Department Chairperson — Melissa Dilworth

Faculty List

English Placement Writing Exam Dates

English Placement Guidelines, 2012-2013

Freshman English Info

2012-2013 Course Catalog

Student Handbook ("Orange Book")


The English Department offers a strong program of classic and contemporary literature from diverse voices that challenges students to think about timeless issues that shape our lives.

Students in all curriculum levels read a core of important works in many genres, including The Odyssey and a collection of myths from varied cultures; stories and poetry from the Bible; Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex; Shakespearean plays (including Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, and Hamlet); Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter; Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn; Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God; and selected writings of Martin Luther King, Jr. Other texts that students may read include: The Catcher in the Rye, The Color Purple, The Laramie Project, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Interpreter of Maladies, Angels in America, The Things They Carried, and The House of Spirits. Through class discussions of the ideas and artistry in these and other works, we help students learn to read with greater insight, sensitivity and pleasure.

We strive for excellence in writing by requiring students at every grade and curriculum level to write analytically, personally, critically, imaginatively — and often. Students use the process of writing to focus, clarify, deepen and expand their thinking. They learn to support their reasoning with coherent arguments and specific evidence.

Students also learn to revise, edit, respond to written comments, reflect upon their progress, and take responsibility for their own work. They keep yearly, cumulative folders and confer regularly with their teachers. Through the development of portfolios over four years, students learn to see the world as writers and understand that writing, as well as reading, is a vital part of life.