English Department Mission Statement


(who we are)

The Mission of the English Department at Western Carolina University, in its teaching (at both the undergraduate and graduate levels), scholarship, and service activities is:

  • To cultivate an appreciation of and facility with English Language and Letters – reading, writing, researching, and thinking about texts in the widest context – in the service of a rich and meaningful life;
  • To provide students with disciplinary tools (writing and editing, information and visual literacy, grammar, research, textual interpretation, and document/media design, and others) they will need to succeed, as well as the ability to continually improve those skills;
  • To produce life-long learners who, because of their facility with those disciplinary tools, are resilient, versatile, and capable of pursuing and advancing any career while responding to the changing forces of the marketplace;
  • To foster global citizenship, cultural awareness, and community engagement as well as the sensitivity to solve complex problems and respond to a range of audiences
  • To contribute to the discipline of English language, literature, and textual studies, both on campus and off, by encouraging engaged graduates, by producing notable scholarship and creative works, and by participating meaningfully in institutional, civic, and professional communities.


(what guides and inspires us)

Appreciation of the rich linguistic, literary, and cultural heritage of this region while helping students to achieve a more global perspective.

  • The importance of a liberal arts education — especially those aspects of a liberal education that rely upon the study and understanding of the English Language and related fields such as
    • information and visual literacy,
    • an understanding of texts both written and otherwise in a variety of media, and
    • an ability to use language for specific purposes in specific contexts.
  • The value of engaged, intentional learning experiences, especially those that integrate or focus on English language and texts.


(who we want to be)

To focus on engaged, practical, and critical ways of reading and writing the world that can only be derived from developing continually evolving skills in all forms of literacy.


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