Why do most colleges and majors require English courses?
In English classes, students learn essential skills like:
- Effective Reading & Writing Strategies and Processes
- Research Strategies
- Clear Communication
- Critical Thinking
Not matter your chosen career, almost all majors require English composition as a prerequisite. Why?
At the heart of every college class is language, and without the necessary reading and writing skills, students may struggle in their coursework since both reading and writing are at the core of all disciplines. English composition courses allow you to acquire skills—such as “how to compose, understand, persuade, and respond” (Dumbauld)—all of which make students better equipped for college classes and life in general: “That’s the focus of English Composition: empowering you to interact with the world on your terms, in your own words” (Dumbauld). That is an asset no matter which path you choose to take.
For more information on the importance of college English classes, see “English Composition: The Most Important College Course You’ll Ever Take.”
Why Major in English?
Liberal Arts and Humanities majors are generally preferred by employers above other majors (political science, for instance) for the above-mentioned skills. According to the Wall Street Journal, “Class of 2015 graduates from those disciplines are employed at higher rates than their cohorts in the class of 2014, and starting salaries rose significantly” (Waller). Employers want well-rounded employees, and English majors deliver.
While teaching is definitely at the forefront, other careers for English majors include journalism, law, publishing, medicine, and the fine arts. All of these careers benefit from the skills you learn as an English major.
Some famous English majors from differing disciplines:
- Conan O’Brian (television host)
- Barbara Walters (journalist)
- Steven Spielberg (film director)
- Clarence Thomas (Supreme Court Justice)
Because it’s your passion
Admit it—you love to read and write. They excite you, and you want to share that passion with others. If that is the case for you, know that our English Department will support you along the way. But even if an English major isn’t your goal, taking English courses is a great start toward any successful career path.
Important Dates & Events
On our calendar, you will find important campus-wide dates in addition to English Department events, such as guest speakers, workshops, GLS-hosted activities, amongst other universally important events for all students and community members. Many events provide links to flyers, offering more information.