What Can I Do With A Major In English?

English is a major branch of the language arts, and the study of English compliments a wide variety of occupations, both in the academic and the business world. A solid grasp of our language, whether spoken or written, is considered basic to American society and reflects a person's level of educational achievement.

As the largest division of the College of Arts and Sciences, UM's English program offers students six options or areas of emphasis: literature, creative writing, film studies, Irish studies, linguistics, teaching English as a Second Language and English teaching in secondary educational institutions. English teachers receive a BA in English literature and are certified to teach students at the middle school and high schools level. Creative writing offers a degree with emphasis in fiction, poetry, or nonfiction writing. Students in the literature option study different genres, eras, and theories of literature. Students in linguistics and teaching English as a second language learn about the essence of language and language acquisition, preparing them for advanced study in linguistics and teaching abroad. Finally, film studies allows students to study film as text and learn about the history, theory and production of this medium. All options focus heavily on writing and analysis, making the English BA a particularly good choice for students wishing to advance to graduate schools.

Commercial businesses recruit English majors because they develop a broad-based understanding of social, cultural and literary perspectives, as well as an accomplishment in critical thinking -- the ability to read a body of work, critically evaluate the body of work, and articulate an audience appropriate response to it. These skills are highly valued in the job market.

A Sample of Related Occupations

Types of Employers

Private and Non-Profit Organizations

Advertising Agencies
Book Publishers
Community Colleges
Community Organizations
Educational Institutions
Financial Institutions
Fundraising Organizations
Health Institutions
Internet Marketing Firms
Literary Journals
Management/Consulting Firms
Manufacturing/Sales Firms
Marketing and Research Firms
On-line Publishers/Retailers
Political Candidates
Professional Publications
Public Relations Firms
Public and Private Middle or High Schools
Radio Stations
Retail Stores
Travel Agencies

Government Agencies

Civil Rights Commission
Consumer Affairs Office
Cultural Affairs
Department of Defense
Department of Education
Department of State
Division of Youth & Family Services
Legislative Affairs
Motor Vehicle Dept.
National Institutes of Health
Peace Corp/Vista
Political Organizations
Small Business Admin.
Travel and Tourism Dept.

Related Web Links

Professional Associations