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Writing

The information on this page pertains to program requirements for students who matriculated in the 2019-2020 academic year.  View requirements for previous catalog years here.

Program Options

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) with a major in Writing

Writing minor

English department web site


Program Overview

The program in writing is committed to establishing a habit of lifelong learning that emphasizes the relationship of reading, writing and critical thinking. Our students:

  • learn to read and write texts in a variety of modes and genres. They read and write imaginatively, critically, analytically, and interpretively, with close attention to detail, and they situate their reading and writing within established and contested historical, cultural, critical, and literary traditions. They understand that reading and writing are deeply inter-related activities, whether their major emphasizes the production or the reception of texts. 
  • think, read, and write collaboratively, sharing their work with others and drawing on their individual and collective knowledge, experience, wisdom, understanding, and background to advance their learning. They become adept at working creatively and effectively with others, through dialogue, debate, and critique.
  • come to English and writing from a broad range of backgrounds, with a variety of beliefs, motivations, and tastes, to pursue a broad range of personal, professional, and expressive goals. Our faculty are co-learners with our students, taking active part in the challenging and rewarding practices of critical literacy and creative writing.
  • develop into culturally aware users of language, attuned to the way language and the variety of meanings to which it gives rise change and respond to contemporary developments, including the political, social, technological, and aesthetic. They learn to question and reflect on these changes and to adapt their readerly and writerly sensibilities to address them.
  • develop the desire to better understand themselves and their world through language, as exploratory writers and inquisitive readers. They are able to achieve that understanding by using language in critical and imaginative ways to advance their learning throughout their lives.
  • become reflective and informed readers, able to generate and pursue complex questions of language’s meanings and uses. By focusing on textual details in relation to larger questions of form, purpose, and context, our students are able to articulate well-reasoned understandings of the language they encounter.
  • learn to take pleasure in the play of language and other representational, symbolic systems of thought and expression. They value novelty and experimentation, both in their critical and writerly endeavors, and become adept at seeing and pursuing opportunities for playful engagement with language and meaning.
  • contend with ambiguity and respond meaningfully and responsibly to changes in the way language functions, whether in its literary or everyday manifestations.
  • develop the critical and creative wherewithal to recognize that language and representation are complex and important, wherever they manifest themselves. They are able to use the critical and creative approaches for thinking about film, drama, new media, novels, stories, poems, and other literary artifacts to analyze and reflect on symbolic representation of all kinds, from popular music to painting to political discourse and beyond.

Our courses involve students in a range of activities, including discussions (in class and online), collaborative projects, conferences, presentations, independent study, internships and service learning.

The English Department is committed to supporting interdisciplinary programs and encourages students to pursue interdisciplinary concentrations, second majors and/or minors. A number of the Department's courses are cross-listed with interdisciplinary programs, facilitating such study. In addition, the Writing major permits students to include related courses taken outside the Department for credit toward their program of study, subject to approval by the student’s English Department adviser.

Our graduates pursue professional careers in such fields as professional writing, editing, advertising, publishing, education, management, computers, public relations and public service, or pursue post-baccalaureate study in English studies, law school or medical school. Students contemplating graduate study should confer with their advisers about special preparation and should be aware that many graduate schools typically expect proof of competence in foreign languages.


B.A. Degree Requirements

The Writing major requires 12 courses: at least 5 at the lower division and at least 6 at the upper division. The Writing major allows for 3 electives, 2 of which must be 100-level courses. An English course may be used only once to fulfill a particular major requirement. Transfer students majoring in Writing must take at least 6 courses in English at Drake. Students with advanced placement (A.P.) will be credited one lower-level elective toward the major.

Course Credits
Lower Division Core
Gateway
ENG 038 - Literary Study 4
ENG 039 - Writing Seminar 4
History and Traditions - Select any ENG course numbered 040-059 3-4
Culture and Identity - Select any ENG course numbered 060-079 3-4
Writing: Topics and Genres - Select any ENG course numbered 080-099 3-4
Upper Division Writing Courses - Select at least nine credits from the list below
ENG 109 - Prose Stylistics 3
ENG 111 - Reading/Writing the Personal Essay 3
ENG 112 - Autobiography and Memoir 3
ENG 113 - Cross-Genre Writing 3
ENG 114 - Advanced Poetry Writing 3
ENG 115 - Advanced Fiction Writing 3
ENG 116 - Creative Writing for New Media 3
ENG 117 - Adaptations and Transformations 3
ENG 118 - Reading and Creating Comics 3
ENG 119 - Community Writing 3
ENG 120 - Advanced Topics in Writing 3
ENG 171 - Teaching Writing: Theory and Practice 3
ENG 172 - Teaching Tutorial Writing 1
Electives - At least nine hours of ENG courses, none of which can count toward any other Writing major requirement.  Courses may be taken outside of the department with advisor approval.  Up to six individual experience hours (internship, independent study, portfolio) may be counted as electives.
One ENG course numbered 001-099 3-4
At least six hours of ENG courses numbered 100 or higher 6
Capstone
ENG 195 - Capstone in English and Writing, or 3
ENG 196 - Capstone in Writing
TOTAL 38-41

 


Writing Minor

The Writing minor requires a minimum of six courses in English, including ENG 38 and ENG 39, and at least two courses numbered above 100 chosen from this list (109, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 120, 171, 174, 3-credit 198). An English faculty advisor is required.

CourseCredits
ENG 038 - Literary Study 4
ENG 039 - Writing Seminar 4
Select one from the following  
ENG 086 - Reading and Writing Sexuality 4
ENG 087 - Reading and Writing Nature 4
ENG 088 - Reading and Writing Social Class 4
ENG 090 - Reading and Writing Drama 4
ENG 091 - Reading and Writing Poetry 4
ENG 092 - Reading and Writing Fiction 4
ENG 093 - Reading and Writing Non-Fiction 4
ENG 094 - Business and Administration Writing 3
Select one from the following  
ENG 109 - Prose Stylistics 3
ENG 111 - Reading/Writing the Personal Essay 3
ENG 112 - Autobiography and Memoir 3
ENG 113 - Cross-Genre Writing 3
ENG 114 - Advanced Poetry Writing 3
ENG 115 - Advanced Fiction Writing 3
ENG 116 - Creative Writing for New Media 3
ENG 117 - Adaptations and Transformations 3
ENG 118 - Reading and Creating Comics 3
ENG 119 - Community Writing 3
ENG 120 - Advanced Topics in Writing 3
ENG 171 - Teaching Writing: Theory and Practice 3
ENG 174 - Theories of Language and Discourse 3
ENG 198 - Independent Study 3
Electives - Select two ENG courses, at least one of which must be numbered 100 or higher 6
TOTAL 20-21

 


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