Advising Info

Once you have successfully completed 26 credit hours, including English 110C, we encourage you to declare your major. You may do so by meeting with Heather Weddington for initial advising. After this appointment, you will be assigned to a faculty member for advising prior to the beginning of each new semester.

You may minor in any of the emphasis areas described above, or you may have a general minor. In any case, you will have 5 classes at the 300/400 level with at least one 400 level. Once you have successfully completed English 110C and your 200 level English, we encourage you to declare your minor. You may do so by filling out the Minor Declaration Form. Once that is completed, please email the form to Heather Weddington. If you have questions, you may make an appointment for advising.

If you have not yet been admitted to Old Dominion, start with admissions.

Once you have been admitted to Old Dominion, you will be advised initially by our transfer advisor. If you wish to see an initial assessment of what will and will not transfer to Old Dominion, please use Monarch TRANSFERmation.

Upon your decision to return to ODU, you must reactivate your status. Once you receive word that your reactivation is complete, you may email Janis Smith for an appointment for advising.

Directions to Old Dominion: To reach Parking Services and obtain a visitor's parking permit for your advising appointment, add these directions to what you see on the link: if you are traveling from the north, you will proceed on Hampton Blvd and turn right on 43rd Street. Parking Services is located at 4310 Elkhorn Ave. If you are traveling from the south, you will proceed on Hampton Blvd and turn left on 43rd St.

For general University information visit the Catalog.

For more information specific to the Department of English visit the Catalog.

Undergraduate Programs

In the Department of English, all programs have 21 hours of core courses and then additional major hours to reach 39 hours. There are 6-majors from which students will choose:


When a poem or lyric moves you, how does it make you feel what you're feeling? When a story scares you, what's happening on the level of structure and syntax to usher you toward surprise? In the creative writing emphasis, you won't only read and write, you'll learn the very mechanics of prose and poetry, in order to be able to reproduce the effects of the literature you love. During your course of study, you'll read and interpret the work of contemporary writers, study the history and conventions of various genres, attend literary readings, and share their prose and poetry with classmates.

  • Screenwriter/Playwright
  • Magazine Editor
  • Literary Agent
  • Travel Journalist
  • Teacher
  • Book Publishing Agent
  • Merchandising Writer
  • Writing Project Manager
  • Critical thinking
  • Creative problem solving
  • Self-expression
  • Logical analysis
  • Close reading
  • Editing

Learn more about the Creative Writing program and view the full Creative Writing advising flyer.

Through a focus on the fundamentals of communicating through writing and visuals, students in the Technical Writing majors are exposed to writing a wide range of document types for various audiences in a variety of contexts, including professional, governmental, nonprofit, and scientific workplaces. Included in many courses are client- and case-based writing projects that provide real-world or real-world equivalent experience.

  • Technical writers
  • Web developers
  • User experience (UX) professionals
  • Project managers
  • Editors
  • Copy writers
  • Experience in writing and editing
  • User experience (UX) and usability testing
  • Project management
  • Document design
  • Technical writing
  • Instructional writing
  • Web design (including wireframing, prototyping, and persona development)

As an English major with an emphasis in Journalism you can enter an exciting career. Journalists are often at the center of what's happening in politics, entertainment, sports, business, and technology. Write and broadcast from the front lines of the battlefield, to the front row of the stadium. Learn from our experienced journalists how you can make your mark in this dynamic industry.

The Mace & Crown and WODU also provide our students with the hands-on experience employers seek when hiring.


  • Radio and TV Producer
  • Public Relations Consultant
  • Digital Writer
  • Newspaper Reporter
  • Magazine Editor
  • Travel and Food Blogger
  • Sports Writer
  • Social Media Coordinator
  • Clear, impactful writing
  • Editing skills
  • Critical thinking
  • Digital research
  • Global knowledge
  • Strong speaking skills
  • Multimedia content creation
  • Design and layout

Learn more about the Journalism program and view the full Journalism advising flyer.

The Applied Language Studies (APLS) Major focuses on the scientific, evidence-based study of language with an emphasis on using linguistics to solve real-world problems. Through the APLS curriculum, students learn the basic structural features that comprise all languages. The English B. A. or English minor with an Applied Language Studies (APLS) emphasis is a "portable" degree, one that is as valuable today as it will be 20 years from now. Because it focuses on applied language in multiple contexts, the APLS emphasis complements other majors in the College of Arts and Letters as well as the Colleges of Business, Engineering, Education, and Sciences and prepares students for success in multiple 21-st century professions and disciplines.

