Major in English at Humboldt State University

We empower students to use the transformative tool of language to enact change and uphold the values of social justice. Through our robust curriculum, students analyze texts and language, challenge entrenched ideas, and think critically about how to amplify diverse voices. With a priority on hands-on learning, our students create, listen, write, teach, and plan their mark on the world. 

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Program Overview

Studying English at Humboldt State, students work closely with faculty and a supportive cohort of peers to explore the deep connection between theory and practice, critique and creation. Graduates leave the University with a renewed passion for the study of English and a broad set of skills to carry into diverse and exciting careers.

Bachelor of Arts in English

English is a place for students who want to make a difference in their communities. How do words and stories shape our worldview? By studying the relationship between language, identity, and power, English students will engage in conversations about social justice, pedagogy, literature, and writing that extend beyond the classroom.

B.A. in English

English Department Minors: 

Master of Arts in English

Our graduate students study how language acts upon the world in order to communicate effectively with diverse communities and envision a just society. The M.A. program values the deep connection between theory and practice and emphasizes hands-on learning through teaching assistantships, tutoring, and internships in editing, digital humanities, and library curating and archiving.

M.A. in English

Featured Alumni Profile

Todd Loughran, 2020 (English, B.A.)

MFA grad student in English Creative Writing: Poetry at University of Kansas City Missouri

I go to class to further my knowledge and expand upon my writing skills. I am also an intern/student at the university's literary magazine "New Letters". I read the applications and choose the best one so far.

Career Options

English majors and M.A. students graduate from Humboldt with refined and applicable skills in critical thinking, analyzing literary texts, and effectively communicating complex ideas across mediums.

  • Research and Library Science
  • Authorship and Book Design
  • Podcast and Audiobook Production
  • English as a Second/Foreign Language Teaching
  • High School, College, and University Teaching
  • Communications for Nonprofits & Activist Organizations 
  • Grants, Fundraising, and Development
  • College Program Administration

    Toyon magazine cover Volume 67 with a mirror of two women faces


    Every year, students and community members have the opportunity to publish their writing and art in the Toyon Multilingual Journal of Literature and Art. Submissions are accepted year-round.

    Become a Staff Member

    English majors also have the opportunity to enroll in English 460 or 461 to learn about the editoral and production process. Each student in the class fulfills a roll as a Toyon staff member. 

    Toyon and student involvement

    We acknowledge that the land on which Cal Poly Humboldt is located is unceded territory of the Wiyot people who continue to live and thrive today. It is surrounded by the traditional, ancestral, and present homelands of several Indigenous nations including the Hupa, Karuk, Mattole, Tolowa, Wailaki, and Yurok that make up Humboldt County.