English is a global language that has brought people and cultures together. It has now, in the current global scenario, become the language of education, technology, trade and cross-cultural relations. In addition to its basic functionality in helping to widen the learners’ perspective by introducing them to sundry cultures across the globe, English literature as a discipline caters to the inculcation of values even as it enriches communicative skills, and thereby grooms the holistic development of the youth. Learning of literature thus contributes richly to community living and comradeship.
The Department is chiefly interested in opening fresh avenues for personality development and command of language skills along with the acquisition of knowledge of the subject, English Literature. It offers need-based programmes, provided in an academic environment of quality higher education, and imbibes essential and universal values implicit in literature and life. The students, especially from the under-privileged stratum, are trained to acquire English communicative skills along with the knowledge about varied social and national values obtained from the study of literatures written in English around the globe.
The Department of English was started when the college was revived in 1966 with only the general English programme run for the PUC classes. Then, in 1977 the undergraduate programme was begun. It was upgraded as a post-graduate department in 1979. The M.Phil. Research programme was begun in 1988 and later Doctoral Research in 1994 making the department a full-fledged research department enrolling full time and part time scholars. Since 2014 M.Phil. is run only as a full time programme. The undergraduate and the postgraduate programmes were started in the self-financed stream in 2010 and 2012 respectively.
The department has thus grown from strength to strength under the committed and competent leadership of the previous Heads namely Professor D. Swamiraj, who was the Principal of the college from 1974 to 1996, and was the Director of the college till 2007; Mr. P.Natarajan was Head ….. , Mr. P. Cruz acted as Head i/c ……, Dr. Pauline Sathiamurthy who later became the General Secretary of the CSI Synod, Dr. R. Appadurai and Dr.R.Roopkumar Balasingh. Dr. Roopkumar Balasingh, Head of the Department from 2003 till 2013 was also awarded Professor Emeritus by the UGC, the first teacher to be awarded this honour in the history of the College and the first in any of the Aided Colleges in Tamil Nadu.
The department offers under graduate and post graduate programmes of study and research related to English language and literature and Teaching of English Language. It has initiated need-based curriculum for all programmes, keeping in mind social and national needs as well as student competence. The syllabi, methodology of teaching and coaching are planned and executed with utmost care at the UG, PG and the M.Phil. levels through a number of student self-study activities to go hand in hand with teaching to help the students meet the demands of the competitive employment market of the present day.
The department is staffed with fifty three qualified teachers, on the whole. While thirty two of them are M.Phil. qualified, seven are NET/SET qualified, and fourteen are doctorates.
The language lab, equipped with individual computer facility for eighty students at a time provides interactive programmed lessons on English grammar issues and communication. The individualized learning at the computer helps the students to pursue their training at their own pace. The one-to-one interaction between the teacher and the student provides a cordial ambience to the teaching-learning process, which is its unique feature.
UG and PG students are motivated to undertake a two week summer teaching practice in a rural or a suburban school under the guidance of the Extension Wing (department which organizes campus teach-out programmes) of the college.
The Language lab also organizes coaching sessions in English communication for the school children, school teachers and he employees of various organizations every year.