Suppose you’re a fresh graduate who just got a degree in the English language. In that case, you may think it’s probably time to embark on an exciting career journey. But what are the best jobs for English majors, and are there many options other than teaching?

If you belong to that category, this article is for you. But even if you’ve just quit your teaching job or are simply curious, there’s plenty of information here that can be useful.

We will help you understand the core skills English majors have and provide essential information on the 12 best jobs for English majors that are out there.

Let’s dive right into it!

Key Takeaways

  • The most essential skills of English majors are research, writing skills, and verbal and nonverbal communication.
  • Although the ideal degree for a journalist is in journalism, English majors are often welcome to pursue careers in this field.
  • To become a librarian, you’ll likely need a Master’s degree in information science, but a degree in the English language can sometimes be enough.
  • English majors can make great paralegals because they’re often well-read and familiar with various topics, including law-related ones.

3 Core Skills English Majors Possess

Future English majors spend a lot of time understanding the language and literature, which involves constant, thorough analysis.

The literature they study is not only that of classic novels and poems; they also examine extensive material regarding current affairs, society, and how language affects various aspects of life.

This effort results in gaining valuable transferable skills that English majors keep polishing even after they leave school. The skills include attention to detail, creativity, and strong problem-solving abilities.

Still, the primary core skills that should be in the possession of every English major are the following:

  • Verbal and nonverbal communication. Studying language and literature helps these professionals to eloquently and efficiently present their ideas, making them one of the people with the best verbal communication skills.
  • Moreover, they often complete teaching courses that leave them with extensive practical knowledge of nonverbal communication.
  • Writing skills. While reading is one of the primary endeavors of English majors, it’s not there only for itself—one of the main aims of this effort is to gain better writing skills.
  • Someone with a degree in this field is typically an exceptional writer proficient at organizing ideas, crafting argumentative papers, and writing well-researched pieces in various fields.
  • Research. Those who decide not to pursue a career in teaching and decide on callings such as writing, editing, or reporting usually do research for a living. Even from their early starts, they must learn to find accurate, up-to-date information and include it in their work.

Therefore, once out of school, their ability to discover and implement relevant information comes easily, regardless of their job.

An image of a person explaining what are the best jobs for English majors

12 Best Jobs for English Majors

Most people gain skills as a means to land their dream job. Although some believe that those who graduated in the English language have scarce employment options, this is not true at all.

Below, we’ve listed some of the jobs English majors can do, so depending on your career goals, you can choose and prepare for some of them.

#1. Copywriter

Copywriters write text, often referred to as copy, for websites, advertisements, emails, magazines, and even billboards, all to educate the reader or persuade them to buy a service or a product. The job requires full proficiency in the English language and impeccable writing and research skills.

If you’re an English major and love your craft, this can be a perfect fit because you probably have all these skills and meet the requirements.

You could write for numerous industries, including marketing, technology, lifestyle, service, and product reviews. Besides enjoying your work, you can also learn a lot about various topics.

The median salary for a copywriter in the U.S. is $55,579 annually.

#2. Technical Writer

Just like for the copywriting position, you’ll need complete mastery of the English language to do this job, but there’s much more to it. A technical writer’s job is to understand, process, and simplify complex data and turn it into reading content that’s easily understandable by regular people.

They typically write guides, manuals, and product instructions in IT technology and engineering or simplify highly technical scientific content.

Apart from technical writing skills, you should have strong attention to detail, spotless grammar, and a strong understanding of complex topics.

The average annual salary for this job in the US is $62,000.

#3. Journalist

Naturally, a degree in journalism is the best choice if you want to become a successful journalist, TV host, or reporter, but when it comes to the written part of it, English majors also rank well.

The qualifications for the job include writing experience, and those with a degree in English already know how to write concisely and accurately.

A good journalist needs to understand where to look for information and how to get it, and they typically need to do it fast. English majors easily fit into this description as they worked under tight deadlines for their writing tasks during their studies.

The average base salary a journalist gets in the US is $48,174.

#4. Editor

Editors are in charge of overseeing the material before it gets published. They proofread and suggest styling and grammar changes the writers should apply.

If you have a degree in English and want to become an editor, know that besides your excellent language proficiency and writing skills, you also need a keen eye for detail.

Additionally, editors are in charge of fact-checking the information provided in the article. They may offer sources for the writer who couldn’t find the proper information or whose data was inaccurate.

The average annual salary for an editor position in the US is $58,275.

#5. Content Manager

An English major who wants this job needs to have leadership skills, creativity, and a highly analytical mind.

Content creators supervise all content on the website and the tasks of writers and editors. They sometimes edit and write themselves, and they make changes and adjust content and numbers regarding the web pages they work on.

