If you’re visiting this page, chances are that you love reading—thumbing through stories, figuring out what they mean, tinkering with how they’re put together, and reflecting on what they reveal about different cultures.
UO English offers several ways to pursue your passion for stories, including a major leading to a bachelor's degree and several minors that range from traditional studies in literature and rhetoric to more interdisciplinary programs in a wide range of texts, cultural artifacts, and new media.
Our courses provide the broad knowledge of a liberal arts education, helping you think and write critically about the many stories you encounter every day. You will also develop a solid foundation in research, textual interpretation, media literacy, and argumentation—skills that are attractive to many employers and essential to being an ethical person.Share in centuries of great literature and explore groundbreaking research in film, popular media, folklore, and rhetoric. Develop your writing skills, aesthetic sensitivity, analytic intelligence, and capacity for moral judgment. Learn to navigate and shape the information age.
Watch this video to learn what it's like to study English at UO:
Why Major in English?
The future for English grads looks bright. Employers, more than ever, want candidates who possess strong writing and communication skills.
In fact, a recent issue of Cascade, the magazine of the UO College of Arts & Sciences, highlighted how a recruiter for a financial services company was looking for English majors to join his organization. He had this to say:The ideal skill set for the position is someone who had majored in English literature – a student who has read about life and its seasons, who is a rigorous and adaptable thinker, who is a good communicator. That kind of person is able to approach problems in a way that someone who is only technically trained cannot.
Regardless of if you think graduate work in literature or work in finance or any number of fields is in your future, perhaps the best reason to major in English is to set yourself apart. An English major offers you skills in reading, writing, researching, organizing, responding, arguing, and most importantly, analysis – abilities we need now more than ever. The skills you learn as an English major never grow obsolete, as the ability to understand and shape language is one of the most essential parts of being human.
Studying language and literature via our revamped English major not only allows you to gain a deep historical understanding of culture, history, and prose from across the globe, but also the expertise to interpret new modes of reading in our digital age.
Want to learn more? Send us an email to learn more about studying English at the University of Oregon.