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Humanities & Teacher Education

Overview of the English Program

The English Major

Students in Pepperdine University’s English program share a passion for the written word as a vital means for engaging the depth of human experience in all its intellectual, ethical, spiritual, and emotional complexity. In small classes where they interact with regular teaching-and-research faculty, students are strengthened for lives of purpose, service, and leadership, enriched by a constant practice of reading and writing.

Why Study English?

The English language is recognized globally as the international means of communication. Graduates of the program are prepared to teach in the secondary schools, to go on to graduate study in English, rhetoric, or creative writing, to pursue a degree in law, information science, or one of the other professions. Students with a degree in English are well equipped to go into the publications field, including corporate and non-profit publications. Because the English degree is so versatile, graduates from our program pursue careers in a range of different areas such as secondary and college teaching, law, editing, journalism, medicine, ministry, business and non-profit organizations, and librarianship.

Unique Aspects of the English Major 

Students may shape their major by choosing one of three areas in which to concentrate: literature, writing, and education. Students who choose literature will focus on the development of the American and British literary traditions. Students who choose the writing concentration will focus on rhetoric and the composition process. In both the literature and the writing concentrations, students will sharpen their writing, speaking, and critical thinking skills in preparation for graduate school and for careers in publishing, writing, editing, law, business and other professions. Students who choose the education emphasis will be prepared to teach English at the secondary level and will receive their certification upon completion of their degree.

London Summer English Program

During the Summer English majors have the opportunity to take upper-division Literature courses while studying at Pepperdine's London campus.  For more information visit the International Programs webpage.

London Summer English

Available Job Opportunities

Often students who love to write and to read great literature ask: “but what can I do with an English major?” The answer is, just about anything. This major is ideal for those who wish to go to law school, who love literature and wish to teach it at the high school level, who wish to enter business, medicine, politics, and government service. See our list of distinguished alumni for examples of possible career paths.

Requirements for Admission to Graduate School

Students who wish to go to Graduate School or to pursue postbaccalaureate study such as a Fulbright should begin preparing as soon as possible in their academic career. Those wishing to attend Graduate School should discuss the application procedure with English department faculty. Students should have a grade point average of at least 3.3, should consider applying to several colleges and universities, and should plan to take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), both general and subject matter portions, no later than October of the Senior year.

Possible Double Majors or Minor Programs of Study

English and Film Studies
English and Business
English and Political Science
English and International Studies
English and Philosophy
English and History
English and Religion

Additional Information

Watch our Promotional Video.

For more information contact:

Dr. Cyndia Clegg
(310) 506-4435
Or the HUTE office at (310) 506-4225