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Sequence of Courses 

The study of modern communications combines wide background knowledge with technical expertise, from traditional literary study to the latest applications in digital electronics. You can develop your skills in several areas: literature, writing, speech, the literature of the theatre, film, television, and radio.

Our program is built on a foundation of courses that give you excellent training in literature, language, and mass media. As an English/Communications graduate, you will be a generalist with extensive humanistic knowledge, capable of adapting your skills and talents to the demands of a number of different career paths.

Your courses in the major fall into three broad areas: foundation courses that everyone takes, concentration courses that focus on your particular learning goals, and electives that expand your knowledge on specific topics.

Foundation courses (24 credits)

All majors take the following eight courses.

Introduction to Mass Media (ENGL 211)

Essentials of Literature (ENGL 250)

Major Author (ENGL 351-65; select one)

Literature in Context (ENGL 366-80; select one)

Diverse Voices in American Literature (ENGL 381-94; select one)

Any advanced writing course at the 200 level or above

Choose one:
   British Masterpieces (ENGL 451)
   American Masterpieces (ENGL 461)
   World Masterpieces (ENGL 471)

ENGL 490 Senior Seminar

Concentration courses

Beyond the foundation courses shared by everyone, you select a concentration. Discuss which concentration best meets your interests, talents, and career goals with your advisor.

Broadcast Media

Film Studies



Public Relations & Corporate Communications

Creative Writing

Departmental Electives (6 credits)

Finally, you complete your major with additional courses that broaden your preparation. Working closely with your advisor, you choose the electives that enrich your qualifications for such career objectives as law, teaching, journalism, media design, public relations, advertising, insurance, real estate, radio or television production, technical writing, consumer relations, editing, politics, and many more.

For example, if you have a concentration in Journalism, you might choose:

  • Two courses in Public Relations that both strengthen your concentration and broaden your career options

  • Two courses in Literature that broaden your understanding of story-telling strategies

  • Any combination that best suits your individual needs and preferences

Your choice of electives should follow a coherent plan, reflecting your career goals, and broadening your exposure to the field.

You can choose to use six hours of intermediate foreign language as elective credit toward the English degree, or you can use study in foreign language to substitute for the core requirement in Critical Reading (ENGL 349). We cannot recommend strongly enough that all English majors attain at least intermediate proficiency in a foreign language.

Suggested Course Sequence

Core courses, concentration courses, and departmental electives should, if possible, follow the pattern outlined below. Of course, you should work out the precise sequence of courses in close consultation with your advisor.

Freshman/Sophomore Year

Introduction to Mass Media(ENGL 211)
Essentials of Literature (ENGL 250)
First course in your concentration

Sophomore/Junior Year

Two core E/C foundation courses (Major Author or Literature in Context, for example)
Required course in advanced writing

Junior Year

Two E/C foundation courses Second concentration course
Third concentration course
First departmental elective
(Some students may be ready for Critical Reading in the 2nd semester; see your advisor.)

Senior Year 

Critical Reading (1st semester)
Second departmental elective
Fourth concentration course
ENGL 490 Senior Seminar (2nd semester)