An English degree is a liberal arts degree that offers multiple benefits and can lead to various career opportunities. There are many attractive elements in an English degree, including strong written and oral communication skills and a broad range of knowledge on a variety of subjects.
Benefits of an English Degree
The benefits of an English degree go beyond the classroom. According to the Princeton Review, English majors will “assuredly sharpen ... critical, emotional, creative and moral faculties ... and the enduring questions of the human condition.” English majors not only learn about literature and writing but also communication and interpersonal relations. These soft skills can make a Bachelor’s degree in English a worthwhile investment, both for a career and for personal development.
Research published in the Brain Connectivity journal “found that reading fiction can improve a variety of brain functions, including enhanced empathy and improved imagination and visualization abilities. Reading also improves cognition and mental health.”
What English Majors Learn
Louisiana State University of Alexandria offers a Bachelor’s degree in English online with course requirements consistent with similar degrees at universities across the country, both online and traditional. These classes include English composition, writing and literature, as well as literary history and foreign languages. Examples of electives in this program include the following:
- Developmental Psychology.
- Myths, Legends and Folklore.
- Public Speaking.
- British Literature II.
The B.A. in English program also offers courses in creative writing and literary criticism. Other classes concentrate on a single author, such as Jane Austen or Shakespeare. Prospective students can find a complete list of required courses and electives on LSU of Alexandria’s course page.
Where English Majors Work
There are a variety of career options available to English majors. The Princeton Review notes that an English degree and “a working knowledge of literature is an invaluable component of any liberal arts education. It is tremendous preparation for a future in law (or any professional training that requires interpreting written material), journalism, publishing, [and] graduate studies.”
The Huffington Post published an article about the value of an English degree. English majors can “go on to successful careers in politics ... rule the word of news and media ... write the great American novels ... and help solve the world’s environmental and humanitarian crises.” English degrees prepare graduates for a wide range of careers: advertising, leadership, film and television. Famous English majors include politician Mitt Romney, TV personality Barbara Walters, and writers Steven King and Amy Tan.
While people may deem a Bachelor’s degree in English impractical, a study conducted by the Georgetown Center on Education and the Workforce notes, “right after graduating, English and history majors reported 9.8 and 9.5 percent unemployment, respectively, while economics and political science graduates came in at 10.4 and 11.1 percent.”
A Bachelor’s degree in English has multiple benefits beyond simply literature and writing. This degree can jump-start many different career opportunities, even in a down market. A flexible major like English is a smart choice for people considering online learning as well as those who want options upon graduation.
Learn more about the LSUA online BA in English program.
Have a question or concern about this article? Please contact us.