Undergraduate

What's it like to study English at UC Davis?

The English department offers a wide range of courses-- small and large, introductory and advanced, undergraduate and graduate.  All of our courses focus on the pleasures and challenges of reading, interpretation, and writing. 

Ranging from Anglo-Saxon texts to works written in English across the globe today, from epic to film, graphic novels, and sound poetry, our courses cast a wide net in order to expand and deepen our understanding of what counts as "English literature."

Major in English (see requirements)

Students major in English by taking courses in a wide variety of media, genres, topics, and historical periods. All students are introduced to the major by completing 20 units spread over courses in writing, any one of many topics courses, and the gateway series to the English major that covers “Literature in English” from the earliest medieval texts to the present.  Students then build their own path through the major depending upon their particular interests, eventually completing 44 more units covering different historical periods, methods of theory and criticism, and thematic focuses. After a shared set of courses, students choose to specialize either in Literary Criticism and Theory or Creative Writing.

Because of the flexibility, relatively low course requirements, and productive relationship between literary analysis and other courses of study, many students also choose to double major in English and another field – students have successfully completed double majors in English along with majors ranging from Cell Biology, Computer Science, Genetics & Genomics, and many others. Whether you are interested in the relationship between literature and the environment, science and literature, the poetic construction of love over centuries, or the narrative structure of video games, we have a course for you.

Minor in English (see requirements)

Whether their major is in Viticulture & Enology or Biochemistry & Molecular Biology – to name just two current examples – many students find that pursuing a minor in English allows them to develop their abilities to read and to write critically while enjoying all the pleasures that great literature has to offer. To complete the minor, students complete five upper-division courses, at least four of which focus on literature, film, or other media. Choices within the curriculum are unlimited by historical period, and can include a course in creative writing.

Professor David Simpson
Professor David Simpson lecturing on British Romantic Literature for English 130

Why Major in English?
The critical and creative skills you develop and hone in English classes will serve you very well throughout your personal and professional life. In their careers, our graduates are well prepared to read, write, analyze, argue, prove, and respond. (Learn more)

Advising
Contact information for advising resources for English majors.

Creative Writing Application 
Admission to ENL 100F, 100P & 100NF is by application and acceptance of instructor. Admission to 100FA/PA is also by application and requires a separate application process with a deadline date early Winter Quarter.

Explore other areas of being an English Undergraduate, from the English Honors Program, Study Abroad, Internships or Preparing for Graduate School.

Be sure to check out Other Opportunities, including the English Club, the Provost's Undergraduate Fellowships and Writing Contests.

Student Learning Objectives