English Language and Literature

Welcome! The Department of English Language and Literature at the University of Waterloo offers unique undergraduate and graduate programs covering the study of literature, rhetoric, professional writing, and digital media. Our professors have national and international reputations in these areas, and we boast many awards for teaching. Graduates of our B.A. and M.A. programs find successful careers in industry, law, government, teaching, medicine, communication design, and entrepreneurship, often getting their start with our co-op program; they also go on to advanced studies in English. Graduates of our PhD program hold academic and non-academic positions in Canada and across the world.

Undergraduate Studies

Photo of student giving presentation on a blog.

Whether you want to explore literature, digital media, political discourse, or technical communication, our diverse undergraduate degrees and programs allow you to pursue your interests. You have a wide variety of degree options, and with our integrated co-op option, you can combine study and work experience.

Graduate Studies

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We offer MAs in Literary Studies, Rhetoric and Communication Design, and Experimental Digital Media. Our PhD offers a unique integration of literary studies with such fields as rhetoric, new media, and discourse analysis. Our degrees will prepare you for work in and beyond the academy. 


Photo of students around a computer.

Our department features internationally known scholars who conduct research in a variety of fields, including literary studies, digital media, and rhetoric and professional communication. The department is also affiliated with a number of research bodies, including the Critical Media Lab, the Games InstituteFirst Person Scholar, the Waterloo Directory of Victorian Periodicals, and the Canadian Journal of Disability Studies.

Teaching and Learning

Photo of students around a seminar table.

Teaching is central to our department, and our faculty and graduate students include many award-winning instructors. Class sizes in the department are small, and your professors are dedicated, dynamic instructors who will give you the academic tools you need to follow your intellectual passions and the individual attention you need to grow as a scholar.

Find out more

To find out more about our department, follow any of the links above or in the main menu. Our faculty and staff are also happy to talk with you via email, over the phone, or in person to answer any questions you might have.

For undergraduate inquiries

Contact our undergraduate adminstrator, Jenny Conroy, or our undergraduate chair, Shelley Hulan.

The English undergraduate office is located in Hagey Hall room 251.

For graduate inquiries

Contact our graduate administrator, Tina Davidson, or our graduate chair, Marcel O'Gorman.

The English graduate office is located in Hagey Hall room 250.


 Social Media

You can also follow us on a variety of social media:

facebook link Event notices, general department news, and English-related links from both within and outside the department.
Twitter logo News and events for graduate students and faculty, English-related job advertisements, and calls for papers and articles.
Wordpress logo Words in Place (our department blog): a wide variety of articles on people and events in the department, including interviews with undergraduate and graduate students.
YouTube link Videos of department events and student projects.
University of Waterloo crest Our Department Newsletter: a periodic summary of what's been happening with faculty and students in English Language and Literature.

The Department of English acknowledges that we are living and working on the traditional territory of ‎ the Attawandaron (also known as Neutral), Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee peoples. The University of Waterloo is situated on the Haldimand Tract, the land promised to the Six Nations that includes six miles on each side of the Grand River. Read More >>

Webmaster: Bruce Dadey

  1. Oct. 31, 2017Fall English Newsletter Now Available

    The Fall 2017 English Department Newsletter is now available, with details of what the department's faculty, students, and alumni have been doing over the past academic year, including events held, awards won, and books published.

  2. Oct. 31, 2017Alice Kuzniar Awarded the Hans-Walz Research Prize

    Alice Kuzniar, University Research Chair and Professor of German and English, will be awarded the Hans-Walz Research Prize at a champagne reception on 1 December at the Robert Bosch Haus in Stuttgart for her work on the history of homeopathy.  The Birth of Homeopathy out of the Spirit of Romanticism was published by

  3. July 1, 2017Shakespeare 401: What’s Next?

    From June 21-24, 2017, Ken Graham and Alysia Kolentsis joined forces with the Stratford Festival to host the second Shakespearean Theatre Conference: “Shakespeare 401: What’s Next?”

    The conference included a number of highlights:

Read all news
  1. Nov. 24, 2017How to Make Connections and Interview Effectively (Master’s Students)

    What: This interactive, half-day workshop will teach you effective networking strategies and will give you the opportunity to improve your interviewing skills.

    When: Friday, November 24, 2017 from 9am-12pm

    Where: TC 2218 (Tatham Centre)

  2. Nov. 24, 2017Department Speakers Series

    Please join us for the upcoming talks in our Speakers Series:

    • November 24, 2017 (HH 373)
      Dr. Derek Gladwin

      SSHRC Postdoctoral Research Fellow
      Department of English
      University of British Columbia

    • January 26, 2018 (HH 373)
      Dr. Peter Walmsley
      McMaster University 
    • March 2, 2018 (TBD)
      Dr. Andrea Jonahs
      University of Waterloo
    • April 6, 2018 (HH 373)
      Dr. Sarah Sharma
      University of Toronto
      Director of McLuhan Centre

    Refreshments will be provided.

  3. Nov. 24, 2017Speakers Series - "‘another, flickering world’: Petrocultures of the North Atlantic," Derek GladwinSullom

    The Department of English Language and Literature is proud to announce “‘another, flickering world’: Petrocultures of the North Atlantic,” a talk by Dr. Derek Gladwin to take place Friday November 24, 3-5pm in Hagey Hall 373. All are welcome to attend. 

    This talk explores the relationship between oil and memory in the North Sea. Linking place-based poetry, film, and web-based media, this talk considers how Roseanne Watt’s filmpoem Sullom (2014) unsettles dominant histories of North Sea oil culture (petroculture) in the Shetland Isles by confronting environmental and spatial injustices. Sullom’s musical score offers an additional element that creates an anti-aesthetic, ironizing petrochemical advertisement campaigns produced by energy companies such as Suncor Energy’s See What Yes Can Do (2013). Watt’s filmpoem ultimately confronts the spaces of Sullom Voe, which is an enormous oil terminal on Shetland, through a combination of literary and visual narratives of place that reclaim ways of being in the world from the dominant petroculture in which they function.

All upcoming events