Career Fields
  • Teaching
  • Marketing, Branding, and Advertising
  • Testing and Assessment
  • Language Documentation and Research
  • Computer-Mediated Language Learning
  • Publishing, Editing, Writing
  • Law and Medical Consulting
  • Civil and Foreign Service
  • Writing
  • Research
  • Teaching
  • Design
  • Analysis
  • Interpretation
  • Evaluation
  • Problem Solvin

Learn more about the Applied Language Studies program and view the full Applied Language Studies advising flyer.

The B.A. in English Literature adds expertise in interpreting literary and other creative cultural texts to the grounding in English Studies provided by the core requirements. Be exposed to the history and cultural significance of American, British, and other culturally diverse literary traditions. Study the comprehensive methodologies for interpreting creative texts, and become the kind of writer who can grapple with the complexities and subtleties of creative texts.

  • Writer/Content Specialist
  • PR/Marketing Specialist
  • Social Media Manager
  • Congressional Aide
  • Lawyer/Paralegal
  • Librarian
  • Editor
  • Educator
  • Expertise in advanced critical thinking
  • Excellence in writing and editing
  • Experience in research design and archival research
  • Awareness of global connections and differences
  • Knowledge of multiple creative traditions
  • Independent and creative thinking
  • Understanding texts within various cultural and historical contexts

Learn more about the Literature program and view the full Literature advising flyer.

This program leads to eligibility for teacher licensure in Virginia, preparing students for a full range of secondary school teaching assignments. The program is accredited by the State of Virginia; in addition, Virginia has licensure reciprocity agreements with thirty other states, should the student leave Virginia. The program combines the usual requirements of a college major and minor. Students take courses in the English department of the College of Arts and Letters and Teaching and Learning department of the Darden College of Education and Professional Studies. Students receive a Bachelor of Arts in English. Students in this program have the option of working toward a Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) certificate through Old Dominion University's English Department to support them in better serving a diverse group of learners in the schools and communities in which they will go on to teach.

  • English Teacher
  • ESL Teacher
  • Literacy Coach
  • Community Programs For Youth
  • Education Program Director
  • Curriculum Writer, Editor
  • Academic Advisor
  • Analysis & Critique
  • Critical thinking
  • Reflection
  • Communication
  • Collaboration
  • Innovation

Students who choose teaching will also be advised in the College of Education. Learn more about the Teaching of English program and view the full Teaching of English advising flyer►

A minor in English demonstrates to employers that you are a strong writer, communicator, and critical thinker in your own specialization.

Mix & match five 300 and 400 level English classes to build your own English minor! Learn more about the English (Minor) program►

All students who enter the University without credit for English 110D must take and pass the Writing Sample Placement Test prior to registering for upper division English courses.

Graduate Programs

Tracks include literature, the teaching of English, rhetoric and composition, or professional writing. Each program develops professional competency in literary and textual analysis and in writing. The program prepares students for further graduate study in English; for professional writing and editing; for teaching in secondary schools and colleges; for further study in such fields as anthropology, law, psychology, and philosophy; for careers in government and industry; and for other professions requiring analytical, literary, linguistic, digital media, or writing skills. Learn more about the English (M.A.) program ►

Prepares students to pursue advanced graduate study or to teach in colleges, adult education programs, businesses, private schools, or institutions in the U.S. or abroad. The program's two majors are Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) and Sociolinguistics. Students in the program may also earn a certificate in TESOL and/or use appropriate courses in the program as requirements toward obtaining the Commonwealth of Virginia Endorsement for English as a Second Language. Learn more about the Applied Linguistics (M.A.) program►

Take workshops and craft courses with our dynamic, award-winning faculty who have expertise in American, British, and world literature, as well as literary theory, film studies, and rhetoric. In our 54-hour program, students graduate not only as writers but also as individuals competent in literary studies. Students can study nonfiction, fiction, and poetry and continue on to publish books, stories, and poems in national literary magazines and journals, articles and reviews in major newspapers, prestigious citations, awards, and grants. Learn more about the Creative Writing (M.F.A.) program►

Explore the opportunities offered by our innovative Ph.D. program, which integrates literature and cultural studies (LCS), rhetoric, writing, and discourse studies (RWD), and technology and media studies (TMS) to offer creative reinterpretations of these fields as they intersect in the discipline. Students may elect full- or part-time study, on campus or from a distance. The Summer Doctoral Institute, required for all part-time distance students, offers opportunities for hands-on, in-person work on campus. Create your career in or outside the classroom: teach writing or literature in digital spaces; create a Writing Center; become a Writing Program Administrator; work in industry or for a non-profit. Learn more about the English (Ph.D.) program►

Graduate Assistantships are available in all programs and offer competitive stipends and teaching and/or research experience.