Undergraduates who major or minor in English explore literature as readers and writers in small classes that focus on the individual student. With help from our wide array of course topics and intellectual approaches, alumni of the English department have succeeded in top-notch graduate programs in law, business and medicine as well as in English and creative writing. Preparation for the English major now begins at the freshman level. In both the fall and spring semesters, freshman seminars of fifteen students or fewer are led by distinguished faculty on subjects such as detective fiction, literature and justice, the invention of romantic love, and the cultural history of the American university. Other freshman seminars train skills in creative writing through close reading of celebrated literary texts. Our department's commitment to cross-fertilizing creative and critical literacy is genuine and longstanding. Home to one of the leading MFA programs in the United States, the department offers an undergraduate minor in writing as well as a major with a concentration in creative writing. English students frequently enroll in creative writing workshops or classes in advanced rhetoric, and three such courses may count toward the regular English major.
It is no accident that both American Culture Studies and the Interdisciplinary Program in the Humanities were founded by English Department faculty. Indeed, many of our classes are designed to facilitate and enrich your movement across various humanities programs and disciplines, from History and African and African American Studies, to Comparative Literature and Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies. Our students have developed second majors in almost every department in the university. Psychology, anthropology, and political science have traditionally interested English majors, with an increasing number now also majoring in those natural sciences that open doors to careers in medicine or scientific research.
Successful English majors are encouraged to join our active and growing honors society, Sigma Tau Delta, and to pursue honors degrees involving original research and one-on-one faculty tutorials. We offer a range of opportunities to study abroad at some of the finest British universities, Oxford and University College, London, among them. All English undergraduates are encouraged to contribute to our new blog, established to encourage student exploration of literature and the arts beyond the classroom.