equipped in critical thinking, verbal and written communication, and analytical reasoning.

Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)

SLO 1: English majors think critically by evaluating and using evidence. They seek out and assess relevant information from multiple viewpoints to form well-reasoned conclusions. 
SLO 2: English majors are personally and socially responsible. They practice ethical reasoning and demonstrate an understanding of the moral dimensions of English studies through well-documented research. 
SLO 3: English majors comprehend the historical, social, and global contexts of their discipline and their lives. 
SLO 4: English majors are able to construct persuasive arguments based on careful analysis and deliberation and use a voice and format suitable for the intended audience.

Last Updated: 8/20/20