English Courses

English Courses

  • ENGL-104W. Introductory Topics in English

    A writing-intensive course focusing on a particular topic related to literature, film or other forms of cultural studies. This course emphasizes the writing process and is designed for all students interested in developing their critical reading ability and improving their writing, as well as for students interested in an English major. Limited to first- and second-year students. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (H; GN or DN, if so designated, contingent upon topic)

    ENGL/HIST-212. Bears Make History: U.S. Higher Education and Digital Entrepreneurship in the Archive and Online

    Ursinus College has a history, and you’re going to tell it. Using an array of digital media, students in this course will become part of the shaping and recounting of the history of Ursinus College and its community. We will consider Ursinus’s place in a broader history of U.S. colleges and universities and will examine how digital humanities is influencing archival research. Students will learn a variety of digital tools, and will analyze and evaluate existing digital history projects. The final part of the semester will be devoted to the collaborative design, pitch, construction, and public dissemination of digital group project/s based on materials from the Ursinusiana Archive. This course is part of the IMPACT curriculum supported by the U-Imagine Center for Integrative and Entrepreneurial Studies. Prerequisite: One Ursinus ENGL or HIST course,or permission of the instructors. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (H, LINQ.)

    ENGL-214. The Structure of the English Language

    This course addresses two questions: how does the English language work, and how did Standard American English become the complex structure it is today? Students will examine the sentence as structure, with attention to morphology, syntax, and grammar. Students will also explore how the English language has developed from its earliest forms through attempts at standardization, including how different racial and ethnic communities have shaped English in the United States. Required for students seeking certification to teach English. Three hours per week. Four semester hours.

    ENGL-220-250.

    These literature courses focus on improving students’ skills in close reading of texts and writing of critical essays, with instruction in the conventions of genre, period, and region as appropriate. Students will complete a research project as part of the course. ENGL-230, 240, and 250 courses may have a DN, GN, and/or O designation depending on individual course topics.

    ENGL-220. Shakespeare

    An interactive introduction to Shakespeare focused on language, genre, and dramatic techniques, with some attention given to theater history and performance questions. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (H.)

    ENGL-222. African American Literary Traditions

    A thematic study the literature written by black American writers, sampled from its beginnings to the twenty-first century. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (H, DN.)

    ENGL/GWSS-228. Women’s Literature

    A cross-period study of women’s writing, whether national, multiethnic, and/or transnational, attending to issues of canon formation and feminist literary theories. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (H, DN.)

    ENGL-230 Literary Histories

    A mixed-genre approach to a specific historical period or literary movement, including early modern/ Renaissance, Modernism, Romanticism, ante-bellum America, the Atlantic World, and 20th/21st-Century America. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (H.)

    ENGL-240. Literary Genres

    Focusing on the development of a single literary form throughout a specific time period or more generally through literary history, genre courses emphasize the relationships between formal innovation and changing thematic concerns. Sample topics include medieval romance, lyric poetry, epic poetry, satire, drama, rise of the novel, memoir, neo-historical novel, and short fiction. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (H.)

    ENGL-250. New Directions in Literature

    These courses shift the focus from conventional genres and periods to new directions in the expanding field of literary study. Students may encounter contemporary genres, such as the graphic novel or the emancipation narrative; explore literary texts through a recent theoretical lens such as disability studies or ecocriticism; or investigate new spaces of textual production such as the digital humanities or transnational/urban literature. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (H.)

    ENGL/ENV-262. The Environment in Literature.

    Students in this course will read and reflect on a variety of texts focused on environmental issues, such as sustainability, the land ethic, ecological crises, climate change and other eco-critical concerns. From nature writers, to philosophers, and from poetry to prose, students will engage with the literature as well as participate in a civic engagement project as part of their course-related work. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (H, O.)

