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English Overview & Goals
The English major prepares students for the wide range of careers that demand strong communication and research skills, creative problem-solving, and the ability to analyze and create written, verbal, and visual materials.
How do we know English works? Our graduates are successful lawyers, medical professionals, members of boards of directors, editors, professional writers, librarians, educators, software managers, and even cartoonists.
Our alumni say: “Bethany English made me the person I am, laid a foundation of hard work, textual evidence, logic, and empathy” and “opportunities I would have never had elsewhere. I edited our literary magazine, I studied at the University of Oxford. To study English is to study honesty and human experience.”
English offers a strong grounding in Creative Writing, Literature, and Writing and Language. Popular minors are in British or American Literature, Creative Writing, and Writing in Social and Natural Environments.
AREA OF STUDY
Environmental Science (Major, Minor)
Creative Writing (Minor)
Writing in Social and Natural Environments (Minor)
“Bethany College gave me the opportunity to learn and think, and to be challenged by many professors who remain mentors and friends long past graduation. It gave me the opportunity to work with classmates who became part of an extended network of accomplished professionals who continue to offer guidance, support, and friendship.
“My experience at Bethany gave me confidence to take risks. It taught me the importance of being insatiably curious and relentlessly kind. Bethany College didn’t change who I was, but it helped define who I am today.”
CAREERS IN ENGLISH
- Customer Service
- Insurance: Underwriting, Claims Management, Sales
- Real Estate: Property Management, Sales
- Human Resources
- Training and Development
- Labor Relations
- Corporate Communication
- Office Management
Public Relations / Advertising
- Public Relations
- Corporate Public Affairs
- Investor Relations
- Event Coordination
- Media Analysis/Planning
- Creative Directing
- Audience Analysis
- Public Opinion Research
- Media Sales
- Media Planning
- Grant Writing
- Public Relations
- Volunteer Coordination
- Program Coordination
- Religious Work: Pastoral and Other Religious Leadership, Mission Work, Religious Camp Administration, Local Ministries
- City or Town Management
- Community Affairs
- Legislative Assistance
- Public Information
Meet The Faculty
Clubs & Publications
The Groundling is the English Program’s newsletter. Published twice a semester, it features information on program events, visiting writers, and upcoming courses. It also highlights the achievements of our students, faculty, and alumni.
The Harbinger is the annual literary arts magazine of Bethany College. The magazine is published by students and showcases student creative writing and visual art.
The Writers’ Club is a student organization dedicated to fostering creative writing on the campus of Bethany College. The club meets weekly to discuss the work of members’ and plan events like open mic nights and off-campus trips to attend readings and workshops. The club also works on the publication and release of The Harbinger.
REQUIREMENTS ENGLISH MAJOR
The following courses are required for all students: ENGL 156, 245, 246, 250, 268, 275 or 280, 477, 490, 495; one other course in American Literature above the 200 level; one other course in British Literature above the 200 level.
In addition, each student must complete one of the following tracks:
Creative Writing: ENGL 240; at least twelve hours of upper-level workshops chosen from the following: 311, 312, 313, 411, 412, 413, with at least three of those twelve hours at the 400-level; and one additional course in American or British literature above the 200-level or one of the following: INTD 251, 252, or 253.
Literature: Twelve credits chosen from ENGL 200, 264, 266, 267, 270, INTD, 251, 252, and 253; one additional course in American Literature above the 200 level; one additional course in British Literature above the 200 level.
Writing and Language: ENGL 156, 240, 220 or 223, 370, 379, at least two additional courses selected from the following: ENGL 212, 220, 223, 311, 312, 351, 483, COMM 201, 202, 305, 309.
REQUIREMENTS AMERICAN LITERATURE MINOR
ENGL 156, 250; nine additional credits in American Literature, six of which must be from the 300 and 400 level.
REQUIREMENTS BRITISH LITERATURE MINOR
REQUIREMENTS CREATIVE WRITING MINOR
REQUIREMENTS WRITING IN SOCIAL AND NATURAL ENVIRONMENTS MINOR
COURSE DESCRIPTIONS ENGLISH
ENGL 111 College Writing 3 credits
This course provides instruction and practice in the process of writing effective essays from the discovery and planning stages through final revision and polishing. Emphasis is on writing correct, coherent, and fluent prose. Writing assignments focus on the effective use of traditional rhetorical modes commonly employed in academic writing and applying the writing process in responding to essay examination questions.
