Department of English and Philosophy


English Undergraduate Studies at ISU

Why Study English?

Literature can be difficult or strange, disturbing or hysterically funny, profoundly spiritual or deeply irreverent. Majoring in English will increase your sense of intellectual curiosity and openness, and at the same time, sharpen your sense of value and discernment. In our classes, students are exposed to the traditions of American and English literature and also a diverse array of elective courses, ranging from Petrarch to Palahniuk, from Fantasy and Science Fiction to Nature Writing, from Classical Literature to Ethnic Literature, from gender theory to the graphic novel.

As a community of teachers and scholars, the Department of English and Philosophy at ISU seeks to understand the human experience through the study and appreciation of literature, language, ethics, and logic. Our programs encourage interaction among students and instructors in our shared goal of promoting innovative thinking, clear writing, and real engagement with ideas.

What Classes Would I Take?

Undergraduates studying English choose to major or minor in literature, creative writing, or professional writing. We also offer a minor in folklore as well as an inter-departmental minor in linguistics. Click on the links at the left to learn more about these options.

In addition, we support students pursuing teacher education through the College of Education. Our courses are described in the ISU Undergraduate Catalog. For more information, explore our website, contact the department office, or communicate with members of the faculty.

What Can I Do with an English Major?

Majoring in English is an excellent choice if you plan to become a teacher or a writer. Your career options, however, are not limited to these choices. English majors are well positioned to excel in a diverse array of career fields, including journalism, medicine, law, public relations, advertising, editing, and publishing. The skills you develop as an English major are valuable ones. Employers are continually seeking workers who can read critically, analyze logically, and communicate effectively. In addition, professional schools such as law, business, and medicine, prize applicants with English degrees.

To major in English is to become a better reader, which means learning to listen more carefully and think with greater deliberation about the world of language in which we live. We invite you to experience the pleasure and the reward of studying English.

For more information, please click on the links at the left or contact us.