Welcome to the English Department

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The English Department offers both undergraduate and graduate programs. The undergraduate major, with a concentration in literature or in writing, leads to a Bachelor of Arts degree in English. Students in other majors have the opportunity to minor in English or take English courses to meet Writing Intensive requirements or as free electives. You may choose from courses in British, American, European, and world literature, including minority and Non-Western literatures; linguistics, interpretative methods, and both critical and creative writing; and other areas, such as those focusing on special movements, themes, and genres, including drama and film. 

Majoring in English can help you enjoy a lifetime of reading pleasure and creative fulfillment, and it can also help prepare you for a successful career. With its emphasis on close reading and writing skills and its training in critical thinking—skills that are crucial in today’s high-tech global economy—the English major helps you acquire the tools that will allow you to flourish in a wide variety of career paths in the private and public sectors, and will give you career flexibility in a constantly changing world.  In a 2013 study, 93% of employers said that “a demonstrated capacity to think critically, communicate clearly, and solve complex problems” was more important in a job candidate than any specific major, and it is precisely these high-demand skills that the English program helps you develop. 

Our English major is a New Jersey State-recognized route for students pursuing Teaching Certification, and many students pursue teaching careers through acquiring a double major in English and Education. Other possible career paths include law, publishing, creative writing, public relations, non-profit organizations, or any of the extensive array of fields in which the ability to read well, think critically, and communicate clearly is essential to moving ahead.

An internship, which gives you real-life professional experience with one of the regional employers we work with, will make you a more attractive job candidate.  Internships are available to juniors and seniors with a GPA of 3.0 or better. Contact the Internship Coordinator, Dr. Martha Witt, for more information.

For information on William Paterson University’s admissions, application, and transfer procedures, click here.

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