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Degree Details

Offered as: Bachelor, Minor

Optional Concentrations & Specializations
  • Secondary Education Specialization
  • Theatre Concentration

Program Description Program Courses

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Why study English at Mount Aloysius College?

The English major at Mount Aloysius College provides a robust curriculum in composition and literature, which promotes critical thinking through engagement with texts across literary eras and genres, as well as participation in diverse and vibrant discourse in the classroom and in various co-curricular programs.

MAC offers a Bachelor of Arts in English, as well as a minor in English, minors in the arts and theater, and English Education Certification. Studying English at Mount Aloysius prepares students for graduate study and for jobs in diverse professional settings that require writing, critical thinking, and public speaking skills. Traditional courses in American and British Literature, as well as Literary Theory, are required; in addition, communications, linguistics classes, special topics courses, and interdisciplinary courses are offered regularly in order to expose MAC English students to cutting edge academic inquiry, discourse, and practices.

MAC English students are given the tools they need to become good researchers.  The English and Fine Arts Faculty work in lock step with the College Library Staff to ensure that their collection of literary, arts, communication, and linguistics texts are current and that research databases are useful and up-to-date.  English courses require students to employ practical research methods in order to access important literary scholarship and criticism.

Program Highlights

  • Emphasis on communication and critical thinking skills at the bachelor’s level
  • Strong preparation for graduate programs
  • Opportunities for field experiences, English and Theatre scholarships, study abroad, and Service Learning

From My Point of View

“The English program at Mount Aloysius is large enough that students can take specialty courses, such as Multicultural Literature or Fantasy Literature; however, it’s small enough that the teachers and advisers get to know each and every student by name. The advisers come to know the students’ majors and career goals, and they genuinely care about assisting and encouraging each student in reaching his or her ambition. The campus newspaper, the Belltower, is also a significant part of the English program, allowing students to get involved on campus and incorporate writing!”- Kait Kuzio, ’14

Where will I work?

Upon graduation, MAC English graduates enjoy an excellent job placement, and professional employers of our graduates include:

  • Social Service Agencies at the state and local level.
  • Marketing Departments for small business and large corporations.
  • Management positions in various business tracks.
  • Writing and/or editing at local newspapers.
  • Academic and Public librarianships.
  • Our majors also pursue graduate degrees in English, Business, Library Science, and Law.

Are there job openings? How much will I make?

Placement survey information provides that mid-range starting salary for English graduates is $25,000 to $35,000 with some graduates exceeding $40,000 a year at entry level.

Recent Success Stories

  • John Moist (Belltower editor)—Graduate Fellow studying Rhetoric at Baylor University
  • Pam Young (Belltower writer)—Behavior Support Specialist (BSS) at Kaleidoscope Family Solutions, Inc. and Program Specialist at Skills of Central PA, Inc.  As an English major with a Theater minor, Pam has also started her own drama therapy program in Cresson, Pennsylvania.
  • Kalyn Blake (Belltower designer and writer)—Marketing Assistant at Advanced Regional Center for Ankle and Foot Care in Altoona, PA.  Kalyn is also a Graduate Assistant in Communications who is pursuing her Masters in Business at Mount Aloysius College.

Who will teach me?

The faculty of the English and Fine Arts Department all hold appropriate doctoral or terminal degrees.  All faculty members take part in regular professional development, whether through research writing, conference presentations, or continuing education, which adds to their knowledge base pertaining to their areas of scholarly expertise.  Furthermore, the faculty of the English and Fine Arts Department also regularly contribute service to the College community by overseeing service projects, working with student clubs, and supporting campus events, speakers, and co- and extra-curricular programs that are valuable to students and a vital part of the campus culture.

Available Concentrations and Specializations include:

Art Minor

Students develop their visual literacy and expression, as well as their knowledge of art history, through the Art Minor.  This course of study also fosters a solid background in technical skills and basic processes in various media.  The connection between art and critical thinking is emphasized in this program via visual projects, informed discourse, and written assessment.

Choral Performance Minor (Vox Nova)

This minor course of study focuses on performance, technique (vocal technique and singing technique), and music comprehension.  Students will work in various genres of vocal music. Working with dedicated classmates in the Vox Nova Choir, participants gain valuable communication, organizational, and time management skills.

