The Graduate Program in English at WVU provides a strong sense of community among faculty and students, a wide range of research opportunities in literary and cultural studies, and professional and creative writing. We also offer extensive teaching experience in composition and literature. Our low faculty-graduate student ratio (about 3:1) encourages both formal collaboration and less formal sharing of ideas and resources.
Nearly all of our graduate students hold teaching assistantships, and all doctoral students teach both freshman and sophomore composition courses and literature courses in their area of scholarly interest.
The English Department is committed to the professional development of its graduate students. The Graduate Program provides workshops on electronic resources and educational materials, scholarly publication, and the job search process. Our students have delivered papers at such conferences as MLA, the Society for Literature and Science, Early Modern Cultural Studies, and The International Congress on Medieval Studies, and published papers in journals such as Anglia, Colby Quarterly, College Literature, Genders, Science Fiction Studies, and Studies in American Indian Literatures.
Each spring, The Graduate Student Colloquium provides an opportunity for students to share their recent research with their peers in a professional environment.
The doctoral program in English has five goals:
(1) to build upon the broad foundations of the M.A. degree’s focus on the cultural, linguistic, and literary heritage of Britain, America, and other English-speaking lands;
(2) to help students to develop fluency in the critical discourses of the profession;
(3) to help students to develop professional competency in three fields of research, as dictated by the Examination for Formal Admission to Candidacy;
(4) to help students to develop the research, writing, and analytical skills necessary for professional success; and
(5) to provide professional training and counseling to prepare graduates to teach English professionally on the post-secondary level.
These goals are met by the various features of our program, which include course work, examinations, and both formal and informal instruction and advising regarding professional teaching and research responsibilities. Doctoral study culminates in the writing of the dissertation, which is designed to contribute to the critical and/or theoretical discussion in its field and to prepare the doctoral candidate for further research and publication as a professional scholar and teacher.