Pursue a course of study focusing on American literary texts and other cultural artifacts. Students will deepen their understanding of the role of narrative and literary form in shaping the experiences and articulating the philosophical, political and social questions central to American history and culture.
This certificate may be especially beneficial to educators, students who are thinking of going on to a PhD program, or anyone who wants to focus their literary study more precisely. Students complete four thematically linked courses for a specialization. The certificate will:
- Expose students to Northwestern University’s distinguished and world class instructors.
- Provide students with countless opportunities to engage with others who are passionate to rediscover and master classic texts while exploring exciting, contemporary works, diverse genres and cutting-edge ideas in narrative form and interpretation.
- Engage students in advanced literary study, which improves critical assessment and problem solving skills which translate to work, personal and intellectual life.
- Sharpen analytical and writing abilities, which can help prepare students for application to PhD programs.
To complete this certificate, students may take any four courses available in the topic area (which may include courses available through The Graduate School). To satisfy the four units of credit required for the certificate, students also have the option to register for the following:
- An independent study, which is a customized course of study undertaken by a single student under the guidance of an instructor. Denoted by the course number, 499, independent studies are comparable in their demands to other graduate-level courses.
- A capstone project, which is an essay of 45 to 75 double-spaced pages written under the supervision of an approved faculty member. The project presents an opportunity to research and explore a topic thoroughly. Students often elect to expand a seminar paper from a previous course. Students who wish to pursue a capstone project must do so as their fourth and final course in the certificate program.
Students who did not previously study literature at the graduate level are strongly encouraged to take LIT 410: Introduction to Graduate Study. This course introduces current issues in literary and cultural studies and provides access to some of the approaches and techniques for the study of literature at the graduate level.
Please note that courses completed in the certificate program cannot be transferred to the corresponding graduate degree.