ENGL 150 Honors Freshman English 3 credits
This is a course for freshmen of superior ability and accomplishment. It focuses on the close reading of novels and emphasizes critical and creative writing in relation to them. This course is an alternative to ENGL 111. Usually offered Fall semester. Enrollment is by invitation only.
ENGL 156 Introduction to Literary Studies 3 credits
This course is dedicated to studying poetry, fiction, and drama by international authors from diverse cultures. Primary emphasis is on the process of applying students’ knowledge of genre and relevant terminology to the close reading of literary texts. Students are introduced to various critical approaches to reading, researching, and writing about literature including Feminist Theory, Marxist Theory, Reader Response Criticism, and New Historicism.
ENGL 160 Introduction to Film 3 credits
This course is an introduction to the study of film as a cultural and technical artifact and as a form of art. Students learn basic principles of film aesthetics and production to provide the skills necessary to “read” the film as art. The course also places a strong emphasis on the social context of film and the place movies hold in our culture, and introduces the general areas of study within film scholarship. (This course may be taken for credit as COMM 160.)
ENGL 200 Literature and Literary Diversity 3 credits
This course is an introduction to the study of poetry, drama, and fiction and an exploration of the diversity of literary expression. Students study the elements of each of the primary genres and examine their interrelationships and functioning in particular works. In the course a wide range of writings are studied, including those by women and men, those representative of diverse literary traditions (including British, American, European, and non-Western), and those reflecting a variety of American ethnic and racial backgrounds. Preference is given to students preparing to teach in elementary, middle, or secondary school.
ENGL 212 Writing for College and Community 3 credits
This course focuses on primary research and writing skills as tools to explore the value of “service” within various subcultures. Students participate in service projects that meet actual community needs and reflect on the projects by thinking, talking, and writing about their experiences. Students increase knowledge of real life situations in the community and consider the effectiveness of state and nationally sponsored service organizations while examining various approaches to civic responsibility.
ENGL 220 Writing for Business and Industry 3 credits
This course is an introduction to writing for the business world. Subjects covered include employment documents (applications, cover letters, resumes, job descriptions); business letters; summaries; informal reports (trip reports, occurrence reports, investigative reports); procedural instructions; process descriptions; and various types of memoranda, including electronic.
ENGL 223 Technical Writing 3 credits
This is a workshop for training and practice in the written communication of specialized information to audiences with varying levels of knowledge. Emphasis is on the analysis of audience and purpose, the selection and organization of information, the creation of informative graphics, and the uses of conventional formats. Students learn to develop summaries and abstracts, instruction sets, proposals, progress and completion reports, and other types of written documents often required of professionals. Students make use of the College’s computer facilities for word processing and for generating graphs, tables, charts, illustrations, and other visuals. Offered Fall semester in odd-numbered years.
ENGL 230 Writing and the Environment 3 credits
This is an intermediate-level essay-writing course focusing on the development of such skills as observing, reflecting, making connections, classifying, and integrating. Essay assignments emphasize seeing the natural world from the broader perspective of understanding the interaction of nature with civilization, the symbiotic relationships inherent in nature, and the life cycles of nature. Preparation for writing assignments includes field trips and other activities both on and off the Bethany campus.
ENGL 240 Creative Writing 3 credits
This is an intensive course in imaginative writing. Students write sketches, short fiction, poems, and dramatic scenes. Students use the College’s computer facilities for independent writing, specific course assignments, in-class writing, electronic intra-class communication, small-group conferences, and submission of some assignments. (This course is required for students preparing to teach secondary school English. Enrollment is limited to 15 students with preference given to juniors and seniors.)
ENGL 245-246 British Literature I & II 3 credits each
These courses examine the development of British literature from the beginning through the 20th century. First Semester: from Beowulf through Milton. Second Semester: from the Restoration to the present.
ENGL 250 American Literature 3 credits
This course examines the development of American literature from the Colonial Period to the present.