Visit the Vox Nova page for more information.

English Minor

A distillation of the English Major, this minor course of study provides a focus on reading, writing, speaking, and listening, providing students pursuing other degrees an added focus on critical thinking. Students in this minor discuss a broad spectrum of literary works, cultures, and historical periods.  In addition, these students are given a solid background in literary research.

Expressive Arts Therapy Minor

This hands-on minor requires the student to understand and apply the A.R.T. (Access-Release-Transform) process for themselves and guide others in using the process for healing; students must work in various modalities (drawing, movement, sound, play/drama, storytelling, poetry, masking, and journaling).  Students will study methodology of this therapeutic technique, as well as direct others, create lesson plans, and evaluate the process (for both client and agency).  The counseling component of this minor requires the student to study the history of counseling, the need for advocacy, the legal and ethical issues in counseling (American Psychological Association’s Ethics Code), the various theories of human development, the various theories of counseling, and the diversity of client populations and treatment settings.

Theatre Minor

The Theatre Department produces three major plays during the course of each academic year.  Through participation in the production process, as well as enrollment in theatre classes, students in this minor experience theater on the stage and the page.  Theatre students develop a thorough understanding of theater history and tradition, as well as practice, method, and theory associated with acting, directing, and technical aspects of performance and production.  The demands of each production foster time management, organizational, problem-solving, and interpersonal skills that are invaluable for undergraduate students.

Visit the Theatre page for more information.

Women and Gender Studies Minor

Students in this minor are able to analyze the impact of social structure and culture on gender, understand the interdisciplinary nature of women’s studies, acquire an understanding of women’s issues from multi-ethnic and multi-cultural perspectives, and develop an awareness of the current debates and issues in the field of women’s studies via an analysis of important texts by or about women.

English Education Certification

Students may also pursue the English major and, at the sophomore level, enter into the Education certification track (at the secondary or elementary level).  This instruction for future educators provides solid grounding in the English teaching specialty and also provides quality instruction on the latest pedagogical theory and technological tools needed in the classroom.

Student Newspaper (The Belltower) and Theater Fellowship Opportunities

The department fellowships are available for majors, as well as non-majors, who hold an interest in journalistic writing or drama.  All of the above English majors were writers, editors, or designers for The Belltower or active participants in the Theater Department. Upon graduation each of these writers has an extensive writing portfolio, which can be linked to an electronic resume or extensive experience in performance and/or production. Below is a list of other students who, while not English majors, were significant contributors to The Belltower or were Theater fellows:

  • Dillon Bender (History/Political Science and Belltower sports writer)—Rose-Hulman sports information graduate assistant at the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology.
  • Marin Cypher (Pre-Law and Belltower editor)—pursued a law degree.
  • Mac Horne (History and Belltower editor)–went on to graduate school at Duquesne.
  • Elizabeth Ditty (Education and Belltower writer)–currently teaching in the public school system.
  • Brandon Rauhauser (Pre-med and Belltower sports writer)—continuing on in graduate school.
  • Kolby Wasnick (Business/Pre-Law and Theater Fellow)—currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Business.

MAC English and Fine Arts Fellowship Benefits:

  • Written and Oral Communication
  • Social Responsibility
  • Critical Thinking
  • Collaboration and Team Work
  • Experience working with design programs


What’s the next step?

  • Request Information (top of this page!)
  • Schedule a visit and see the campus
  • Apply to become a Mountie!


Meet Our Department!

Photo of Thomas Coakley
Thomas Coakley
Professor of English
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Daniel P. Anderson
Assistant Professor of English/Fine Arts Department
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Barbara Cook
Professor of English/ Chairperson English and Fine Arts
Photo of Jessica Jost-Costanzo
Jessica Jost-Costanzo
Assistant Professor, Department of English
Photo of Nathan Magee
Nathan Magee
Theatre Director/Assistant Professor of Fine Arts
Photo of Glenn Neff
Glenn Neff
Associate Professor of English
Photo of Donald Talbot
Donald Talbot
Professor of English and Fine Arts
Photo of Nancy Way
Nancy Way
Assistant Professor of Music/ Vox Nova Director

Aerial Photo of the Mount Aloysius College Campus