In addition to the goals for the core program, all of which apply to the major program, the English department sets the following as goals for its majors:
1. Acquire a basic knowledge of literary history—how generations affect each other, and how authors write with an awareness of those who have written before them.
2. Understand different literary genres and forms and the aesthetic dimensions of literary texts.
3. Recognize that texts can be approached in multiple ways.
4. Understand how works of literature reflect their own times, engage great moral issues, and advance or undermine justice.
5. Understand how works of literature challenge readers to recognize difference, build communities, address racial, social, and economic inequities, and participate critically as active members of society.
6. Develop habits of reading for both pleasure and intellectual edification.