Frequently Asked Advisement Questions
Hopefully, you’re asking this question for yourself and not for your parents.
Frankly, your question had some limited relevance in the twentieth century but not much now. We're living in a twenty-first-century marketplace that values the attitudes and skills that English majors develop.
If you wanted to be, say, a mechanical engineer, then it would be much better for you to get into the ME program instead of majoring in English. Careers like engineering, accounting, and biochemistry are best begun in their respective departments.
However, we've had plenty of our majors go into various fields in the marketplace upon graduation as well as to professional and graduate schools in business, public administration, law, medicine, and so forth.
The English major provides a great foundation for a number of careers, especially when combined with a well-chosen minor, an internship or two, study abroad, and other kinds of experiences outside the classroom. Just be aware as you progress through the university that you should be thinking as much about your career as your major.
First, you should start thinking of your undergraduate studies as a kind of career—something that extends way beyond taking courses and fulfilling graduation requirements. Think of yourself as a professional student with an academic passport you want to get stamped with lots of extracurricular experiences by the time you graduate.
Second, you should stop by the Humanities Advisement Center (1175 JFSB) and pick up a copy of A Student Guide to the College of Humanities. Read through it carefully. It includes everything you need to know about having a productive undergraduate experience in preparation for a great post-graduation career. It’s the single best resource you have for academic and career preparation.
Third, you can sign up for English 195, Academic and Career Preparation for English Majors. It’s a one-credit hour course that meets once a week on Thursday at 4:00 p.m. You’ll read Smart Moves for Liberal Arts Grads (Curran and Greenwald), take some quizzes, write a couple reviews, and do a paper on a potential career.
The first half covers the Humanities + program, including advisement, major requirements, study abroad, internships, student journals, Writing Fellows, Writing Center, clubs, and so forth. The second half features guest speakers from a variety of professions, all English Department alumni, who will regale you with stories of their marketplace successes.
We have lots of advisors to help you. Just match the issue with the proper advisor. Here’s an overview of the advisement resources available to you:
English Department. You have an assigned faculty advisor who would be happy to sit down and visit with you about your specific or general academic questions and concerns. Your individual teachers would also be glad to visit with you on general issues as well as course-specific ones. Just don't expect the faculty to know all about graduation plans and clearance or anything else really official. Click here to find your personal advisor.
College of Humanities. Paula Landon in the College of Humanities Advisement Center (1175 JFSB) is the official advisor for English majors, but any of the advisors can help you with declaring a major or graduation plans and clearance as well as other issues such as coordinating transfer credit. If they can't help you directly, then they’ll refer you to exactly the right place. Check them out at http://humanities.byu.edu/advisement/
University. BYU's Counseling and Career Center (2500 WSC) has six different departments, each with a slightly different mission in supporting students. They can help with making major and career choices, improving study skills, preparing for professional schools, getting off academic warning or probation, resolving emotional issues, and so forth. Check them out at http://ccc.byu.edu.
Drop by the Humanities Advisement Center. They’ll send you to the right person.
Check out the page English Department Internships Made Easy. Then see Professor Phil Snyder, Internship Coordinator, for further information.
BYU's London Centre offers different programs every semester and term. Every spring the English Department and Theater and Media Arts Department offer the London Theatre Program, focusing on Shakespeare and contemporary theatre on the London stage. Every other year, the department offers a hiking tour of the UK with an emphasis on writing in a cultural setting.
In addition, there are many other International Study Programs offered through the Kennedy Center. Check them all out and then contact the directors of the programs you're most interested in.
See the Transfer Evaluation Office (D-148 ASB) for general education credits and the Humanities Advisement Center (1175 JFSB) for major and minor credits.
See the Humanities Advisement Center (1175 JFSB).
See the Academic Support Office (2502 WSC) for the proper forms. You'll also need to meet with your faculty advisor.
Only if you want to graduate from the College of Humanities.
If you've already taken courses in French, German, Russian, or Spanish, you can take a placement exam online (http://webscape.byuhtrsc.org?/acc=byu with the password cougars). For other languages, contact the department.
Join the English Society. See Professor Paul Westover, English Society Advisor. Also you should hang out in the 4th floor alcoves and terrace of the JFSB.