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College of Arts and Sciences


English studies is an academic discipline that focuses on the study of literatures written in the English language, as well as English linguistics and English sociolinguistics. The degrees offered by the Department of English Language and Literature explore literature, composition and rhetoric, creative writing, and speech communication.

This area of study prepares students for careers in publishing/editing, advertising, public relations, law, journalism, web development, marketing, arts administration, non-profit administration, government, teaching, finance and library science.

Undergraduate: B.A.

An English major combines all the intellectual rigor of a traditional liberal arts education with all the fun of engaging with the best creative minds of every generation — and maybe even joining the next generation of literary greats. As an English major, students analyze literary and non-literary texts within cultural and historical contexts, to think critically, to write clearly and to communicate persuasively.

The department offers four major tracks leading to a Bachelor of Arts degree: general major, intensive major, writing concentration and secondary education. Hands-on experience through innovative research projects, internships and major fellowships is encouraged for all undergraduate students.

Graduate: M.A. and Ph.D.

The graduate program features a curriculum that provides opportunities for foundational training, specialized inquiry, and directed interdisciplinary scholarship. Home to diverse and creative students, USC English offers a collaborative learning environment, sponsors a variety of student organizations, and places a heavy emphasis on professional development and the successful placement of graduates.

As part of its commitment to support graduate education, the program's students are eligible for numerous fellowships, including several for prospective and current students from both the Graduate School and the College of Arts and Sciences as well as several competitive department and program-specific fellowships.


Department Chair
Nina Levine

Undergraduate Director
Rachel Corbett

Graduate Director
Andrew Shifflett

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