English Department

English Department at a Glance


Undergraduate Programs: The undergraduate English major emphasizes the study of British and American literature. In addition to literary study, special tracks or concentrations are available in: creative writing, honors and secondary English licensure.

Minor: The department also offers a minor in English.

Graduate Programs: For graduate students the department grants a Master of Arts with a concentration in literature or creative writing and a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing. The Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing is offered as part of the NorthEast Ohio Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing a four-university consortium incorporating the faculty and resources of Cleveland State University, Kent State University, Youngstown State University, and the University of Akron.

Marketable Skills

The skills you will develop as an English major will serve you well in the twenty-first century workplace in which versatile and transferable skills are highly desirable. A survey of employers indicates that they seek employees who have strong skills in communication, writing, research, critical thinking, creativity, and problem-solving. As an English major you will develop abilities in all of these areas. Additionally, an undergraduate degree in English serves as an excellent foundation for a professional degree in many fields, including communications, law, medicine, and business administration.


What is the practical value of majoring in English? Your options are many, and below are listed just some of the job titles you might explore: account executive, administrator, attorney, author, bank officer , book critic, business manager, circulation assistant, college professor, columnist, communications manager, copywriter, creative writer, curator, desktop publisher, editor, education and training specialist, foreign correspondent, fundraiser, greeting card writer, human resource specialist, indexer, insurance agent, interpreter and translator, journalist, lobbyist, manager, marketing and public relations specialist, proofreader, teacher (all levels), publisher, speech writer, stockbroker, technical writer, web designer/developer, and many others.

Many famous people were English majors; take a look at the following list:

  • Mario Cuomo, former Governor of New York
  • Kathryn Fuller, CEO, World Wildlife Fund
  • Richard Lillie, Cleveland State University English Alumnus, Head of Litigation, Benesch, Friedlander, Coplan & Aronoff
  • Toni Morrison, novelist
  • Paul Newman, actor, food entrepreneur
  • Sally Ride, astronaut
  • Diane Sawyer, broadcast journalist
  • Marty Shottenheimer, NFL coach
  • Carol Story, Cleveland State English Alumna, Producer, CBS News, (NY)
  • Clarence Thomas, Supreme Court Justice
  • Barbara Walters, broadcast journalist