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What English majors learn

What skills and knowledge will I have when I graduate?

Three main skills:

  1. critical reading: the ability to read a wide variety of texts with attention to the nuances of structure, style, implication, and rhetoric that reveal thoughts, motives, and presumptions.
  2. critical thinking: the ability to analyse any situation on its merits and to arrive at original conclusions.
  3. critical writing, with emphasis on the writing of evidence-based arguments and analysis.

In your English classes, you will learn to think critically and logically, to make and support evaluative judgements, and to communicate more effectively by learning how others communicate. English develops flexibility of thought, creative engagement with new situations, compassion, and the ability to learn through dialogue.

You will also learn:

  • techniques and terminology for reading texts closely
  • historical contexts for contemporary literary, social, cultural and ethical questions
  • how literature in English has changed over a number of historical periods
  • how to read a broad range of texts from different periods, genres, and national origins, by both men and women from different cultural surroundings
  • contemporary developments in literary and related cultural theory