ENGL 264 Masterpieces of Drama 3 credits
This course is a study of the development of Western drama. Emphasis is on the evolution of dramatic types and forms, on techniques for reading and understanding plays, and on the analysis and evaluation of dramatic works.
ENGL 266 Masterpieces of European Literature 3 credits
This course is an examination of major literary works by European writers in the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. Writings are studied by such authors as Voltaire, Molière, Rousseau, Stendhal, the brothers Grimm, Goethe, Flaubert, Tolstoy, Dostoyevski, Chekhov, Ibsen, and Strindberg.
ENGL 267 Masterpieces of World Literature 3 credits
This course is a study of literary works representing a cross-section of the world’s cultural traditions. Readings range from the ancient (such as the Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh) to the contemporary (such as the novels of the Nigerian Chinua Achebe), from the East (such as the Japanese Noh and Kabuki plays) to the West (such as the magical realism of the Columbian Gabriel Garcia Márquez), and from the traditional (such as the Japanese haikus of Matsuo Basho) to the westernized (such as the modern Chinese poetry of Wen I-to); however, emphasis is on writing from more recent eras. The relationship of particular literary works to other aspects of the cultures in which they were produced (especially music and the visual arts) is examined.
Preference is given to students preparing to teach in elementary, middle, or secondary school.
ENGL 268 Modern World Literature 3 credits
This is a study of the work of 20th century writers representing the diverse cultural traditions of the modern world. In addition to writings representing the western tradition, works are studied representing such traditions as the Eastern European, the Middle Eastern, the African, the Latin American, and the Asian.
ENGL 270 Shakespeare 3 credits
Major plays of William Shakespeare are studied in this course. Both the texts of the plays and the cultural context that produced them are examined.
ENGL 275 American Short Stories 3 credits
This course is a survey of the development of the short story in America from its beginnings in the early 19th century to the present. The course considers the short story as a literary form and examines major writers of short stories, such as Poe, Hawthorne, Twain, James, Chopin, Fitzgerald, Hemingway, O’Connor, Updike, Baldwin, Oates, Morrison, and Erdrich.
ENGL 280 Short American Novels 3 credits
This course is a study of the short novel and its development as a distinct genre in American literature.
ENGL 311 Poetry Writing Workshop 3 credits
This is an intensive workshop for training and practice in the writing of poetry. (Enrollment is limited.) Usually offered Spring semester in even-numbered years. Prerequisite: ENGL 240 or an acceptable portfolio.
ENGL 312 Fiction Writing Workshop 3 credits
This is an intensive workshop for training and practice in the writing of fiction. (Enrollment is limited.) Usually offered Spring semester in odd-numbered years. Prerequisite: ENGL 240 or an acceptable portfolio.
ENGL 313 Creative Non-Fiction Writing Workshop 3 credits
This is an extensive workshop for training and practice in the writing of creative non-fiction. (Enrollment is limited.) Prerequisite: ENGL 240 or an acceptable portfolio.
ENGL 320 Women and Literature: The Middle Ages and Renaissance 3 credits
This course explores women writers from the period whose work was largely ignored until the 20th century. Authors include Domna H. Garsenda, the Countesse of Dia, Marie de France, Julian of Norwich, Heloise, Christine de Pisan, Vittoria Colonna, Veronica Franco, Chiara Matraini, Gaspara Stampa, Laura Cereta, Marguerite de Navarre, Lousie Labe, Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, Mary Sidney, Mary Wroth, Elizabeth Cary, and Margaret Cavendish. Prerequisites: ENGL 245 or INTD 252.
ENGL 321 Women and Literature: Modern Western World 3 credits
This is a study of poetry, fiction, drama, and non-fiction prose about women by British and European women writers. Emphasis is on literary responses to such subjects as childhood, adolescence, marriage, and old age; to the roles of daughter, sister, friend, lover, wife, and mother; to life-style and vocation; and to social issues. Consideration is also given to theoretical formulations about women and their social and literary functions.
