About the Department

Faculty after a department meeting
Faculty after a department meeting

Who We Are

Our faculty and staff is committed to the department’s mission statement and is dedicated to the futures of our students. Our specialties range from the medieval to the contemporary, the graphic novel to the epic poem, and the creative to the rhetorical, giving students ample opportunities to explore all that English Studies has to offer.

“My overall goals are to empower students within and outside the classroom.”–Dr. Tena Helton, Department Chair (2011-2017)

What We Do

Our diverse curriculum, hard-working faculty and staff, and unique attributes all come together to prepare our students for a variety of career paths. We aim to send our students confidently into today’s job market with an edge on the competition: communication, analysis, presentation, editing, and both creative and professional writing are highly desired skills by employers from many different fields. We believe that we are creating more versatile and adaptable employees by giving our students these skills.

Our Mission Statement: The UIS English Department emphasizes the humanistic endeavors of reading, writing, and studying texts in a variety of genres across cultures and times; the connection between critical and literary reading and a range of academic, professional, and creative pursuits; students’ participation in the creation of knowledge in many literary modalities and media; and the connection between civic life and the study of composition and literary texts. We offer Bachelor of Arts (Online and On-Campus) and Master of Arts degrees, an undergraduate minor in English, and a Graduate Certificate in Teaching English. Students may study a range of courses in British, American and World Literature, and Linguistics. They may also take a variety of writing courses.

To learn more about our department from one of our past students, watch below: