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FAQ: Online English Degree

Frequently asked questions about Marylhurst University's
BA in English Literature & New Media online program.

What do you mean by "low-residency, online program"?
What kind of computer or other technology do I need to complete the program?
How often will I be required to come to campus?
I don't live in the Portland area. Do I have to come to campus for the program orientation session?
What types of classes will I take in the English literature and new media program?
Can I take some of the classes required for this degree on campus instead of online if I want to?
I understand that the program is based on a "cohort" schedule.  Can you clarify the number of classes and credits that involves per quarter?
Does the cohort schedule include the required core as well as the major coursework?
Which classes do I need to enroll in for my first quarter in the cohort?
What happens if I skip a term? Will I be able to re-enter the program?
Can I transfer in credits from other colleges?
Are there any prerequisites I need to complete before pursuing a degree in English literature and new media?
How long will it take me to earn the degree?
Can I pursue this degree at my own pace, taking as many or as few classes as I want to at a time?
Do I have to pay travel costs for the two on-campus sessions out of pocket?
What is digital humanities?
What can I do with a degree in English literature and new media?


What do you mean by "low-residency, online program"?
"Low-residency" means you will come to campus twice for a three-day residency component. You'll be provided meals and lodging while you work closely with your professors and cohort, building community as you engage with faculty and fellow students. "Online" means you may choose to take the rest of your courses online, or you may take some of them online and some of them on campus. This highly customizable approach combines the excellent teaching and community experience you expect from Marylhurst, while preserving the flexibility and freedom of a fully online program.


What kind of computer or other technology do I need to complete this program?
You will use an iPad, which will be provided to you. You also may choose to engage some coursework via a personal computer. A high-speed internet connection (or access to one) is strongly recommended.


What types of classes will I take in the English literature and new media program?
The program emphasizes the intersection between literary studies and new media, so you will study literature and writing, while also considering how those disciplines are changed by new digital technologies. Courses might also focus on critical theory, cultural studies, new media, creative writing, social media and digital publishing. For more information on specific coursework, see our degree requirements page.


How often will I be required to come to campus?

You'll make two trips. You'll attend a three-day orientation class at the beginning of the program, and either a three-day or week-long summer seminar later on. An optional on-campus colloquium will be scheduled in conjunction with graduation.


I don't live in the Portland area. Do I have to come to campus for the program orientation session?

Yes, this is a mandatory session to allow you to meet your classmates and many of our faculty and get a full orientation to the program. It is a three-credit course that takes place for three days on campus the second weekend after the term starts. Most if not all of the cost of your travel to campus for this session is built into your program tuition. If you have concerns about making it to campus for this orientation session, please contact program director Keri Behre at kbehre@marylhurst.edu.


Can I take some of the classes required for this degree on campus instead of online if I want to?
Yes. While all of your coursework can be completed online (with the exception of two required campus visits noted above), many of your required and elective courses are offered on campus. More information about on-campus courses can be found in the current version of our university catalog and in our quarterly course schedule.


I understand that the program is based on a "cohort" schedule.  Can you clarify the number of classes and credits that involves per quarter?
Nine credits are required during the first term. Then, after that, you'll take one 6-credit cohort class each term, Spring, Fall, and Winter (with Summer being optional). You'll fill out the rest of your schedule in whatever way works best for you. Some students will go part time and take 6 or 9 credits each term. Others will take 12+ credits each term. We tried to create a degree that was as flexible as possible.


Does the cohort schedule include the required core as well as the major coursework?

Some of the required core is met within the courses you'll take in the cohort sequence. You'll weave the rest into your schedule when and where you see fit.


Which classes do I need to enroll in for my first quarter in the cohort?

LIT 204 Critical Analysis 3 crs. (on-campus orientation)
LIT 205 Introduction to Literary Studies (6 crs)
Your choice of electives (to be discussed with your academic adviser).


What happens if I skip a term? Will I be able to re-enter the program?
Since the program is cohort-based, the intention is that you will work through the core requirements with your cohort. If unforeseen circumstances require you to skip a term of coursework, please contact program director Keri Behre about how to resume your place in the program cohort.


Can I transfer in credits from other colleges?
Yes. One of our admissions counselors will be happy to review your previous college transcript(s) and give you a preliminary indication of how many credits will transfer to Marylhurst.


Are there any prerequisites I need to complete before pursuing a degree in English literature and new media?

To be admitted to the English literature and new media program you must have at least 24 transferable quarter credits and have completed a college-level writing course. If you don't meet those requirements, we may admit you to the university but you will not be able to begin the cohort program until you've fulfilled those requirements. No technological or programming expertise is required in advance, but students are expected to have basic research and writing skills, and a working knowledge of word processing programs and basic internet applications is recommended.


How long will it take me to earn the degree?

That depends on how many credits you transfer in to the program. You'll need 180 credits to earn a bachelor's degree; 75 of those credits come from specific classes required for the degree, and the other credits are made up of core undergraduate requirements and electives. No core program requirements may be met through transfer credit. An admissions counselor can help you determine how long it may take for you to earn your degree based on the number of eligible credits you are bringing with you.


Can I pursue this degree at my own pace, taking as many or as few classes as I want to at a time?
Our program is a cohort model, which means you'll be taking the same core classes required for the degree with the same group of students. You can take other courses that you may need to complete your degree at your own pace. If you have special circumstances, please contact program director Keri Behre to discuss ways to adapt the program's requirements to your needs.


Do I have to pay for travel costs for the two on-campus sessions out of pocket?

Your tuition will cover the cost of your stay while you are on campus for mandatory sessions (food, accommodations and related expenses). You'll be responsible for the cost of getting to campus. You can apply for a need-based scholarship to assist you with the cost of getting to campus if you are traveling a long distance.


What is digital humanities?
Digital humanities is the application of digital technology to the study of literary texts within the English and humanities disciplines. Learn more about digital humanities


What can I do with a degree in English literature and new media?

The English literature and new media curriculum provides a strong foundation for students who want to pursue a number of career paths or graduate studies. Whether you are planning a career or graduate studies in traditional areas such as law, business, journalism and writing, and education, or looking to explore growing technological fields like digital archiving, social media marketing or Web content development, the skills and knowledge you gain in this program will prepare you well. See our career paths page for more ideas on what you can do with a degree in English literature and new media.

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