What can you do with an English Degree?

By | August 25, 2016
English degree jobs

With an English degree you can do various jobs, including desktop publishing, web content editing, and journalism.

What can you do with an English Degree?

In an era where STEM education (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) and various other job-targeted degrees are placed on a pedestal, the question thrown at prospective English majors is, ‘What can you do with an English degree?’

One of the few disciplines facing gross underestimation in our society today is English language.

While giving credit to technical courses, a lot of snide remarks have been made about the humanities, especially the English language.

This has discouraged a lot of students majoring in the course and deterred even more from pursuing the degree.

But is an English degree really impractical and irrelevant, without good job prospects, as presumed?

It is worthy to note that employers are currently on the lookout for humanities majors among which include English graduates who possess soft, transferable skills of crystal communication, elaborate writing, refined research, and a sense of empathy.

Steve Strauss in attestation to the fact stated, ‘English majors are my employees of choice’.

Only a meagre 9.8% of English graduates are said to remain unemployed right after school, this is in contrast to 10.4 and 11.1% of unemployed economics and political science graduates as sourced from Georgetown Center on Education & Workforce.

English language undoubtedly has played an important role in unifying people of diverse cultural, racial, and geographic background, proving to be an internationally recognized language employed in business, education, media, and religion.

A lot of people who majored in English; people such as Joan Rivers (Presenter), Mario Cuomo (Ex-governor, New York), Mitt Romney (Politician) and Hugh Grant (Actor) to mention but a few have all gone ahead to have successful careers.

The opportunities available with an English degree range from job positions in the banking industry to the media, education, research, and journalism.

In surprising contrast to the attributed snobbery, an English degree in the U.S occupies a position as one of the most popular college degrees, ranking 13th and 9th most popular degree according to Matchcollege and USATodaycollege respectively.

What can you do with an English Associate’s Degree?

There are several jobs one can get with a degree in English, depending on the type of degree obtained.
With an Associate’s degree in English, you can occupy positions as:

  • Desktop Publisher: Their duties entail the development and design of professional materials, including books, journals, magazines, and newspapers. They evaluate the needs of a client and use computer graphic and text software to create a choice design/material. They are responsible for the formatting and editing of design text, they prepare materials for printing using desktop publishing software and ensuring that produced content (digital photo, charts) meet the requirements of the client.
  • Administrative Assistant: They specialize in the provision of office and administrative services. They ensure the efficient operation of administrative systems, policies and procedures. They carry out office tasks of providing information as well as ensuring the functioning of office equipment, keeping a record of stock and generally assisting with the maintenance of efficient workflow and business growth.
  • Teaching Assistant: They provide classroom assistance to teachers helping them manage the affairs of students. They maintain student’s records, take attendance, prepare classroom materials and interact with students to help them develop academically. With further education, they can fully transit into the education system as teachers or administrators.

What can you do with an English Bachelor’s Degree?

A baccalaureate degree in English opens the door to wide possibilities for entry-level jobs.
With a Bachelor’s degree, an English graduate can get the following jobs:

  • Web Content Editor: They are tasked with the responsibility of creating and posting information on websites. They provide web details for corporate companies, media agencies, academic institutions and I.T companies using their excellent communication and writing skills to deliver a captivating web content for their client.
  • Editorial Assistant: With a good command of words and an exceptional ability to write, English majors can go on to become editorial assistants whose duties involve identifying errors in a written material and ensuring manuscripts are precisely put down. They also work with a team to monitor pre-publication and post-publication activities.
  • Advertising Copywriter: They are responsible for the development and production of compelling adverts. They work with an art director to come up with advertising ideas such as slogans or a catchy images that are put together to produce an impressing advert. They try to actualize the advert ideas of a client as well as suggesting better concepts.
  • Lexicographer: They specialize in compiling, editing, and writing of dictionaries for online and print publication. They monitor and evaluate the use of language/words, sampling evidence from a wide range of sources and then go ahead to create definitions most suitable for the specified word. They proofread, review definitions, and spot new common words that can be added to the dictionary.
  • Information Officer: Their duties involve managing the procurement and distribution of information for a client/organization. They are responsible for providing information resources, carrying out research to obtain facts, performing information audit and writing of publications/reports. They generally strive to make a desired information available to meet the needs of the clients.

What can you do with an English Master’s or Doctorate Degree?

Advanced degrees in English such as Master’s or Doctorate degree provide English majors with a professional/expert status to occupy job positions as:

  • Journalist: Their duties involve providing the public with verified news of events and issues arising from a specific region. They carry out proper survey and research to come up with information and details that are newsworthy. They usually work in media houses and news agencies.
  • Instructor: Earning advanced degrees in English provides an opportunity for academic career as teacher or lecturer whose duty is to provide students in colleges/universities with knowledge of effective communication and writing.


As a result of the various transferable skills that an English degree imparts on students, it provides a platform for graduates to thrive on jobs in other fields.

What job would you like to get with an English degree? Please share with us the career you plan to pursue with an English degree in the box below.