    ENGL-290W. Methods in Literary Studies

    Designed as a gateway to the English major; appropriate for minors as well. Includes an introduction to critical vocabulary; study of the genres of poetry, prose, and drama; critical reading practices; a general introduction to literary theory; conventions of the literary research paper; and frequent practice of careful critical writing. Prerequisite: CIE-100 or 150, or permission of instructor. Four hours per week. Four semester hours.

    ENGL-301. Literary Theory

    A study of theoretical approaches to literary texts, such as feminism, postcolonialism, and cultural studies. Recommended especially for students considering teaching or graduate studies in English; required for English honors candidates. Prerequisites: ENGL- 290W and one course between ENGL-220 and 250, or permission of instructor. ENGL- 301 does count as a colloquium, but it does not fulfill either the pre- or post-1800 colloquium requirement. Three hours per week. Four semester hours.

    ENGL Advanced Colloquia

    ENGL courses numbered between 310 and 335 build on the English major’s knowledge and skills, while providing students with opportunities for substantive research, oral presentations, and other scholarly activities To ensure that students are prepared for advanced work, each colloquium will have as prerequisites both ENGL-290W and one course between ENGL-220 and 250; or permission of the instructor. To provide students with as many choices as possible, the English Department will rotate the courses listed below and post specific course offerings on its website. (Listed topics are subject to change.)

    • ENGL-310—Topics in the Novel
    • ENGL-315—Topics in Poetry
    • ENGL-320—Topics in Drama
    • ENGL-325—Crossing Borders/Periods/Genres
    • ENGL-330—Literature in Translation
    • ENGL-335—Post-Colonial Literature

    ENGL-381. Internship

    An off-campus academic/work experience under the supervision of an internship adviser and an onsite supervisor. Discuss details with the chair of the department.Open to juniors and seniors. The term during which the internship work is performed will be noted by one of the following letters, to be added immediately after the internship course number: A (fall), B (winter), C (spring), or D (summer). Internships undertaken abroad will be so indicated by the letter I. The intern must complete a minimum of 120 hours of work. Graded S/U. Prerequisites: approval of an internship adviser. Three semester hours. (XLP.)

    ENGL-382. Internship

    An off-campus academic/work experience under the supervision of an internship adviser and an onsite supervisor. Discuss details with the chair of the department.  Open to juniors and seniors. The term during which the internship work is performed will be noted by one of the following letters, to be added immediately after the internship course number: A (fall), B (winter), C (spring), or D (summer). Internships undertaken abroad will be so indicated by the letter I. The intern must complete a minimum of 160 hours of work. Graded S/U. Prerequisites: The approval of an internship adviser. Four semester hours. (XLP.)

    ENGL-440W. English Major and College Core Capstone

    A study of a genre, a major figure, or a special topic. Prerequisites: ENGL-290W or 301; senior or permission of department chair. This course will satisfy the College requirement for a capstone experience and an oral presentation in the major. While the topic of the course will change based on faculty expertise, several elements remain consistent, especially those pertaining to its capstone designation and to the Quest Curriculum. Three hours per week.Four semester hours. (CCAP., H.)

    ENGL-491. Research/Independent Work

    This course is open to candidates for honors in English and to other students with the permission of the department chair. Pre-requisite: ENGL-301. Four semester hours. (XLP.)

    ENGL-492W. Honors in English

    A continuation of course ENGL-491 for students approved for honors. Prerequisite: ENGL-491. When this course is used to fulfill the capstone experience in the major, the student will be required to give a substantial oral presentation of the research project, either to the departmental honor society or to another group approved by the project adviser. Four semester hours. (XLP.)

Creative Writing Courses

  • ENCW-106 Introduction to Creative Writing

    A mixed-genre introduction to writing fiction, poetry, and one other genre (such as memoir or playwriting), in a workshop environment. Students will closely engage with a variety of texts in each genre, learn genre conventions and craft techniques, and write and revise original work. Three hours per week.  Four semester hours. (A.)

