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About

English chair Krista Ratcliffe / Photo by Deanna Dent/ASU Now

Welcome to the Department of English at ASU. We’re glad you’re here!

When you study in the Department of English, you may pursue creative writingEnglish educationfilm and media studieslinguistics and applied linguisticsliterature; and writing, rhetorics and literacies. Within these areas of study, you will engage a diverse set of texts, discourses, and cultures.

We also house the university’s Writing Programs, whose composition courses are taken by almost every first-year ASU student and whose TomorrowTalks this year will invite ASU students to interact with nationally known writers such as Michael Eric Dyson, author of Long Time Coming: Reckoning with Race in America.

ASU and the Department of English are committed to excellence and access. Of the more than 2,000 students pursuing undergraduate degrees in the Department of English, 33% are BIPOC students, 46% are Pell grant eligible, and 34% are the first in their families to attend a university.

One of the largest English departments nationally, we believe our mission befits our scale. Our aim is to prepare citizens who can think, read, and write critically, pose and solve problems, and communicate effectively in their academic, personal, professional, and public lives. These skills are necessary, now more than ever. In a global economy where professionals change jobs on average twelve times during their lives, humanities degrees, like those in English or film and media studies, prepare graduates to remain agile in the marketplace of ideas.

When you join our department, you’re supported by nearly 700 faculty and graduate students who are rigorously trained in the latest teaching and research methods exploring not just local, but global expressions of the English language in all media. You’re surrounded by experts in everything from videogame studies to medieval studies, from health humanities to desert humanities, from classical rhetoric to data literacy, from young adult literature to Shakespeare and ACMRS’s RaceB4Race.

Our motto―“Start here. Go anywhere.”―captures the unique values of a degree from our department. When you study with us, you learn the imaginative, analytical, interpretive, and communicative skills necessary for living an engaged life and pursuing a rewarding career. Our degrees open doors to careers in publishing, media, management, teaching, governmental or non-profit work, and they can be springboards for professional study, such as in law and medicine. In the Department of English, people are willing to try new things, and we imagine failure as simply a step toward success.

What can you do with an English or film and media studies degree?

Our answer is: whatever you can imagine! And we will be there to help you.

Krista Ratcliffe
Professor and Chair
Department of English

 

The humanities well-equip us to tell better stories about both history and the present and are integral in shaping more humane communities to come.

—Jeffrey Cohen, ASU humanities dean and English professor