Student Resources


I. Grammar and Editing Tests for English Majors

  • These tests can be used as an alternative to the department’s English 322 course, “Systems of Grammar.” See English Section of the HU Catalog for the official statement.

  • Though taken at the same time and related by their focus on grammatical and stylistic skills, these are two separate tests. Students who pass one test but not the other only need to retake the test they failed.

  • The grammar test consists of multiple-choice questions over English usage. A score of 80% is required for passing.

  • The editing test requires students to find and mark errors in a short essay. A score of 70% is required for passing.

  • Arrange to take the tests by contacting the departmental secretary, Jennifer Lowe (279-4421).

  • Once a student has attempted ENG 322 (including partial semesters), students must complete ENG 322 to fulfill the requirement for graduation.

  • The tests may be taken a maximum of two times. Students who do not pass both tests after the two attempts must take English 322 to meet the departmental requirement.

  • We advise students to take the tests at least one semester before graduation to insure an opportunity to enroll in English 322 if they cannot pass one or both of the two tests. Remember, if, after taking the grammar and editing tests twice, you still have not passed both, your only option for gaining the credit is to take English 322. 

II. Senior Seminar Attendance

All students enrolled in ENG 231 must attend at least one Senior English Symposium during the semester and complete any required coursework related to the observation. Students enrolled in ENG 451 (0 and 1 hour sections) must attend all Senior English Symposia for the semester (not just the one they are presenting). Students who fail to meet attendance requirement during the semester enrolled in the relevant course will receive an automatic 5% course downgrade in ENG 231 and the 1 hour section of ENG 451.

III. English Department Policy on Plagiarism (From University Catalogue)

Plagiarism: Representing the words, ideas or data of another as one’s own in any academic exercise. Plagiarism is a type of stealing, whether done deliberately or by mistake. Such violations include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Purchasing a paper from an electronic source or other entity.

  • Downloading a partial paper or an entire paper from the Internet and submitting it as

one’s own or allowing someone else (including tutors) to write, or significantly rewrite, a paper and then submitting it as one’s own.

  • Using ideas, paraphrases, and/or direct quotes from a source without clear

documentation of that source.

  • Recycling a paper from a concurrent class or a class that was previously taken in high

school or college without the permission of the instructor to do so.

  • Copying verbatim from a source without using quotation marks, even if the source has been cited.

  • Copying, in part or in whole, from a print source, media broadcast or recording, or the Internet or other electronic media without proper acknowledgment of the source.

  • Copying another person’s sentence style and structure, key words, organizational plan, or unique words or ideas without proper documentation.

Sanctions for Plagiarism at the Course Level include the following:

  • Repeating of the assignment or completion of an additional assignment, with possibly less credit awarded in either case.

  • Lowering of the grade on the test or assignment, possibly to “F” or zero.

  • Lowering of the grade for the course, possibly to “F.”

  • Immediate removal from the course with either a “W” or an “F” placed on the transcript.

All incidences of Plagiarism will be reported to the Provost office, where additional sanctions may be imposed. See Catalog for a full description of other forms of Academic Misconduct and Sanctions. 

IV. Senior Project Requirements:

Students who enrolled under the 2015 – 16 catalogue are required to take two semesters of ENG 451. All students are encouraged to take both semesters.

Zero hour section –The first section is for 0 hours and is intended to help students identify a topic, conduct preliminary reading and research, and produce a proposal and meet with the assigned mentor by the end of the semester. ·      One hour section – All students complete the senior project in the one hour section. Students who are not required and opt out of the zero hour section, are expected to have conducted preliminary research prior to the beginning of the semester, and present a Proposal at the first class meeting. These students must submit by the semester’s first class meeting a short proposal for the project in order to remain enrolled. See appendices for a description and sample of the proposal.

V. Senior Project Graded Components and Potential Deductions:

The final senior project grade is based on a maximum point value of 300 distributed as follows:  

  • Project – 250 points

  • Mentor: Process grade: 50 points

  • Final essay grade: 50 points

  • Second Reader: Final essay grade: 100 points

  • Faculty Panel: Presentation grade (an average of the three): 50 points  

Project grades, grade sheets, and/or comments on project will not be delivered until the student has completed the English Department Senior Exit Survey.

Students in the zero hour section who do not have an acceptable proposal by the semester-end due date, may receive a downgrade of up to 10% on the final grade for the project.

