Department of English

English Program

Required Courses

B.A. in English - click here for details

English majors learn to reason effectively and to communicate well, both orally and in writing. Under the English curriculum students are well prepared to pursue careers in education, law, government service, technical writing, journalism, public relations, business, and the corporate world. The graduating English major may enter a masters or Ph.D. program in English, Comparative Literature, African American Studies, Women's Studies, Cultural Studies, Diaspora Studies, creative writing, technical writing, linguistics, or in any of the humanities. Many of Xavier's English graduates have entered law or graduate school programs.

Majors are required to pass a senior comprehensive examination and must attend all departmental (English Club) meetings.

The English program requires 120 semester hours to earn the degree. In addition to the English core curriculum requirements (ENGL 1000/1010, ENGL 1020/1023H, and ENGL 2010/2011H), students must pass with a grade of "C" or higher the following classes, all of which are writing-intensive: ENGL 2070 (British Lit. I), ENGL 2080 (British Lit. II), a choice of ENGL 3010 (Medieval Lit.) or 3021 (Early Modern Lit.) or 3070 (Restoration/18th Century Lit.), a choice of ENGL 3210 (Romanticism), or 3221 (Victorian/Early 20th Century Lit.), or 3270 (20th/21st Century British Lit.), ENGL 3160 (American Lit. I), ENGL 3170 (American Lit. II), a choice of ENGL 3185 (Special Topics in African American Lit.), ENGL 3280 (18th/19th Century African American Writers), or ENGL 3290 (20th/21st Century African American Writers), a choice of ENGL 2200 (Grammar), ENGL 3135 (Language History & Theory), or ENGL 3275 (African Lit.), two ENGL 4000-level Seminars, and an ENGL Elective (for seniors with 3.5 GPA in English, this could be ENGL 4500 Senior Thesis, which takes the place of the senior comprehensive exam.)

Minor in English Students electing English as a minor must earn 18 hours of English beyond English 1000/1010-1020. ENGL 2010 (2011H) and 2020 are required and count toward the 18 hours of the minor.

Honors in English ENGL 1023H and 2011H satisfy the core curriculum requirements in English composition, introduction to literature, and world literature (the equivalent of ENGL 1010, 1020, and 2010). Upon receiving a grade of "C" or better in the Freshman Honors Englis Sequence (ENGL 1023H and 2011H), the student will receive 3 semester hours of credit for ENGL 1010. ENGL 1020 and 2010 cannot be substituted for the Freshman Honors English Sequence; if the student elects to take either of those, he/she forfeits his/her placement in the Honors sequence.

Students may receive Honors in English in four different ways.

  1. For initial placement in the Honors in English program, students must meet criteria that include ACT or SAT scores and high school transcript. The English Department determines final placement. To receive an honors distinction in English, students so chosen must take ENGL 1023H, 2011H, and an additional 3 semester hours with a 3000 or 4000 level English course of their choice and receive a cumulative average of 3.0 or higher for all three courses (or their equivalent).]
  2. Students with Advanced Placement credit may take the sequence with ENGL 2011H and one more English course at the 3000 or 4000 level. A cumulative average of 3.0 or higher in these two courses will earn them Honors in English.
  3. A student who earns an "A" in English 1010 may also qualify for the honors sequence. A student with credit in programs other than AP should consult the chair of English for honors consideration.
  4. Students need not be placed in the Freshman English Honors Sequence outlined above to qualify for "Honors in English." Students majoring or minoring in English may also earn the honors distinction by completing their courses of study with a 3.5 cumulative average in English. At least eighteen semester hours of English must be earned at Xavier. Students may use the AP or CLEP examinations as equivalencies for English 1010 or 1020. Students must have taken the essay portion of the exam as well as the objective portion and must meet with the department chair for advising no later than the last day of registration to determine from which course(s) they may be exempt.