English


Whether you strive for a career in teaching, law, writing, library science, or a bevy of other sectors, studying English at St. Ambrose you get the skills and opportunities to master your craft.

Our graduates work as English teachers; as writers publishing works of prose and poetry; as lawyers in various sectors of law; as librarians organizing literature and reference material; as content contributors and specialists for websites, and many other sectors of work.


Ambrose Advantages

  • Small Class Sizes, Not Lecture Halls
  • Caring and Dedicated Faculty
  • Read Literature and Learn Writing in Fun and Creative Ways

students in class

students on campus walking

students in class

As an SAU English major, you will explore a wide variety of genres, be guided and challenged by professors and peers, and gain critical thinking, reading, and writing skills that employers covet.

Read our English Major Fact Sheet (pdf)


More Information About Our English Program

What will I learn?

English majors develop skills in composition, literature analysis, and critical thinking by studying various authors, genres, and periods. Core courses include British literature, American Literature, and literary studies.

We offer traditional and unique electives so you can shape your degree to your interests. Electives include linguistics, African American literature, fiction into film, Shakespeare, poetry, and many others.

Most of our students choose to complete a second major or minor. Common combinations include English and History; English and Political Science; and English and Philosophy.

Contact us today to arrange a campus visit or chat with an English professor!

What unique learning opportunities will I have?

At SAU, youc an put your growing skills and creativity to use. English majors can:

  • Serve on the student advisory board for Quercus, SAU's literary journal for fiction, poetry, and visual art. Read our latest volume.
  • Write for the SAU student newspaper, The Buzz
  • Study as a Fulbright Scholar
  • Join SAU's student club, English Pros(e)

Get real-world experience before graduating with an internship. Contact the SAU Career Center. English students have completed internships at print and media outlets; communications and PR firms; nonprofit organizations, and others.

English Department give you the chance to engage with visiting authors, and you can broaden your worldview even more through Study Abroad.

And if service is part of your plan, SAU offers the Peace Corps Prep program, a series of courses that makes you a stronger candidate for volunteer positions. Employers value the skills and cultural worldview you gain in Peace Corps, and best of all, most students can earn the Peace Corps certificate without taking extra courses.

What are some careers I could pursue?

A liberal arts education – along with strong critical thinking, reading, writing, and speaking skills – can lead you into multimedia journalism; English education; law; advertising, marketing, public relations, and communications; and technical writing.

You will also be a strong candidate for graduate studies in education, law, library science, medicine, journalism, and creative writing.

Wait – med school? Absolutely. Majors from the humanities – English is one of them – have a higher acceptance rate (and higher MCAT scores) into medical school than science majors. And the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai is purposely recruiting students from outside the sciences.

What are alums doing now?
  • Anna Badamo '18 is working toward a Master of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. Click here to read more about Anna's Ambrosian experience
  • Emily Bailey Keimig '16 coordinates Youth Services at LeClaire (Iowa) Community Library.
  • Eric Herbst '16 works in marketing for Mississippi Valley Credit Union.
  • Livv McDonald '16 is a technical writer at Twin State Technical Services.
  • Mary Madormo '13, a double major in English and public relations, is a marketing coordinator for Nickelodeon.
Faculty

Sarah Dennis, PhD, Chair and Assoc. Professor

Patrick Connelly, PhD, Professor
Philip Goldfarb Styrt, Teaching Fellow
Carl Herzig, PhD, Professor
Emily Kingery, PhD, Asst. Professor
Lindsay Schaefer, Instructor

Degree Requirements

Bachelor of Arts in English (36 credits)

English majors choose a concentration in either Literature or Creative Writing. Both are 36 credits.