ENGL 340 Harry Potter: Background and Criticism 3 credits
This course introduces students to the literary traditions upon which J. K. Rowling built the Harry Potter books, and on the discourse of theoretical and literary scholarship of her novels. Readings in the tradition include authors such as Hughes, Kipling, Nesbit, White, and Dahl, and scholarly approaches from Jungian, Freudian, Feminist, Marxist, Human Rights, and Ecological perspectives. Prerequisite: One course in British Literature.
ENGL 351 Literary Criticism and Theory 3 credits
This is a study of literary theory, the history of literary criticism, and applied approaches to literary criticism. Special emphasis is placed on the preparation of essays applying particular theories and demonstrating a variety of critical points of view.
ENGL 360 Classic British Novels 3 credits
This is a study of novels by major British writers from the 18th century to the mid-20th century. Emphasis is on the analysis of specific novels and their relationships to the development of British literature. Usually offered Fall semester in even-numbered years. Prerequisites: ENGL 245, 246, or one of these courses and concurrent enrollment in the other.
ENGL 365 Classic American Novels 3 credits
This is a study of novels by major American writers from the early 19th century to World War II. Emphasis is on the analysis of specific novels and their relationships to the development of American literature. Usually offered Fall semester in odd-numbered years. Prerequisites: ENGL 255, 256, or one of these courses and concurrent enrollment in the other.
ENGL 366 Regional American Literature 3 credits
This course allows students to focus on a distinct region of the United States by investigating how factors such as culture, history, and geography influence the region’s literature. Students are encouraged to contact the instructor before registering in order to learn which region will serve as the focus of the semester’s study.
ENGL 370 Introduction to Linguistics 3 credits
This course introduces the basic concepts and terminology of linguistics. It incorporates the study of the acquisition and development of language from the earliest babbling to mature language patterns, including the examination of typical language abilities of children at various ages. (This course may be taken for credit as WLAC 370.)
ENGL 379 Systems of English Grammar and the Development of Modern English 3 credits
This course is a study of the history of the English language and an investigation of systems of English grammar such as traditional grammar, structural grammar, transformational grammar, and the grammars of minorities.
ENGL 383 African American Novel 3 credits
This course traces the evolution of the novel from the slave narrative through Reconstruction, the Harlem Renaissance, and the Black Arts Movement, to the neo-slave narrative and contemporary African American literature. While the novel is the focus of the course, special attention is paid to African American history and culture, as well as relevant scholarship and critical theory.
ENGL 385 Women and Literature: The American Experience 3 credits
This course centers around writings by American women about their experiences as they have imagined, theorized, and otherwise rendered them. Because the course focuses heavily on the act of reading and analyzing literary texts, historical background, literary theory, and students’ critical thinking and writing figure prominently into the course.
ENGL 411 Advanced Poetry Writing Workshop 3 credits
This is an intensive workshop for advanced students writing poetry (Enrollment is limited.) Prerequisite: ENGL 311.
ENGL 412 Advanced Fiction Writing Workshop 3 credits
This is an intensive workshop for advanced students writing fiction. (Enrollment is limited.) Prerequisite: ENGL 312.
ENGL 413 Advanced Creative Nonfiction Writing Workshop 3 credits
This is an intensive workshop for advanced students writing nonfiction. (Enrollment is limited.) Prerequisite: ENGL 313.
ENGL 420-429 Seminar in Comparative Literature 3 credits each
These seminars provide students with the opportunity to study and compare literary works produced in a variety of cultural contexts. Works not written in English are studied in English translations. Prerequisite: Previous study of authors, periods, movements, or traditions relevant to the specific seminar topic.
ENGL 421 History of the Western Erotic Lyric 3 credits
This course is an advanced study of Western erotic lyric poetry from the classical world to the seventeenth century. Among the writers considered are Sappho, Catullus, Propertius, Dante, the trobar and trobairitz poets, Petrarch, Gaspara Stampa, Ronsard, Sidney, Shakespeare, Carew, and Lovelace. This course is research based: students do research weekly and prepare seminar research essays.
ENGL 430-449 Seminar in British Literature 3 credits each
These seminars provide students with the opportunity to study an author, period, movement, or tradition in British literature. (Enrollment in each course limited to 12 students. Topics change regularly.) Prerequisite: previous study of the author, period, movement, or tradition in a survey course.
