Who are we? A degree-granting program, offering majors in English and Liberal Arts at Michigan Technological University. We offer opportunities to study literature in its many diverse forms and to engage in acts of creative writing. Our curriculum challenges you to develop intellectually and creatively, preparing you to live and work in a rapidly changing world, where skills in research, close reading, critical and creative thinking have proven practical value.

What we do. We are committed to engaging literary culture—textual, visual, cinematic, dramatic and theatrical, oral, digital, and multi-media—and to applying a range of critical and theoretical practices to deepen our and our students’ scholarly engagement. The critical and theoretical frameworks that inform our reading and our writing include eco-critical and environmental studies, sustainability, colonial, post-colonial, and decolonization studies, feminist and queer theory, gender studies, Caribbean, Atlantic, and other transnational and transatlantic perspectives.

We read literature written and translated into English and explore transnational and global literary culture. We watch, listen, absorb; we cross disciplinary boundaries and create interdisciplinary networks in critical and creative acts that reconfirm the relevance of critical interpretation in our ever-changing society.

Join us. Our degree in English literature encourages linking a degree in English to other disciplines across campus, including computer science, psychology, engineering, history, or your other passion. We also offer an array of introductory and advanced courses designed to help students develop and improve skills in analysis and argument, creativity, historical perspective of literary culture, and writing. For students pursuing degrees in the sciences, business, or medicine, law, and engineering: literature and creative writing courses will flex your intellectual and creative muscles.

The Degrees


The Bachelor of Arts in English draws upon artistic and research strengths of faculty in creative writing, literature, cultural studies, film, rhetoric, and more. Learn research, writing skills, and strategies that enable you to analyze and report on the language and texts of others, as well as to create original, meaningful texts of your own. Such training prepares you for graduate work in literature, creative writing, culture, and rhetoric, or for careers in publishing, industry, law, business, and government–careers requiring skills in interpretation, analysis, creative thinking, and communication. Find specific course requirements on the degree audit form.

English Secondary Education

The Bachelor of Arts in English Secondary Education includes how to implement teaching and learning strategies in secondary English classroom environments to meet future literacy challenges. Learn research and writing strategies to analyze and report on the language and texts of others, as well as to create original, meaningful texts of your own. Graduate prepared for highly competitive teaching positions in public or private high schools and middle schools. Find specific course requirements on the degree audit form.

Contact Information

Dana Van Kooy

Dana Van Kooy

Program Director, Associate Professor of Literature

Kette Thomas

Kette Thomas

Associate Professor of Literature, Creative Writing, and Film Studies

Evelyn Johnson

Evelyn Johnson

Senior Lecturer of Secondary Education and Literature 

M. Bartley Seigel

M. Bartley Seigel

Associate Professor of Creative Writing and Literature 

Stephanie Carpenter

Stephanie Carpenter

Senior Lecturer of Creative Writing and Literature 

Maria Bergstrom

Maria Bergstrom


News and Events

Adventures in English Studies

Preview image for Study Abroad in Cumbria, England video

Study Abroad in Cumbria, England

This program offers students the opportunity to study history, archeology, literature, theatre,
music, art and culture during the summer in northern England

What We're Reading

Program Learning Goals 

Disciplinary Knowledge

In this program, students will acquire knowledge of a wide range of literature, including British, American and World literatures. They will develop tools for understanding how to analyze and critique literature while also learning how to apply methods to their own writing practice. Students will be expected to demonstrate competency in the following areas:

  • Historical grounding and cultural impact of literary works in various cultures.
  • Focused study of genres, forms and modes of writing, such as the novel, drama, or lyrical poetry.
  • Focused study of specific movements and periods, such as the Avant-Garde, Romanticism or Modernism.
  • Focused attention on studying the “body of work” of select influential writers.


By exposing students to various forms of communication, students will be able to understand how and when to apply different tools to engage others.

Social Responsibility and Ethical Reasoning

Focused attention will be placed on the cultural values reflected in literary works. Students will also engage the social and ethical implications of literary works and its creative production.

Global Literacy

Students will demonstrate: 

  • the ability to differentiate cultural traditions, ideas, and practices while recognizing shared characteristics and human concerns.
  • the ability to communicate effectively and appropriately in cross-cultural contexts.
  • basic literacy in a modern language and understand its cultural significance.

Critical and Creative Thinking

Students will:

  • learn to apply different theoretical concepts to literary interpretations.
  • learn to read texts closely, identifying multiple interpretations that broaden comprehension.
  • demonstrate the ability to analyze themes or contextualize works from a variety of sources alongside literature and writing practices. This may include social media, film, journalism, etc.
  • demonstrate the use of multiple research methods to develop critical analyses theses, and writing projects.
  • understand how to access, evaluate, and use information ethically and legally.