See Course Descriptions

Literature Concentration

Required (18 credits)
WI-ENGL 200 Introduction to Literary Study
+ENGL 201 British Literature I
+ENGL 202 British Literature II
ENGL 210 American Literature I
ENGL 211 American Literature II
WI-ENGL 401 Senior Seminar

Electives (18 credits)
Choose 18 credits of ENGL courses, 12 credits of which must be 300-level

Creative Writing Concentration

Required (6 credits)
+ENGL 317 Creative Writing Workshop
+WI-ENGL 415 Advanced Creative Writing

Electives (30 credits)
Choose 21 credits of ENGL courses
At least 9 of the remaining credits must come from the following:

+ENGL 199 Creative Forms
+ENGL 315 Written Business Communication
WI-ENGL 316 Expository Writing Workshop
+ENGL 317 Creative Writing Workshop
WI-ENGL 319 Writing About Place
+ENGL 321 Creative Nonfiction
+WI-ENGL 415 Advanced Creative Writing

+ Satisfies General Education Requirement
WI Writing Intensive

English Minor (18 credits)

Required:
Two courses from the following:
ENGL 201 British Literature I
ENGL 202 British Literature II
ENGL 210 American Literature I
ENGL 211 American Literature II

Electives:
12 elective credits (6 credits of which must be at least 300 level and one course must be writing intensive (WI) in English or a writing course.)

English Minor in ESL (15 credits)

Required:
EDENGL 230 The Structure & Grammar of English
EDUC 302 Foundations of ESL/Bilingual Education
ENGL 313 Linguistics: Language and Learning
EDENGL 380/580 Teaching English as a Second Language
EDENGL 381/581 Teaching English as a Second Language: Secondary and Post-Secondary Learners

Writing Minor (18 credits)

All courses are 3 credits unless otherwise noted.

Choose 18 credits from:
+ENGL 199 Creative Forms
WI-ENGL 315 Written Business Communication
+ENGL 316 Expository Writing Workshop
+ENGL 317 Creative Writing Workshop
WI-ENGL 319 Writing About Place
+ENGL 320 Writing Topics
+ENGL 321 Creative Nonfiction
ENGL 350 Independent Study (1-3 credits)
+WI-ENGL 415 Advanced Creating Writing

+ Satisfies General Education requirement
WI writing intensive

Plan to Graduate

Literature Concentration
This is a sample plan of English courses to graduate in four years with a degree in English.

Sophomore
Fall – ENGL 200, ENGL 201 or 210, ENGL elective
Spring – ENGL 202 or 211, ENGL elective

Junior
Fall – ENGL 201 or 210, ENGL elective
Spring – ENGL 202 or 211, 300-level ENGL elective

Senior
Fall – ENGL 401, 300-level ENGL elective
Spring – ENGL elective

Creative Writing Concentration
This is a sample plan of English courses to graduate in four years with a degree in English.

Sophomore
Fall – ENGL 200, ENGL 201 or 210, ENGL elective
Spring – Two ENGL electives

Junior
Fall – Two ENGL electives
Spring – ENGL elective, 300-level ENGL elective

Senior
Fall – ENGL 415, two 300-level ENGL electives
Spring – open

Bachelor of Arts in English with Secondary English Education Endorsement (36 credits)

Students seeking licensure in 5-12 (Secondary) English shall fulfill all the requirements for a major in English as well as the licensing requirements in secondary English prescribed by the State of Iowa and implemented by the Teacher Education Program at St. Ambrose.

Requirements for a Major in English with Secondary English Education (5-12)

  • Acceptance into the Teacher Education Program (and student teaching) include a cumulative GPA of 3.0;
  • Major GPA 3.0;
  • Education coursework GPA 3.0;
  • ACT score of 22 (New SAT 1110, Old SAT 1530);
  • Passing scores in all three components of the PRAXIS CORE exam (reading, writing and mathematics);
  • Education 205 or 207 (B or better), US History or American Government, SPED 310, EDUC 282, 284, 300, 301, 305 343;
  • 140 hours of pre-student teaching field experiences at two different school sites plus EDUC 309, 336, 419 (see above GPA requirements).

