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The Department of English at Chapman University encourages students to read widley and deeply, to write boldly and thoughtfully, and to engage in interdisciplinary scholarship and creative activity. Coursework ranges across literature, rhetoric, and cultural studies; creative writing; journalism; digital humanities; and creative and cultural industries. Our English students and faculty explore and create the stories that shape our worlds.

The English Department invites students to pursue coursework in multiple areas of English Studies. Our topics-based literature and rhetoric courses cover a wide variety of genres, themes, time periods, international tradiations and critical theories. We offer creative writing workshops in fiction, poetry, screenwriting, and creative nonfiction. Our practice-based journalism courses focus on reporting and writing, new media, and editing. From "Writing for Video Games" to "Race and Shakespeare," courses in the English Department blend traditional and innovative scholarship.

The vibrant conversations among English students and faculty extend beyond the classroom, too. Opportunities include an active chapter of Sigma Tau Delta (English Honors Society), Calliope (student literary journal), Prowl (student online magazine), Tabula Poetica (international poetry journal) and The John Fowles Center for Creative Writing (creative writing research center).

  • Undergraduate Degrees
  • Undergraduate Minors
  • Graduate Degrees
  • Professor Tom Zoellner lectures a group of students.Bachelor of Arts (BA) in English

    The BA degree is earned under the guidance of faculty advisors. BA students complete a program in one of two areas of study: Literature, Rhetoric, and Cultural Studies or Journalism. Each student is required to complete 15 credits of core classes in addition to 27 credits of elective courses.

    Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Creative Writing

    The BFA degree combines literature courses and writing workshops to explore students’ talents as creative writers. It includes a focus on the study of important literary works.

    For further information, visit one of the links below:

  • Student lounging in the Student Union

    Minor in English

    This minor requires a total of 18 credits in English courses above ENG 104, with at least 9 upper-division credits. It may be combined with any undergraduate major outside the Department of English. To view a list of courses, visit the Undergraduate Catalog.

    Minor in Journalism

    This minor requires a total of 21 credits in English courses above ENG 104, with at least 12 upper-division credits. It may be combined with any undergraduate major outside the Department of English. To view a list of courses, visit the Undergraduate Catalog.

    Minor in Writing & Rhetoric

    This minor requires a total of 21 credits in English, 15 of which must be upper division courses. Students will gain a foundational understanding of the field of rhetorical studies, and explore a variety of methodological approaches to the study of language and writing. To view a list of courses, visit the Undergraduate Catalog.

    Minor in Visual Journalism

    This minor requires a total of 24 credits in English and Art Department courses that explore the practice, history, and theory of design, photography, videography, editing, and journalism. At least 12 of these credits must be upper division. The minor is open to all students except those earning a BA or BFA in English, those minoring in Journalism, or those seeking a BFA in Art or Graphic Design. To view a list of courses, visit the Undergraduate Catalog.

    Minor in a Particular Area of Study

    Students who wish to design a minor focused on a particular area of study must speak with an advisor in the English Department. For a referral to an appropriate advisor, contact the Department Office.

    For further information, visit one of the links below:
  • Wilkinson College currently offers three master’s-level degrees in English: an MFA in Creative Writing, an MA in English, and a Dual Degree in English and Creative Writing.


    Master of Arts (MA) in English

    The MA degree is designed for students seeking continuing education, a foundation for doctoral work (PhD, EdD, JD), and/or a credential qualifying them to teach literature and composition courses at junior and community colleges.

    Click here for more information about this degree, including admission deadlines and requirements.

    Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Creative Writing 

    The MFA is a terminal degree in creative writing. Many MFA graduates teach at two- and four-year colleges, publish their work, or go on to professional careers in writing and editing. The MFA program at Chapman University fosters the growth of fiction writers, poets, creative nonfiction writers and even screenwriters through workshops, techniques courses, literature courses, The John Fowles Reading Series, Tabula Poetica, and the literary journal Calliope.

    Click here for more information about this degree, including admission deadlines and requirements.

    Dual MA/MFA Degree 

    The Dual Degree combines the MFA and the MA. This innovative program combines the practice and study of creative writing with literary and rhetorical scholarship. It allows students to spend three years building the foundation for their future as readers and writers on the job and well beyond.

    Click here for more information about these degrees, including admission deadlines and requirements.

    Accelerated Undergraduate/Master of Arts in English

    Program Overview:

    Undergraduate English majors can earn a graduate degree with just ONE additional year of study! You’ll be able to complete both your bachelor’s and master’s degree in just five years: four years of undergrad study and one year of graduate work. 

    Academic Requirements:

    Must be an undergraduate student with 90+ units of undergraduate coursework completed, and a cumulative GPA of 3.0+.

    Application must be submitted during the junior year or first semester of the senior year

    Admission Requirements:

    • Submit the Online Application
    • As a current Chapman University student applying to an accelerated Masters degree program, the department has agreed to waive the recommendation letter requirement for your application. In the online application, please enter the name, email and phone number of two faculty or staff members at Chapman who support you as a candidate for this program.
    • CV and Resumé
    • Statement of Intent: An essay expressing your reasons for wanting to join the particular academic program to which you are applying. What are your personal and career goals, and how will this particular degree from Chapman University help you reach those goals? Your essay should be double spaced, size 12 font, and 1-2 pages in length
    • Critical Essay of 12-15 text pages that demonstrate talent for scholarly writing and ability to handle texts of literary criticism relative to the subject matter. The essay should reflect a grasp of critical literary skills and ability to deal with theoretical texts in an effective and knowledgeable manner.

    A maximum of 12 units at the 500 level will be double-counted toward undergraduate and graduate coursework requirements.

    Contact Information:

    Program Coordinator: Mark Axelrod, Axelrod@chapman.edu, (714) 997-6586
    Graduate Programs Coordinator: Allison DeVries, devries@chapman.edu, (714) 997-6752