Why study English? Everything you do, you do in language: you seduce, you negotiate, you network, you enlighten, you argue, you sue for peace, you counsel. When you study literature and rhetoric, you learn to understand and represent many different people’s perspectives. These skills transfer to management, law, education, and counseling very well. You become a better writer and thinker. Good writing is good thinking. Good thinking is powerful.
You become a better reader. You learn to read widely in the tradition of the best of what has been thought and said throughout history, and you learn to read closely. Reading closely will give nuance to your thinking, and that will help you address the most difficult kinds of problems. Your ability to analyze language, both long, complex documents and fragments, is another one of those widely-valuable skills.
In short, it’s fun. To quote Ezra Pound, “Gloom and solemnity are out of place in the study of an art that is meant to make glad the heart of man.”
What You’ll Learn from Us
The program in English grounds you in language skills and analytic practices allowing the development of tools that not only retain their value, but also transfer easily to specialized work in graduate and professional schools as well as in the workplace. Ultimately, a degree in English is a wonderful portal to careers and advanced degrees in and out of English.
As an undergraduate, you may pursue a major in literature; at the graduate level, you will earn an MA in Literature or Composition, and may pursue a Master Teacher of Writing Certificate. At both levels, the English program at Texas A&M University-Texarkana affords you the opportunity to work closely with a small, diverse faculty of dedicated and accomplished teachers and scholars in a curriculum emphasizing literature, writing, and literary studies. You may also choose to complement another major with the minor in drama or English. For those of you who desire to teach English in the grades, The English department collaborates on the 4th-8th & 7th-12th grade Teacher’s Certification in English, Language Arts, and Reading.
The BA and BS in English provide a strong background in English and American literature. You will take World Literature, British Literature, American Literature and Literary Studies at the sophomore level. The core of the B.A. and B.S. programs in English consists of required survey courses: Advanced American Literature, English Literature, and World Literature; Understanding Grammar; Advanced Expository Writing; and Studies in Genre. Other required courses for English majors are History and Grammar of English, which provides an understanding of the origin and development of the English language and a survey of grammatical approaches to the language, and Shakespeare, which offers a detailed look at some of the major works of this important author. Optional courses, such as Studies in Women's Literature, Children’s Literature and Young Adult Literature and Special Topics allow you to customize your degree plans. English majors also participate in a capstone course, during the semester they graduate. You can find the degree requirements in the catalog and in DegreeWorks.
Click here to access the form to become an undergraduate English major.
The Master of Arts in English provides courses in literature, linguistics, and composition. The MA program welcomes ArkLaTex’s brightest students and professionals from the realms of English education, communication, writing, and management. Should you choose to embark upon an English MA with Texas A&M-Texarkana, the dedicated faculty will help you find and develop your passion for English language and literature, as well as help you construct a meaningful future. MA student graduates have gone on to top tier PhD schools, became nationally celebrated teaching professionals, and published in popular venues such as 4-States Magazine, Her, and TXK Today, as well as making names for themselves in scholarly venues, such as The Sigma Tau Delta Review, and conferences. Some on-campus jobs are available to defray enrollment costs.
The MA degree requires Research Literature and Techniques and 24 semester credit hours in English, at least half of which must be in literature courses. Additionally, you may choose to do either a Thesis or the capstone course, Current Issues in English Studies. In the capstone course, you write and formally present two major papers. If you choose this non-thesis option, six semester credit hours in approved electives are required, while if you choose the thesis option, only an additional three semester credit hours in an approved elective are required.
Click here to access the form to become a graduate English major.
The drama minor offers a program of study that emphasizes dramaturgy and a lab platform for performance exercises. The minor’s courses include an introduction to theatre, two reading-intensive theatre-history classes, a playwriting course (including an end-of-term performance), a course in acting theory and application, and a seminar for studies in drama. CELA has allowed the drama program to cross-list the playwriting and studies-in-drama courses so that English majors may take those classes for credit. All students pursuing the drama minor must audition for and participate in the shows that the drama program offers. The minor prepares students for pursuing degrees that may lead to careers in criticism, performance, scriptwriting, or artistic direction.
