If you choose a Literature major, you will engage deeply in the study of texts from different time periods and parts of the world and so imagine possible realities and the lives of others. Literary coursework develops your alertness to the powers of language and texts, your ability to handle ambiguity and the unknown, and creative and critical habits that will deepen your understanding of how the written word shapes the world.

Along the way, you’ll learn professional skills and advanced critical, interpretive, and human interaction skills that will make you a strong candidate for a limitless variety of rewarding careers.

Program Highlights

  • Faculty who know who you are and where you are going
  • Opportunities to professionalize your writing, editing and publishing experience through creative outlets such as Upper Mississippi Harvest, an art and literary magazine; and Kaleidoscope, a multicultural literary magazine
  • Internships encouraged in professional, language-rich, challenging environments
  • Study abroad opportunities worldwide, including Alnwick Castle (England), Mary Immaculate College (Ireland), or Nelson Mandela University (South Africa)
  • The Literature concentration does not require a minor, although foreign language study is recommended
  • More than a dozen department-based scholarships awarded each year

Program Distinctions

  • The Write Place can employ English majors with unbeatable experience providing individualized writing coaching while respecting a writer's authority and ownership of their work.
  • Published writers in the department you can work with include Monica Pelaez (Lyrical Liberators: The American Antislavery Movement in Verse, 1831–1865 (PDF) (2019); Matthew Barton, Dungeons and Desktops and other books analyzing video gaming and digital media; Cezarija Abartis, Sarah Green, and Shannon Olson’s long list of creative works in poetry, fiction, and non-fiction; and Michael Dando.
  • Recent graduates have distinguished themselves at graduate schools and in careers in the corporate and non-profit sectors doing freelance writing, technical writing, social media development and brand management at — 3M, Edge Advertising in Plymouth, Benton County News/Star Publications, Cricket Media in Chicago. 

Student Organizations

Popular Careers

  • Copywriting
  • Publishing
  • Editing
  • Teaching
  • Social media/brand management

University Facts & Stats

  • 93% of English graduates employed

  • 39 Education Abroad programs offered

  • 2021 Military Friendly® Top 10 School designation

  • 90+ nations represented on campus

  • $4.8 million HD TV broadcasting renovation

  • Among Forbes' "America's Top Colleges" 

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