English Major


The English Major provides students a broad-based liberal arts education in English literature, language, and culture through innovative and diverse approaches.  The English Major fosters skills in critical analysis, independent thinking, creativity, research, and writing.  Students majoring in English take core courses in literary analysis, literary history, language, Shakespeare, and focused research.  They also take elective courses in a range of topics in the research specialties of our renowned faculty. 

English majors are prepared for careers after graduation through access to a large and growing internship program, a Professional and Technical Writing certificate program, special career development events, a study abroad program in London, and a competitive English Honors program.  Recent UA English majors have put their degree to use in a wide variety of careers, including: editing, digital marketing, publishing, politics, governmental service, environmental public policy, business management, development, teaching, marketing, law, medicine, technical writing, higher education administration, and many more.

The English major requires 39 units.  The core courses are 280, 380, 396A, 496A, 373A, 373B, and 496A/B.  18 units in English electives are also required, at least three of which must be a designated “language emphasis” course.  Up to 6 units of 200-level coursework may be applied to the elective requirement. 

The flow chart below shows all of the classes required for the English major.  Please contact the department or schedule a meeting with a departmental advisor for specific questions.

Declaring the Major
Interested in declaring the English Major?  Fill out the English Major Declaration Form if you're ready to declare now.  Have more questions first?  Use WiseAdvising to schedule a meeting with one of our advisors (note that English is in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences). 

What you can do with an English Major
The English Major provides key skills that make our majors some of the most valuable candidates for employment and graduate school.  Our majors are trained to think critically and independently, to understand problems within their underlying context, to write clearly and effectively, to read and comprehend difficult or complex writing, and most of all: to understand all human endeavor as grounded in deep and meaningful questions.  Our majors learn and adapt to new tasks and environments quickly.  By always being encouraged to look behind texts to their meanings and contexts, our majors are excellent at understanding the why of their work.  English majors do not simply do a job that has been assigned to them.  They are the innovators, so much in demand, who are poised to understand why, in broad and local terms, the job assigned is significant and thus are the ones most likely to creatively design new approaches and new solutions.

English Majors are thus uniquely prepared for success across many broad fields and specific career paths.  

Broad Fields
International Affairs
Nonprofit and Social Service
Politics and Government
Public Policy

Specific Careers
Content Writing
Grant Writing
Library Science
Technical Writing
Digital Design

Below are examples of the wide variety of careers that our English Majors have taken after graduation (under construction).




Learning Outcomes
The following are the learning objectives for the English Major.

1. Knowledge of foundational texts of British and American literature
2. Understanding of the historical and cultural range of literature written in English
3. Understanding of the development of the English language as used in works of literature
4. Understanding of strategies of textual interpretation appropriate to different literary genres
5. Ability to conduct and use literary research, to the point of achieving:
    * an overall thesis that pushes the argument beyond summary
    * accurate and sufficient evidence presented in a scholarly manner
    * proper disciplinary and inter-disciplinary research tools
    * clear and appropriate writing for a research paper 
6. Ability to write clearly and effectively   





College of Social and Behavioral Sciences