When you decide to pursue majors in an English degree, you may also want to consider a minor, certificate program, or graduate-level study.
How to know if you should be an English major? Part of the process is reading books and novels. If you like the intricacies of the language, you should consider advanced qualifications.
And to help traditional and online students get started professionally, most institutions offer career centers, individualized advice, internships, and practicum opportunities.
Finding institutions that provide relevant internship programs can lead to career progression and hands-on experiences beyond imagination.
Furthermore, practical communication skills, innovative problem-solving skills, and critical reading skills are among the top-selling qualities of the modern English major.
How to be an English major? Those interested in a career in medical or technical writing might consider a STEM minor or master's degree to help them break into the area.
However, these specialized prerequisites will differ according to the specific field one is writing for. And if you're in high school, you should take creative classes to prepare for this degree.
Moreover, a firm grasp of business processes and concepts may also be required for the highest-paying positions for English majors.
Keep reading as we delve deeper into the specifics of a career in English:
What English Majors Bring To The Market
While an English degree entails more than just reading till your eyes cross, interpreting written works is the biggest part of your education.
Students studying English literature examine and discuss various texts while also learning about literary trends, periods, and styles that have affected modern literature.
Studying it will help you improve your writing and communication skills, as well as your ability to argue a point, structure a story, or analyze multiple levels of meaning.
Developing A Strong Argument
English majors learn to communicate written messages clearly and understandably. However, that still represents additional value.
They learn to take a stance (much like a thesis statement in an essay) and build an argument to support an assertion.
Editing And Proofreading Written Material
Another skill set that English majors develop concerns proofreading, editing, and refining written pieces until they are polished.
Giving Constructive Feedback
Taking and giving constructive criticism is a trait that is appreciated in college. And because papers are usually assessed by peers in the classroom, students learn to give and receive constructive critique.
Keeping Track Of The Specifics
Every week, English majors absorb and digest vast volumes of information. As a result, they can recognize key ideas and detect inaccuracies in arguments.
Organizing and Prioritizing Their Time
They must learn to manage their schedule and submit their time-consuming reading and writing tasks on time.
This is something you should work on at high school if you want to pursue an advanced degree in English.
Understand Different Points Of View
Becoming an English major also helps you develop the ability to accept and appreciate different perspectives.
This is because, when perusing through works written across several centuries, they learn to comprehend cross-generational approaches taken by authors.
As a result, it helps them understand that there are usually a variety of approaches to an issue, all affected by socio-cultural setups.
Creativity Is Being Put To Test
English majors generally have a creative streak that allows them to write poetry, novels, and essays, as well as develop their own take on a piece of literature.
Making And Giving Presentations
For English majors, explaining perspectives and presenting knowledge verbally is a critical aspect of the educational process. As a result, kids learn how to give presentations, which is a vital practical ability.
Best Careers With An English Major
One of the most commonly asked questions in this field is, "What jobs can I get with an English degree?".
The answer is more complicated than you may think because English degree holders can be found working in almost every field.
Social Media Managers
A social media manager requires similar imagination to individuals with English majors. It assists them in designing social media tools for promotional purposes.
They frequently create written proposals for other team members to examine, and they must explain their ideas to coworkers to reach an agreement.
Furthermore, a social media manager often has to decide and select content creators and bloggers for potential partnerships.
Here, an English major's reading skills can help choose superior writers. Hence, new grads are frequently hired to assist social media, public relations, and marketing managers.
If you want to get into this field, look for on-campus social media roles for your university's student organizations or administrative departments.
News reporters provide information to the public through television, newspapers, radio, and online tools.
The profession is higher in demand in major urban regions. Therefore, the monetary rewards of this being a reporter are mainly reliant on location.
The entry-level prerequisite for aspiring reporters is a bachelor's degree in English with a specialty in subjects like:
- Broadcast communications
- Media Production
The fast-paced nature of the industry necessitates travel, research, investigation, and administrative work. Hence, news reporters work in a variety of locations.
Technical writers are highly specialized content creators because their work involves more practical research in niche areas.
They help develop manuals, frequently asked questions, websites' help sections, and other documentation about the use of products and services.
Additionally, they take advantage of their majors in English to communicate concepts most clearly and with the utmost ease.
Public relations representatives are hired to help maintain and voice the official persona of companies, celebrities, athletes, and institutions.
