Program Details

Program Details

Bachelor of Arts Degree • School of Arts and Sciences

English Major

Program Details

Curriculum: English majors study the great heritage of the English-speaking peoples in a comprehensive and varied program that includes:
  • literature,
  • the history and structure of the English language, and
  • various aspects of writing.
Students develop an understanding of the relationship between English and the diverse cultural traditions around the world through the study of ancient and modern foreign literatures in translation. They gain cultural understanding, communication skills, and experience in scholarship, and are therefore prepared to teach, do graduate work, or enter any occupation that requires critical thinking, good writing, and a broad perspective.

Detailed advising guides (available from any member of the department faculty or in the School of Arts and Sciences Office) help students select from the options in the major requirements to prepare themselves for careers in business, civil service, law, or publishing, for graduate work in English language, English as a second language, literature, or writing.

Students planning to be certified in K-12 teaching will take elective courses that will strengthen their expertise in their content area of specialization. Prospective childhood education teachers will be advised to take ENG 303 when possible.

Total credit hours required for degree: 120

Jason Denman, Ph.D.Dedicated teachers: English majors at Utica College benefit from close interaction with respected and dedicated teachers who provide opportunities not always available in larger departments. The expertise of the faculty in the English Department incorporates all areas of American, British, and western literature as well as linguistics and rhetoric. Faculty members mentor students through independent study projects as well as in more informal settings.

Career Opportunities: Students in UC's English department are able to plan a course of study that will help them develop and advance toward their career goals. Graduates from the past 10 years have found jobs in such diverse fields as technical and scientific editing, publishing, civil service, and law. Many graduates are now teaching at elementary and secondary schools in central New York and throughout the country.

Honors: Outstanding English majors are offered the opportunity to take Major Honors tutorials with individual faculty members. The English department sponsors a chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the international English honor society.

Gary Leising, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of EnglishSpecial Opportunities: Outside the classroom, students combine their practical and creative abilities to produce Ampersand, the college’s literary magazine, an impressive collection of Utica College students' literary and artistic work. Under the guidance of a faculty adviser, student editors oversee its production from submission and selection of materials to design and publication.

The Harold Frederic English Society offers students interested in literature, drama, and the arts an opportunity to socialize. They meet writers at the college’s Lunch Hour reading series and may lunch with them. They undertake excursions to area theatrical performances and sites of literary importance. In the past, HFES has traveled to New York City, Boston, Washington D.C., and Toronto.

Study Abroad: Various faculty in the English Department direct the London Learning Experience, a three-week three-credit independent study trip. Students visit important historical and literary sites in London, Stratford-upon-Avon, Bath, and Greenwich, and complete independent study projects for credit. Study-abroad opportunities also are available at the University of Wales in Aberystwyth and through Syracuse University's Division of International Programs Abroad (DIPA).

Faculty accomplishments: The English Department is proud of the publishing record of its faculty members but even prouder of their outstanding teaching. Dr. Frank Bergmann and Dr. John Cormican have won the College's Distinguished Teaching Award.

Recent publications range from Gary Leising's poetry chapbook, Fastened to a Dying Animal, to Dr. Diane Matza's Sephardic American Voices to Professor Lisa Orr’s Transforming American Realism: Working-Class Women Writers of the Twentieth Century. Other members of the department research such diverse subjects as language variation, autobiography, Elizabethan drama, and late Victorian aestheticism.

Alumni news: Through our alumni newsletter, The Spectator, the department maintains an extensive alumni network composed of secondary and college teachers, and professionals in fields such as journalism, law, and business.

Facilities: One of the department's professors directs the College's Writing Center, which employs Utica College students to assist fellow students with writing problems.

Utica College maintains seven academic computer laboratories on campus. Classes are taught in some of the computer labs; all labs are accessible to any UC student during published hours. The labs are equipped with laser printers, and the computers have word processing, spreadsheet, and database programs.

If you have questions about the English major, email Dr. Gary Leising, Chair of English, at

Total credit hours required for degree: 120


See catalog listing for English major

Contact Us

Dr. Gary Leising

Dr. Gary Leising

310 Romano Hall
(315) 223-2381

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