English Program Overview

The Bachelor of Arts in English degree program at Manhattanville University allows students in two concentrations, Literature and Creative Writing, to develop strong reading and writing abilities, as well as the ability to organize and conceptualize individual and group projects. These are powerful professional capabilities used in nearly every career path.

Students who choose to concentrate in writing hone their craft in workshop courses and collaborate to design, edit, and publish the campus literary magazine, Graffiti. Students concentrating in literature grow and refine skills that employers covet, from clear communication to critical analysis, undertaking advanced research, and making persuasive public presentations using a variety of media.

With small, participatory classes, experienced faculty, and an intentional community of fellow language lovers, Manhattanville’s English major program is the ideal place to enhance your skills and build the confidence to thrive in any professional setting.

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The BA in English degree program curriculum allows students to explore literary themes and genres from diverse points of view. First, you’ll establish familiarity with periods of English, American, and non-Western literature. Next, you’ll encounter a variety of literary genres including poetry, fiction, drama, film, speeches, manifestos, letters, and social media. Finally, you’ll also become well-versed in how to distinguish primary from secondary sources, how to build arguments around key concepts, and how to organize a long-term research project.


To complete the English major, the requirements include:

  • Eleven core English language and literature courses
  • Concentration area courses and electives
  • General education requirements and First Year Program

Some course choices in the English major will be determined by either concentrating in Literature or in Creative and Professional Writing. Ample room for electives permits students to pursue their specific interests, independent study, or internship credit.

Review complete degree requirements for the BA in English.


English Major Courses 

The flexible structure of English coursework allows you to undertake diverse reading and writing projects to help hone your time management skills and locate your unique creative process. Based on the expertise and study interests of faculty, courses cover unique subfields and contemporary topics.

Courses you may take include:

  • The Art of Criticism
  • Narrative Studies
  • Shakespeare on Film
  • Monstrous Women
  • Love and Heroism in the English Renaissance


Literature Concentration

The BA in English with a concentration in Literature program grapples with early and modern works as well as post-colonial and non-Western literature. You’ll also learn how to pull these themes from other forms of media, like visual media, and how to analyze them meaningfully. 

Dive into courses including:

  • Reading and Writing in the Digital Age
  • How to Read and Love Poems 
  • Women in Comics
  • Cultures and Contexts: Literature of the Caribbean
  • Global Prison Literature 

Put your knowledge to use in a Senior Thesis Research course to complete your degree with a unique piece of new knowledge you’ve produced.


Creative and Professional Writing Concentration

The concentration in Creative and Professional Writing offers tailored craft training that allows students to dive into different genres. In addition to learning about literary themes and historical discourses, students take courses and participate in workshops in:

  • Poetics
  • Screenwriting
  • Journalism
  • Writing for the Media
  • Fiction
  • Literary Magazine Production

English majors concentrating in Creative and Professional Writing will submit a Senior Writing Portfolio in their senior year as their final project.


Double Major in English and Education

If you are interested in becoming an English teacher, this popular double major pathway can prepare you to teach at the K-6 or 6-12 levels. With the help of dedicated counselors in both disciplines, English majors can master the subject matter and take courses that will enable them to pass required exams and obtain initial teacher certification.

Explore the School of Education to find your preferred degree and learn more.

In today's job market, contextual thinking and communication skills are more valuable than ever. Whether you're crafting web content or managing social media, your ability to connect with others through language is essential – and unreplaceable.

At Manhattanville University, we provide a supportive environment that nurtures these skills, with access to enriching events, activities, and professional networking opportunities. From the Creative Writing Awards to Pitch Fest, to in-depth workshop courses and panels of visiting professionals, the English department has fostered a community that promotes diverse and fulfilling career experiences for our students.

Learn more about English and Writing programs at Manhattanville.

Turn Language and Writing Skills Into Fulfilling Careers

Becoming an English major prepares students for many careers requiring strong reading, writing, and analytical skills. Graduates of English degree programs have become journalists, lawyers, politicians, and even corporate executives. They work in non-profits, fast-paced technical industries, marketing, communications, and traditional publishing; they also become English teachers, authors, editors, and more.

Learn the skills that employers in all industries value, including a capacity for verbal expression, logical argumentation, and close analysis of language. A bachelor’s degree in English prepares you for entry-level careers in publishing, journalism, copywriting, or content writing, and builds the foundational skills to pursue careers in tech, law, marketing, and business.

From analyzing a piece of writing to drafting a persuasive memo, the skills of English majors make them valuable, well-rounded, and impressive employees and talented graduate students if they continue their education to become lawyers, teachers, or writers or pursue other fields.


English Major Salaries

If you’re interested in either traditional writing, editing, and publishing careers, or branching out into other areas, a BA in English degree program can serve as a springboard to pursue fulfilling roles with a range of average annual salaries.

If you enjoy writing and understand how to write for a specific audience, use your research and composition skills to enter fields such as technical writing, business and professional writing, content marketing, and more. Entry-level positions you may pursue include:

Working as an editorial assistant is a great way to move up the ladder in a publishing company or at a magazine or newspaper. The storytelling abilities you develop will also help you perform in areas such as marketing, branding, strategy, and entertainment. The English program has a long history of placing its students in full-time internships at magazines and media companies in New York City and Westchester County.

Amplify your potential earnings as you gain work experience and maximize your skills in literary culture and language. Specializing your studies to include medical or technical fields can enhance your ability to enter these fields as technical or proposal writers.

English Minor Concentrations

Undergraduate students in the English major or a different Manhattanville major can add a tailored minor to their primary area of focus. Enhance your academics in a specific area:

  • English minor 
  • English minor with concentration in Film Studies

English majors may major in one concentration and minor in another as long as courses don’t count twice.


Accelerated Dual Degree: BA English + MFA Creative Writing

Students in the BA in English program interested in pursuing further training in creative writing can pursue a journey of self-discovery in the accelerated Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Creative Writing program pathway. By taking on graduate coursework as a junior and senior, students can graduate with an MFA in just one additional year.

Learn more about the accelerated dual degree programs.


Take the first step to join a tight-knit community of students and mentors as an English major at Manhattanville. Explore the admissions process with the help of dedicated counselors and financial aid staff, who help 98% of our undergraduate students receive a form of financial assistance.


Apply to the BA in English Degree at Manhattanville University

Pursuing the Bachelor of Arts in English degree program at Manhattanville University proves to be a rewarding pathway driving professional success in a variety of career endeavors.

Ready to begin? Request more information about becoming an English major or begin your application today.