Plan to Graduate

This is a sample plan of English courses to graduate in four years with a degree in English.

Sophomore
Fall – ENGL 200, ENGL 201 or 210, ENGL elective
Spring – ENGL 202 or 211, ENGL elective

Junior
Fall – ENGL 201 or 210, ENGL elective
Spring – ENGL 202 or 211, 300-level ENGL elective

Senior
Fall – ENGL 401, two 300-level ENGL electives
Spring – open

Scholarships and Grants

Undergraduate Scholarships

For academic/merit-based awards, eligible students are matched to the qualifying award; some of them are listed below.

For need-based support, eligibility is determined by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The SAU school code is 001889.

You may also qualify for a scholarship or grant due to your talent in the fine arts or athletics, contact the Admissions Office so we can help be sure you're getting what you need. (You're also encouraged to seek outside scholarships and begin that search early.)

First-Year Scholarships

Amounts are for first-year students entering St. Ambrose in the 2020-21 academic year.

There is no need to apply for the scholarships or grants below; students automatically are eligible if they meet specific criteria. The Admissions Office calculates the award amount by using unweighted high school GPA and ACT/SAT scores.

Your scholarship will automatically renew each year of your undergraduate studies, for up to four years, as long as you maintain satisfactory progress toward an undergraduate degree, a minimum 2.0 GPA, and remain a full-time student. 

FOR STUDENTS LIVING ON CAMPUS

On Campus (Merit-Based Scholarships)

Ambrose Advantage Scholarships
Criteria: Iowa resident, Pell Grant eligible, 2020 high school graduate, min. unweighted GPA 2.8, admitted to SAU and FAFSA filed by Mar. 15
Award: Full Tuition

Trustee Scholarships
Criteria: unweighted 3.9 GPA and minimum 29 ACT or 1340 SAT score
Award: $25,000/year and invited to compete for a full tuition scholarship

Presidential Scholarships
Criteria: minimum unweighted 3.8 GPA and 28 ACT or 1310 SAT score
Award: $22,500/year

Academic Scholarships
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score
Award: $14,000-$20,000/year

University Grants
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score
$12,000/year

On Campus (Additional Institutional Scholarships)

Fr. Welch Alumni Scholarships
Criteria: parent is a St. Ambrose graduate
Award: $1,000/year

Freeman Pollard Diversity Awards
Criteria: ethnically diverse student
Award: $500-$1,000/year


FOR STUDENTS LIVING OFF CAMPUS

Off Campus (Merit-Based Scholarships)

Academic Scholarships
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score
Award: $12,000-$15,000/year (Iowa resident) or $13,000-16,000/year (non-Iowa resident)

University Grants
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score
Award: $10,000/year

Off-Campus (Additional Institutional Scholarships)

Fr. Welch Alumni Scholarships
Criteria: parent is a St. Ambrose graduate
Award: $500/year

Freeman Pollard Diversity Awards
Criteria: diverse student
Award: $500/year

International Student Scholarships

At SAU, our international students can qualify for university scholarships and grants based on academic achievement, merit, and their performance and abilities in fine arts and athletics.

Below, you'll find a quick summary of financial awards, and we continually look for ways to make an Ambrosian education even more affordable and attainable. Recently, we began offering athletic scholarships for Marching Band and Esports.

If you have any questions or want to apply, please contact the International Student Admissions office. 

Institutional Scholarships (2020-21)
There is no need to apply for the scholarships or grants below; students are automatically are eligible if they meet specific criteria, although some may require a certain GPA to stay eligible.

Academic Scholarship – $14,000-$20,000/year

Athletic Scholarships
We have many international student-athletes who are contributing and growing their skills as valued team players. As a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), St. Ambrose can award athletic scholarships to student-athletes. The amount varies and is based on performance and ability. These scholarships allow you to earn a college education while competing in the sport that you love. At Ambrose, we embody the value of developing both the mind and body.

