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The PhD in English and the Teaching of English

The Ph.D. in English and the Teaching of English integrates research in English studies with practical and theoretical training in the teaching of English. It is the only Ph.D. program in English in Idaho, Montana, or Wyoming, and attracts applicants from around the region, the nation, and the world.

The 2014 Report of the MLA Task Force on Doctoral Study in Modern Language and Literature recognized our program as an example of innovative doctoral training. Indeed, our program is unique in its integration of research-oriented coursework with courses in pedagogy, supervised teaching internships, and a pedagogical component in every dissertation. The aim is to prepare students for teaching careers in English at two- and four-year colleges and universities, and the Ph.D. program is especially well-suited for those pursuing a teaching-focused position at a community college.

Our Ph.D. program also houses the Teaching Literature Book Award, an international, juried prize that recognizes excellence in research on teaching literature at the college level.

For more information, please see:

Curriculum, Doctor of Philosophy in English and the Teaching of English

The Doctor of Philosophy in English and the Teaching of English prepares students for teaching careers in English at colleges and universities. The program emphasizes the study of literature, rhetoric and composition, and content-specific English pedagogy. For a full description of the PhD Curriculum, please see the Graduate Catalog.

Recent PhD Dissertations

Students have written dissertations in several areas of English studies. Most focus on British, American, or Anglophone literature, or some aspect of literature or composition pedagogy, while some deal with traditional or newer forms of narrative (oral storytelling, film, graphic novels, and video games). Each dissertation contains at least one chapter discussing implications of the research for teaching literature or composition.

  • Noran Amin, “The Interrogative Mode: A Practical Theory for Comics Criticism” (2020)
  • Catherine Becker “Seriality, Context, and Format: Early American Literature and the Periodical” (2020)

  • Jennifer Cox “Illuminating the Dark Carnival in American Fantasy” (2020)

  • Melinda Linscott, “Petrarchan Imagery in Woth's Pamphilia to Amphilanthus and Prominent Cultural Discourses in Seventeenth Century England: ‘From contraries I seeke to runn, but contraries I can nott shunn’ “ (2020)

  • Shelley McEuen, “A 21st Century Perspective on the American Frontier:  The Influence and Continuity of Historical Rhetoric on Current Attitudes toward Western Landscape and Urban Wild Spaces” (2020)

  • Richard Samuelson “Crossing the Moat around the Ivory Tower: Community Engagement in a Face-to-Face and Online First-Year Writing Course” (2020)
  • Corinna Barrett-Percy, “ ’Ideal’ American Heroes: Soldiers of Color in American World War II Literature” (2019)

  • Dana Benge, “Well-Behaved Women Rarely Make History: Patricia Clapp’s Jane Emily and Young Gothic Literature” (2019)

  • Anelise Farris, “The Boundless Self: Disability in Virtual Reality” (2019)

  • Quinn Grover, “Water, Aridity, Community, and Individualism in 20th Century Fiction of the American West” (2019)

  • Suzette Kunz, “What Vernacular Narratives Teach Us about Trauma” (2019)

  • Brad Rowe, " ’Annuit Coeptis’: The Providence Myth and the American Revolution” (2019)

  • Diantha Smith, “Empowering Student Writers with Instruction on Language Patterns in Academic Discourse” (2019)

  • Valah Steffen-Witter, “Anglo-Saxon Sources in The Hobbit” (2019)

  • Jacob Thomas, “Hagiographic Rhetoric in Medieval English Devotional Texts: Ælfric of Eynsham, Thomas of Monmouth, and John Mirk” (2019)

  • Chris Brock, “Masculinity in the Early Works of Frank Miller” (2018)

  • Steve Harrison, “ ’Come Out of the Woods and We’ll Tell You Who You Are’: The Protest Literatures of S. Alice Callahan, Charles Alexander Eastman, and Simon Pokagon” (2017)

Job Placement of Doctoral Graduates

Academic Positions (initial placements)

  • Anoka-Ramsey Community College, Cambridge, MN
  • Aurora University, George Williams College Campus, Williams Bay, WI
  • Brigham Young University - Hawaii, Laie, HI
  • Brigham Young University - Idaho, Rexburg, ID
  • College of Eastern Idaho, Idaho Falls, ID
  • College of Southern Idaho, Twin Falls, ID
  • Columbia Basin Community College, Pasco, WA
  • Columbus State Community College (Delaware Campus), Delaware, OH
  • Corban College, Salem, OR
  • Heidelberg College, Tiffin, OH
  • Kenyatta University, Nairobi, Kenya
  • Lahore University of Management Sciences, Lahore, Pakistan
  • Multnomah Bible College, Portland, OR
  • Nantong University, Nantong, Jiangsu, China
  • New Mexico State University - Grants, Grants, NM
  • Northwest Nazarene University, Nampa, ID
  • Olivet Nazarene University, Bourbonnais, IL
  • Portland Community College, Portland, OR
  • Rock Valley College, Rockford, IL
  • Sage Colleges, Troy, NY
  • Slippery Rock University, Slippery Rock, PA
  • Southwestern Oklahoma State University, Weatherford, OK
  • SUNY-Institute of Technology, Marcy, NY
  • SUNY-New Paltz, New Paltz, NY
  • University of Arkansas – Fort Smith, Fort Smith, AK
  • Wanli University, Ningbo, Zhejiang Province, China

Positions outside the Academy (Alt-Ac Careers)

A number of our doctoral graduates have established careers outside the traditional academic track. These careers include work in technical writing (at the Idaho Nuclear Engineering Laboratories and elsewhere), industrial communication and training, editing, and teaching in public and alternative schools.