English language / English studies is an academic discipline that includes the study of literatures written in the English language. Students who major in English reflect upon, analyse, and interpret literature and film, presenting their analyses in clear, cogent writing.
Scope of English language
In the past an academic degree in English usually meant an intensive study of British and American literary masterpieces. Now, however, an English Major encompasses a much broader range of topics which stretch over multiple disciplines. Prospective English Majors can expect to take courses in academic writing, creative writing, literary theory, British and American literature, multicultural literature, several literary genres (such as poetry, drama, and film studies), and a number of elective multidisciplinary topics such as history, courses in the social sciences, and studies in a foreign language. To the end of studying these disciplines, candidates for a Major in English attain skills in rhetoric, literary analysis, an appreciation for the diversity of cultures, and an ability to clearly and persuasively express their ideas in writing.
Skills and Competencies that You Might Need
To excel as an English language major or graduate, these are vital skills that could be useful for your career:
– sound written and verbal communication skills
– organisation and time management
– critical reasoning and anaylsis
– Ability to use and manipulate words
– articulating and understanding texts, ideas and theories
– creative thinking
and an understanding of different cultures, civilizations, and literary styles from various time periods.
Career Opportunities for English Language Graduates
The English language no doubt is the dominant language in today’s world economy. if you studied English language in a higher institution it may seem that there are no tangible, hard skills acquired except that of knowing your way around speaking and writing the English language.
One could argue that there are no specific career paths for English language graduates as it is not in itself a professional course of study that leads to defined professional career routes.
However the advantage for any good English language graduate is that he could easily veer off into marketing, advertising, teaching, communication careers etc.
The skills you gain through an English language degree are marketable in many career areas. See below some job and career options for you as an English language graduate;
- Editor/Editorial Assistant – print, online media etc
- Teacher – primary, secondary school
- Lecturer – (a post graduate degree needed)
- Lexicographer – printing, publishing etc
- Journalist – print, online, radio, TV media
- Writer/Author – writer, blogger, playwriting, fiction writing, poetry, feature writing etc
- Librarian – public, private libraries
- Information Officer – NGOs, government agencies, business organisations
- Marketing Executive – business organisations
- Copywriter – advertising, pr agencies
- Records Manager – archives, museums, publishing
Admission Requirements for Studying English Language in Nigeria
For most high institutions in Nigeria, to study English language as a course, you need to meet specific academic requirements. Candidates seeking admission through the Jamb are required to have five credit level passes in the Senior Secondary Certificate Examination (S.S.C.E.) or its equivalent. These should include English Language, Literature in English and three other Arts or Social Science subjects. Some schools require at least a pass in Mathematics.
For Jamb UTME, English Language is Compulsory for this course. The three (3) other JAMB UTME subject combination needed to study English Language are Literature in-English, one other Arts subject and another Arts or Social Science subject. Please check Jamb brochure for requirements for each school.
Some schools offers this courses with options in:
- English Studies
- Literacy Studies