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Why an English Degree Could Be the Key to Success

26/01/2023 / English Tuition

Does your child lack direction? Maybe they keep telling you they don’t know what to do when they leave school? Rather than worrying too much, help them find the direction they need instead. At Principal Tutors, we find that many of our students struggle with the idea of the future and rather than pressure them to pick a career path, we help them to keep their options open by supporting them with core skills such as maths, science and English.

If your child loves English, then choosing this diverse subject for their undergraduate studies could open more doors than they’ve ever imagined – find out more now!

Why English is a Great Choice

English is one of the most popular degree courses on offer in UK universities. Students choose English for lots of different reasons including:

  • The opportunity to explore their creative side
  • To learn more about how to communicate effectively
  • To study poetry and prose that has shaped the world
  • To become an expert in the English language
  • And lots of other reasons

English is a versatile subject with plenty of different avenues that can be explored and enjoyed. What’s even more exciting about English is that it provides a young person with a degree that doesn’t hem them into one specific field, allowing them to use it to enter a range of different industries.

What Career Options Can an English Degree Offer?

As a parent, wanting your child to achieve an education that will stand them in good stead for a successful future is natural, that’s why English is a great choice. Take a look at some of the different careers that are easier to access with a degree in English:

  • Marketing & Advertising – there’s no doubt that a career in marketing and advertising is a great way to make good money. Having an English degree shows that an individual has a good grasp of the English language, making them a perfect candidate for any entry-level jobs with large marketing firms.
  • Journalism – being able to convey topical information in an easy-to-read manner is the essence of a journalists day job along with research and excellent penmanship. If your child is interested in a journalism career then a degree in English is a great starting point that will help them show that they are capable of disseminating qualify information that can be trusted.
  • Editor – a career as an editor offers lots of promise to young graduates, as well as a huge range of industries that require skilful editors. From Maxine’s to newspapers and publishing houses to marketing companies, an editor that can notice and fix errors as well as shape writing to fit the brand will always be able to find work!
  • Teacher – if your child is keen on a career that helps others then a degree in English could be the starting point to a career as a teacher. There is a huge demand for well-qualified teachers to support students in both school environments and alternative education establishments too.
  • Librarian – a love of reading and in-depth knowledge of books is an essential requirement for librarian roles as well as research skills and organisation. A degree in English will help your child on the road to becoming a librarian along with postgraduate study in archiving and library organisation.
  • Writer – does your child have a creative flair that could help provide them with an income as they get older? Becoming a writer is an exciting and varied career with opportunities for authorship as well as copywriting and technical writing. Some English degree modules focus purely on creative writing, giving your child the chance to hone their craft before starting to share their writing with the wider world.
  • Publishing – the world of publishing is exciting for anyone that loves language, books and writing, From jobs as publicists to literary agents and product managers to project managers, there is something for every skillset.
  • Marketing & PR – an English degree will stand your child in good stead if they want to be become a PR specialist, brand manager or marketing executive. Typically, a degree in English Language or Lang/Lit is the best route for this career path.
  • Law – if your child loves the law then an English degree is a great step into a career as a legal researcher or paralegal. Many people believe that a law degree is essential to these roles but the skills that an English degree offers is often more appropriate for research and paralegal positions.

These are just some the career options for an English graduate to explore but there are plenty more too! What’s great about English is the fact that it also provides a solid starting point for anyone that wants to go on to study at masters and doctorate levels too, and for those who want to pursue a career in university academia.

Ultimately, if your child really doesn’t know what they want to do when they head to university, English is a solid choice that can be studied as a standalone subject or paired with any other course for a joint or major/minor degree choice.

What Types of English Degrees Are There?

While choosing English is the first step in your child picking out a degree choice, the options are still varied and can be honed to suit their specific interests. Each university sets its own degree pathways and syllabus. As a general rule, there are four broad types of undergraduate English degrees that your child can choose from:

  • English Literature – this degree covers a wide range of different texts from a number of different countries and historical periods. From medieval literature to modern literature and everything in between, there will be a number of exciting modules to choose and study.
  • English Language – studying language and linguistics will give you an oversight of the mechanics of the language including studying things like phonetics, semantics, pragmatic and more. It will also cover topics such as language acquisition.
  • Critical Theory – rather than studying specific texts in different eras, Critical Theory means studying various literary and cultural theories, such as feminist theory, postcolonial theory, and psychoanalysis.
  • Creative Writing- finally, if you child is creative then they can enjoy learning the craft of fiction, poetry, drama, and non-fiction writing on a Creative Writing degree course.

