English, B.A.

A group of English students outside Farmer Hall.The study of English language and literature enrich students’ lives by engaging with evocative authors, ideas, and language across historical periods, cultures, and national literatures. Because people read to be entertained, to be surprised, and to be inspired, we believe that all students benefit from integrating literature with writing on analytical, creative, and professional levels.

Undergraduate Requirements

Students who major in English must take 36 hours in English courses numbered 300 or above.

The 36 hours must include the following:

  • 3 hours in ENG 300, Introduction to the Major;
  • 9 hours in ENG 305, 306, and 307, Introduction to the Study of British and American Literature;
  • 3 hours in a course that focuses on the writings of one or two authors (ENG 405);
  • 3 hours in a course that focuses on a genre (ENG 411, 412, 413, 414, 415, or 419);
  • 3 hours in a course that focuses on texts of a specific cultural or historical period (ENG 423, 424, 425, 426, 427, 428, 431, 432, or 439);
  • 3 hours in a course that analytically studies the history, structure, or use of language or of texts (ENG 452, 454, or 455);
  • 3 hours in Diverse Voices, a study of texts that present perspectives or voices historically not taught in British or American literature (ENG 471, 472, 473, 474, or 475);
  • 3 hours in ENG 485, Senior Seminar: A Capstone Course for English majors; and
  • 6 additional hours in English courses numbered 300/400 and above.

Of the 27 hours in courses other than ENG 305, 306, and 307, at least 6 hours must be in literature written before 1800, and at least 6 hours must be in literature written after 1800. In addition, of these 27 hours, at least 3 hours must be in courses primarily about American literature, and at least 3 hours must be in courses primarily about British literature. A single course can satisfy only one of the nine requirements.

English majors must also complete either:

  • a minor in a selected field, or
  • a departmentally approved minor area of concentration.

Candidates who wish to pursue the English/Language Arts Alternative Master’s program must successfully complete 32/19 (32 hours with 19 hours at the 300/400 level) and have at least one course in each of the following areas: English, theatre, speech, journalism (MC 200), and grammar.

Alumnus Perspective

Tina Moziel BrazielWhat I love most about the English major is how it invites so much other knowledge in. If you know something about geology or philosophy or pottery, it informs how you write creativity, rhetorically, and analytically. Since we cant ever know all the things (at least I know I cant), English is a major that rewards us for following our curiosity. Take full advantage of UMs liberal arts education. Take classes in whatever sparks your imagination. And talk with your professors
about their passions. They may ignite your own.” — 
Tina Moziel Braziel B.A. ’95, Poet and Director of Ada Long Creative Writing Workshop


A minor in English requires completion of 18 hours in English courses numbered 300 or above.