English Concentration

A particularly flexible degree path, the English concentration can be tailored to help you study literature, writing, or journalism, and is useful for students who would like to continue their education to develop careers in education, journalism, writing, human relations, editing, law, publishing, public relations, advertising, and other fields.

Furthermore, an English concentration will help you develop the communication skills that most employers place at or near the top of their list of qualifications. 


Creative thinking, critical thinking, disciplined writing and revision, and collaborative work are the hallmarks of a successful English student. These skills and talents are said to be some of the most desirable and flexible a professional can hold. Students will learn both processes and collaborative skills in writing, reading, and developing ideas using creative and critical thinking.

SUNY Adirondack’s English concentration begins with introductory classes in composition and communication, setting the stage for advanced classes that may focus on literature and creative writing in a wide range of genres. Through readings, lectures, writing assignments, and examining published literature, students will study the history of literature and how it informs our world today.


After completing two required writing courses, you will take at least four courses from the following categories:

  • Conventions of the Discipline
  • Literature and Identity
  • Major Genres and Author Courses
  • Survey and Period Courses

We also have a strong creative writing program which offers Writing as Craft courses; however, we recommend that you consult your transfer institution or consider pursuing the Creative Writing A.A. degree for more extensive advanced work in that particular interest.

SUNY Adirondack offers small class sizes and access to dedicated faculty who have years of real-world experience in publishing scholarship, literary criticism, journalism, and creative writing in scholarly journals, literary magazines, newspapers, books and anthologies. Excellent students in the English concentration will also have the opportunity to work on the campus literary magazine or to study and practice tutoring in the Center for Reading and Writing which serves the entire campus. Another distinctive feature of our program is the Writers Project which brings published professional writers to campus regularly to read from their work, answer questions, and visit classes.

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Degree requirements

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While the English concentration within the Liberal Arts and Sciences: Humanities and Social Sciences degree is primarily geared toward transfer opportunities, graduates will find they can take the skills and critical thinking learned in this degree straight into a relevant career.

Upon completion of the program, graduates will have developed advanced writing skills to continue with a four-year education. This particular program has been favorably reviewed by partner transfer institutions, such as:

  • SUNY Plattsburgh
  • SUNY Oswego
  • SUNY Albany

For more information about SUNY's English concentration, visit SUNY Transfer Path: English.

Program Learning Outcomes

  1. Develop sufficient background in a Humanities or Social Science discipline to qualify for upper level study.
  2. Demonstrate the skills and knowledge needed to think critically.
  3. Employ effective communication skills, both written and verbal.
  4. Articulate the presence and influence of diversity within societies such as the United States and those in Western Europe, as well as throughout the world.
  5. Demonstrate the skills and knowledge related to personal health and fitness, life-long sports, and recreational wellness.
  6. Examine expression and the creative process in one or more of the areas of humanities.
  7. Demonstrate an understanding of the scientific method.
  8. Identify basic factors relevant to the analysis of human behavior.