Each of these courses can also be paired with a different degree as a joint honours or some universities will also offer a specific English degree with a themed approach such as gender studies, journalism, American studies and more.

What Employability Skills Does an English Degree Offer?

An English degree is a great choice for employability because it develops a wide range of transferable skills that are highly valued by employers and provides a solid foundation in the study of literature, language, and culture, which can be applied to a wide range of careers. Furthermore, an English degree demonstrates a strong work ethic, attention to detail, and ability to think creatively, which are key skills that are desirable in any field. Some of the most in-demand, employability skills that an English degree offers includes:

  • Strong written and oral communication skills
  • Critical thinking and analysis
  • Research and information management skills
  • The ability to interpret and evaluate texts
  • Creative and flexible thinking
  • Cultural awareness and understanding
  • The ability to work independently and in teams
  • Strong organisational and time management skills
  • The ability to present and defend an argument
  • The ability to adapt to new technologies and digital media
  • Strong editing and proofreading skills
  • Familiarity with literary and cultural theory
  • Familiarity with different historical periods and literary genres
  • Knowledge of language and linguistics

These skills can be applied to a wide range of careers, including in fields such as journalism, publishing, teaching, marketing, public relations, editing and proofreading, advertising, and more.

Which Universities Are the Best for Studying an English Degree?

There are many universities in the UK that offer excellent English degree programs. Some of the top universities for English include:

  • University of Oxford
  • University of Cambridge
  • University College London (UCL)
  • University of Edinburgh
  • King’s College London
  • University of Warwick
  • University of Bristol
  • University of York
  • University of Glasgow
  • University of Southampton

These universities are consistently ranked highly in national league tables and are known for their strong academic programs and research in the field of English. However, it’s important to note that the best program for your child will depend on their personal interests and career goals, so it’s important to research and compare the different programs offered by universities before making a decision.

If your child has expressed an interest in studying abroad, then this is also possible even when studying a degree in English. Many universities around the world offer excellent English degree programs, and studying in a different country can provide an opportunity for students to gain a different perspective on literature and culture, and to develop intercultural skills.

However, it’s important to do research on the universities and programs you are interested in to ensure they meet your academic and career goals. It’s also important to consider the cost of studying abroad, as well as the language requirements, if any, and the support services available to international students.

How to Support My Child to Excel at English

  • Encourage Reading – Reading is one of the most important ways to improve language skills. Encourage your child to read a variety of texts, including novels, nonfiction, poetry, and newspapers.
  • Practice Writing – Encourage your child to write regularly, whether it’s through journaling, writing stories, or composing songs or poetry.
  • Discuss Their Reading – Talk to your child about what they’re reading and writing, and encourage them to express their thoughts and opinions, giving reasons for what they think.
  • Make Language a Priority – Use language and literature in everyday life, such as reading aloud, playing word games, or writing letters to friends and family.
  • Encourage Different Genres, Authors and Cultures – Encourage your child to explore different genres, authors, and cultures through literature, and help them understand the cultural and historical context of the texts they read.
  • Lead by Example – Show your child the value of language and literature by reading and writing yourself, and by discussing books and other texts with your child.

While an English degree may be the best choice for your child’s future, helping them to get there can be  are several ways you can help your child excel at English:

Keep in mind that every child is different, so it’s important to tailor your approach to your child’s unique needs and interests. If you are keen to help your child achieve the best results in English, then an online English tutor may be the answer. A tutor will work with your child to hone their grammar, spelling, reading, writing and oracy skills.

They will also work with your child to prepare for tests and exams, helping them to develop their confidence to explain their ideas in a coherent and logical way. As schools teach both English Literature and English Language, you can ask a tutor to work on one area specifically or provide a broader level of support across both subjects.

Arrange English Tuition with Ease

Ready to arrange a tutor for your child but don’t know where to start? Principal Tutors is here to help! All of our tutors are fully qualified and experienced teachers who understand the curriculum as well as exam requirements.

All our customer service is completed by qualified teachers who know what it is you are looking for and can provide pertinent advice as and when you need it. In fact, our service has been so well received by parents like you, that we have been lucky enough to win multiple awards for out hard work – proving that we really are the experts you need.

We know that it can be chore to find a tutor that your child clicks with so we offer a pay as you go system so that you are never tied into support that doesn’t work for their needs. Connect with us today and find out more about how we can help your child succeed.


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