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Washington State University Factsheets

Doctor of Philosophy in English

Program URL: http://english.wsu.edu
Faculty working with Students: 41
Students: 23
Students receiving assistantships or scholarships: 91.3%
Priority deadline:
  • Fall January 10
Campus:
  • Pullman: Yes
Tests required:

Degree Description:

Students entering the Ph.D. program in English are expected to have completed a master’s degree in English or in a related field of study at an accredited college or university, and to show promise of doing excellent work at the doctoral level. Students who complete a master’s degree at WSU must re-apply for admission to the Ph.D. program. Ph.D. candidates must demonstrate general competence in two foreign languages or advanced competence in one (see Language Proficiency Requirements, below). All doctoral students are expected to take part actively in planning their own literary and language programs and in meeting deadlines set by the department and by the WSU Graduate School.

The objective of the Ph.D. program – including concentrations either in literature or in rhetoric and composition – is to prepare scholars for employment in a wide variety of post-secondary institutions of learning by providing both generalized and specialized training in literary/cultural theory and criticism, as well as opportunities to develop critical and research skills in literary and intellectual history, rhetorical theory, genre studies, composition studies, pedagogical theory, linguistics, and other related fields. The Ph.D. candidate’s course of study is not designed to confront the student with every significant piece of writing in the respective field (i.e., English and American literature or rhetoric and composition). Rather, the coursework aims to produce mature critics and scholars who are widely read in English and American literature, knowledgeable about the methods of systematic scholarship, and competent to function professionally, not only in the modern university, but also in related research institutions such as historical societies, museums, and publishing firms.

Student Learning Outcomes:

All graduates will be able to:

  1.  Demonstrate a broad understanding of contemporary English Studies and its various sub-disciplines.
  2.  Demonstrate substantial knowledge of more specialized areas within English Studies, accompanied by the ability to locate and synthesize scholarship in such.
  3.  Demonstrate the ability to conduct original research in such sub-disciplines as literary studies, rhetorical theory, composition studies, digital technology, second-language learning, etc.
  4.  Demonstrate the ability to present original research findings to appropriate academic audiences.
  5.  Demonstrate the ability to write scholarly essays or to create texts of other kinds which articulate new claims and present the results of original research and thinking.
  6.  Demonstrate the ability to teach a range of courses in English Studies, including, for example, Freshman Composition, Writing Research Papers, introductory courses in literary or rhetorical study, etc.

Faculty Members:

Bell, Nancy Dolores, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Benedict, Leah

Serves as: member only on graduate committee

Boyd, Ashley, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Professor Boyd’s research centers on issues related to social justice and English Education. With regard to preservice teacher education, she examines pedagogies that seek to enhance the critical consciousness and social justice dispositions of those who plan to enter the profession of teaching. Related to practicing teachers, she investigates how teachers implement texts related to social justice themes including addressing race, class, and gender, as well as how critical approaches can be applied to canonical texts. She also explores how teachers engage in discursive constructions about these issues, investigating the ways that we construct our beliefs and pedagogies through language. As a whole, her work is aimed at broadening traditional notions of multicultural education so as to open space for action-oriented methods that encourage students to see themselves as agents of change in their present contexts.

Burwick, Kimberly

Serves as: member only on graduate committee

Butler, Todd Wayne, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Professor Butler’s current research focuses on the intersection of law and literature in the early modern period. His particular interest lies with the nature of treason–not only how it was conceived but also how differing forms of circulation (thought, manuscript, print) help shape the period’s understanding of this crime. The project draws upon archival research completed at both the Folger and British libraries, as well as printed and staged accounts (ballads, pamphlets, drama) of crime during the period. Butler’s research has been supported by external grants from the Mellon Foundation and the Folger Shakespeare Library, as well as internal WSU funds.

Campbell, Donna Marie, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

American literature of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, with a special interest in local color or regional fiction, realism, and naturalism.

Chilson, Peter M, M.F.A.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Chilson’s work has primarily focused on literary journalism, with an emphasis on Africa and the American West. He is interested in travel writing, the memoir, investigative journalism and fiction. He is also interested in African literature and borderlands studies. He is presently working on a book about African borderlands for University of Nebraska Press.

Christen, Kim

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Christopher, Renny

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Cozza, Vanessa, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Student enculturation and assimilation, cultural differences in communication styles and its impact on literacy learning, teaching composition to U.S.-educated multilingual writers, Latino/as education, visual literacy and rhetoric, writing studies, critical pedagogy and social justice.

Delahoyde, Michael Edmund, Ph.D.

Serves as: member only on graduate committee

Research Interests

Delahoyde is currently obsessed with his heretical work in the Shakespeare Authorship Controversy. On back burners are popular culture topics and interdisciplinary Humanities projects.

Eddy, Robert F, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Rhetoric and racism
Malcolm X rhetoric and the renaming of the U.S.A.
Teaching writing to nontraditional students
Prison writing and restorative justice
Identity and representation issues in writing across cultures

Edwards, Michael

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Fry, Bryan J, MFA

Serves as: member only on graduate committee

Goodrich, Rebecca M.

Serves as: member only on graduate committee

Gordon, Lynn Martha, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Grigar, Rudyne M, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Hamlin, William Michael, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Hanly, Michael G, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Hegglund, Jon R, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Hellegers, Desiree E, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Civil Liberties, Environmental Literature and Eco-criticism, Gender, Homelessness and Poverty, Seventeenth-century English Literature, Shakespeare , Social Movements, Twentieth- and Twenty-First-Century 
American Literature

Johnson, Wendy, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

history and theory of rhetoric, 19th century American Women’s poetry.

Lee, Debbie, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

– Creative Writing, Nonfiction, Environmental Humanities, Wilderness Studies.
– Literature, Culture, and History of the American West, Oral History, Public History, Ecocriticism.
– British Romantic Literature, 18’th and 19’th century British History and Culture, Postcolonial Theory.
– Lifewriting/Biography/Autobiography.

Levy, Lynn T, M.A.

Serves as: member only on graduate committee

Research Interests

Technical & Professional Writing
Creative Writing, all genres
American Indian Literature
Adventure/Lifestyle/Journalism

Lewis, Thabiti, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Mays, Michael, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Modern and Contemporary Irish and English Literature.

McAuley, Louis Kirk, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Narayanan, Pavithra, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Oforlea, Aaron Ngozi, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

African American Literature
, 20th-Century American Literature
, African American Intellectual Traditions and Literary Theory
, African American Folklore
, African American Rhetoric
, Literacy Studies

Olson, Wendy Michelle, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Orr, Leonard, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Plemons, Anna Charis

Serves as: member only on graduate committee

Potts, Donna, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Irish Studies, Postcolonial Studies and World Literature, Ecocriticism, Women’s Studies, and Trauma Theory

Ross, Susan D, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Russo, Linda, Ph.D.

Serves as: member only on graduate committee

Siegel, Carol R, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Siler, Elizabeth A, M.A.

Serves as: member only on graduate committee

Research Interests

– ESL Specialist
– Second language reading.

Staggers, Julie

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Villanueva, Victor, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Whitson, Roger, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

The adaptation of nineteenth-century literature into digital media, and how this adaptation effects the future of the English discipline.

Wilde, Patricia

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Contact Information:

Tanya Gonzales
PO Box 645020
Pullman, WA 99164-5020
509-335-7000
509-335-2582