To qualify for an athletic scholarship you must be eligible to play a sport at St. Ambrose. You can read about those qualifications here. The NAIA also has a complete website on how to register for eligibility at playNAIA.org

To learn more about all of our athletic teams and opportunities – including Esports – click here

Fine Arts Scholarships

These scholarships are based on your performance and ability in art, music, or theatre, and you may qualify for the Michael Kennedy Theatre Scholarship. Audition or portfolio required. Contact the Admissions office to apply or for more information. 

See below to learn more about outside scholarships and we encourage you to begin your search early.

Transfer Scholarships

Amounts are for transfer students entering St. Ambrose in the 2020-21 academic year. 

St. Ambrose scholarships are awarded for fall and spring semesters only and renewable up to 120 credits of undergraduate study, which includes credits transferred to St. Ambrose from prior attendance. For example: If you transfer in with an AA/AS degree, you would receive a scholarship for two additional years at St. Ambrose.

Scholarships

Phi Theta Kappa
Criteria: awarded to all Phi Theta Kappa National Honor Society members transferring from a community college
Award: $15,500

OR

Transfer Academic Scholarships
Criteria: based on GPA
Awards (Iowa residents):
3.5-4.00 GPA $15,000 
3.0-3.49 GPA $14,000
2.5-2.99 GPA $13,000 
2.0-2.49 GPA $11,000 

Awards (non-Iowa residents):
3.5-4.00 GPA $13,000 
3.0-3.49 GPA $12,000
2.5-2.99 GPA $11,000 
2.0-2.49 GPA $10,000 

Fr. Welch Alumni Scholarships
Criteria: parent is a St. Ambrose graduate
Award: $1,000 per year (on campus); $500/year (off campus)

Dual Admission Scholarships
Criteria: participant in SAU/community college dual admission program
Award: $1,000 maximum

Freeman Pollard Diversity Awards
Criteria: Ethnically diverse student; FAFSA required. Additional aid available by application
Award: $1,000/year (on campus); $500/year (off campus)

Federal and State Aid

Iowa Tuition Grant
Criteria: based on financial need, Iowa residents only. File FAFSA as soon as possible after Oct. 1, deadline July 1.
Award: $6,000

Federal Pell Grant
Criteria: based on financial need; file FAFSA as soon as possible after Oct. 1
Award: $6,195 maximum

Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
Criteria: based on financial need, priority to Pell Grant recipients. File FAFSA as soon as possible after Oct. 1.
Award: $400 maximum

Federal Work Study
Criteria: based on financial need. File FAFSA as soon as possible after Oct. 1
Award: $1,850

Athletic Scholarships

As a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), St. Ambrose can award athletic scholarships to student-athletes.

These scholarships allow you to earn a college education while competing in the sport that you love. At Ambrose, we embody that value of developing both the mind and body.

How do I qualify for an athletic scholarship?
You must first be eligible to play a sport at St. Ambrose. You can read about those qualifications here. The NAIA also has a complete website on how to register for eligibility at playNAIA.org

With more than 29 varsity athletic teams and state-of-the-art facilities in which to play them, the Fighting Bees of SAU are bold contenders on any field. Watch this video

Fine Arts Scholarships

How do I qualify for a fine arts scholarship? 
Scholarships are awarded based on performance and ability in art, music and theatre. Review the various requirements below:

Outside Scholarships

There are many opportunities to receive scholarships from outside sources, here are a few websites to begin researching your options:

Another tip: Next time you're on campus, check out the bulletin board outside Bee Central where we post more flyers and applications for outside scholarships.


Apply Visit Info

Contact


Sarah Dennis, PhD, Department Chair

English Department
Ambrose Hall 322A
518 W. Locust St.
Davenport, IA 52803
DennisSarahE@sau.edu

So, what's next?

Are you ready to take the next step? St. Ambrose offers more than 60 programs and 29 athletic teams and sports to join on campus. Become an Ambrosian today!