The English Department at Boston College—a cornerstone of the university’s thriving liberal arts program—is designed to illuminate the diverse literary traditions of the past and present. English students choose from a range of subjects, including literary and cultural history, genre, gender, and ethnic studies, and creative writing. In our small, discussion-based courses, you’ll hone skills in critical thinking, writing, and communication that will serve you well in a wide range of careers.

A Wide-Ranging Literary Education

Following a sophomore sequence in poetry and narrative and a cluster of courses introducing literature’s historical traditions around the world, you’ll work with your faculty advisor to choose among a rich variety of electives that range from well-known authors and genres to noncanonical authors and newer areas of study, such as post-colonial studies, film, and journalism. In your junior and seniors years, you’ll develop depth in one or more of these areas, and you can apply to write a senior thesis in the department’s Honors Program under the guidance of a full-time professor.

Undergraduate Programs


A Culture of Collaboration

The English department is deeply engaged with scholarship in other departments. Many English majors minor in other disciplines, while students from other departments often choose to minor in English. Home to programs in American Studies, Digital Humanities, Journalism, Creative Writing, Health, and Culture, the English Department also participates in several university-wide programs, including African & African Diaspora Studies, Asian-American Studies, Irish Studies, Linguistics, Medical Humanities, and Women's and Gender Studies.

Interdisciplinary Concentrations


A Space for Conversation

The English Department hosts regular Poetry Days and Fiction Days, which bring internationally renowned writers to campus. It is also affiliated with two University-wide speaker series that bring luminary authors, scholars, artists, and performers to Boston College, from U.S. poet laureate Ada Limón to Partners in Health founder Dr. Paul Farmer.

The Lowell Humanities Series    

The Park Street Corporation Speaker Series


A Hub for Student Writing

Boston College is home to several excellent undergraduate literary journals, including:

The English Department also publishes a national literary journal, Post Road, which publishes work by up-and-coming and established authors, as well as BC’s acclaimed Religion and the Arts journal. Qualified upper-level students can apply to work as interns at Post Road.

Post Road

Religion and the Arts

Life After the English Major

BC Commencement 2016
A generation ago, most English graduates headed to law school, teaching, publishing, or graduate programs in literature. While these paths are still popular, our recent graduates also write and produce for television, work as journalists or content designers, support non-profits, build start-ups, work in consulting, write speeches and grants, or head off to programs in medicine, public health, or business. Our liaisons with Career Services introduce you early on to strategies for finding internships and connecting with alums and local experts in fields that inspire you.

The Liberal Arts Advantage

The English Department's First-Year Writing Seminars and Literature Core play a key role in Boston College's distinctive liberal arts education.

Foundational Courses