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B.A. in English

Department of English


The Bachelor of Arts with a major in English is designed to be flexible enough to provide the student with an adequate background for graduate studies in English or preparation for such professions as law, medicine, the ministry, advertising, communications, technical writing, and library science.

Students will develop not only the ability to derive meaning from what they read, particularly literary texts, but also the ability to write analytically about literature and its history. Derived from this are the following five objectives:

  1. Students will demonstrate the ability to do a close reading of genres (e.g., poetry, fiction, drama, or film);
  2. Students will demonstrate a general knowledge of major move - ments, periods, and authors in British and American literature;
  3. Students will demonstrate a working knowledge of literary terms;
  4. Students will demonstrate the ability to understand literature in its cultural context;
  5. Students will demonstrate the ability to locate, read, understand, and apply literary criticism and scholarship; and
  6. Students will demonstrate the ability to write analytically and articulately about literature, offering evidence of clarity, coherence, and style.

A grade of C or better in English 102, or its equivalent, is a prerequisite for all other English courses.

All students pursuing the B.A. in English must complete at least 18 hours in the major (coursework at the 300 level or above) at USC Aiken.

Technological Literacy in English

All English majors will demonstrate proficiency in the compilation, evaluation, and integration of electronic sources in researched writing, particularly in the following required courses: ENGL 284, 285, 288, 289, and the senior project. Furthermore, all English classes require some use of computer technology, from simple word-processing to internet navigation.


1. General Education Requirements

50 - 53

  A. Knowledge of Human Cultures and the Physical and Natural World 31 - 34
  At least 3 hours must be in Non-Western World Studies, unless an approved non-Western world studies course has been completed elsewhere in the student’s degree program. See definition and list of approved courses in the Undergraduate and Graduate Programs Bulletin.

1. Natural Sciences

Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Geology, Astronomy (1 lab)

7 - 8

2. History of Civilization

(HIST 101 or HIST 102)


3. Social and Behavioral Sciences (two areas)

Psychology, Sociology, Anthropology, Economics, Political Science, Geography


4. Languages

(Two (2) semesters of the same language required.)

6 - 8

5. Humanities (at least two areas)1

Communications (last two digits must be in 50s or 60s), History, Art History, Music History, Theatre History, Literature, Philosophy (other than logic), Religion, Selected Language courses, Humanities (HSSI acronym), Honors (HONS acronym)

  B. Intellectual and Practical Skills 16

1. Critical Inquiry

Freshmen must take Critical Inquiry in their first semester of enrollment at USC Aiken. Students in degree programs which require more than 16 credit hours in the first semester of enrollment may complete Critical Inquiry during their second academic semester. Transfer students are not required to take the Critical Inquiry course; however, the one credit hour requirement will still need to be completed within the degree requirements.


2. English 101 and 102

Students should take English in their first semester of enrollment at USC Aiken (unless they have received credit for ENGL 101 and 102 through concurrent enrollment, AP, etc.). Students must complete English 101 and English 102 with a grade of C or better in order to fulfill general education requirements and before taking Writing Intensive courses (see #6) and other English courses.


3. Oral Communication

(COMM 201, COMM 241)


4. Math/Statistics/Logic

Students should take math in their first year of enrollment at USC Aiken (unless they have already completed general education requirements for math through concurrent enrollment, AP, etc.). MATH 221 and MATH 222 cannot be used for General Education math credit EXCEPT by students graduating with degrees in Elementary, Early Childhood or Special Education.


5. Satisfactory completion of Writing Proficiency Requirement


6. Satisfactory completion of three courses designated as Writing Intensive, at least one of which is in the student’s major.

  C. Personal and Social Responsibility 3

1. American Political Institutions

(POLI 201, HIST 201, or HIST 202)


2. Inter-Curricular Enrichment Program (ICE)

Two approved events in each semester of enrollment.

  D. Integrative Learning  

While there are no specific course requirements in this category, students are strongly encouraged to include one or more integrative learning experiences in their academic programs, such as linked courses, study abroad internship, service learning, faculty-mentored research, capstone.


2. Introduction to Literary Criticism (ENGL 275)


3. Survey Requirements



ENGL 284, 285, 288, and 289


English majors may use six of these twelve hours toward satisfying the Humanities component of the General Education Requirements. All English majors are also strongly advised to complete their survey requirements before enrolling in upper-level literature classes.

4. Major Requirements (300 level or above)



One course from each of the following areas :


Area I :

British Literature (ENGL 405, 411, 412, 416, 417, 419, 423, 424)


Area II :

American Literature (ENGL 425, 426, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 449)


Area III :

Major Author Studies (ENGL 401 or 494)


Area IV :

English Grammar (ENGL 450)


Area V :

World Literature/Comparative Literature (ENGL 385, 389, 390, 391, 396, 435, 491)


Area VI :

Writing (ENGL 345, 460, 461, 462, 463, 464, 466, 467, 468)


Area VII :

Shakespeare (ENGL 407)


Area VIII :

Senior Thesis or Seminar (ENGL 496 or 499)

The writing proficiency portfolio is a general education requirement that must be satisfied before any student attempts the senior thesis or senior seminar requirements.


5. Electives in English



Any three English courses at the 300 level or above.


6. Required Cognate or Minor







7. Electives


Total Hours Required