6 Advanced Degree Possibilities for Undergraduate English Majors

If you are a recent English graduate, you may be wondering what to do next. While many English majors can use their degree to get a well-paying job, some find themselves not making progress in that job search. One idea is to direct your love of language and literature into a new subject and pursue advanced study. Getting an advanced degree may help you be in a better position to get a coveted job in the field of your choice. Here are six types of advanced degree programs that are the perfect fit for undergraduate English majors.

1. Creative Writing

English graduates who enjoy writing may want to focus their advanced studies in creative writing. Many English majors go on to advanced study in this field and pursue MFA degrees. An MFA degree is a terminal degree that qualifies a candidate to teach college level writing classes. Additionally, graduates of MFA programs in creative writing learn the skills needed to publish their writing. They also make connections with important publishers and writers in the industry to help jumpstart their own writing career.

2. Teaching

Another option for an English graduate is to consider going into teaching. Most states have certification requirements for subject teachers in secondary school settings, and your English degree program typically meets those requirements. An advanced degree in teaching can help you get the necessary skills and knowledge to be successful in the classroom. Additionally, possessing an advanced degree upon graduation can help you get hired more easily within an educational system.

3. Law

It’s also common for English graduates to use their persuasive writing skills and talents in constructing an argument to help pursue a degree in law. Lawyers have to possess strong written and oral communication skills, which are heavily stressed in an undergraduate course of study in English. In order to practice law in this country, it’s essential to know all of the basics about the American legal system. USC offers advanced degree programs that help students expand their legal knowledge and further their careers.

4. Communications

Another natural fit for further study for an English major is in the communications field. If you want to take your appreciation for effective writing into a leadership role, an advanced degree in communications management may be the right choice. At USC, you can learn how to equip yourself with the necessary skills to get hired in a management position in the communications industry.

5. Journalism

Next, an English degree could lead to further study in the field of journalism. Although print newspapers are declining, online journalism is exploding. Opportunities for journalism are plentiful with the huge increase in social media and online news sources. Pursuing study in this field could help you learn the best methods of reporting and news writing and put your career in a new direction.

6. Library and Information Science

The last place to find inspiration for advanced study is at your local library. If you have a love of reading and enjoy being surrounded by books all day, an advanced degree in library and information science may be right for you. Today’s librarian is more than just someone who shelves books and offers recommendations to patrons about their next read. This field has expanded to include more of a focus on technology, research, and digital literacy. At the heart of everything is an understanding of communication and language, which is something that English majors possess.

When it’s time to move on after graduation, some students may struggle with making the transition from college to career. If you majored in English, and you’re having a tough time knowing what to do next or where to go, consider pursuing graduate study. You can make yourself better prepared for an interesting career if you look around for degrees that use your knowledge from your undergraduate English program.


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