Skip to main content

Undergraduate English Degrees

Tremendous developments in technology, media, science, healthcare, politics and beyond have simultaneously changed the way we communicate, learn, perceive, heal, and govern. But intelligent and ethical innovation emerges from the interplay of analytical reasoning, imaginative power, and articulate expression. 

The world needs people who can read, write, and think critically about these ever-evolving complex problems. Enter English majors. English majors possess some of the most flexible skillsets – communication, research, analytical skill, and the creative ability to think outside the box - all of which are foundational to the most sought-out fields of the future. Fuse the study of the most influential literary works in human history with the development of the future’s emerging skills.

English at John Carroll University

As an English student at John Carroll, you will begin with a core literary foundation intensive no matter which concentration you pursue – whether it’s Literature, Creative Writing, Professional Writing or English Education (seeking Adolescent/Young Adult licensure).  You will focus on creating compelling arguments, proofreading and editing work, giving and responding to constructive criticism, reading and synthesizing large amounts of complex information for both big picture and detail-specific issues, and exercising imaginative and creative problem solving.

Through our program, you will master key English concepts and skills, including the ability to: 

  • Read texts with active, critical skill to form and articulate accomplished interpretations; 
  • Produce written analyses of literary texts that demonstrate awareness of audience, organizational sophistication, and clear argumentation;
  • Build oral communication skills by listening to others' ideas and articulating their own responses and questions clearly to situate themselves in the conversation.
  • Gain knowledge of cultural and historical contexts that enhances your appreciation for the voices either within or marginalized by the texts.

English Degrees

As a Creative Writing major at John Carroll, you will gather intensive workshop experience in writing poetry, drama, fiction, and creative nonfiction. These workshops are intimate with not more than 15 students. Your professors are actively publishing, dynamic writers and instructors, which is why John Carroll boasts one of the most respected Visiting Writers programs in Ohio. You’ll have a chance to meet and work with nationally known visitors to our campus, people like Billy Collins, Rita Dove, Simon Armitage, Paul Muldoon, and Robert Pinsky.

Learn More »

The literature program at John Carroll is truly customizable to the areas of literature that you’re most passionate about, whether that’s poetry, fiction, non-fiction, film, women’s works, or something more specific. It includes foundations in classic literature, global or minority literature courses, creative writing, and literary theory, combined with intensive, close-knit workshops, and culminates with an oral capstone presentation.

Learn More »

As a Professional Writing graduate, you will leave John Carroll with dynamic, cutting-edge writing capabilities, practical in nearly every industry. In addition to the John Carroll English foundation, Professional Writing majors can pursue more specialized areas in writing, such as film, digital media, business communications, writing for healthcare and technical writing.

Learn More »

If you have always been enthralled by classical and modern literature, a minor in literature will help you put that love to practical use. The literature minor includes an exploration of major British and American writers, combined with a choice from literature courses covering Medieval ages, Henry VIII and Elizabeth I, and into the late 18th century and early American works.

Learn More »

Whether you’ve always had a love of writing poems or you’d like to keep exercising your storytelling muscle, the creative writing minor is an examination into all kinds of writing – fiction and nonfiction, narrative and poetry –  as well as the important, foundational skills for doing so. Set yourself apart and bring with you a skill that is useful in every field. 

Learn More »

The minor in professional writing augments literally any career – in medicine, business, environment, beyond. You will be surprised just how quickly you become the go-to person wherever you work to proofread, analyze, and come up with ideas.

Learn More »

Training in the art of performance and theatre will enhance your communication skills for any number of fields, including law, politics, teaching, sales, marketing and management. The Theatre minor includes 18 credits in Acting, Directing, classic works and culminates in a capstone project participating in a production by directing, designing, stage managing, or acting in a major role.

Learn More »

English Program Highlights

Real Teaching

At John Carroll, your professors are actively publishing, dynamic writers and instructors, which is why we boast one of the most respected Visiting Writers programs in Ohio. You’ll have a chance to meet and work with nationally known visitors to our campus, people like Billy Collins, Rita Dove, Simon Armitage, Paul Muldoon, and Robert Pinsky, in intimate discussion-based classes.

Amazing Experience

Find real-world, transformative experiences that build on your writing and reading skills, as well as your worldview through unique, collaborative opportunities like peace-building classes in Ireland, Environmental Literature courses, workshops with actors from the London Stage, or chances to publish something brilliant from start to publication of the Carroll Review. 

Jobs & Internships

Our students take advantage of a range of internship and professional development opportunities both on and off campus. Work as a consultant in the University Writing Center; serve as both an editor for or contributor to the Carroll Review, our student-run literary journal; or gain experience at every level of a campus newspaper, from beat reporter to executive editor at the award-winning Carroll News. Over your summer, land a paid internship with the Young Writers’ Workshop, a weeklong camp for students in 8th-12th grades. Or go off campus, and intern at organizations like Lake Erie Ink, Cleveland Magazine, American Greetings, or a number of locally headquartered, multinational companies.

Featured Faculty

“My scholarship and teaching about climate-change literature energize students to understand our current ecological crisis. The English Department boasts stellar professors who teach and research poetry and fiction that address such urgent issues as socioeconomics, immigration, national belonging, racial and gender disparities, rhetorical strategies, and much, much more.”

—Debby Rosenthal, Ph.D., Department Chair

Anya Slota

Anya Slota, English ‘22

Status: Accepted into the inaugural class of Cleveland Marshall Law School's Criminal Justice Fellows

What inspired your future? “John Carroll University’s English program gave me the analytical thinking and writing skills that I needed to seamlessly transition to a job in the legal field right from graduation, as well as take my pick of law school offers and scholarships.”

Alumni Across The Region Map

English Alumni Across the Region

John Carroll University alumni live, work, teach and support communities throughout the region from Northeast Ohio to Chicago, Indianapolis, Detroit, Columbus, Buffalo, Rochester, Pittsburgh, New York City, Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia.

Top Employers

English Top Employers