English (BA)

Explore historic novels and emerging written works, graphic novels, and other written forms of media within their specific historical and cultural contexts. Learn how to interpret works of fiction, drama, poetry, and non-fiction and gain critical reading, analytical and writing skills. This will provide you with a strong foundation for work in many professional fields including professional writing and communication, editing and publishing, law, and education.

Customize your English degree with a concentration in Creative Writing or combine with a law degree from the University of Sussex, United Kingdom.

Apply Your Learning

Make the most out of your university career by taking advantage of all that Laurier has to offer you. Volunteer work, campus clubs, leadership programs, studying abroad, work experience – there are so many ways you can extend your classroom experience into the real world.

Here are just a few examples of the experiences you’ll have access to in the English program:

  • Apply to live in the Film and Media Residence Learning Community as part of your first-year experience.
  • Take courses with a Community Service-Learning component to apply your learning outside of the classroom by volunteering in the Waterloo community.
  • Study abroad for an academic term and become immersed in another culture.
  • Pursue the BA + Master's pathway in English to gain conditional acceptance to a Master's in English when you complete your undergraduate degree.

Check out the English Experience and Career Guide for more!


2022 graduates who secured employment or went on to postgraduate studies


Laurier ranks in the top 6 percent of universities worldwide*


students who gained hands-on learning experiences at Laurier in 2022

*Center for World University Rankings (CWUR)


Format: full time or part time      Duration: four years     Start: September (fall term) or January (winter term)     OUAC code: UH (English); ULA (Sussex Law Pathway); UMA (BA + MA Pathway)

Program Details

Experience a Vibrant English Program

We offer you a chance to explore language and narrative in print and electronic media. Our vibrant program allows you to develop your critical reading, analytical and writing skills in preparation for working in a globally connected world.

Our innovative classrooms emphasize active learning in small group settings where you'll study literary and film texts drawn from the breadth of English-speaking cultures.

Taught by scholars who are internationally recognized researchers, teachers and award-winning writers, our courses include British, Canadian, American, Indigenous and World literatures that participate in conversations that have endured over thousands of years, and which continue to fascinate our contemporary world via the screen and page.

Pathway to a Master's Degree

You can apply for a Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Master of Arts (MA) in English to receive two conditional offers of admission: one to undergraduate studies (BA) in English, and one to graduate studies (MA) in English.

Vancouver Film School Pathway

The Vancouver Film School (VFS) pathway gives you the opportunity to enrich your critical study of literature with practical training in writing at Canada’s leading school for filmmaking.

In only four years, students in the VFS pathway complete an honours Bachelor of Arts (BA) from Laurier and a diploma from VFS. English students (or combined English and Film Studies students) attend VFS's Writing for Film, Television and Games program.

Program Options and Courses

Creative Writing Concentration

The English program offers you the opportunity to work towards a concentration in Creative Writing. This concentration will help you think and practice beyond the usual forms of academic writing; and offer you real-world experience in using your creative, analytical, and editorial skills to develop writing for professional publications.

Options and Minors

These are a few of the many popular academic opportunities which allow you to dive deeper into your major area of study or broaden your knowledge:

  • Applied Digital Option
  • Communication Studies Minor
  • Creative Writing Minor
  • Film Studies Minor
  • History Minor
  • Legal Studies Option
  • Teaching Option (Coming soon!)
  • Social Entrepreneurship Option

For non-English majors:

  • English Minor
  • Writing for Career and Community Minor
  • Youth and Children: Texts and Cultures Minor

Check out other options to enhance your degree.

First-Year Courses

You'll have the option to select two of the following courses:

  • Literature and Catastrophe
  • Literature and Crime
  • Literature and Love
  • Reading Fiction

In addition, you'll choose 4.0 elective credits in courses that interest you.

Sample First-Year Electives

  • Film and Genre
  • Film and Narrative

Sample Upper-Year Courses

  • Critical Reading and Writing
  • Gaming and Narrative Theory
  • The Fairy Tale
  • Sport Literature
  • Reading the Vampire
  • Creative Writing: Non-Fiction or Poetry

Similar Programs


Co-op is a way to integrate what you are learning in the classroom with practical experience in your field of study. Build your resume, earn money, develop your network, and graduate with work experience.

You can apply for admission to co-op in your first year and may be eligible for an admission interview early in your second year. As a student in this program, you will be eligible to complete paid work terms lasting 12 to 16 weeks.

Interested? Learn more about co-op.

Tuition and Scholarships

Getting a university education is an investment in your future.

At Laurier, we take financial health seriously by providing a wide variety of funding opportunities for you throughout your degree, such as scholarships and bursaries, and by equipping you with the skills to manage your finances effectively in the years to come.


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"Through class discussion, conducting research, and constructing essay arguments, I gained the tools to analyze and contextualize media and texts.... In pursuing work as a film and television editor, as well as a novice screenwriter, a strong understanding of media fundamentals has given me the confidence not only to utilize conventional methods, but also to explore the limits of those conventions in my own work."

Shelley Therrien, English graduate

Your Career Awaits

Laurier English students have gone on to pursue a wide range of exciting careers in traditional and non-traditional areas. Our alumni stress the importance of writing, communication and analytical skills — command of language is crucial to all fields — and demonstrate how fundamental English and literary studies have been to success in postgraduate education and careers straight out of undergraduate degrees.

Here are just some examples of our graduates' destinations. What’s yours?

Sample Career Options

Note: Additional training and education may be required.

  • advertising agent
  • copy writer/editor
  • digital communications specialist
  • journalist/reporter
  • lawyer
  • marketing manager
  • project coordinator
  • scriptwriter
  • teacher/ESL instructor
  • technical writer

Explore more careers.

Support After Graduation

Alumni for life means that you have access to Career and Employment Support offered at Laurier for your entire career.

Waterloo Campus

The Waterloo campus is tucked into about one city block, so you’re steps away from your classes, food and your new favourite study spot.

There are many ways to tour our Waterloo campus, whether that's on a guided tour with one of our Laurier student ambassadors, on your own using virtual reality, or even on-demand through one of our pre-recorded tours. See our campus spaces and start to picture yourself at Laurier.

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"Immediately after receiving my English degree from Laurier, I began a broadcasting career in Toronto working for a nationally televised network. Being asked to produce scripts specifically for television was a seamless transition for me thanks to the four years spent honing my writing skills and producing essays at Laurier."

Andy Baechler, English graduate

Interested in More Info?

Email chooselaurier@wlu.ca, call 548.889.8888 or see all contact information.