By Paul Budra

August 29, 2016

Welcome back to a new semester at Simon Fraser University and a special welcome to those of you who are just beginning your studies here at SFU. I hope you can join us in the English Department for what promises to be a very exciting year. Some two years ago we began plans to rework our undergraduate curriculum: we talked to students, studied enrolment patterns, and discussed scholarly trends with our faculty members. This September we are rolling out the first stages of that new curriculum.

The biggest change that we’re making this semester is to the first-year courses. We’ve replaced four of the old genre-based courses (Introduction to Drama, Introduction to Poetry, etc.) with courses that will introduce students to literature that is diverse in form and from many historical periods. The new courses are Literary Classics, Literature Now, Literature and Performance, and Language and Purpose (personally, I’m excited to be teaching the first iteration of Literary Classics on the Burnaby campus). We have also modified some course prerequisites to give students more flexibility in planning their academic programs. Over the next year or so we will be making more changes to the undergraduate curriculum. Stay tuned.

Whether you’re taking an English course out of interest or because you want a major or minor in the subject, there is no better place to do it than at the English Department at SFU. Our widely published professors bring their original research to the classroom. Their fields of expertise range from the traditional (Chaucer and Shakespeare) to the exotic (graphic novels and digital databases). Our Department has won more teaching awards than any other in the university. And our staff members are professionals with many years experience, trained to help students like you. 

Please do not hesitate to contact them or myself if you have any questions about studying English here at SFU.

Have a wonderful year.

Paul Budra

Professor and Chair



Paul Budra teaches Shakespeare and early modern literature and has published articles on Renaissance literature and contemporary popular culture. He is the author of A Mirror for Magistrates and the de casibus Tradition and Shakespeare Early and Late: a textbook. He is the co-editor of the essay collections Part Two: Reflections on the SequelSoldier Talk: Oral Narratives of the Vietnam WarFrom Text to Txting: New Media in the Classroom; and Shakespeare and Consciousness. He is a past president of the Pacific Northwest Renaissance Society, former Associate Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, and winner of the SFU Excellence in Teaching Award for 2004.