Majors and Minors /
In this section..
Majors: Creative Writing • Professional Writing and Journalism • Literature
Capital’s English Department offers three majors — Literature, Creative Writing and Professional Writing/Journalism — that prepare students to use the English language effectively in a number of areas. Although different in focus, the majors have important common components through their grounding in language and literary studies. Many students have more than one major or a combination of a major and minor from the English department.
The creative writing major is designed for students who wish to pursue careers as writers of imaginative literature: fiction, poetry, the essay and drama. The major is also good preparation for students who want to teach creative writing, for those who seek careers as editors, or for students who simply strive to find creative solutions in any field.As all great writers are great readers first, creative writing majors take a wide variety of courses in literature. They also take introductory and advanced creative writing courses and may work on and submit their work to ReCap, Capital’s student-edited literary magazine. In addition, there are opportunities throughout the year to take part in open readings of their work and to attend readings by distinguished writers.
The professional writing/journalism major combines the theory and practice of designing, critiquing, crafting and editing written documents. Students receive training in identifying communication needs of specific audiences and addressing such needs through effective communication of information. The journalism component of the major provides multiple opportunities for print, visual and digital media production through work on The Chimes, Capital’s student-edited weekly newspaper. The program also offers courses in technical writing and editing, in writing new media and in research writing across disciplines and professions.
The literature major focuses on interpreting significant texts of American, British and global literature. This process involves careful reading, attention to contexts, thoughtful analysis and clear written explanation. Through this study, literature majors develop skills that are transferable to many contexts, and gain insights into themselves and their relationship to a changing world. As scholars have stated for centuries, literature offers insight and pleasure, and motivates personal and social change. It challenges us to see the world more fully and to interpret it more carefully.
Well-read creatives with excellent writing skills are always in demand in the marketplace. Whether they choose to enter the workforce right after graduation, or to pursue a graduate degree in virtually any discipline, our graduates are prepared for meaningful work and lives of positive impact. Here is a sampling of what some of them are doing now:
Our professors bring out the best in you. We won't lie. They can be tough. But they're also your counselors, your mentors, and your biggest advocates. Meet a few below, or view our department directory.
Dr. Kevin Griffith is
a professor of English at Capital University and professor of Legal Writing at
Capital Law School. He is the author of three books of poetry: Someone Had to Live (1994), Paradise Refunded (1999), and Denmark, Kangaroo, Orange (2008). He is
also the author of 101 Kinds of Irony
(2012), a collection of fiction, and the editor of The Common Courage Reader: Essays for an Informed Democracy (2001).
He has received
three Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Awards in Poetry, the most recent
one in 2014. He and his son achieved worldwide fame in late 2014 with the
release of www.Brickjest.com, a website featuring their recreation of David
Foster Wallace’s novel Infinite Jest
in Legos. Stories about the website have been featured in dozens of major
newspapers and magazines throughout the world.
Dr. Griffith has
published more than a dozen short stories in such magazines as Hotel Amerika,
Spectrum, The Mid-American Review, The Coachella Review, and others.
He works with
students to help them prepare to present their creative/critical work at
conferences such as the National Undergraduate Literature Conference. He also
has worked with former student Ian Golding to produced a national magazine of
fiction called The Interrobang, and
has organized a poetry reading series that features a poet of national
reputation paired with a student reader.
Winner of the
Praestantia Award for Excellence in Teaching and the Cotterman Award for
Excellence in Advising.
Basic WritingCreative WritingCritical Writing for English MajorsPoetry WritingFiction Writing The English LanguageHumanitiesSupplemental Writing (Law School)
Ph.D. in English,
The Ohio State University
Capital University Main Campus
Dr. Sergey Rybas has been
part of Capital University’s professional writing program since 2008. His
research areas include power, subjectivity and identity issues in
computer-mediated communication; performances of online community; multimodal
teaching and learning; and epistemologies of the information age. He has also
been involved in projects exploring politics, practices and performances of
nationality and nationalism and has specifically focused on issues of national
identification and difference in Eastern Europe and the former USSR.
Seeing the application of
his research to a broad spectrum of disciplines in humanities and social
sciences, he advocates critical cultural literacy as a primary goal of an
interdisciplinary and intercultural dialogue on problems related to production,
dissemination and interpretation of knowledge.
