The skills most in demand for today’s job market are those in which English majors excel – oral and written communication, critical thinking, active listening, reading comprehension and analysis.
Strength in these communication fundamentals places graduates of Appalachian State University’s English (BA) - Literary Studies program at the top of employers’ wish lists, assuring them success and flexibility in a wide variety of careers such as writing, editing, publishing, law, teaching, educational administration, journalism, broadcasting, marketing, advertising, public relations, financial services, business, library and information science, information technology, medicine, politics and more.
The Literary Studies program offers students a solid, well-rounded liberal arts education. By helping students to investigate, nurture and integrate their historical, philosophical, psychological, political, ideological, ethical, emotional, spiritual and aesthetic responses to the world, the study of literature helps students to become complete and well-rounded individuals. Literary Studies majors engage in analytical and critical readings of literature and develop methods for arguing and supporting a specific point of view, with the guidance of award-winning faculty who are distinguished in their fields. This program is particularly good preparation for law, business, publishing, higher education, and other professional fields.
Employment: Students who graduate from this program have gone on to work for Wake Forest University, Palgrave Macmillan Publishing, CNN, Merrill Lynch, U.S. Department of Justice, Proctor and Gamble, PepsiCo, Odyssey Marketing Group, Digitas Health, Duke University Hospital, Microsoft, Mitsubishi Nuclear Energy Systems and others.
Graduate School: Students who chose to continue their education have gone on to earn graduate degrees in English, law, education, publishing, linguistics, technical and scientific communication, library and information science, history, medicine, communication sciences and disorders, public administration, psychology, social work, theology, computer science, business administration and creative writing. They have gone on to graduate programs at the following schools:
- Appalachian State University
- UNC-Chapel Hill
- Emory University
- University of Chicago
- University of Massachusetts-Amherst
- Duke University
- Wake Forest University
- Graduate Center, City University of New York
- Florida State University
- Miami University of Ohio
- University of South Carolina
- Oxford University (UK)
- York University (UK)
- University of Aberystwyth (UK)
Students take courses in British, American and world literature, as well as writing, a language and a senior capstone in literature.
A minor is required for this major. Popular choices include:
- Foreign Languages
- TESL/Applied Linguistics
- Art History
- Global Studies
- Women’s Studies
Engagement Outside the Classroom
The English Club is a student-run organization that supports camaraderie among English majors through a variety of activities and special events on campus.
Sigma Tau Delta is an international honor society for English undergraduates.
Lyric is Appalachian’s Spoken Word Poetry Club.
The Peel is an award-winning student-run literary publication that features Appalachian students’ stories, poetry, essays and artwork.
Cold Mountain Review is Appalachian’s professional literary review published out of the Department of English.
The Film Club is the Department of English’s undergraduate club devoted to film production and appreciation.
APPS Society Film Series is sponsored by the Appalachian Popular Programming Society (APPS).
Sustainability Film Series screens films that help viewers better understand the challenges facing human culture and our planet.
The Queer Film Series seeks to increase campus and community awareness of the histories, lives, and cultures of LGBTQI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, and intersex) persons.
The Hughlene Bostian Frank Visiting Writers Series brings eight authors to campus for readings and craft talks throughout the school year.
Appalachian is committed to introducing students to different cultures and teaching them how to live and interact in a global society.
There are no admission requirements beyond admission to Appalachian State University.
- Research shows that English majors who choose to pursue a graduate or professional degree consistently perform at the highest levels on the GMAT, MCAT, LSAT and the GRE.
- 4000-level literature classes are capped at 18 students, so professors and students work together closely.
- The Hughlene Bostian Frank Visiting Writers Series brings eight authors to campus every year.
- Qualifying students can participate in Appalachian’s accelerated master’s program – often called 4+1 – and complete a master’s degree in English in one additional year.
Number of Students
Method of Delivery
On campus only
Appalachian graduates with English degrees excel wherever employers value cultural literacy and the ability to read carefully, think critically and write effectively.
Dr. Tammy Wahpeconiah
Professor and Interim Chair