Their primary responsibilities include:
- Creating concise news pieces
- Aligning politically and socially correct announcements
- Manage complaints
- Provide clarity on recent activities
Additionally, PR experts know how to pique the media's curiosity through coverage in newspapers, magazines, television, websites, and radio stations.
Sometimes, employers may also expect them to possess administrative skills to satisfy audiences' interests.
When you ask an attorney to list their most important abilities, don't be surprised when they mention writing as one of them. This includes:
- Legal documents
- Courtroom minutes
Therefore, English majors can craft language and possess the writing talents necessary to thrive in various areas of law.
Law students may find that writing is much more important to their success because they are continuously charged with drafting legal cases and precedents.
From an academic perspective, Law students must also write well-written responses to essay questions in order to pass the bar exam.
Translators & Interpreters
An English degree with a foreign language minor provides candidates a greater understanding of language structure and good communication abilities in another language.
Translators deal with written language, whereas interpreters work with spoken language in most organizations.
Grant writers are also storytellers, as they must persuade funding agents that resources will have a good influence on their constituents.
As part of the grant development process, they frequently examine, edit, and change submissions from scientists and teachers.
Additionally, grant writers need research and reading abilities to study funding sources and review initiatives sponsored by target organizations.
Therefore, English majors have the creative sensibilities that come into play when raising funds for arts and culture-related groups.
When deciding which books to add to their collection, librarians must draw from their ability to recognize good literature – a trait espoused by English majors.
As a result, they can swiftly read book reviews and make decisions based on their reading abilities.
When assembling information for papers, English majors learn how to use resources, and librarians spend a lot of time advising customers on the best sources for their research
Hence, an English major's attention to detail and organizational skills can help librarians establish effective categorizing and shelving systems.
Content Managers & Editors
When reviewing applications for book publishers and magazines, editors must have the grammatical nous that English majors usually have.
They offer critical feedback and corrective guidelines to writers. Editors and content managers evaluate the writing potential of possible contributors and provide proper guidance and critique.
Editors, like English majors, must understand their target audience and develop communications strategies that will appeal to them.
In order to create publications on time, they must be able to set and stick to deadlines. And this is a trait that everyone should try to improve upon outside of school.
Communication is an integral part of a human resources professional's job description. Hence, they are required to use precise and meticulous language.
Furthermore, sometimes they also have to educate managers on how to communicate with employees about their performance.
Moreover, human resources professionals write job adverts to attract the best candidates. They also create written training materials to promote employee development.
With majors in English, you are qualified to do tasks that an HR professional may have to do. This includes:
- Analyzing resumes
- Employee assessments
- Contract language
- Creating recommendations for future hires/fires, human resource managers
Majors in English gain a strong knowledge of the language, including grammar and vocabulary.
Therefore, they are in an excellent position to pursue graduate work. To start, they can aim to become an ESL instructor in the public school system or at a college in the United States.
Furthermore, international language groups – such as the Peace Corps – and language schools abroad hire English majors as English teachers right out of college.
Internal communications personnel are responsible for ensuring accurate and timely communication among all employees inside a company.
They work with other supervisors to encourage and update staff via:
- Social media
They may provide employees with company goals, policy updates, human resource advancements, and other information.
Moreover, executives in internal communications require outstanding writing and verbal communication, leadership, analysis, and organization skills.
Fundraisers must engage potential donors, identify their interests, and create written communications that will likely result in donations.
Staff members that work in development create content for brochures and websites, as well as campaign mailings. In addition, they provide jargon for volunteers to utilize when fundraising over the phone.
To prepare successful events and cater to the requirements of people in attendance, fundraisers must be organized and detail-oriented, traits demanded by English majors.
According to multiple studies, the total number of students choosing an English major dropped by 15% between 2010 and 2016. Nonetheless still, around 45,000 English degrees were conferred in 2016.
Many successful and famous journalists, US senators, and CEOs of Fortune-500 companies went for majors in English. Since then, we have witnessed a tremendous rise in career opportunities with an English degree.
Some English graduates may also pursue further education by doing an MA or Ph.D. in English language and literary studies, creative writing, Victorian, fantasy, medieval literature, or linguistics.
In contrast, others choose more practical postgraduate degrees in teaching, journalism, content, or law. These courses enable you to study in a field that you want to pursue as a career.
If you're confused about choosing a future profession, doing majors in English will only set you up for a wider array of employment opportunities. And to prepare for this degree, you will need a private tutor.
Join Superprof, search for English tutors in your area, and choose one who falls within your budget and goals.
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