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Open the door to infinite possibilities.

Majoring in English sharpens your critical thinking, reading and communication skills — abilities that will serve you well on any career path.

Become an expert on literary works

Your literary classes will expose you to a wide variety of works by authors from different times, places, and walks of life. Some courses will focus on only one or two authors, while others will invite you to perform comparative analysis of several works related to a single topic.

Develop skills in creative expression

There’s more to English than just literature! You’ll study films, playwriting, linguistics, language development and multimedia. By exploring how we use language to communicate ideas, you’ll come to understand English as both an art and a science — and this will empower you to express your own creative ideas.

Create your personal schedule

You’ll work with your academic advisor to create an English major that suits your needs. If you’re looking to teach English in grades 7-12, you’ll take graduate courses during your senior year. If becoming a writer is your objective, then you’ll take specific classes that concentrate on creative writing in different genres. No matter your passion, there’s a way to make your degree in English work for you.

At a Glance

Degree Type

Bachelor of Arts




College of Arts and Sciences

Next Steps

Interested in this major? Here's what you can do next:

The Curriculum

With challenging and relevant courses, outstanding faculty, small class sizes, and an emphasis on hands-on learning, the english program will position you to succeed in your chosen career.

Program Details

Find out what it takes to earn a degree in english and explore the courses.

Emphasis Areas

Customize this major to your interests by taking courses in an area of focus:


The writing concentration is appropriate for students who want to pursue an MFA or a career in professional writing.

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Highlighted Courses

Get familiar with some of the courses you might take in this major.

ENGL 302: Creative Writing: Fiction

Fiction writing workshop with an emphasis on skills: crafting plot, developing character, and evoking setting. Students will complete one or more short stories.

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ENGL 304: Creative Writing: Creative Nonfiction

This workshop will explore the evolving genre of creative nonfiction. This course will provide instruction and practice in reading creative nonfiction in some of its many forms. Writing assignments will include a range of essays such as the personal essay, lyric essay, and literary journalism.

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ENGL 305: Playwriting

This workshop course focuses on developing playwriting skills, with an emphasis on mastering plot, character, and dialogue development. Students will write and revise an original play.

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ENGL 324: English Literature II

This course explores the major themes and social contexts of English literature from the Romantic through the Victorian era to the present day.

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ENGL 326: American Literature II

This course focuses on the intellectual and social influences on the literature of the United States from the Civil War through the 20th century, with an emphasis on the impact of realism and modernism on the literary imagination.

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ENGL 480: English Major Capstone Colloquium

Students will research and write an original work of literary scholarship or complete a polished creative writing project. Students who wish to pursue a creative project should have taken a creative writing course in the genre they wish to write before enrolling in the Capstone.

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Recommended Minors

Want to add even more value to your degree? Consider one of these minors to gain a unique combination of skills and perspectives.

The Experience

We offer hands-on opportunities that give you the freedom to explore your passion through real-world work and prepare for a fulfilling career.

  • Internships

    In addition to your classes, you’ll be able to take on paid positions that allow you to build your teaching and leadership skills. These opportunities include internships, departmental assistantships, editing the award-winning literary magazine Morning Glory, and tutoring in the Writing Center.

  • Travel Seminars

    Travel seminars will allow you to experience the locations where great literary works first came to life. By studying up-close the cultures and histories that inspired these works, you’ll gain a more complete understanding of these important writings — and a greater appreciation of them.

  • Conference Presentations

    Performing research, writing critical analysis, and creating original works will all be integral parts of your coursework — the results of which you can present at local, regional, and national conferences. Also, the culmination of your major will be a public presentation of your capstone project.

Student photo

Morning Glory is so much more than just a college magazine. It has been a place of refuge and comfort for students, faculty, alumni and family, where people can process their emotions and make meaning and beauty out of both beautiful and painful experiences. It has been personally rewarding to cultivate a community of openness and dialogue on campus through the magazine.

Brianna Zaragoza '20

Career Paths

Because of the well-rounded training that an English major provides, our graduates have successfully pursued career paths as varied as their individual interests. Teaching, law, non-profit development, political advocacy, marketing, film, library science and business leadership are just a few examples of the fields you can enter with your English degree.

Potential Careers

Proofreaders and Copy Markers

Read transcript or proof type setup to detect and mark for correction any grammatical, typographical, or compositional errors. Excludes workers whose primary duty is editing copy. Includes proofreaders of braille.

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Plan, coordinate, revise, or edit written material. May review proposals and drafts for possible publication.

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Writers and Authors

Originate and prepare written material, such as scripts, stories, advertisements, and other material.

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Appraise, edit, and direct safekeeping of permanent records and historically valuable documents. Participate in research activities based on archival materials.

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Library Technicians

Assist librarians by helping readers in the use of library catalogs, databases, and indexes to locate books and other materials; and by answering questions that require only brief consultation of standard reference. Compile records; sort and shelve books or other media; remove or repair damaged books or other media; register patrons; and check materials in and out of the circulation process. Replace materials in shelving area (stacks) or files. Includes bookmobile drivers who assist with providing services in mobile libraries.

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English Language and Literature Teachers, Postsecondary

Teach courses in English language and literature, including linguistics and comparative literature. Includes both teachers primarily engaged in teaching and those who do a combination of teaching and research.

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Looking for more career paths? Search these related areas to discover more options.


Graduates from this major have gone to work at:

  • Creative Media Marketing
  • Dole Food Company
  • ELCA Division for Global Mission
  • J.D. Power & Associates
  • Sage Publications
  • The Trevor Project
  • Louisville High School
  • Peace Corps.

Graduate Schools

Our alumni have pursued advanced degrees at:

  • American University in Cairo
  • Antioch University
  • Arizona State University
  • Boston College
  • Emerson College
  • Goldsmiths, University of London
  • Trinity University, Dublin
  • University of California, Los Angeles
  • University of San Diego

This page includes information from O*NET OnLine by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license. Some occupations listed above may require a related graduate degree.

How We Prepare You for Success

We have 20,000+ employer contacts for jobs and internships, with over 200 listings posted each week.

Our excellent career counselors in the Career Services center will get in touch with you during your very first term on campus. They offer over 50 workshops each year on resume writing, interviewing, salary negotiations, applying to graduate schools, and other critical skills to help you begin your career successfully.

After you graduate from Cal Lutheran, you receive free access to Career Services for life, as a valued member of our alumni family.

Learn more about career outcomes

of Cal Lutheran graduates find a job or enroll in graduate school within nine months

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We offer a range of awards based on academic merit and financial need. This is money that does not need to be repaid.

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Financial Aid

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