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English Language and Literature


Programs in English language and literature focus on the English language, including its history and structure. They also look at the literature and culture of English-speaking peoples.

English language and literature programs include topics such as:


In English language and literature programs, students may be able to specialize in:


Community colleges and other two-year schools offer associate degree programs in English language and literature. An associate degree usually takes two years to complete. After earning an associate degree students can transfer to a college or university for further study.

Most colleges and universities offer bachelor's degrees in English language and literature. They are sometimes offered as part of a broad English program. A bachelor's degree usually takes about four years of full-time study.

Many universities offer graduate degrees in English language and literature. A master's degree typically requires two years of study beyond a bachelor's degree. Doctoral (PhD) degree programs usually require two or more years of study beyond the master's degree.

See schools that offer this program.

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Careers Directly Related to this Program of Study

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Program Admission

You can prepare for this program by taking courses in high school that prepare you for college. This typically includes four years of English, three years of math, three years of social studies, and two years of science. Some colleges also require two years of a second language.

Below is a list of high school courses that will help prepare you for this program of study:

Graduate Admissions

Admission to graduate programs is competitive. You need a bachelor's degree, good grades, and good test scores.

Additional requirements at some schools include:

Typical Course Work

Program Courses

This undergraduate program typically offers course work in the following:

Graduate Program Courses

Graduate study in English language and literature typically includes:

Things to Know

If you want to transfer credits to a four-year program or attend graduate school, you should plan your courses carefully with your college advisor.

This program offers adequate preparation for graduate study in many fields. For example, an undergraduate degree in English can prepare you for graduate study in business, community service, journalism, human resources, law, public administration, social work, and teaching. Many people choose to continue studying in the field, concentrating on creative writing, composition and rhetoric, or specific areas of literature.

English language and literature programs often offer a broad selection of courses. For example, you can take courses on African writers, environmental essays, creative writing, or film analysis, to name a few.


East Side Area

Big Bend Community College

Central Washington University

Walla Walla University

Washington State University - Pullman

Wenatchee Valley College

King-Snohomish Area

Bellevue College

Columbia College - Naval Station Everett/Marysville

Everett Community College

Highline College

North Seattle College

Seattle Pacific University

Shoreline Community College

South Seattle College

University of Washington - Seattle

Kitsap Area

Olympic College

Spokane Area

Eastern Washington University

Gonzaga University

Spokane Community College

Spokane Falls Community College

Whitworth University

Tacoma Area

Evergreen State College, The (Tacoma Campus)

Pacific Lutheran University

Pierce College Fort Steilacoom

Pierce College Puyallup

Tacoma Community College

University of Puget Sound

Tri-Cities Area

Washington State University - Tri-Cities

Vancouver Area

Washington State University - Vancouver

West Side Area

Centralia College

Columbia College - Whidbey Island

Evergreen State College, The

Grays Harbor College

Lower Columbia College

Saint Martin's University

Skagit Valley College

Western Washington University

Yakima Area

Heritage University

Yakima Valley College