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Why English?

  • english students
  • Previewing a scene from The Tempest
  • Professor Chrissy Kolaya
  • Morris students
  • English senior seminar
  • Students at PGLF
  • Professor Janet Schrunk Ericksen
  • English alumni

The English Discipline is one of the largest at the University of Minnesota, Morris. We offer a range of literature and creative writing courses that enable students to achieve both breadth and depth in their study. Some examples of our courses include:

  • Caribbean Literature
  • Detection and Espionage in Fiction and Film
  • Environmental Justice Literature
  • Gender in Literature and Culture
  • Graphic Novel
  • Harlem Renaissance
  • Representations of American Indians in Popular and Academic Culture
  • Shakespeare and Ecology
  • The Environmental Imagination
  • Writing Poetry for the 21st Century

New course offerings for 2021-2022 include:

  • Careers for Writers (lower level), a professional writing class
  • Reading and Writing Fantasy (lower level), a hybrid literature and creative writing course
  • Queer Literatures, a class about queer storytelling post-Gay Liberation (upper level)
  • Recent Debates About Fiction (research seminar), a class on the nature, purpose, ethics, and practice of contemporary fiction

For their capstone experience, English majors take a research seminar. Research seminars explore timely and historical topics in detail. Recent themes include:

  • “Feminist and Queer Storytelling” with Prof. Angela Hume: Asks how LGBTQ+ identified authors have reimagined and reclaimed their origin stories and histories through literature.
  • “Writing Early Ireland” with Prof. Julie Eckerle: Asks how we might define “Irish” literature, especially before 1700, and how texts written in or about Ireland changed according to time period and authorial identity.
  • “Booker Watch” with Prof. Brook Miller: Asks what conversations and qualities define contemporary literary fiction, and who gets to decide.

English Major

The English major begins with an introductory course called Literary Studies along with surveys of American and British literature. Typically, six electives and a research seminar fill out the minimum coursework.

English Minor

The English minor can be satisfied with 20 credits—Literary Studies, two survey classes, and two additional electives. The English minor makes a strong complement to any number of majors at UMN Morris and prepares students to be effective oral and written communicators in whatever career path they pursue.

Creative Writing

A Creative Writing subplan or minor, which combines the study of literature and the practice of creative writing, provides students with a strong foundation for developing their craft. Students take workshops with published poets and novelists. Writing courses focus on fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction, and also on subtopics such as sports, environmental, and essay writing. English majors can earn a Creative Writing subplan (area of emphasis) by completing 48 credits total. Non-English majors can earn a Creative Writing minor by taking 20 credits in the English discipline, including ENGL 1404: Introduction to Creative Writing.