ENGL 430 Chaucer 3 credits
This course is a study of major works by Geoffrey Chaucer, with special attention given to his language, life, and times.
ENGL 433 The Restoration 3 credits
This course examines the literature of the Restoration period of English History. With the restoration of the Stuarts, England authorized women on the stage and in the literary marketplace, and nourished the development of the early novel and experimental science. The literature strains to balance political liberty and personal libertinism with censorship and restraint, grapples with gender roles and sexual morality, and gives rise to one of the greatest periods of English comedy. Writers examined include Milton, Congreve, Wycherly, Ethridge, Behn, Centlivre, Bunyan, Pepys, Dryden, Waller, and Rochester.
ENGL 434 Jane Austen and Virginia Woolf 3 credits
This course is a study of the works of Jane Austen and Virginia Woolf. Texts may include Northanger Abbey, Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Emma, Mrs. Dalloway, To the Lighthouse, Roger Fry, A Room of One’s Own, and Orlando, as well as letters, diaries, short fiction, and essays.
ENGL 435 Brides, Bribes, and Bibles: The Early English Renaissance 3 credits
The course investigates the late birth of the Renaissance in England. In the 1480’s the War of the Roses concluded and attention turned to the continent, as commercial publishing and Renaissance art and scholarship moved into the culture for the first time. Emphasis is on writers such as Malory, Tyndale, More, Skelton, Elyot, Heywood, Udall, Askew, Wyatt, and Surrey, and the adoption of Renaissance fashions in philosophy, literature, music, and art into a distinctly English form.
ENGL 440 Topics in Shakespeare 3 credits
This is an advanced study of Shakespeare’s works and times, focusing on a particular genre (history, romance, comedy, tragedy) or theme (the family, kingship, courtship, Shakespeare and his sources, etc.).
ENGL 441 Twentieth Century British Writers 3 credits
This is a study of major British writers of the 20th century. Among the writers discussed are Joyce, Eliot, Yeats, Woolf, Lessing, Beckett, and Pinter.
ENGL 443 Seventeenth Century British Literature 3 credits
This is a study of plays, poetry, and criticism of Ben Jonson; the Cavalier poets (Herrick, Lovelace, Suckling, and Waller); the Metaphysical poets (Donne, Herbert, Vaughn); the work of Samuel Pepys; and plays and criticism by Dryden.
ENGL 444 Elizabethan Drama 3 credits
This course is a close reading of plays written by Shakespeare’s contemporaries. Emphasized is the work of Ben Jonson and Christopher Marlowe.
ENGL 445 Victorian Writers 3 credits
This is an investigation of major poems by Tennyson and Browning, poems and criticism by Arnold, and novels by Dickens, Thackeray, and George Eliot.
ENGL 446 Milton 3 credits
This is a study of Paradise Lost, Paradise Regained, and Samson Agonistes, with some attention to the sonnets, other minor poems, and the Areopagitica. Emphasis is on Milton’s theological ideas, architectonics, and relationships with the literature and political developments of his age.
ENGL 447 Eighteenth Century British Literature 3 credits
This is a study of eighteenth century British writing. The first half emphasizes the neo-classical satirists, including Dryden, Pope, Swift, and Addison and Steele. The second half emphasizes the Johnson circle, including Samuel Johnson, Boswell, and Goldsmith. Pre-Romantic writers such as Gray, Thomson, and Burns are also considered.
ENGL 449 British Romanticism 3 credits
This is a study of major British authors of the Romantic Period and the influences upon them. The course investigates works in various imaginative genres and the biographical and philosophical works of the period. Emphasis is on writers such as Blake, Mary Shelley, Percy Bysshe Shelley, William and Dorothy Wordsworth, Coleridge, Byron, and Keats.
ENGL 450-459 Seminar in American Literature 3 credits each
These seminars provide students with the opportunity to study an author, period, movement, or tradition in American literature. (Enrollment in each course limited to 12 students. Topics change regularly.) Prerequisite: previous study of the author, period, movement, or tradition in a survey course.
ENGL 453 Contemporary American Poetry 3 credits
This course analyzes trends in recent American poetry since 1980. Students examine postmodern aesthetics that include post-confessional, documentary poetics, the New Sincerists, and the post-avant garde movements, among others.
