Student reading in a campus study area. The Literature program offers a great opportunity to pursue your intellectual passions while cultivating skills that will help you in almost any career field.

Our students engage with literary works from diverse historical periods and cultural perspectives, learning about the development of genres, forms, and styles in relation to the historical circumstances that surround them. Courses range from broad surveys of a period or movement to specific investigations into a single author or theme; they also reach across the media spectrum, from Elizabethan sonnets to propaganda films.

Major Concentration

Literature is the most flexible of the four concentrations within the English major. Students can choose electives not just in literature but in linguistics, creative writing, and professional writing.

If you choose this major, you will find that the reading, writing, and critical thinking skills you develop will help you to pursue careers in virtually any field. Employers know that an English major is someone who can write and think logically and critically and who is thus a desirable candidate for managerial and professional positions. Our graduates work in fields as diverse as book and magazine publishing, web publishing, teaching, law, medicine, library science, banking, public relations and development, and retail management. Many go on to achieve advanced degrees from graduate and professional schools.

You must complete 42 hours of eligible English courses at the 200-, 300-, and 400-level. A complete list of major requirements, courses, and a proposed four-year program of study for Literature concentration are available in the UAB Undergraduate Catalog.

Minor Concentration

The minor in Literature offers you an exciting and practical way to make the most of your college learning experience and broadens your career options. The program gives you the opportunity to read challenging texts and connect with the language of literature and creative writing, and the courses will help you hone your writing, critical thinking, primary and secondary research, and text analysis skills.

If you are majoring in pre-law, business, education, biology/pre-med, or engineering, you'll find this minor to be valuable as you enter professions where excellent communications and writing skills are important. If you are planning to enter graduate school, the minor offers a chance to learn skills important to primary research in the community and secondary research in libraries and databases.

You must complete 18 hours of eligible English courses at the 300- or 400-level. A complete list of minor requirements and courses is available in the UAB Undergraduate Catalog.


Margaret Jay Jessee
Director of Undergraduate Studies
University Hall 5055
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