Bachelor of Arts


While poring over poems, novels, and plays, English majors develop a critical and aesthetic understanding of English as a language, and of literature as an art form. Students learn a little of nearly everything along the way, and they learn it with the help of faculty who embrace undergraduate research.

Did You Know?

  • In recent years, two-thirds of English department tenured or tenure-track faculty have mentored at least one student-presented project at Undergraduate Research Day, the celebration of collaboration held on Family Weekend each year.
  • Faculty research and student interaction created Directed Self-Placement, a process by which all first-year students come to understand their level of preparation for college-level writing. 
  • The English department is a major stakeholder in Wake Forest University press, the premier publisher of Irish poetry in North America. 
  • English majors have earned more than two dozen major national and international scholarships, including three Rhodes Scholarships.


Sample courses for students studying English include:

  • The Legend of Arthur
  • The Medieval World
  • Literature Interprets the World
  • Playwriting
  • Roots of Song
  • Poetry Workshop

View official major requirements »

Practical Experience & Skills

A common misconception about English majors is that after they graduate the only thing they can do with their degree is go to graduate school or teach. With such a firm foundation of writing and communication skills; however, English majors are ready to hit the street and tackle a host of careers—after a few internships, that is. An internship within an intriguing industry will help translate academic skills directly into applicable workplace skills. Internships are great ways to get experience and help you narrow down your endless career possibilities.

Students in this program will develop the following skills:

  • Aptitude for making critical observations
  • Proficiency at reading, writing, and speaking
  • Command of grammar and vocabulary
  • Capable of reading analytically
  • Creative thinking
  • Ability to work toward deadlines
  • Able to successfully make decisions
  • Attention to detail

Get to know our Personal & Career Development Center

Clubs & Organizations

English students participate in the following clubs and organizations:

Career Outcomes

Careers that often interest English majors include:

  • Advertising Copywriter
  • Attorney
  • Author
  • Book Store Manager
  • Broadcast Journalist
  • Copy Editor
  • Court Reporter
  • Editor
  • Educator
  • Entertainment Agent
  • Human Resources Director
  • Journalist
  • Librarian
  • Media Specialist
  • Paralegal
  • Press Representative
  • Public Relations Director
  • Publishing Assistant
  • Technical Writer

The roster of English majors includes at least 50 who own their own businesses; more than 150 executives in other businesses; more than 200 lawyers and judges; and hundreds of other distinguished alumni.

Related Programs

Those who are interested in English also consider the following programs:


At Wake Forest, we have lots of good stories to share, so we hope you’ll get to know us. Browse our Viewbook to learn more.

2023-24 Undergraduate Viewbook