This is the preliminary (or launch) version of the 2024-2025 VCU Bulletin. Courses that expose students to cutting-edge content and transformative learning may be added and notification of additional program approvals may be received prior to finalization. General education program content is also subject to change. The final edition and full PDF version will include these updates and will be available in August prior to the beginning of the fall semester.

Les Harrison, Ph.D.
Associate professor and chair

Gretchen Comba
Professor and associate chair

John Brinegar, Ph.D.
Associate professor and director of undergraduate studies

Jennifer Rhee, Ph.D.
Associate professor and director of the M.A. program

Kathleen Graber
Professor and director of the creative writing program

Mary Caton Lingold, Ph.D.
Associate professor and director of the MATX program

The purpose of the Department of English is to teach students to see their worlds with clarity and respond to them with sensitivity, through reading and writing. Students are invited to read and explore a diversity of texts created in different times and voices and then to respond to these texts variously and critically, situating them within their contexts and discerning their important aesthetic features, rhetorical elements and social functions.

Students in this department also are encouraged to express themselves in expository or imaginative works that engage thought and feeling, evince purpose clearly, marshal appropriate evidence and observe principles of rhetorical decorum.

The Department of English offers a Bachelor of Arts in English, as well as minors in American studies, British studies, English (for non-English majors), creative writing, professional writing and editing; the Master of Arts in English and the Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing; and a doctoral program leading to a Ph.D. in Media, Art, and Text. Use the program index links to view individual program descriptions and curricula, or visit the department’s website for additional information.


Students who complete the requirements for this degree will receive a Bachelor of Arts in English.