Program Description

The Communications Division prepares students to write and think critically to meet the growing demands of the communications age. Students planning to enter into the field of communications can complete their first two years of education at Arizona Western College. An Associate in Arts degree in English will prepare students for transfer and success in their upper division courses at the university level.

The English Department seeks to prepare students for the rigorous demands of active personal, academic, professional, and civic engagement in the 21st century by developing essential writing and critical-thinking skills and by fostering an appreciation for the humanistic truths of literature.

Courses allow students the freedom to create an individual curriculum to explore their particular educational interests. A major in English provides an excellent background for a profession in education, writing, journalism, linguistics, law, business, film studies, or library science. An advisor from the English department will help each student with their program design. However, it is the responsibility of the student to check with the four-year college/university they plan to attend regarding specific program requirements.

Courses are also offered in the subjects of: Honors (HON), Journalism (JRN), Reading (RDG), and Speech Communication (SPC).

Graduates of these programs will successfully complete the following learning outcomes:

  • Demonstrate proficiency in written composition
  • Compose in multiple genres
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the rhetorical contexts and strategies of writing
  • Develop an informed appreciation of literature
  • Hone critical reading and thinking skills
  • Develop proficiency in literary analysis within a writing-intensive environment

Degree(s) / Certificates(s)

Title Local Bachelor's
English - A.A. Transfer Degree -

Career Outlook

Successful completion of this program may lead to a variety of employment opportunities, most of which require continued higher education at the university level. Below are examples of related occupations and annual mean wages in Arizona according to a May 2020 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates Report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Teaching Assistants
Perform duties that are instructional in nature or deliver direct services to students or parents. Serve in a position for which a teacher has ultimate responsibility for the design and implementation of educational programs and services.
Clerical Library Assistants
Compile records, and sort, shelve, issue, and receive library materials such as books, electronic media, pictures, cards, slides and microfilm. Locate library materials for loan and replace material in shelving area, stacks, or files according to identification number and title. Register patrons to permit them to borrow books, periodicals, and other library materials.
Library Technicians
Assist librarians by helping readers in the use of library catalogs, databases, and indexes to locate books and other materials; and by answering questions that require only brief consultation of standard reference. Compile records; sort and shelve books or other media; remove or repair damaged books or other media; register patrons; and check materials in and out of the circulation process. Replace materials in shelving area or files. Includes bookmobile drivers who assist with providing services in mobile libraries.
Instruct individual students or small groups of students in academic subjects to support formal class instruction or to prepare students for standardized or admissions tests. 
Postsecondary Teaching Assistants
Assist faculty or other instructional staff in postsecondary institutions by performing instructional support activities, such as developing teaching materials, leading discussion groups, preparing and giving examinations, and grading examinations or papers.
Librarians and Media Collections Specialists
Administer and maintain libraries or collections of information, for public or private access through reference or borrowing. Work in a variety of settings, such as educational institutions, museums, and corporations, and with various types of informational materials, such as books, periodicals, recordings, films, and databases. Tasks may include acquiring, cataloging, and circulating library materials, and user services such as locating and organizing information, providing instruction on how to access information, and setting up and operating a library's media equipment.
Writers and Authors
Originate and prepare written material, such as scripts, stories, advertisements, and other material.
News Analysts, Reporters, and Journalists 
Narrate or write news stories, reviews, or commentary for print, broadcast, or other communications media such as newspapers, magazines, radio, or television. May collect and analyze information through interview, investigation, or observation.
Court Reporters and Simultaneous Captioners
Use verbatim methods and equipment to capture, store, retrieve, and transcribe pretrial and trial proceedings or other information. Includes stenocaptioners who operate computerized stenographic captioning equipment to provide captions of live or prerecorded broadcasts for hearing-impaired viewers.
Plan, coordinate, revise, or edit written material. May review proposals and drafts for possible publication.
Public Relations Specialists
Promote or create an intended public image for individuals, groups, or organizations. May write or select material for release to various communications media. May specialize in using social media.
Technical Writers  
Write technical materials, such as equipment manuals, appendices, or operating and maintenance instructions. May assist in layout work.
Successful completion of this program may lead to employment in a variety of different occupations and industries. Check the above for additional information.

Contact Information

Department Contact(s)

Liberal Arts & Education

Hours of Operation
  • Normal Hours
  • Monday - Thursday: 7:00am - 5:00pm
Faculty/Staff Contact(s)
Name Title Phone Email
Michael Moghtader, PhD Associate Dean of Liberal Arts and Education (928) 317-6248 Michael.Moghtader@azwestern.edu
Paul Huggins, PhD Professor of English - South Yuma County (928) 314-9533 paul.huggins@azwestern.edu
Sarah Snyder, PhD Professor of English/Writing Program Administrator, Writing Specialist 928-344-7639 Sarah.Snyder@azwestern.edu
James Nichols Professor of English / Writing Center Coordinator (928) 314-9569 Clayton.Nichols@azwestern.edu
Eric Lee, PhD Professor of English (928) 344-7738 Eric.Lee@azwestern.edu