ISU Headlines

ISU Department of English announces new Ph.D. program to begin fall 2009

Posted October 28, 2008

The Department of English and Philosophy at Idaho State University has established a new Ph.D. program in English and the teaching of English that will be offered beginning fall 2009.

The program will offer the only Ph.D. in English in the state of Idaho. The program, which integrates the study of literature and English pedagogy, will train students for teaching careers in English at two- and four-year colleges and universities.

“The English department’s shift to the Ph.D. from the D.A. further strengthens an already sound doctoral program, enabling it to better meet the evolving needs of doctoral students throughout the state and region,” said ISU associate provost Stephen Adkison, Ph.D. “The department’s strengths and expertise are well-reflected in the State of Idaho’s only Ph.D. program in English.”

In the fall of 2009, the department will begin phasing out its Doctor of Arts (D.A.) degree program, which has been training students in English studies and pedagogy since 1971. Students currently enrolled in the D.A. program will have the option of completing the D.A. or enrolling in the new Ph.D. program.  

The Ph.D. builds on the strengths of the D.A., which attracted applicants from around the world and placed more than 90 percent of graduates in tenure-track teaching positions. With the new Ph.D., the department will continue to draw national and international students and provide doctoral training for teaching-oriented careers at two- and four-year schools.

The department also has an established Master’s of Arts program and recently added a Graduate Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), which may be completed as part of a graduate degree or as a stand-alone credential.

Applicants to the Ph.D. program must have an M.A. in English as well as a 3.5 GPA and score at least 50 percent on the verbal section of the GRE.

Applications are due by Feb. 15 and must include an application form, undergraduate and graduate transcripts, three letters of recommendation, a writing sample of 10-20 pages, and a 500-word statement of purpose. Priority in admission will be given to experienced, successful teachers.

For more information, contact the ISU Director of Graduate Studies in English, Alan Johnson, Ph.D., at or (208) 282-2895.

Further details also will be available on the English department Web site at in mid-November.