Skip to Main Navigation | Skip to Content


English and Philosophy Testimonials
English and Philosophy Testimonials
English and Philosophy Testimonials
English and Philosophy Testimonials
English and Philosophy Testimonials
English and Philosophy Testimonials
commencement information




mission

Mission Statement

English Department Mission Statement

The English mission is to instill a love of learning, language, and literature, with effective critical thinking, reading, and writing skills, and to inspire lifelong intellectual growth and creativity using traditional and emerging technologies.  The English faculty prepares well-qualified graduates in English as teachers, as pre-professionals, and as professionals;  fosters the literary arts through the creative writing program, Pleiades Press, and cultural activities;  provides graduate studies and research opportunities in English and TESL;  provides general education courses in composition and literature;  provides support courses in ESL for Central Missouri's diverse student population;  strives to excel in teaching, while engaging in scholarship, creative activities, and service;  enhances teaching and learning and improves programs through assessment and technological applications;  promotes appreciation for the value of human diversity;  and supports student and faculty participation in Central Missouri's international programs.

Goals for English Majors

The English Department at Central Missouri believes that the undergraduate degree in English should direct students toward the attainment of specified and demonstrable knowledge and skills essential to success in the field. Ultimately, however, the process of learning and evaluation in English, as in all disciplines, especially in the humanities, should have as its end the development of those intangible attitudes and values that are not easily quantified but that are revealed indirectly through overall performance in the academy and beyond--an inward spiritual growth of which academic, professional, and life accomplishments are only the visible signs.  They include those qualities of character often referred to in terms like sensitivity, universality, self-knowledge, love of excellence, intellectual maturity, moral awareness, tolerance, open-mindedness, and not least of all, appreciation of the word.

The English Department also recognizes that the process by which these goals are achieved as well as the weight given any one of them may vary for the individual student as well as for the individual teacher and individual program, and that exposure to and understanding of various processes, approaches, and values are some of the primary benefits of higher education.  All five goals apply to the BS in Ed. program. The first three goals - literature, expression, and research - apply to the BA program.

  • Literature Goal:  Students should appreciate the aesthetics of literature; understand its origins, trends, critical approaches, classifications, and limitations; and evaluate significant patterns of meaning found in its study.

Levels of Achievement -- Students should be able to:
Level 1:  Show familiarity with authors, titles, genres, and critical terms covered in the course. Methods of assessment: examinations, discussions/presentations, timed writings, journal writings, analytical essays.
Level 2:  Analyze literature on their own and/or with the help of scholarly sources for its historical, cultural and/or social influences. Methods of assessment:  Same as Level 1.
Level 3:  Use an appropriate critical method or methods in synthesizing personal insight into a literary work with an awareness of the work’s context in literary history. Methods of assessment:  Same as Levels 1 and 2.

  • Expression Goal:  Students should be able to write and speak with clarity, originality, and logic, demonstrating rhetorical skills necessary for successful communication. 

Levels of Achievement--Students should be able to:
Level 1: 
Write formally and/or informally as situations warrant and distinguish between tentative and polished expression as they develop a personal writing style. Methods of assessment:  multiple drafts of essays, formal papers, journal writings, timed writings, discussions, peer reviews, self-assessment portfolios.
Level 2:  Assess writing--their own and others'--for its effectiveness by considering personal and external standards and the writer's purpose and audience. Methods of assessment:  same as Level 1.
Level 3: Construct logical arguments by synthesizing rhetorical methods as evidence of literal and figurative, critical and exploratory writing abilities. Methods of assessment:  Same as Levels 1 and 2.

  • Research Goal:  Students should accomplish primary and secondary research, incorporating the results into formal written and oral presentations.

Levels of Achievement--Students should be able to:
Level 1:  Understand the purposes of research and documentation. Methods of assessment:  documented research papers, use-of-library exercises, peer reviews, self-assessments, portfolios, oral reports.
Level 2:  Formulate specific problems and demonstrate solutions gained through research. Methods of assessment:  Same as Level 1.
Level 3:  Integrate research/documentation principles, analysis of scholarly sources, and personal beliefs into valid arguments. Methods of assessment:  Same as Levels 1 and 2.

  • Language Goal:  Students should understand language diversity as well as language uses, the relationship between spoken and written language, grammatical systems, historical developments and social/cultural adaptations, and particular and universal linguistic features. 

Levels of Achievement--Students should be able to:
Level 1: 
Distinguish among levels of English usage--colloquial, informal, formal, literary—and between the nature of spoken and written language; understand and apply traditional grammatical terms and rules to their own and to others’ writings. Methods of assessment:  examinations, papers, researched writings, discussions/reports.
Level 2:  Distinguish between traditional and non-traditional grammatical systems; identify the significant stages in the history of the English language and explain its socially determined features--individual, ethnic, and regional. Methods of assessment:  same as Level 1.
Level 3:  Demonstrate that language in general is an arbitrary communication system involving the interaction of phonemic, morphemic, semantic, and syntactic components and is a universal system involving the interaction of various languages and language families. Methods of assessment:  same as Levels 1 and 2.

  • Teaching Goal:  Students should be able to identify the components of a sound language arts curriculum at the secondary school level, understand and apply currently accepted teaching theory and practice, and incorporate these skills into a personal philosophy and teaching style that accounts for diverse student backgrounds, needs, and abilities and that reflect a growing teaching expertise.

Levels of Achievement--Students should be able to:
Level 1: 
Distinguish among varying teaching styles and evaluation methods; demonstrate appropriate reading, speaking, and writing skills; and use a variety of communication modes including verbal and non-verbal, print and non-print media.   Methods of assessment:  participation in whole-class, small-group, and tutorial structures; journal writings, self-assessments, timed writings, formal essays; oral reports, peer reviews.
Level 2:  In non-practicum situations, demonstrate knowledge of current theory and practice regarding the relationship of language arts content to student needs, abilities, and backgrounds; to traditional and non-traditional teaching and evaluation methods; and to personal beliefs about teaching and learning. Methods of assessment:  written and oral lesson plans, peer evaluations, self-assessments, microteachings, small-group and whole-group class critiques.
Level 3:  In practicum situations, apply knowledge of content, theory, and methodology to the teaching and evaluating of secondary school students; demonstrate a developing philosophy of the roles of teachers and students; and add to personal knowledge of literature and communication skills through repeated teaching practice. Methods of assessment:  high school and university supervisors' critiques; written and oral self-assessments; conferences; written lesson plans, tests, quizzes, theme and project assignments; copies of graded materials.