ENGL 454 Hemingway 3 credits
This is a study of Hemingway’s fiction from In Our Time through The Garden of Eden. Emphasis is on the evolution of Hemingway’s themes and style, on his revision process, and on the relation of his life to his work.
ENGL 455 American Women’s Poetry 1800-Present 3 credits
This course is an examination of American poetry by women writing in the nineteenth, twentieth, and twenty-first centuries. Writers whose poems may be studied include–but are not limited to–Emily Dickinson, Gertrude Stein, Mina Loy, Djuna Barnes, Audre Lorde, Lucille Clifton, Adrienne Rich, Sylvia Plath, Anne Sexton, Brenda Hillman, Marilyn Kallet, and Lyn Hejinian.
ENGL 456 Race, Gender, and Power in Early American Literature 3 credits
This course is an examination of Early American Literature from the 16th century through the early 19th century. Students will read primary texts and secondary criticism paying particular attention to how race, gender, and power govern the writing and reception of Early American works. Writing requirements include brief response papers and formal seminar papers.
ENGL 462 Films of Alfred Hitchcock 3 credits
This is a critical examination of cinematic technique and thematic concerns in major films by Alfred Hitchcock, such as The Lodger, Blackmail, Shadow of a Doubt, Notorious, Vertigo, Rear Window, North by Northwest, and Psycho. Prerequisite: COMM/ENGL 160.
ENGL 477 Senior Seminar 3 credits
This course is a reading and research seminar designed to assist students to review, organize, and synthesize their knowledge of literature. (The course is open to qualified juniors intending to take comprehensive examinations in January.) Prerequisites: ENGL 156, 245, 246, 255, 256, or permission of the instructor.
ENGL 480 Methods of Teaching English 3 credits
This course is a study of materials and methods used in teaching middle and secondary school English. The course focuses on theories and contemporary practices. Particular emphasis is on examining important works of literature about or of special interest to adolescents, developing an understanding of and appreciation for adolescent literature, and learning and applying strategies and techniques for presenting the works to students. Also emphasized are learning and applying strategies for assessing and improving the reading skills of students. (This course may be taken for credit as EDUC 480. A 30 hour field placement is required.) Prerequisites: EDUC 242; a passing score on PRAXIS I Core Academic Skills for Educators; admission to the teacher education program.
ENGL 481 The Practice of Tutorial Writing 1 credit
This is an activity course providing instruction and practice in peer tutoring. Students enrolled in the course gain practical experience by serving as tutors in First-Year Seminars and/or the Writing Center. (CR/NCR only.) Open only to students selected by the Course Instructor.
ENGL 483 Teaching Composition and Language 3 credits
This course examines historical and current theories of composition as a conceptual background for both teaching and writing, with emphasis on the writing process. Students practice both writing and teaching writing and learn and apply strategies for teaching grammar and integrating instruction in grammar with instruction in composition.
ENGL 484 Methods of Teaching English as a World Language: Selected Methodological Issues 3 credits
This course introduces methods and materials necessary for teaching English as a second language and provides instruction and practice in planning lessons and extracurricular activities. (This course may be taken for credit as WLAC 484 or EDUC 484.)
ENGL 487-488 Independent Study 1-4 credits
The Department provides an opportunity for study in any area of English for which the student is qualified. Independent study is intended to supplement regular course offerings. Prerequisite: Adequate preparation to undertake the study as determined by the instructor.
ENGL 489 Internship 2-6 credits
The Department provides an opportunity for students to receive credit for an internship in any area of English for which the student is qualified. Prerequisite: Adequate preparation to undertake the internship as determined by the Department.
ENGL 490 Senior Project 2-4 credits
The senior project generally consists of a major critical paper on a topic developed from at least one of the student’s elective courses in the department. Sometimes projects may take other forms. Reading, research, and writing are completed during the student’s senior year, although the student is expected to consult with the chair of the Department and to begin preliminary work in the junior year.
ENGL 495 Comprehensive Exams
This course is an administrative placeholder used to record a student’s score on Comprehensive Exams (CR/NCR).