College of Liberal Arts & Sciences


What is English?

This major studies literature, text, and culture. You’ll learn how to apply critical thinking skills to a variety of pieces of literature. You'll look at situations from new angles, and communicate your ideas through writing. Your coursework will delve into subjects like:

  • Fiction
  • Drama
  • Poetry
  • Film
  • Essays

You will also have the opportunity to take many writing-based classes to hone your professional writing skills. English may be right for you if exploring modern and historically complex issues sounds interesting. A Secondary Education option is also available for the teaching of English in high schools.

Career Options

  • Arts administration
  • Communications
  • Education
  • Entertainment
  • Library and information science
  • Media
  • Publishing

Post-Graduation Success1

86% employed or continuing education

67% employed after graduation

19% attending graduate school

$37,070 average starting annual income

Sample employer destinations: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana High School, Becker's Healthcare View All

Sample grad school destinations: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Loyola University Chicago, Chicago-Kent College of Law View All

Review Criteria

First-Year Major-Specific Criteria

  • Demonstrated understanding of and interest in the major

View All Review Criteria

Transfer Criteria

Transfer Guide

Graduation & Retention2

3.9 years to degree

96% first-year retention rate

75% four-year graduation rate

84% six-year graduation rate

Annual Program Costs

Illinois Resident

  • Tuition: $12,254
  • Fees: $4,612
  • Expenses3: $16,194
  • Total: $33,060


  • Tuition: $29,704
  • Fees: $4,612
  • Expenses3: $16,534
  • Total: $50,850


  • Tuition: $32,094
  • Fees: $4,612
  • Expenses3: $16,534
  • Total: $53,240