English (BA)

Offering courses in literature, professional writing, and creative writing, the English bachelor’s degree program at Columbia College Chicago weaves your imagination and love of reading with the writing and communication skills that lead to success in the workplace.

You’ll study different literary forms (fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and more) as you become a flexible and adaptable writer and thinker. And as a member of Columbia’s diverse creative community, you’ll have access to the college’s robust arts and media resources as you prepare for your career. You’ll graduate with sharp analytical skills, the capacity to write in different forms, and the creativity and critical thinking that are valuable assets to any employer. 


In the Classroom

english classroom

Your First Year

You’ll begin with introductory courses in literature and creative writing, which provide a foundation for both analyzing creative texts and creating your own work. You’ll also experience how collaborative writing and workshopping can benefit your work and your individual expression.

Other Courses You’ll Take

Intermediate writing courses like Writing Digital Content and Writing for the Creative Workplace build on your foundation. Intermediate literature courses invite you to reflect on developments in popular literary traditions (English or American) over the course of several generations of writers. You’ll choose interdisciplinary elective courses that both broaden your frame of experience and enable you to apply your skills and abilities in a new context.

While you focus on locating and evaluating sources from libraries and online databases, seminar and workshop classes will help you hone your skills as a researcher, reader, and writer.

Your Last Year

For your capstone project, you’ll revise your favorite piece from your body of work, create longer and more complex pieces, and shape a portfolio that will showcase your abilities to potential employers. You’ll also complete an internship. 


Faculty

Like our students, Columbia College Chicago English and Creative Writing faculty members are diverse in every sense of the word. They are practicing, publishing writers and scholars; they are artists who teach.

Combining different literary backgrounds and experiences with a willingness to experiment, faculty members will encourage you to produce your best work, no matter where you fit into the literary scene.

View all department faculty members


Internships

Employers in fields like technical writing, marketing management, education, research, and nonprofits need people with creativity and critical thinking skills. With your English bachelor’s degree, you’ll be a fit for internships at marketing firms, tech companies, legal firms, television companies, advertising agencies—wherever good writing helps companies thrive. 

Learn more about the Career Center


Chicago: A Writing Hub

Chicago at Night

A world-class city that has given rise to literary greats, Chicago is a hub for writers and literature lovers. From distinctive bookstores and libraries to live lit events that welcome new talent, Chicago has everything an aspiring author could want. Find your community of writers here.  


Faculty Spotlights

Check out what some of our award-winning faculty members are up to:


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Why We Need 'truth talk' Now

Assistant professor of English Nicole Spigner writes on the impetus for Columbia’s 'truth talk' series and the need to address police brutality as a community.

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Jim DeRogatis

The groundbreaking music critic and journalist teaches students to become sharper writers and continues his decades-long reporting on the R. Kelly saga.

Read More


Related Minors for the English BA Program