The School of Arts & Sciences

Department of English

BA in English

Given its history of service to the entire university and its growing triple-tiered, interdisciplinary BA-English program – students curate the emphasis of their studies by choosing a combination of literature, language, and creative writing classes – the Department of English stands proudly and stoically as the flagship department of the School of Arts and Sciences. The variety of English courses that may be taken as Liberal Arts and Science (LAS) electives is a core contributor to a well-rounded undergraduate education. The department also hosts the annual university-wide Literature Day and Creative Writing Competition.

The department Today

Teaching and research in the department cover the entire history of literature in English from the Anglo-Saxon period to the present day, along with language, literature in translation, and creative writing studies. In 2015 and 2018, the language and writing tracks were restructured to have more functional and experiential emphases – to offer an enhanced, and better focused, education for our students. Additional awareness of the Anglophone writing community outside the classroom is provided for by guest speakers, editors, and industry specialists, invited where possible to share their expertise with students. 

Growth Areas

More recent growth areas in the department – reflected in new course offerings, faculty research, and award-winning student capstone projects – include literary and cultural theory, life writing, postcolonial and world literature, gender and sexuality, corpus linguistics, narrative medicine, English studies of the Arabic novel and discourse and power. We are also the only university in the region that offers full-fledged undergraduate courses in narrative medicine and the Arabic novel in translation. Faculty research strengths lie in the sheer variety of outputs, from representations of aging in the Arabic novel, queer readings of home in the diaspora, language and the law, media and politics, Victorian studies, Renaissance criticisms, and ethnographic life writing research.

Student and Faculty Successes

In 2019, three students on the BA-ENG cohort were appointed editors of Afkar, an emerging peer-reviewed undergraduate journal of Middle East studies, with links to Yale, New York University, and the School of Oriental and African Studies, London. The department also benefits from the academic visibility achieved by faculty who regularly showcase their research at international conferences and symposia, or who are awarded research fellowships or book deals by illustrious institutions in the field, including the University of Oxford and Edinburgh University Press. 


A senior research thesis is a core requirement for graduation.  If you specialize in Professional creative writing, you will complete an internship during your final year.

Regardless of their chosen emphasis, English majors can obtain a Teaching Diploma by taking six designated Education courses (18 credits), including EDU418 Practice Teaching. If the student chooses any from these six Education courses to satisfy part of the Core Curriculum requirement, he/she must take the equivalent number of courses/credits, in any field, to be awarded the Teaching Diploma.

What Do I Do with My Degree?

With your degree, you could also go for careers in professional writing, media, television, international organizations, the arts, publishing, business, translation, consulting, information technology, journalism, and public relations. You could enter a teaching career (if you also get the Teaching Diploma), or start graduate studies in a wide variety of fields related to literature, language, creative writing and the humanities and social sciences.

Major Core Requirements (24 credits)

Number Course Cr
ENG213 Introduction to Language 3
ENG216 Introduction to Literature 3
ENG281 Language & Change: Past, Present, & Future 3
ENG303 Literary Linguistics 3
ENG366 Creative Writing 3
ENG372 Comparative and World Literature 3
ENG354 Theories of Literature and Culture 3
ENG499 Senior Study 3

Other Major Requirements (24 credits)

Student can choose one of the 6 options below: 


Number Course Cr
ENG323 Renaissance Drama 3
ENG324 Medieval Literature 3
ENG325 Renaissance Poetry 3
ENG326 Restoration and Neoclassical Literature 3
ENG328 Early Novel 3
ENG336 Romantic & Victorian Poetry 3
ENG339 Nineteenth-century British Novel 3
ENG342 Modernism and Beyond 3
ENG345 Twentieth-century British Novel 3
ENG346 Contemporary Culture 3
ENG348 Post-colonial Anglophone Literature 3
ENG351 Early American Literature 3
ENG352 Twentieth-Century American Novel 3
ENG479 Topics in Literature and Culture 3
ENG376 Gender in Literature 3
ENG487 Topics in Drama & Theatre* 3

*ENG487 can be taken more than once for extra credits if the topics differ. 


Number Course Cr
ENG282 Language and the Media 3
ENG283 Language and Gender 3
ENG308 Semantics and Pragmatics 3
ENG380 Language and the Law 3
ENG381 Corpus Linguistics 3
ENG480 Discourse and Power 3


Number Course Cr
ENG301        Food and Travel Writing                3         
ENG331 Poetry Writing 3
ENG332 Life Writing 3
ENG333 Fiction Writing 3
ENG335 Playwriting 3

Liberal Arts Curriculum requirements (34 credits): divided into Liberal Arts Core Curriculum (13 credits) and Liberal Arts Electives (21 credits)

Free Electives (10 credits)

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