Mission Statement

The Daemen College English Department prepares students for life in a complex, globally-interconnected world. Our three majors (English, Adolescent Education in English, and Professional Writing and Rhetoric) cultivate critical thinking, imagination, and problem-solving skills by emphasizing close reading, writing as a process, and oral communication. We aim not only to impart skills but provoke transformation.

English department faculty are nationally and internationally recognized experts in literature, film, and writing. We place a strong emphasis on ideas and experiences that open new horizons. We are focused on helping students gain a broader understanding of the world and appreciation of diversity by encountering new concepts, nationalities, and cultures. Our faculty work closely with students inside and outside the classroom. Taking students to local sites, lectures by important authors, and on international research trips helps us reinforce material introduced in the classroom. Our students are encouraged to publish in Insight, our campus newspaper, and Iconoclast, our creative writing journal.

We believe that whether your goal is to work in law, education, business, library science, nonprofits, publishing, or elsewhere, a strong grasp of reading and writing in diverse settings is the key to a successful career. Further, we know critical and rhetorical skills translate well across professional contexts, so if you switch career paths you will do so with the confidence that you are prepared.

In addition to our three majors, we offer minors in literature, literature and composition, professional writing, public relations, and political communication. These shorter programs add breadth and distinction, and can be integrated with a professional degree or major in another discipline. A minor in English provides a point of differentiation that sets our students apart from their peers.

We challenge our students to analyze texts they otherwise wouldn’t encounter and consider ideas that are new and sometimes disorienting. We believe a rigorous educational experience and supportive faculty mentoring helps our students reach their maximum potential.

Departmental Learning Objectives

  1. English majors will read attentively, closely, and critically, effectively using primary texts through quotation and internal reference, drawing conclusions and generalities beyond a given text, and offering a clear critical approach in interpreting texts.
  2. English majors will be able to state clearly the central themes, concepts, and ideas governing a work of literature and then, as a separate but related act, to evaluate their literary importance or cultural significance.
  3. English majors will develop familiarity with major periods and movements and with the influence of previous trends and styles on later authors and texts.
  4. English majors will understand the major characteristics of the dominant genres (poetry, fiction, and drama) and use those characteristics to analyze individual examples.
  5. English majors will respond to a literary text in a way that reflects an awareness of aesthetic values, historical context, ideological orientation, and critical approach.
  6. English majors will demonstrate the role of context(s) in production, reception, and transmission of literary and cultural texts (across periods, histories, geographic or national spaces, and cultural differences).
  7. English majors will write thoughtfully, coherently, and persuasively.