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What We Do in Class

You can take classes in the range of American, British, and World literatures, creative writing, writing in professional contexts, editing and publishing, and even do a Writing Internship or write a Honors thesis over the course of an academic year. Our courses emphasize reading and writing and lots of discussion about ideas, big and small. Students research and write big papers, of course, but also work together to present their work to the USCB community and the wider public in a variety of creative ways.

Great Courses from Great Faculty!

Our faculty are scholars and teachers, and it shows in the classroom. Read below to learn more about the kinds of courses you can take. See the Upcoming Courses page to see what's next.

outsideEnhanced First Year Sequence

Our Enhanced First Year sequence is recommended for English majors, humanities majors, and all word-lovers. ENGL 105 – Enhanced Composition is an introduction to genres of writing, including (but not limited to) researched arguments. ENGL 106 – Enhanced Composition and Literature is an introduction to literary interpretation and the writing of researched arguments about literature. 

ENGL 200: Introduction to English Studies

Dr. Hoffer leads students to explore the history, present state of affairs, and potential futures of the discipline with an emphasis on the distinctive fields, practices, approaches, and terminology employed in the discipline. Students also consider the diverse array of employment opportunities in the field.

may river review workENGL 211: Editing and Publishing Practicum

In this one credit course, students work with either Dr. Malphrus and USCB's creative writing journal, The Penor with Dr. Hoffer and Dr. Barnes and USCB's interdisciplinary critical journal, The May River Review. Students make calls for essays or creative writing, evaluate submissions, compose style guides, design page and journal layouts, copyedit pieces accepted for publication, and organize strategies to publicize and promote the journal on campus and in the community. Beyond offering students firsthand experience for future internships and positions in editing and publishing, the culmination of the course each semester is the completion and publication of the journal itself.

222ENGL 222: Creative Writing Across the Curriculum

Dr. Malphrus leads students in a sophomore level creative writing workshop designed to give students of all majors the platform to experiment with their creativity and curiosity using words. They "dabble with fiction, poetry, playwriting, and creative nonfiction (true stories told well)." It's an intimate classroom setting where students and professor alike give and receive feedback on creative works in progress. (Pictured: readings of short plays.)

ENGL 287-290: Surveys of Literature

Taught by scholars in their fields, these surveys of American, British, and World literatures are perfect introductions to the traditions and new directions of literary history. Open to all students at USCB, these courses hit the sweet spot between serious rigor and fun accessibility. Here is Dr. McCoy's ENGL 290: Great Books course imagining what it would be like to translate Greek tragic choral signing to today's styles:

Courses in Writing

corpseWriting practice is an important part of every course we teach, but we emphasize it in a number of courses, beyond the 100 and 200 levels. Students majoring in English can choose to do a Writing Concentration; students minoring in English can get a minor in Writing. ENGL 460: Advanced Composition gives practice in a variety of non-fiction genres. ENGL 462: Technical Writing and ENGL 463: Business Writing give practice in writing in professional genres. (The only pre-reqs for 460, 462, and 463 is the First Year English sequence, and they are open to students of all majors.)

Dr. Malphrus leads students in ENGL 464: Poetry Workshop and ENGL 465: Fiction Workshop, to establish a community of writers in an intimate classroom setting. (Pictured above is an "a blackboard version of an "exquisite corpse," which isn't what it sounds like.) Many of the students' poems and stories written for these classes are published in The Pen and presented in readings around campus. And many of these students choose to write a creative thesis.

Students also have the opportunity to work with Dr. Kilgore on a ENGL 466: Writing Internship. structured but flexible opportunity for English majors to earn course credit for an internship that focuses on writing, editing, proofreading, and/or research. Former interns have worked for organizations such as USA Today and Literacy Volunteers of the Lowcountry. 

Courses in Literature and Literary History

fantasyMany of our 300+ level courses are deep dives into a particular literary genre, topic, or time period: for example, the American Renaissance, Southern Literature, Fantasy Literature, Shakespeare, African-American Literature, "The Ways West: Rootedness and Restlessness in American Literature," "Theater History I: Gods. Demons. Kings.", "The Arts of War and Peace in Seventeenth-Century Literature," "Victorian Crime and Criminality."

These courses can lead to innovative ways of learning, knowing, and sharing. Dr. Barnes, for her ENGL 429: Historical Imaginaries in American Literature course, guided her students to create and curate an “Americana Retrospect” exhibit for our library. Inspired by a key moment in Edith Wharton's The Age of Innocence, the students' exhibit features artifacts that remember and remake significant objects from the course texts. Students’ projects offer brilliant insights about how these novels represent the past in order to critique the present or even the future. Here, you can see students do what teacher-scholarship might call literary “critical making”: they apply their analytical eyes not only to writing but also to making something that shows how they interpret modes of remembering, disremembering, and forgetting in nineteenth-century fiction.

historical imaginaries

Library exhibit, created by students in Dr. Barnes' ENGL 429: Historical Imaginaries in American Literature. Download a fuller description of the exhibit (pdf).

As you can see, in these 300+ level literature courses, students get a greater sense of literary history, how texts and authors are inter-related, how history shapes texts and texts shape history. Faculty guide students into individualized research projects where students investigate something in the course that matters to them, and these researches lead to argumentative essays, which in turn find ways for public expression: through library exhibits, for example, or through presentation as an essay or a poster for Student Research and Scholarship Day or other conferences, such as the annual convention of Sigma Tau Delta, the International English Honor Society.

Senior Thesis and Honors Senior Thesis

Students regularly choose to write a senior thesis, either creative or literary critical. [Read More]