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About the Program

English students engage with the richness and variety of poetry, drama and prose fiction. You will also explore a range of historical periods and critical approaches. By considering the aesthetic, rhetorical, historical, philosophical, cultural and ideological dimensions of everything from the canonical masterpieces of British and American literature to experimental literary works and marginalized voices from around the world, you will discover the power of English language and literature and make some of your own.

What Makes Us Different

  • A solid foundation

    Critical thinking, communication and independent research skills will prepare you for graduate and professional programs and the working world of business, nonprofits and public service.

  • Base for interdisciplinary programs

    The topics explored through English pair well with other areas such as Africana Studies, Environmental Studies, Film Studies and Gender, Sexuality & Women’s Studies.

  • Creativity meets rigor

    Combine a deep knowledge of past forms, modes and genres with the opportunity to refine your own artistic practice.

Applied Learning



English majors excel in their ability to synthesize research, formulate thoughts, draw carefully reasoned conclusions and communicate effectively with a wide range of audiences. Equally important is the majors' broad contextual understanding of the history and sweep of human ideas. W&M graduates apply their skills and knowledge in a wide range of endeavors. Many gravitate toward careers in business, marketing, editing, writing and teaching at the elementary and secondary levels. A substantial number go on to graduate-level study in a field related to English with the goal of entering the professoriate or pursue a professional degree in journalism, medicine, law or librarianship.

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Want to learn more? Our current students and faculty want to connect with you.

Department of English

Tucker Hall Room 112

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Courses Disclaimer

*Courses listed are examples. Course availability changes each semester.