Western Washington University · Bellingham, Washington
English—Literature Emphasis, BA
What Is the Study of English Literature?
English is one of the central liberal arts degrees. A background in English provides graduates with a sound basis for pursuing a variety of careers including law, business, education, publishing and government, as well as graduate work in language, literary and cultural studies, and writing. English engages students in diverse literary heritages, as well as fosters the development of sophisticated abilities in critical analysis, creative inquiry, reflective reading, and effective communication and expression.
Why Should I Consider this Major?
The English Literature major focuses on the study of literatures in historical and cultural contexts and includes course work in English language, literary theory, and composition and rhetoric. Some students may opt to develop a writing concentration within their literature major, taking writing courses such as composition, creative writing, and professional and technical writing. There are also opportunities to pursue English Education, including endorsements. Students in the upper-division courses are expected to interpret and analyze literature in thoughtful, organized, and clear essays that are free of mechanical errors. If you think you need help with your reading and writing, we strongly encourage you, in addition to your work in English courses, to consult the Writing Center and other university resources.
How to Declare:
The prerequisites for declaring the major are 75 credits completed and ENG 202.
To declare the major, contact the Undergraduate Program Coordinator, Linda Flanagan. Though the English department cannot guarantee immediate enrollment in the major or access to any specific class, we matriculate students into the major on a rolling basis as space is available and offer a wide variety of topics each term.
Advising Tips: Students are strongly encouraged to meet with the Undergraduate Program Coordinator, Linda Flanagan, early in their careers at Western. Students must declare their major by the start of their junior year.
English Language Arts- Secondary Endorsement:
Students seeking teacher certification are advised that the careful selection of English courses within the English Literature major and the addition of one 5 credit English course are necessary in order to meet requirements for the English Language Arts—Secondary endorsement. Students must meet with the secondary education academic advisor in the English department, Bruce Goebel (HU 277, 360-650-7364), to complete a plan of study.
- Four courses from:
- ENG 307 - Literature and Culture I: Pre-16th Century
- ENG 308 - Literature and Culture II: 16th and 17th Centuries
- ENG 309 - Literature and Culture III: 18th and 19th Centuries
- ENG 310 - Literature and Culture IV: 19th and 20th Centuries
- ENG 311 - Literature and Culture V: 20th and 21st Centuries
- One course from:
- ENG 301 - Introduction to Writing Studies
- ENG 302 - Introduction to Technical and Professional Writing
- ENG 350 - Introduction to Creative Writing
- ENG 401 - Senior Seminar in Writing Studies and Rhetoric
- ENG 313 - History of Critical and Cultural Theory
- ENG 418 - Senior Seminar
- ENG 370 - Introduction to Language
- (Students who earn a grade of 3.0 or better in Linguistics 201 may substitute a 300 or 400-level English course under advisement for English 370.)
- Electives: 20 credits. 15 credits must be at the 400 level, 5 credits at either the 300 or 400 level
These courses are offered within this major and may be used to satisfy GUR or Writing Proficiency Requirements.
- BCOM: ENG 202
- ACGM: ENG 335, 336
- BCGM: ENG 334, 338
- Law Business (including public relations, sales and marketing)
- Education (teaching or administrating)
- Author, broadcaster, artist, entertainer
- Government Editing and Publishing
- Graduate work in Literature and Creative Writing
- Graduate work in Composition and Language