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Mission

The English Department of California State University, Northridge is a community of teachers, scholars, writers, and support staff whose primary mission is to promote learning in literature, creative writing, composition, and linguistics, to help students acquire knowledge, develop skills, and realize their own intellectual and creative goals. In pursuit of our mission, the department is also committed to promoting faculty development in such areas as research, publication, creative work, and other professional activities for the advancement of knowledge and pedagogy.

Values

  1. A commitment to teaching the knowledge and skills for critical reading, writing, and thinking

    We teach the conventions, terminology, and practice(s) of the discipline at the university level. We teach the historical and intellectual backgrounds for the study of literature, creative writing, composition, and linguistics. We encourage students to use this knowledge to develop and extend the discipline through their own creative and intellectual endeavors. We teach the value of language and literature within a broader social context.

  2. A commitment to preparing students to be informed and responsible participants in a democratic society

    We encourage students to develop a commitment to cultural and other forms of diversity in and beyond the classroom through an engagement with various literatures, theories, and creative works. We teach respect for all people(s) while recognizing both the differences and commonalities that contribute to a diverse, democratic society. In addition, we encourage students to participate in service learning, to seek community involvement, and to pursue other forms of non-traditional education.

  3. A commitment to fostering life-long learning among students as they pursue personal and professional goals

    We believe that studies in language, literature, and writing establish a strong foundation for a life of intellectual curiosity, creative activity, and personal development. Therefore, we seek to make students aware of the ways in which reading and writing, like language itself, can be experienced as open-ened and ever-developing activities that significantly enrich personal experience and can contribute to professional advancement. We aim to provide students with the literacy skills and critical capacities to frame guiding questions that will sustain reading and writing throughout their lives.

  4. A commitment to fostering professional development among colleagues

    We believe effective teachers continue to learn and also to share their knowledge through publication and other professional activity. Through our activities, we expand our own knowledge, disseminate our ideas to contribute to ongoing professional conversations, deepen our understanding of pedagogy, and update our teaching skills.

  5. A commitment to sharing knowledge beyond the university classroom in a variety of venues

    As active professionals and public intellectuals, we seek to share and develop knowledge by disseminating our work in a variety of public forums. We seek to foster connections among students, faculty, and various cultural, academic, and community-based organizations for mutual enrichment through service, shared knowledge, and creative activity.

Student Learning Outcomes of the Undergraduate Program

  1. You will gain the ability to read critically.
  2. You will gain the ability to write effectively.
  3. You will gain a broad knowledge of and ability to engage with rel­evant theories.
  4. You will gain a broad knowledge of literary and cultural history with an emphasis on British and American literature and culture.
  5. You will gain knowledge of the cultural diversity of literatures.
  6. In addition to these primary learning outcomes, the Department of English has designated the additional learning outcomes for the fol­lowing options.

Students in the Creative Writing Option are expected to reach the following Learning Outcomes:

  1. You will learn to write and revise creative work using techniques and strategies employed by experienced writers.
  2. You will develop the critical ability to read and understand poetry, narrative, and/or drama.
  3. You will learn to reflect on your own creative writing in relation to relevant literary and theoretical traditions.
  4. You will work at advanced levels in at least one creative writing genre.

Students in the Subject Matter Option are expected to reach the fol­lowing Learning Outcomes:

  1. You will gain knowledge of the nature and structure of the English language and its relationship to other human languages.
  2. You will gain knowledge of and ability to apply rhetorical and com­position theory.
  3. You will develop the ability to participate in discourse pertaining to the disciplines of English.

In addition to the above Subject Matter Option Learning Outcomes, students in the Four-Year Integrated and Junior-Year Integrated Subject Matter Options are expected to reach the following Learning Outcomes:

  1. You will develop the ability to engage and support all secondary students (grades 6-12) in learning.
  2. You will develop the ability to create and maintain effective environ­ments for secondary student learning.
  3. You will develop the ability to make subject matter comprehensible for student learning.
  4. You will develop the ability to plan instruction and design learning experiences for all secondary students.
  5. You will develop the ability to assess secondary students’ learning.
  6. You will give evidence of the ability to develop as a professional educator.

Students in the Honors Option are expected to reach the following Learning Outcomes:

  1. You will gain the ability to articulate clear interpretations of cultural texts
  2. You will gain the ability to engage in independent research and scholarship.
  3. You will gain the ability to present a scholarly paper.

Student Learning Outcomes of the Graduate Program in Literature:

  1. You will gain the ability to apply major critical approaches to the study of English language and literature.
  2. You will gain the ability to conduct advanced literary research, including bibliographical and historical study.
  3. You will gain the ability to write advanced analyses that take into account current schools of critical methodology and are informed by professional standards of literary research.
  4. You will gain the ability to present scholarly analyses through confer­ence presentations, including the annual Honors Colloquium and AGSE Spring Conference.

Student Learning Outcomes of the Graduate Program in Creative Writing:

  1. You will develop the ability to apply major critical approaches to the study of English language and literature.
  2. You will demonstrate improvement and a growing sophistication in the application of creative writing techniques.
  3. You will demonstrate familiarity with contemporary literature and proficiency with a variety of poetic, dramatic, and narrative forms, and with the critical vocabulary for discussing those forms.
  4. You will demonstrate an understanding of aspects of the writing profession, including literary publishing, performance, reviewing, and participating in professional conferences.

Student Learning Outcomes of the Graduate Program in Rhetoric and Composition:

  1. You will gain the ability to apply major critical approaches to the study of English language and literature.
  2. You will gain the ability to conduct research appropriate to rhetoric and composition, including bibliographical, historical, ethnographi­cal, and classroom research.
  3. You will gain the ability to write advanced analyses that take into account current schools of rhetorical theory and criticism, and con­temporary theories of composition and communication.
  4. You will gain the ability to write and present textual analysis of data-based and qualitative research that would be appropriate for academic dissemination in the fields of composition and rhetoric.
  5. Those intending to be classroom teachers will gain the ability --to think critically and reflectively about their teaching as informed by professional modes of inquiry.

Last updated: May 11, 2010

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