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Majors & Minors

The Department of English offers two 12-course majors in English and writing. In addition, the Rhetoric program is joining the department, providing students with a third major option.

English and writing majors take at least five courses in the department’s lower-division common core, including two Gateway courses and one course in each of three areas: Culture and Identity, History and Traditions, and Writing: Topics and Genres. As sophomores, students are eligible to begin taking upper-division courses. Writing majors take three upper-division courses focused on the craft of writing in various modes and contexts: poetry, essay, memoir, fiction, new media, adaptation, hybrid forms, and community writing. All students, no matter which major they select, complete at least six upper-division elective courses and a capstone seminar in their major. The BAs in English and writing each require 12 courses total.

Rhetoric majors consider how our use of language and symbols shapes who we are, what we do, and what and who we and others may become. RMSC courses bring critical attention to the nature of representations and knowledge practices in communication. How do these mediate our lives and experiences? We examine how concepts of identity, community, public life, ethics, and morality are contested and changed.

Students learn to analyze media from across political, popular, and professional cultures. How can we understand social change in diverse settings? In the program, you will consider how media and culture offer differing resources to engage in political action in your own life.

Current Catalog requirements for RMSC major and the RMSC minor
Prior Catalog Requirements

Students may not double major or major/minor in English, Writing, and Rhetoric.

The flowcharts below offer a visual overview of our majors in English and writing. The department is working to update the Rhetoric major.

  English Major Flowchart

Writing Major Flowchart





Students who wish to complement their degrees in other areas of study, to pursue personal interests in critical reading and creative writing, and to provide employers or graduate schools with supplementary credentials in writing or English can choose an 6-course minor.

English minors take two Gateway courses, two lower-division electives, and two upper-division electives.

Writing minors take two Gateway courses, two lower-division courses from the writing core (80-99), and two upper-division writing courses.

Students majoring in English or writing may not minor in the Department; students may not double-minor in English and writing.




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