The English minor offers an 18 credit hour program of study that emphasizes personalization and genre selection. The minor’s courses, in addition to composition one and two, include one sophomore literature survey, a genre course of your choosing, and any two upper division advanced survey courses. The English minor, with its genre options is an exceptional complement to the social sciences. Social scientists benefit especially from classes such as Expository Writing, Survey of World Literature, Women’s Literature, and History & Grammar of English which gives you beneficial exposure to diverse ways of thinking about the medium of language in culture.
Click here to access the form to become an undergraduate minor in English.
What You’ll Do Here
The university offers organizations, events, and activities to develop the professional and personal lives of English majors:
Established in the 1980s, the English Club is an active student group of 20 to 30 members who meet monthly.
Conferences Film Fests Poetry Readings Author Presentations
Play Performances Staged Readings Choir Performances
- Shakespeare Festivals in Montgomery, Alabama, and Dallas
- Performances of Current Stage Shows in Dallas, Little Rock, Magnolia, and Texarkana
- Children’s Literature Conferences in Little Rock
- Jack London Museum (Centenary College)
- Norton Art Gallery in Shreveport
- Kate Chopin Museum near Natchitoches
Local Networking and Outreach:
- Texarkana Regional Arts and Humanities Council (TRAHC)
- TRAHC’s writing competitions
- PLACE’s writing competitions
- Literacy Council of Bowie and Miller Counties
- Fundraising educational supplies for children
- Supporting Texarkana’s community-built park—Kidtopia
- Judging poetry for the Barry Telford Unit of the Federal Correctional Institution.
Sigma Tau Delta
- Wear Sigma Tau Delta regalia at graduation,
- Apply for a variety of Sigma Tau Delta scholarships valued at up to $5,000 each,
- Writing awards & publishing in The Sigma Tau Delta Review,
- Digital and long-form print opportunities,
- Sigma Tau Delta co-sponsored paid internships, and
- Annual Conventions.
Texarkana Young Writers’ Workshop
The English program sponsors the Texarkana Young Writers’ Workshop, a two-week summer program to foster literacy development in an engaging environment among 2nd through 12th graders from area schools.
Qualifying undergraduate and graduate students can apply to be a workshop teachers or classroom supervisors. Involvement in YWW allows you to
- Teach program participants about various writing genres,
- Improve learners’ motivations for and skills in writing,
- Design and practice engaging literacy activities,
- Support participants’ achievements through authorship,
- Enjoy visits from children’s authors, and
- Learn how an anthology is published.
East Texas Writing Project
The East Texas Writing Project (ETWP) is an affiliate of the National Writing Project, a collaborative university-school development program designed to improve the teaching of writing in the nation’s classrooms, K-16. Beginning in 1979, the East Texas Writing Project receives funds through grants to promote the teaching of writing in regional schools.
- For Post-Baccalaureate and Graduate Students in English and Education
- Three week, all day institute
- Graduate credit bearing
- Grant funding support available
- Share your own teaching best practices
- Study composition theory and research in a praxis setting
- Experience the writing process by writing and sharing your writing in small groups
During the academic semesters, the ETWP offers various writing sessions for teachers and others interested in writing. Participants in the Institute become part of ETWP’s Teacher Consultant Network (TCN) and enjoy the benefits of ongoing monthly activities.
Aquila Review is a nonprofit annual arts journal that Texas A&M University- Texarkana publishes. Funding for this publication comes from ads, private donations, and subscriptions to the journal. Aquila Review publishes creative nonfiction, drama, fiction, music, nonfiction, poetry, and visual art. The journal employs a general editor (a professor from the English department), a graduate editor (a graduate student in the English program), and an undergraduate editor (an undergraduate student in the English program). The editors receive and consider submissions throughout the year and publish the journal in September.
Career Options: Education: College level, Primary Education, Secondary Education, Private Schools, Teaching English as a Second Language, Tutoring, Educational Administration, Editorial Assistant, Copyediting/Proofreading, Internships, Production, Marketing/Publicity, Publishing, Journalism, Corporate Communications, Public Relations, Digital Media, Creative Writing, Copywriting, Technical Writing, Science Writing, Freelance Writing, and Grant Writing.