    ENCW-205. Fiction Writing

    A beginning course in the writing of fiction, with special attention to the short story. Students will study technical aspects of the craft and a variety of examples of the genre. Students will write short stories, receive critical responses, and make extensive revisions. Three hours per week.  Four semester hours. (A.)

    ENCW-206. Poetry Writing

    A beginning course in the writing of poetry. Students will study selected works, learn traditional forms of the lyric, and write original verse in those forms. Students will make extensive revisions, based on responses from peers and the professor. Three hours per week.  Four semester hours. (A.)

    ENCW/MCS-207. Introduction to Journalism

    This course introduces students to the principles of journalism, including: information gathering, writing, editing and presentation of news under deadline. Students also explore issues related to libel, visual literacy, and changing audience demographics through the critical analysis, interpretation, and evaluation of various media outlets. Three hours per week.  Four semester hours.

    ENCW/MCS-208. Journalistic Storytelling in the 21st Century

    In this course, students will consider how the digital era has brought upheaval to the world of journalism, including changes to the ways journalists report, tell stories, and relate to audiences. In the second half of the semester, students will create multimedia content that meets the challenges and takes advantage of the opportunities of digital media. Prerequisite: ENCW/MCS-207 or permission of instructor. Three hours per week.  Four semester hours.

    ENCW-209. Memoir Writing

    A beginning course in the writing of memoir, with attention to the personal essay. Students will study selected examples of the genre and write original work rooted in personal experience that incorporates a connection to the larger world. Students will make extensive revisions based on responses from peers and the professor. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (A.)

    ENCW-215. Topics in Poetry (sample titles: Spoken Word, Persona, Prose Poems)

    Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (A.)

    ENCW-216. Topics in Fiction (sample titles: Myth & Fairytale, Flash fiction, Science Fiction)

    Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (A.)

    ENCW-217. Topics in Creative Nonfiction  (sample titles: Travel Writing, Philly Word / Literary Culture)

    Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (A.)

    ENCW-218. Topics in Hybrid & Digital forms (sample titles: Hybrid Texts, DIY Publishing, Word & Image)

    Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (A.)

    ENCW-305. Advanced Fiction Writing

    A workshop course in fiction writing Students will have the opportunity to develop skills first established at the 200-level. Prerequisite: ENCW-205, or permission of instructor. Three hours per week.  Four semester hours. (A.)

    ENCW-306. Advanced Poetry Writing

    A workshop course in poetry writing Students will have the opportunity to develop skills first established at the 200- level. Prerequisite ENCW-206, or permission of instructor. Three hours per week.  Four semester hours. (A.)

    ENCW-309. Advanced Creative Nonfiction

    A workshop course in creative nonfiction. Students will have the opportunity to develop skills first established at the 200- level. Prerequisite: ENCW-209, or permission of instructor.  Three hours per week.  Four semester hours. (A.)

    ENCW-319. Special Topics in Advanced Creative Writing

    A workshop course in an area of advanced creative wring not covered by other courses. Students will have the opportunity to develop skills first established at the 200 level. Prerequisites will vary. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (A.)

    ENCW-420. Senior Portfolio in Creative Writing

    A workshop course in creative writing offering students the opportunity to receive significant critical responses on a portfolio of works of poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, or hybrid forms. Prerequisites: senior standing or permission of instructor, plus at least three ENCW courses. Three hours per week.  Four semester hours. (A.)

    ENCW-493. Independent Study in Creative Writing

    This course is open to candidates for honors in Creative Writing and to other students with the permission of the department chair.  Four semester hours. (XLP.)

    ENCW-494W. Honors in Creative Writing

    A continuation of course ENCW493 for students approved for honors in Creative Writing. Prerequisite: ENCW-493. When this course is used to fulfill the capstone experience in the major, the student will be required to give a substantial oral presentation of the research project, either to the departmental honor society or to another group approved by the project adviser.  Four semester hours. (XLP.)