Degree Requirements for the English Major

The English major prepares students for a variety of careers that demand expertise in analyzing texts, thinking critically, and writing for a diverse audience. These include, among others, print and electronic journalism, teaching, law, public relations, marketing, technical writing, librarianship, and information management.

Bachelor of Arts in English


English Major Checklist click here

English Majors and advisors may download a 4-Year Degree Plan (Sample) Program of Study here.

Students earning the Bachelor of Arts in English degree must complete the university-wide general education requirements, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences requirements, and fulfill the following concentration requirements:


Complete 30 credit hours above the 100-level. Most majors take more than 30 credit hours. (All courses are 3 credit hours, unless otherwise designated.)

Course Requirements (18 hrs.)
All majors choose a concentration in literature or in writing, and take six required courses:

Both of the following (6 hrs.):

  • ENG-L 202: Literary Interpretation
  • ENG-L 371: Critical Practices

Two of the following British literature surveys (6 hrs.):

  • ENG-E 301: Literatures in English to 1600
  • ENG-E 302: Literatures in English, 1600-1800
  • ENG-E 303: Literatures in English, 1800-1900
  • ENG-E 304: Literatures in English, 1900-Present

One of the following American literature surveys (6 hrs):

  • ENG-L 350: Early American Writing and Culture to 1800
  • ENG-L 351: American Literature, 1800-1865
  • ENG-L 352: American Literature, 1865-1914
  • ENG-L 354: American Literature since 1914

Please note: students must take the American and British literature surveys in different historical periods. Hence, in the table below, students must spread their three choices among A, B, C, and D below - and two of those selections must be "E30x" courses; one must be L35x. Any survey course may also be taken as an elective, with no restrictions.

A Pre-1600 ENG-E301
B. 1600-1800 ENG-E302 or ENG-L350
C. 1800-1900 ENG-E303 or ENG-L351 or ENG-L352
D. After 1900 ENG-E304 or ENG-L354


One of the following senior seminars (3 hrs):  

  • ENG-L 450: Seminar: British and American Authors           
  • ENG-L 460: Seminar: Literary Form, Mode, and Theme

Students take the senior seminar when all or almost all other major courses have been completed.

Electives (12 hrs):
In consultation with the advisor, students plan elective courses with consideration of possible career choices and graduate study.
Concentration in Literature: At least 9 of the 12 hours must be in literature at the 300-level and above.
Concentration in Writing: At least 9 of the 12 hours in must be in writing, 6 of which at the 300-level and above.

The following journalism courses are offered by communication arts in the Raclin School of the Arts, and can count toward an English major. See communication studies under Raclin School of the Arts for these offerings: 

  • JOUR-J 200 Reporting, Writing, and Editing
  • JOUR-J 341 Newspaper Reporting

For information on minors and certificate programs, click here.