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Chair’s Welcome

The Department of English and Theatre offers instruction in literature, creative and technical writing, language and theatre arts. This instruction is designed for students who want to broaden their insight into the nature of language and literature, students who want to develop their writing abilities, students who want to learn theatre skills, and students who plan to teach. The Department also offers instruction in reading and study skills, basic instruction for speakers of English as a second language, and developmental courses for students who have been away from formal learning situations for a period of time or who need to develop language skills before entering college-level courses. In addition, academic assistance is offered to students from all programs and at all levels in the Writing Center.

Undergraduate English

At the undergraduate level, the department offers a Bachelor of Arts in English with the option of an emphasis in literature, technical writing, or creative writing. These options share a common core with additional courses to fit the particular emphasis. All three of these options include enough elective hours to pursue a minor, a second major, or simply to indulge one’s interests. The department also offers a Bachelor of Arts in Teaching which qualifies its graduates for certification to teach English at the secondary level.

Minors are offered in English and English Teaching. The minor in English is 18 hours. It requires a course in writing and in the principles of literary study. The remaining twelve hours can be chosen from any of our upper-division English courses. The minor in English Teaching is 27 hours and is for those with a primary teaching certification in some other area but who wish to be certified to teach English as well. An endorsement in teaching English as a Second Language (ESL) can be added to the teaching major.

Undergraduate English Online

EKU offers an online Bachelor’s degree in English to prepare graduates for a multitude of career choices. This program broadens students’ insights into the nature of language and English literature.

EKU’s online English degree offers students the option to pursue up to three emphases: Creative Writing, Technical Writing and Literature. This online English degree program is enhanced by individual attention from a dedicated faculty, including multimedia approaches to teaching and small workshop environments.

Undergraduate Theatre

The department offers three theatre degrees at the undergraduate level. The Bachelor of Arts in Theatre is a generalist degree which requires 41 hours from across the total theatre curriculum. In addition to completing the required course work, the individual student may choose to create an area of specialization through the selection of theatre electives. The Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Teaching, which requires an English Teaching minor, qualifies its graduates for certification to teach Theatre and English at the secondary level. Finally, the Bachelor of Fine Arts in Performing Arts is a multi-disciplinary program in theatre, music and dance, providing students with training for musical theatre.

Minors are offered in Theatre and Theatre Teaching. The theatre minor requires 18 hours while the teaching minor requires 21. Course work includes acting, stagecraft, directing and theatre history. The teaching minor is most popular with English Teaching majors who want to expand their experiences and marketability.

Graduate English

At the graduate level, the department offers a Master of Arts in English with emphases in British Literature, American Literature, Rhetorical Studies, Language Studies, including English as a Second Language, and Creative Writing. The masters is a 30 hour program and offers both thesis and non-thesis options. A limited number of graduate assistantships are available. These assistantships come with a stipend and a waiver of the out-of-state tuition fee. This means both Kentucky residents and non-residents pay the in-state tuition rate. Just as importantly, these assistantships typically provide opportunities for teaching experience in a supervised setting and/or the opportunity to assist in the department’s Writing Center and computer writing labs.

Choosing a Major

If you do not already have a major or minor, consider English and Theatre. An English and Theatre major or minor provides an excellent preparation for a wide variety of opportunities, including business and industry, government, social work, and teaching. It also is excellent preparation for law school. In fact, English and Theatre majors can be found almost everywhere in the workplace. English not only introduces students to the finest literature but also teaches students to think critically and to write well: two skills in demand in today’s marketplace. Theatre helps develop speaking and performance skills which are increasingly important in all areas of work and leisure. For these reasons the study of English and Theatre is fine preparation for work and for life. Remember, however, that through your education you want not only to acquire a marketable skill but also to acquire an understanding of yourself and other people–which ultimately may be the most valuable skill of all. We believe our offerings can help you achieve both these goals.

If you wish further information on the department and its programs, please send your request to:

Dr. James Keller Chair, Department of English and Theatre
Case Annex 467
Eastern Kentucky University
501 Lancaster Avenue Richmond, KY 40475-3102

Be sure to include both your email and USPS mail addresses with your request.


521 Lancaster Avenue
106 Beckham Hall
Richmond, KY 40475
Phone: 859-622-5861
Fax: 859-622-3156

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