New Media and WritingWriting in the ProfessionsTechnical Writing and EditingWriting for the WebSenior Seminar in EnglishCollege Reading and Writing
Ph.D. in Rhetoric and
Composition, Bowling Green State University
Dr. David Summers has been teaching the classics and literature to Capital University students since 1997. He has served as director of General Education and as assistant dean of the School of Humanities in the College. In 2007, he was honored with Capital's most prestigious faculty award — the Praestantia Award, for excellence in teaching. He also has led travel groups from Capital to England, Italy and Greece.
Dr. Summers is a Seattle native who spent his undergraduate years in Oregon and Corban University, and then trained at the University of Washington to he a high school social studies teacher. He later pursued graduate studies in medieval and Renaissance literature at the University of Washington, completing a master's degree and doctorate there. Before joining the Capital faculty, Dr. Summers held tenure-track positions at Whitworth College and Seattle Pacific University. He also is credited with passage of General Education curricular reform at Capital, and he participated in the Council of Independent Colleges Summer Seminar at the Hellenic Studies Center: Herodotus' Histories.
Humanities — Antiquity to the RenaissanceBritish Literature Survey: Anglo-Saxon to AugustanClassical MythologyShakespeareClassical LiteratureMedieval Literature — Dante and ChaucerRenaissance LiteratureEliot and AudenYeats and Joyce
Ph.D. in English Literature, University of Washington Master of Arts in English Literature, University of Washington Secondary Certificate in Social Studies (History), University of Washington Bachelor of Science in Humanities and Religious Studies, Corban University
"Eliot's Dantean Pilgrimage" in Dante, T. S. Eliot and the European Tradition, edited by Paul Douglass, Cambridge Scholars Press (forthcoming 2011)"The Unattended Moment: Selfhood and the Experience of the Transcendent in Four Quartets" in Ecstasy and Understanding: Religious Awareness in English Poetry, edited by Adrian Grafe and Andrew Harrison. Continuum Press: London, 2008.
Below are our majors for traditional undergraduate students.
ARTArt EducationArt TherapyStudio ArtBIOLOGICAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCEBiologyEnvironmental ScienceBUSINESSAccountingBusiness ManagementFinancial EconomicsMarketingCHEMISTRY AND BIOCHEMISTRYBiochemistryChemistryCOMMUNICATIONCommunicationElectronic Media and FilmOrganizational CommunicationPublic RelationsTheatre StudiesCONSERVATORY OF MUSICCompositionJazz StudiesKeyboard PedagogyMusicMusic EducationMusic IndustryMusic TechnologyPerformanceEDUCATIONAdolescent to Young Adult Early ChildhoodMiddle ChildhoodMulti-AgedIntervention Specialist (Mild/Moderate)ENGLISHCreative WritingJournalism and Professional WritingLiteratureHEALTH AND SPORT SCIENCESAthletic TrainingExercise ScienceHISTORYHistoryInternational StudiesMATHEMATICS, COMPUTER SCIENCE AND PHYSICSComputer Science Computer Science - Engineering Dual DegreeMathematicsMathematics - Engineering Dual DegreeMILITARY SCIENCEROTCNURSINGNursingPOLITICAL SCIENCE & ECONOMICSEconomicsEconomics – Political SciencePolitical SciencePRE-PROFESSIONAL STUDIESPre-DentistryPre-LawPre-Law (3+3 Accelerated)Pre-MedicinePre-Occupational TherapyPre-OptometryPre-PharmacyPre-Physicians AssistantPre-Physical TherapyPre-PodiatryPre-Public Health Pre-SeminaryPre-Veterinary Medicine
PROFESSIONAL STUDIESInterdisciplinary StudiesProfessional Studies – Music TechnologyPSYCHOLOGY, CRIMINOLOGY AND SOCIOLOGYCriminologyPsychologySociologyRELIGION AND PHILOSOPHYPhilosophyReligionWorship MinistriesYouth Ministry and Christian EducationSOCIAL WORKSocial WorkWORLD LANGUAGES AND CULTURESFrenchSpanish
The cliché is often the first obstacle a writer must overcome. No matter how compelling the subject, a story told from the same lens each time starts to become as vapid as a piece of over-chewed gum. Capital University senior Stephanie Schwarten is a Professional Writing major who is also in the process of writing a novel which she hopes will offer a counter perspective to victims of sexual assault, a topic she has spent many hours researching....
The Freedom to Write
It's every writer's dream: to be freed from the daily worries of life with plenty of time to write. Abby Goodhart's dream came true when she was awarded an Undergraduate Research Summer Fellowship to spend the summer writing poetry. Gifts from Capital University alumni and fr...
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