Do you love books, reading, or anything to do with literature? Then a degree in English Literature might be for you! If you’re still deciding what you want to study at university, then this is a degree you might want to consider. It’s never an easy decision choosing what you want to study, but knowing what you’ll be going into beforehand always helps with the decision-making process. So, if you definitely want to do this degree, or just want to learn more about what it entails, then here’s all of the reasons why you should study English Literature!

1. You’ll develop a broad range of transferable skills

10 reasons why you should study English Literature
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English Literature is one of those degrees that has loads of transferrable skills, which will always be useful! These can include, writing, researching, time-management skills, organising, and more. Learning these skills is super important, as it will give you more things to put on your CV. Doing this also opens more opportunities for you as well, which is always worth taking advantage of whilst you’re at university.

But probably one of the best skills and top reasons why you should study English Literature is the ability to analyse and think critically. You’ll be expected to read and abstract meaning from very different kinds of texts that cross cultures and history. This will allow you to interpret texts, but perhaps apply such critical thinking to wider situations too, which is invaluable.

2. There’s fewer contact hours

independent working

Most English Literature courses have less contact hours compared to other ones. This means there’s less face-to-face lecturing, and more independent work. This works great for some people, as you can manage your own time better, rather than having loads of hours in university and then coursework on top of that as well.

Having less contact hours also means having more free time, which is obviously a huge bonus! Although you have more time to yourself, it is expected that you become independent and research and do your own work, rather than having everything taught to you in class. Research is something you will have to do a lot of in English Literature, but even with this added work, you still get more free time than other courses.

3. You’ll get to read all the time

10 reasons why you should study English Literature
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It’s usually assumed that if you do English Literature, then you love to read, which I think honestly is sort of a requirement for this degree. You will be doing a lot of reading, which is perfect for book lovers, but probably a nightmare for anyone else. What’s great about university is that you will have a huge variety of books to read in multiple genres, so you really will get a taste of everything! Although it’s likely you won’t like every single book you read, there will definitely be a few that you will fall in love with.

4. You can select modules

choose modules on a degree

Another reason why you should study English Literature is the choice you get with your modules. A lot of subjects don’t offer students a lot of choice when it comes to modules, but with English Literature this is usually the opposite. Depending on what university you go to, you may be able to choose completely what modules you want to take. This is a bonus for any student, since you can avoid the topics that don’t interest you, and actually focus on what you enjoy. Studying what you love also makes you more likely to succeed and actually enjoy your university life as well! So, if you are able to pick your modules, pick what sounds the most interesting, since there’s nothing worse than learning about something you have absolutely no interest in.

5. You’ll be able to improve your writing

10 reasons why you should study English Literature
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Studying English Literature gives you the opportunity to improve your writing, which is great for people who love to write or looking for a career in writing. Listen to the feedback you get and make sure to implement it in the next thing you write. Having feedback from your lecturers is so important, since you’ll never be able to improve if you don’t know what’s wrong with your writing in the first place! As you go through university, you’ll definitely see improvements in your writing compared to when you first started, and honestly, it’s such a great feeling seeing in your work how much better you’ve gotten, so don’t waste the opportunity!

6. You’ll become part of a small community

group of students

What’s great about English Literature is that there usually aren’t hundreds of people in your course. Having a smaller class definitely makes it feel more like a community, and this makes it easier to get to know your coursemates and make new friends. Being around a smaller group of people also helps with the transition from school to university, as it’s less daunting. You’ll soon find that you’re recognising people on your course, without ever having spoken to them, which is what makes English Literature such a nice community!

7. You’ll expand your knowledge

10 reasons why you should study English Literature
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With English Literature, you’re always learning new things. Whether that be the historical context behind a novel, or a new word, there’s always something new to learn! The more you read and learn about the books you are reading, the more you’ll get to learn about different eras, historical moments, the progression of language, and so much more. English Literature is also about looking and learning about new ways to view novels. Even if you end up studying a novel you’ve already read, with this degree, you’ll definitely finish it gaining a new perspective on something you already know!

8. There’s lots of job prospects


Believe it or not, there are so many job options after graduating with an English Literature degree. Teaching and lecturing may seem like obvious choices, but if that’s not what you fancy, then there’s many more career paths you can go down! To name a few, you could become a journalist, editor, writer, marketer, and publisher! Prospects have an extremely useful page on different careers you can get with an English Literature degree, with tips on what experience you might need and how much you are likely to get paid!

With English Literature being a broad degree, it makes it easier to get into different careers! This also means it’s easier to do a degree in English Literature, then go on to do a more specialised Master’s degree, which many people do after finishing their undergrad. If you’re still unsure on what’s available, then check out our article on what can I do with an English Literature degree?

9. You’ll be invited to share your opinion

10 reasons why you should study English Literature
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Sharing your opinion is definitely one of the more exciting elements of the course. Sometimes, it can be hard to feel like your opinions are heard. Maybe you have a really interesting take on a book, but no one to tell. Luckily, with this degree, different opinions and views are always valued! Lecturers love hearing different opinions and views on a text, and this is extremely encouraged at university. As long as you can back up what you’re saying, then you can really express what you feel! Class discussions are common within English Literature, so you’ll get to share your opinion with your peers. This also means listening to what others have to say, and learning from them as well! It’s a really nice environment, where everyone’s opinion is valued. And like I said, if you can back it up, then you can’t say anything wrong!

10. There’s lots of opportunities for discovery

why study English Literature?

What I loved most about my English Literature degree was how interesting it was! I found that I was always learning something new, which kept my motivation going throughout term time. It’s one of the reasons why I chose to study English Literature. Although analysing texts isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, you might find it really interesting to properly dig into a book and see what it’s about. If you love doing this, then this degree is perfect for you! There’s always a new way to look at something, even at books that have been out for hundreds of years!

Finding your own discoveries within novels is really fulfilling, since you may have found something no one else has. My lecturers always told me how students always managed to show them something different, even though they’d been lecturing for years and thought they knew everything there was to know. It’s the perfect reason to do this degree if you love looking into things a bit deeper!

You’re the only one who can decide what to study and why you should study English Literature, but researching into different topics always helps the process! If you’re set on studying English Literature but unsure on which universities to apply to, then read our article on the best universities for English Literature in the UK!