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Education Sites Catalog

May 27

The variety of English studies

From an academic point of view, English studies is a discipline that covers three major areas of study, the English literature, English linguistics and English sociolinguistics. But every one of these areas covers numerous and various topics and matters, which makes English studies an extremely comprehensive and encompassing course. English literature for examples includes all literary work written in the English language, such as British literature, American literature or literature from Canada, Ireland, Australia and even India or the Philippines. The English linguistics area focuses on disciplines like phonetics, syntax, phonology, semantics, morphology or stylistics, while English sociolinguistics courses cover areas such as the history of the English language, discourse analysis of texts written in English or the study of the English language around the world. Therefore, English studies cover a variety of courses and fields of study, not to mention than some of the academic departments and programs provided by universities also include more in-depth branches of knowledge, such as journalism, literary criticism, composition studies or the philosophy of the language.

Generally, English studies are specific to university departments, though more general and smaller dimensions of the English texts analysis are also studied in college and undergraduate programs. The undergraduate degree in English studies is also widely known as an English major and it represents the basis of an English studies degree, the starting phase, where students learn to analyze and interpret English literature and to produce clear, conclusive writing. The list of academic disciplines that are gathered under the English studies umbrella is compendious and comprises, in addition to the above mentioned areas, rhetoric, technical communication, English language learning and teaching and World Englishes, which help students acquire essential skills that can later be used in a series of career fields, such as education obviously, writing or publishing, public relations or advertising and even law or finance.

The skills that students acquire after taking English studies are not limited to an exhaustive knowledge of the British or American authors and literary masterpieces. They are not just required to memorize poems or literary styles, but to perform in-depth analysis of the written text, based on logic and reflective thinking, to produce original and creative writing, based on both literary knowledge and imagination and to understand the differences between the various English literature and cultures, reflected in the style and language of the texts, regardless of genre, as students can major in drama, as well as in poetry or even film studies. At the end of the English studies, students should be able not only to perform critical analysis on any given literary text, but also to appreciate the variance of cultures and to be able to express themselves in writing discernibly and conclusively.

Taking everything into account, English studies entail a high level of variety, but they also open up a wide range of choices and opportunities, which is why students with an English degree encounter no difficulties when entering the job market. Suitable for numerous careers and fields, the study of English, under all its disciplines and areas, helps students pursue careers in education, publishing or acting.


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