Apr 12, 2024  
2023 - 2024 College Catalog 
2023 - 2024 College Catalog

Creative Writing Minor

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Literature is a treasury of our cultural heritage and an expressive human creation embodying both beauty and knowledge. Close examination of literature improves our thought and our use of language, enhances our understanding of past and present, and provides insight into our interior lives. So, too, does the practice of accurate and carefully crafted writing. Consequently, the English major at St. Mary’s is designed so that students will read a broad historical and cultural range of literatures and develop a variety of writing skills.

To achieve these goals, the English program begins with a required course on reading and writing in the major and two required literature-in-history courses, as well as 200-level elective courses that concentrate on either writing or a specific literary topic. In the surveys, students encounter influential writers, works, and ideas, which provide necessary background knowledge for further study of writing and literature. At the upper level, students define their individual course of study by taking “Methods of Literary Study” and more specialized literature and writing classes. During their senior year, students make use of the knowledge and skills learned in previous courses by choosing to do a St. Mary’s Project or by taking additional advanced coursework. Within this overall framework, faculty advisors help each student select courses that will best meet his or her interests, needs and goals.

With its stress on clarity of thought and expression, and its focus on choices within the program, the English major provides an excellent foundation for a meaningful liberal arts education as well as a strong preparation for a variety of careers that require analytic rigor and clear, precise communication. The English major also provides the basis by which students can enrich their lives through an ongoing contact with stimulating authors, evocative language, and significant ideas.

Degree Requirements

The courses that constitute the minor in creative writing provide a basic introduction to the study of creative writing and a chance to focus on the art and craft of writing, editing, and analyzing their own work, as well as the work of established writers. As with the minor in English, the minor in creative writing offers a great degree of flexibility for students and affords the opportunity to do work at both introductory and advanced levels of study.

To earn a minor in creative writing, a student must satisfy the following requirements:

General college requirements.

All requirements in a major field of study.

At least five courses, totaling no less than 18 credit hours, as specified below:

Students majoring in English may also minor in creative writing, but they cannot use the two required upper-level creative writing workshops (ENGL 395 ENGL 495 , TFMS 345, TDPS 346 , or ILC 360) to count toward the major’s upper-level electives requirement.

ENGL 101  and ENGL 102  may not be counted towards the minor. No more than 4 credits of guided readings, independent studies, or credit-bearing internships may be counted towards the minor.

A grade of C- or better must be received in each course, and the cumulative grade-point average of courses used to satisfy the minor must be at least 2.0.

Required Courses:

Students must take two creative writing workshops in two distinct genres, both at the 300 level or above.

Courses that can be applied toward this requirement include:

One elective in literature at any level.

This can be a course offered from the English Department (other than ENGL 395  or ENGL 495 ), or one from the list of approved cross-listed courses, which include:

Any upper-level literature class in ILCC, ILCF, ILCG, ILCS, or ILCT

Minimum Grade and GPA Requirements

A grade of C- or better must be received in each course, and the cumulative grade-point average of courses used to satisfy the minor must be at least 2.0.

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