The Department of English and Communication Arts offers two degrees – English and communication arts – and a third, conferred jointly with the economics and business administration department. Our minors include film studies, graphic design, journalism, literature, public relations, studies in women and gender, theatre and drama, and writing.
A high degree of literacy is a valuable skill, and is enhanced by exposure to a wide range of great written works. The department's approach to literature promotes the following:
A liberal arts education that ensures professional capability and personal growth
Enhanced appreciation of literature through extensive reading and writing
Development of imagination and creativity through extensive reading and writing
You'll learn how to obtain information, analyze it in a variety of ways, and to communicate it clearly to a wide audience.
Beginning with freshman composition, courses in the English department are limited in size, and many are taught on a tutorial basis. All classes emphasize and develop skill in writing and in critical thinking that are transferable to and are essential in all other areas of study.
The department offers a strong mix of co-curricular activities – The Blue and Grey, the student newspaper, which offers writing, publication and leadership experience; Blazer Radio, a student-run Internet radio station that gives you the opportunity to produce your own radio programs; Wisteria, the student literary magazine, which is entirely student run, from submissions to review, layout to distribution; and the Hood College Broadcast Studio, which allows you to learn the techniques involved in shooting, editing and producing newscasts and other types of visual content. Hood College Theatre puts on one new production each semester, and includes an improv group and an incubator for play development.
Departmental faculty regularly sponsors field trips to the professional theaters in the metropolitan area and to special exhibitions at museums such as the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore or the Folger Library in Washington, D.C. In the near future the department will offer summer courses in London and Italy.
The English/CMA/Theatre faculty stand united in our belief that Black Lives Matter. This simple, powerful phrase illustrates how vital effective communication is to human understanding and social justice—and how far we as a country need to go in combating systemic, violent racism. Part of that fight consists of choosing our words with care and opening ourselves up to the perspectives of others. Storytelling, both fictional and non-fictional, is one of the oldest ways of sharing vastly different lived experiences. Through all forms of writing—literature, media reporting, the performing arts—the English/CMA department fosters that sharing of experience, as well as the open exchange of ideas in a civil classroom. We join the ongoing struggle against all forms of racism and discrimination, and pledge the following:
to review our course materials and curricula, and ensure they speak to and represent the experiences of all members of human society, and incorporate anti-racist principles;
to ensure that our classrooms are safe spaces for students of color as we engage in the free and respectful sharing of ideas;
to continue our awareness of systemic racism and discrimination of all forms.