The Association of Literary Scholars is a registered student organization designed to support graduate students specializing in literature in their research endeavors. ALS members are organized into small groups that have similar research interests who meet at least once a month to share their research questions, discuss ideas, recommend further reading, and offer feedback.
Currently, the groups are diverse and range from historical British periods and children's literature to literary theory and American studies. Members are encouraged to join groups that align with their own research and are free to start new groups based on topics that interest them.
Additionally, ALS presents at least one literature-focused speaker every year. In the last two years, Dr. Rebecca Saunders has presented on the evolution of literary theory in the field and Dr. Chris Breu has presented on researching and applying for fellowships and grants to do archival research.
Every spring, ALS also offers a literature pedagogy workshop that gathers together experts in the field of literature from our ISU faculty to present on the teaching of literature. Topics and presenters have included discussing how to teach specific genres; how to approach "difficult" topics such as racism, sexism, and homophobia in the classroom; how to integrate disciplines inside and outside of English Studies into the Literature classroom; and how to conduct and interpret class evaluations.