Students who fail to attend all Senior Symposia during both sections of ENG 451 will receive an automatic 5% course downgrade in the 1 hour section of ENG 451.

VI. Foreign Language Requirement

  • BA with licensure students are required to take two semesters (6-8 hours) of a single modern foreign language or American Sign Language. This fulfills the Global Perspectives requirement necessary for graduation. Student are strongly encouraged to fulfill the Global Perspectives through two semesters of a modern foreign language.

  • BA non-licensure students under the 2016-17 (or later) catalogues are required to take three semesters (9-11 hours) of a single modern foreign language in order to fulfill the Global Perspectives and BA English requirements for graduation. Students graduating under a catalogue prior to 2016-17 must take four semesters of the same modern foreign language.

  • For licensure majors, Spanish is highly recommended by the College of Education.

  • Foreign Language Courses must be numbered 101 or higher. Courses such as Spanish or Italian for Travelers, or MGRK 100, will not fulfill this requirement.

VII. English Proficiency Requirement:

In order to graduate, students must demonstrate proficiency in English. Proficiency is shown by acquiring CLEP, AP, or Honors credit, or by making a C or higher in both English 111 (or 113) and English 211. Students who make a D or F in English 111 or 113 must retake it before going on to English 211. Students who make a D or F in English 211 cannot graduate until they retake it and make a C or higher. See the university catalog section called “Graduation Requirements” for complete details.

English Department Grading Standards

Qualities of “A” Papers

An “A” paper is focused by a carefully worded thesis statement or clearly implied controlling idea.  It is well organized; it shows some originality of concept or a special insight concerning the topic and demonstrates a “depth of reflection” concerning “the implications of one’s subject” (The Council Chronicle, March 2007: 8).  The tone of the paper is suited in purpose to the audience’s interests; additionally, it contains rich, tightly packed, thought-provoking content.  The “A” paper is coherent and contains artful transitions in the logical developments of ideas and the use of relevant supporting evidence for ideas and generalizations.  Mature and varied sentences populate well-developed paragraphs.  The diction is concrete and appropriate.  A reader feels significantly taught by an author whose maturity of thought is evident sentence by sentence, paragraph by paragraph; furthermore, the reader is left feeling satisfied and eager to reread the piece and consider its observations.

Qualities of “B” Papers

Generally, a "B” paper has most if not all the positive traits of the “A” paper.  Similarly, both exhibit few or no major grammatical faults: agreement, fused sentence, comma splices, pronoun reference, misplaced modifier, verb tense, etc.  The greatest difference between the two will be the maturity of thought and effective, even imaginative use of language that makes the better paper stand out.  Also, the supporting ideas of the “B” paper may be less fresh or may lack clear expression or thorough development. In some cases, a number of lesser weaknesses may leave the “B” paper short of A-level excellence.

Qualities of “C” Papers

Most “C” papers have a clear purpose and a reasonably organized plan or pattern.  Although reasonably free of mechanical errors and having adequate support, these essays often lack specific illustrations and exhibit truisms, clichés, thin evidence or faulty logic.  In some cases, however, the “C” paper will have more substantive content, but a higher number of errors will keep it from rising to the next level. In general, this paper fulfills the assignment in a conventional and adequate manner without being distinguished.

Qualities of “D” Papers

A “D” paper displays a weak or clouded development of ideas, often caused by the lack of a clear thesis; it may lack unity, organization, and coherence.  Little evidence of audience awareness is seen.  The development is inadequate, and supporting examples are trite, clichéd, or ineffective.  Sentence structure, paragraph development, diction, and style are generally weak. Quite often the paper is deficient in a major area, such as development or focus.  Sometimes it does not fulfill the assignment.  Frequently, it is marred by numerous errors in usage, punctuation, and spelling—or recurring serious errors such as pronoun reference or subject-verb agreement.

Qualities of Failing Papers

The “F” paper has an absent or poorly worked thesis, is poorly organized and developed, and offers little or no evidence in support of the subject.  It shows little awareness of audience, and the ideas are vague or incoherent.  The paper evinces little or no mastery of usage, punctuation, or spelling, and the structure of sentences and paragraphs is weak.  Typically, this paper is deficient in several major areas, not merely one.  Sometimes it fails because it does not fulfill the assignment; sometimes it does not address the assigned topic; sometimes the length requirement is not met.  Overall, its organization, form, and style fall far below acceptable college-level writing.