Jul 17, 2024  
2017-2018 Undergraduate Catalog 
2017-2018 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Department of English

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Dr. Dabney A. Bankert, Department Head
Phone: (540) 568-6170
Email: bankerda@jmu.edu
Location: Keezell Hall, Room 215
Website: http://www.jmu.edu/english

D. Bankert, M. Favila, A. Federico, J. Gabbin, B. Johnson, L. Kutchins, R. Majors, D. Mookerjea-Leonard, A. Morey, M. Parker, M. Rebhorn

Associate Professors
P. Bogard, K. Castellano, E. Cavanagh, S. Cote, A. Fagan,  R. Gaughran, D. Goode, B. Hefner, L. Henigman, M. Rankin, M. Thompson, S. White

Assistant Professors
D. Babcock, M. Godfrey, D. Lo, S. Samatar, G. Wrenn


The Department of English offers to all students, wherever their professional and vocational interests lie, skills in critical thinking, analysis and writing along with an appreciation of the great literary heritage of Western civilization, with particular emphasis upon British and American literature. The program also promotes global awareness and the appreciation of cultural diversity through numerous opportunities for world or multicultural studies.

Our goal is that, through the humanistic study of a variety of literature, students will obtain a better understanding of themselves, their culture and other cultures with which they must invariably come into contact.

A senior requirement ensures that each major will have a final capstone experience through courses designed to integrate earlier training and focus it toward postgraduate needs and opportunities.


To build upon the skills introduced in the General Education  program, the Department of English strives to:

  • Provide students advanced instruction in writing styles ranging from expository and creative writing to literary criticism.
  • Help students master advanced skills in analytical and critical thinking.
  • Develop skills in research and information access.

Career Opportunities

Careers that involve critical thinking, document analysis or oral and written communication such as:

  • Career counseling
  • Corporate recruiting
  • Consulting
  • Editing
  • Educational administration
  • Film and food critic
  • Graduate school in English, creative writing, law and library science
  • Human resources
  • Insurance underwriting
  • Intelligence analyst
  • Law school
  • Library science (librarian, archivist, preservationist)
  • Literary agent
  • Literacy instructor
  • Lobbyist
  • Magazine writing and editing (print and online)
  • Marketing
  • Newspaper reporting/foreign correspondent
  • Non-profit advocacy and administration
  • Public relations and public affairs officer
  • Publishing
  • Research
  • Speech writer
  • Stockbroker
  • Teaching

Co-curricular Activities and Organizations

  • Sigma Tau Delta (the National English Honor Society)
  • gardy loo! (a literary magazine)
  • Sister Speak (JMU’s feminist journal)
  • MacGuffin Film Journal
  • Cinemuse Film Club
  • Hopscotch (children’s literature magazine)

Cross Disciplinary Minors

English participates in the following cross disciplinary minors:


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