Department of English

Welcome to the English Department at San Juan College!


To provide opportunities for students to develop writing skills for personal, academic, and technical writing purposes and to explore the writing of others.


As a department, we value...

  • Recognizing how rhetorical situation influences our choices and strategies in writing.
  • Viewing writing as a collaborative process through workshopping and other group activities.
  • Viewing writing as a process.
  • Developing our students’ voices and confidence as writers.

What We Do

The English Department works with students from all disciplines and departments on campus. Clear and effective written communication is highly valued in any field or career, and the department helps students develop the appropriate writing and communication skills to be successful in their academic and professional careers as well as in their personal lives.

Our department is comprised of four areas:

  • Composition (ENGL 095, 099, 111 and 211)
  • Technical Composition (ENGL 098, 118 and 218)
  • Teacher Preparation for Language Arts (ENGL 250, 271 and 272)
  • Creative Writing / Literature (a variety of courses of interest to students)

The Composition Program

Depending on a student’s Accuplacer score, he or she is placed in ENGL 050, 095, 099 or 111 for their first course in writing. Students develop skills in focus, organization, coherence, development, documentation and expression in a progression from personal writing to academic writing in this sequence of courses. ENGL 211 (Advanced Composition) is the capstone course for academic argument.

ENGL 111 and 211 meet the General Education requirements for A.A. and A.S. degrees and satisfy the transfer requirements for New Mexico Higher Education Department Area I [Communications].

Technical Composition Program

Students are placed in technical composition courses by Accuplacer or by completion of pre-requisite composition courses if their declared majors require technical writing. Many of these courses are in the School of Trades and Technology or School of Energy. Embedded or cohort courses are offered for some of the technical composition courses to emphasize the importance of writing in specific fields. Technical composition focuses on writing used in the workplace, such as reports, proposals, and memoranda.

Teacher Preparation Courses

The English Department offers three courses designed to help future teachers learn how to teach language arts and writing in K-12 settings. These courses provide an introduction to linguistics, grammatical structures and foundations of theory and practice in writing.

Creative Writing Program / Literature Courses

Any student, who has completed ENGL 111, may take courses in poetry, fiction or nonfiction and develop their own style of creative writing through introduction and workshop-style courses. They may also develop an appreciation for other writers in different genres at San Juan College.

A Creative Writing Certificate is offered for students, who are committed to their writing, and is ideal for students planning to apply to a B.A. or M.F.A. writing program. It is also challenging and rewarding for writers who simply want to develop a portfolio of their own writing.

Students may also study literature in our survey courses (world literature or American literature) or in high interest, topic-specific courses, such as Native American literature or Women’s literature. A full listing of the literature courses is in the college catalog.

The literature courses satisfy the Humanities requirement for A.A. and A.S. degrees at San Juan College as well as the transfer requirements for New Mexico Higher Education Department Area V [Humanities].