Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How can I find out the reading list for a class I’m taking before the first day?
The schedule of classes  in Banner lists the instructor for each course. E-mail the instructor ( to request the course reading list. Also check with the University Book Store.  Some instructors also post that information on their faculty pages.


Q: How do I find out who my adviser is?
Once accepted into the major, each concentration has its own departmental advisor.

Create Writing Concentration: Mr. Jay Udall

Film Concentration: Dr. Todd Kennedy

Literary Studies Concentration: Ms. Elka Staley

Writing and  Rhetoric Concentration: Dr. Ellen Barker

Departmental Advising Coordinator, Dr. Michele Theriot.  Dr. Theriot is also the Nicholls Online  English Degree advisor.


Please Note: ALL Freshmen are advised within University College.


Q: What are the job possibilities with this major?
A: Graduates become teachers, lawyers, politicians, technical writers/editors, managers, web developers — the career possibilities are so broad because the skills gained are highly valuable to employers.


Q: What jobs other than teaching have faculty members held?
A: Nicholls Department of Languages and Literature faculty members have held diverse positions, including web developer for a children’s hospital, freelance writer/editor, documentation and training consultant for a Midwestern IT company, personnel director for Lafourche Parish, director of Lafourche Parish Head Start, obituary writer for the Daily Comet, owner of Taliessin Bookstore (now Cottonwood Books) in Baton Rouge, novelist, journalist for the Houma Daily Courier and other publications, editor of educational software, book Coordinator and publisher, public relations specialist, advertising design and sales representative, YWCA program coordinator, oral history collector, cemetery surveyor/documenter, administrative assistant, assistant director at University Press of Mississippi, land title researcher for an attorney, mock jury analyst for an attorney, proofreader of Bibles and editor of Athlon sports magazine.


Q: What kind of classes are required for the degrees?
A: The degree in English offers three areas on concentration:  literary studies, rhetoric and writing, and creative writing.  Students will take a core unit of courses, an introduction to the discipline and surveys in American and British Literature.  Then they will choose from English electives outlined for each area of concentration.  The department offers a wide variety of courses in each area of concentration, such as digital rhetoric, special topics in the study of ancient to contemporary rhetoric, composition pedagogy, studies in social media; studies in the writing of fiction, non-fiction, flash fiction, poetry, drama, and screenwriting; all areas of the established literary canon plus courses in multi-cultural literature, women’s literature, major authors, African-American literature, and a number of exciting special topics courses.  We also offer courses in film, folklore, cultural studies, and linguistics.


Q: Do students in the writing concentrations have a heavier workload?
A: Earning a concentration does not add hours to the degree requirement; it only dictates how students use some of their English electives.


Q: What minors would be attractive with the degrees/concentrations?
Minors that may be of interest include humanities, international studies, biology, government, history, art history, music, sociology, criminal justice, English (for French majors), French (for English majors), computer science, business administration, management, marketing, business information systems, family and consumer sciences, psychology.  The answer depends on the student’s career goals.


Q: How long does it take the average person to complete this degree/concentration?
The program is designed to be completed in four years with a full load. Students may take longer for a host of reasons, including being late to declare their major, dropping classes and having personal or work obligations that prevent a full courseload. Students should meet regularly with their advisers to assist with timely completion of the degree.


Q: Are electives truly elective? How open are my choices?
Read the catalog carefully. Some electives have to come from specific disciplines, such as art or history, and some electives have to be chosen from courses numbered 300 or above.


Q: Are there any graduate-level courses offered?
Yes. Students can earn graduate credit in a number of our courses.  Please refer to the current catalog.  All courses with an asterisk can be taken for graduate credit.   There are also a number of courses at the 500 level, which are designated graduate classes.


Q: Are there any seldom-offered-but-required classes I should know about?
A: Classes are on a three year rotational schedule, which enables students following a four year academic program to complete courses required for the major.  We do require that students take ENGL 220, 315, 316, 321, and 322.  After completion of these courses, students have a number of electives they may take to complete their area of concentration for the major in English and for the minor in English.