An English Degree Prepares You For a Wide Range of Careers

English majors are well-suited to a wide range of careers, from legal and publishing to technology, marketing, education, medicine, public service, and more. They have the analytical skills and communication skills necessary for these roles.

They’re also excellent writers, using effective writing processes and contributing to conversations by reading, listening, speaking, and writing clearly and persuasively. They have a keen sense of cultural awareness, and are interested in exploring the ideas that shape our world, both past and present.

As an English major, you develop a wide range of skills, including critical thinking and analysis, strong interpersonal and communication abilities, and advanced vocabulary and grammar. You’ll also learn how to engage with literature, history, and culture in ways that will help you in your professional life and in making decisions about how to best spend your time as a student or a working person.

Those skills are particularly important for today’s world, where there is a demand for workers who can communicate effectively and efficiently with their clients. According to the World Economic Forum, eight of the ten in-demand skills trending for 2022 are taught in English classes, such as critical thinking, creativity, and interpersonal skills.

A BA or MA in English can lead to a variety of career options, from journalism and law to publishing and medicine. Students can also choose to pursue graduate degrees in English and related fields such as linguistics, psychology, or philosophy.

An English degree is usually a reading-intensive program, with coursework focusing on literature and related subjects. It’s also typically assignment-based, with essays and papers submitted frequently and exams administered at the end of each semester or year.

For a degree in English, you’ll need at least 36 semester hours of course work (depending on your country). This includes a minimum of 7 literature courses and 1 writing course. You’ll also need to choose 9 units of electives, including one 200-level or above English language and literature course not counted toward the writing requirement.

You’ll take core courses in literary theory and criticism, language, and the social sciences. You’ll also take a wide range of writing courses that focus on fiction, poetry, drama, and nonfiction. You’ll also have the opportunity to study abroad or complete an internship.

Your English studies will teach you to read with a critical eye and to write articulately and beautifully, no matter what your interests are. You’ll also be able to apply these skills to a variety of topics and disciplines, from business memos to music lyrics.

The skills you gain as an English major will always be in demand, and they’ll remain valuable tools that you can use in your professional and personal life. In fact, many employers are actively seeking and welcoming English graduates because of the breadth of their expertise.

If you want to study English, there’s no better place to start than Yale. Our Department is at the heart of literary study in America and around the world, and we have a long tradition of teaching students and alumni to critically think about the ideas and stories that matter.