The Major

General Information

Courses numbered from 100 to 294 (introductory courses) are designed for non-majors and majors alike.  With the exception of 200-level creative writing courses, these courses have no prerequisites.  English 295, “Critical Methods,” requires prior completion of one Foundations course and another 6-credit English course. (English 295 is not open to first-year students.)   Literature courses numbered 300 and above (upper-level courses) require prior completion of one Foundations course and another 6-credit English course.   Intermediate courses in creative writing (200-level) require prior completion of one 6-credit English course; admission to upper-level courses in creative writing (300-level) is by portfolio submission.  English 395, “Advanced Seminar,” requires prior completion of English 295 and one 300-level course.

Requirements for a Major

I. 72 credits in English, including the following:

1. Foundations: One designated 100-level course that develops skills of literary analysis and introduces the concept of genre

2. Historical Eras: 36 credits in literature courses numbered 200-395 (excluding 220 and 295) which must include:

  • 12 credits in literature before 1660 (HE1)
  • 12 credits in literature between 1660 and 1900 (HE2)
  • 12 credits in literature after 1900 (HE3)

3. English 295: Critical Methods

4. English 395: Advanced Seminar

5. English 400:  Integrative Exercise (A senior may choose one of the following):

  • Colloquium Option: A group option in which participants discuss, analyze and write about a thematically coherent list of literary works.
  • Research Essay Option: An extended essay on a topic of the student’s own devising.  Open only to students who have completed their Advanced Seminar by the end of Fall term senior year. 
  • Creative Writing Option: Creation of a work of literary art.  Open only to students who have completed at least two creative writing courses (one of which must be at the 300 level) by the end of Fall term senior year.
  • Project Option: Creation of an individual or group multidisciplinary project.

II. Of the 72 credits required to complete the major:

1. At least 6 credits must be taken in each of the following traditions

  • T1: Literature of Ireland & Britain
  • T2: Literature of North America
  • T3: Global Anglophone Literatures

2. At least 24 credits must be in courses numbered 300-395

3. Up to 6 credits may be in literature other than English in the original or translation

4. Up to 12 credits may be in creative writing