6 April 2022
I often get asked the question ‘But what can I do with an English degree?’ to which I reply ‘anything!’.
It’s often thought that subjects with a clear vocation are ‘better’ – medicine for doctors, accountancy for accountants, law for lawyers. But the reality is different – most people who study law at university don’t become lawyers after all.
Here’s why you have great job prospects as an English graduate:
As an English student, you’ll develop several skills that are valued by employers, including, communication, critical thinking, problem-solving, research, negotiating and evaluating different points of view, and working independently and as part of a team.
In fact, these skills are becoming increasingly in demand, as shown by the World Economic forum report, and one reason is...
More and more jobs are becoming automated and COVID has accelerated the rate of automation. Many jobs won’t exist in the future – including accountants! And most of you will do jobs that don’t exist yet – in the green economy for example. But, as an English graduate, you will have the skills you need.
In English degrees, you think and learn about technology, history, geography, philosophy, the visual arts, politics, and science. This knowledge can be applied to a range of emerging role and to new sectors.
But also, English – literature and language – is about people, society and humanity. Jobs which involve human interaction will continue to be relevant, and as an English graduate you will have greater cultural awareness, emotional intelligence and understanding of people.
English is about who you are, how you express yourself, and how you think critically about the world around you. Moreover, you study it because you love it, right?
Doing something you love, rather than something you think you should, will always make you a more successful professional, a more productive employee, a better boss – a better person.
So if you want to teach English in the UK or overseas, or use your communication skills online or in the boardroom, or do a job that doesn’t exist yet, or do anything at all, then do an English degree.
Sebastian Rasinger, Associate Professor in Linguistics
Find out more about studying English, and other degree courses, at one of our Open Days.