The decision to pursue a BA in English is an exciting one with many opportunities now set before you. Not only do you get to go to school to read and write (presumably your favorite pastimes), but you also cultivate creativity and communication skills, which will be huge benefits when it comes time to find a job.
Now, you have to choose the right university. A good university should have a balance of courses in your field of study as well as on- and off-campus experiences. A great way to get those and more is to find a biblical university; you’ll get those academic aspects along with a well-rounded education in the Word and Christian community.
As you look at various English programs, consider if they have these six important aspects:
- Qualified Faculty: The university you choose should have professors who are not only qualified but dedicated to the subjects they teach. A school may dazzle you with their Oxford-educated faculty who are thought-leaders in literary criticism, but are these same professors available for office hours? Personalized assistance from English professors who are invested in your academic and personal development can make or break your college experience.
- Diverse Courses: Courses offered in various areas of literature and writing, like a short stories class or one on Asian literature, allow you to tailor your education to your specific interests. When exploring different programs, request a curriculum sheet to get a better sense of what types of courses you could take.
- Integration of a Biblical Worldview: As you study a wide range of literature, you will find the truth of Scripture in the themes of both religious and secular texts. An effective English program at a Christian university will embrace and encourage this type of integrated thinking. The mindset gained at a Christian university is an asset to the English major, not only because they will be able to apply what they learn about Scripture to other class material, but they can also use what they learn about literature to build a greater appreciation for the Word of God.
- Internships: Internships allow you to grow professionally and better prepare for the job market. Most universities offer internships for students on campus or have connections with internship programs off-campus, with certain opportunities even tailored specifically for English Majors. Find out what kind of internships could be available to you.
- Study Abroad: Options to study abroad in places like Oxford or Ireland open a whole new understanding and context to the literature you study. Not only do you gain a cultural context to the classics you love, but your own worldview broadens through these new experiences.
- Creative Expression: Students who are allowed to pursue the creative arts through class, competitions, or clubs often end up more well-rounded. University outlets for creative expression are important to your chosen English program. This also breaks up the monotony of academic writing and studying.
English programs from a biblical worldview prepare Christians to work within the world to serve and benefit those around them. Whether you major or minor in English at Cairn or another Christian university, you will receive a well-rounded education that combines your love of literature with your love of the Lord.