About English

Award winning teachers, writers, and scholars in the English Department at Cal State LA offer a comprehensive English studies program built around small classes, engaged critical reading, thinking and discussion, and intensive analytical and creative writing.

The English Department at California State University, Los Angeles, cultivates students’ imaginations and critical skills through the intensive study of literature and language. Offering programs leading to the Bachelor of Arts and the Master of Arts degrees, the department provides courses that build on the traditional study of British and American literary history while encouraging students to further explore literary theory and criticism, world literatures and transnational critical paradigms, children’s literature, creative writing, rhetoric and composition, interdisciplinary cultural analysis, and the history and structure of the English language. 

Image of Bidhan Roy

Professor Bidhan Roy, CSULA English

Drawing on the richness of L.A.’s geographical and cultural context, the department equips students to see the study of literature and language as both personally enriching and publicly meaningful within their own communities. Those communities may be defined through the department’s direct engagement with the neighborhoods of East L.A. and the San Gabriel Valley or regarded as a global terrain, in which Oxford connects to Oaxaca and where ideas resonate from ancient Greece and Rome to the contemporary Pacific Rim. These broad horizons signal a commitment to both the mastery of literary traditions and the development of new kinds of knowledge, both local and global.

Study in English provokes intellectual and personal development while providing effective preparation for a number of careers. Graduates of CSULA’s M.A. program in English regularly gain acceptance to the top doctoral programs in the country; the department’s undergraduate Single Subject Credential option and emphasis on pedagogy help to prepare students for careers in education. Teaching, however, is only one of the many professions open to English majors; the department’s commitment to providing students with rigorous training in close reading, research, writing, and critical thinking skills makes graduates attractive to professional schools and a wide array of employers in the legal profession, business, civil service, the non-profit sector, the entertainment industry, and other venues. Whatever their vocation, English majors possess not only practical abilities but also a subtle understanding of the varied ways in which human beings search for meaning and strive to express the complexity of individual and communal experience.