Someone who graduated from the English department could find themselves helpful in this role because they can utilize all the skills they already have. Additionally, they may gain plenty of knowledge about this lucrative field.

The average salary you should expect if you land a job as a content manager in the US is $63,534 per year.

#6. ESL Teacher

ESL stands for English as a Second Language, and this position often requires a teaching degree and full proficiency in the English language. You’ll also need to arm yourself with patience, active listening, and empathy. The ESL teacher position is one of the best entry-level jobs for English majors.

The students can be both children and adults, and in some roles, you may have to create the teaching plan on your own while the institution typically provides the materials.

Meanwhile, as there are many fully remote ESL companies, you could have an opportunity to find one of the best online jobs for English majors. In that case, all you’d need is a stable internet connection, a headset for your computer, and sometimes a few teaching props if you’re working with children.

The average hourly rate for an ESL teacher in the US is $23.55.

#7. Blogger

Bloggers can be entrepreneurs who have started their businesses and write articles for their websites. They can also be full-time employees for big marketing agencies or digital magazines. Conversely, blogging offers some of the best part-time jobs for English majors seeking freelance opportunities.

If you have a knack for writing and think you’re creative, you should consider this career path. Your degree can help single you out in a crowd of applicants who may not have any specific qualification other than writing experience.

This role could be excellent for you as an English major because it should come easy. If you enjoyed your time at the university, you’re likely to enjoy this job.

The average blogger’s salary in the US is $64,846 per year.

#8. Librarian

Librarians are in charge of helping people find, categorize, or update information. These information science professionals need strong organizational skills and extensive knowledge of information science.

It’s ideal to have a Master’s degree in this field, but an excellent basis for it could be a degree in English. In some cases, a degree in English language and literature can be enough.

In any case, it’s valuable to have admirable knowledge of literature so you can suggest readings to those who come looking for your help.

As a librarian, you could work for government agencies, public or private libraries, and various research centers.

The average salary for a librarian position in the US is $55,398 per annum.

an image of a person discussing what are the best jobs for English majors

#9. Fundraiser

Fundraisers are professionals with a degree in English language, communications, or public relations. While you can make a great career working in this position, some people see it as one of the best summer jobs for English majors.

To become successful at this job, you need to be presentable, well-spoken, and have excellent interpersonal skills, as the job’s primary duties involve organizing events and raising money for specific causes.

Fundraisers typically work for non-profit or political, religious, and social organizations. You’ll need strong communication skills as you will work with people daily to do your job well. These skills can often be found in someone with an English degree.

Additionally, politeness and subtle negotiation skills are always welcome since you could influence individuals to donate money to your fundraising cause.

The average salary a fundraiser gets is $61,190 per year.

#10. Paralegal

Careers for English majors sometimes include jobs that are not directly related to their field of study. One such position is paralegal.

If you work as a paralegal, your primary duties would be assisting lawyers, researching legal documents, and investigating cases. Although you won’t use much of your creativity here, you’ll contribute significantly if you’re a skilled wordsmith.

Besides, as those who studied English came across a wide range of topics and researched multiple branches, they could put this knowledge to use and understand various types of cases and legal documents they might have to deal with.

The average paralegal salary in the US is $56,803 per annum.

#11. High School Teacher

Even though we saved it for last, most people would probably guess this is one of the best jobs for English majors. Indeed, if you want to teach English in high school, you’ll need a teaching degree in English language and literature, and you’ll have to obtain a teaching license.

The duties of an English teacher in high school are what you may already expect—teaching grammar, reading, writing, speaking, and research to children in grades 9–12. Besides the bachelor’s degree, you’ll need skills for passing on your knowledge and a lot of patience, as well as a good set of soft skills.

The average salary of a high school teacher in the US is $54,491 per year.

#12. Translator

If you speak a foreign language, this advantage can be perfectly coupled with a bachelor’s degree in English. Mastering both languages can offer you many opportunities in the translating industry, but remember—it’s essential to be on your A game in both languages.

As opposed to translators, interpreters orally mediate language, usually between two parties. Conversely, translators work in written form only and translate text from one language to another.

Apart from full proficiency in both languages, attention to detail and accuracy are valuable skills.

If you’re an English major or plan to get this degree, pursuing a job in translation would help you make the most of your language skills.

The average salary for this job in the US is $55,646 annually.

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re still wrapping your head around which degree you should go after or you’ve just gotten out of the university with a fresh diploma from an English department, this article can help you sort out your career options.

The same goes if you’re just looking for the best fun jobs for English majors. You can see if any of these jobs look appealing to you, and if not, maybe choose another career path.

Meanwhile, if you’re looking for a regular job and think you’re stuck with only a few choices, you may find many other alternatives in this article.

To whichever of these groups you belong, best of luck!