Welcome to the Department of English and Comparative Literature!

Study with award-winning teachers & professional writers. Prepare for a variety of careers in teaching, career and technical writing, or advanced study in English, law and medicine. Home to the Steinbeck Fellows and the Lurie Visiting Distinguished Author programs, the department also houses the Center for Literary Arts, which brings distinguished poets, fiction writers and creative nonfiction writers to campus to give public readings.

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Four Undergraduate Concentrations

Our department offers four B.A. concentrations that include focuses on literature, creative writing, teaching, and technical writing. The department also houses the composition program in which undergraduates complete their general education writing requirements.

Explore the Concentrations

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MA Program

Our MA program offers a great opportunity to expand your literary horizons with a program perfectly suited to working adults.  

Learn About the MA Program

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MFA Program

Our MFA program, the Literary Incubator in the Heart of the Silicon Valley, offers a rich opportunity for students to pursue their craft with active, publishing faculty and talented peers who go on to vibrant publishing careers.

Learn About the MFA Program

Reed Magazine Issue 152

The Place for You!

So, whether you want to work on Reed Magazine, the oldest literary journal west of the Mississippi, read literary classics, attend readings by local and high-profile writers, or learn about a career in technical writing, the Department of English and Comparative Literature is the place for you!

Explore Reed Magazine

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Award Winning Faculty

Our faculty are committed to student success, and many have won recent teaching awards marking their successes in the classroom. Our alums are employed throughout the Bay Area in positions that draw upon their training as English majors, showing how practicality meets passion in our department.  

Meet the Faculty

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Scholarships and Opportunities 

We have very generous scholarships and awards for both undergraduates and graduates, and all of our students benefit from the Center for the Literary Arts' programming and the Lurie Chair, a prestigious award that funds spring semester residencies for highly distinguished writers.   

Apply for Scholarships 

Our Mission

The Department of English and Comparative Literature's mission is to develop the reading and writing skills, the interpretive ability, and the cultural awareness of its students by maintaining and enhancing a tradition of strong teaching, good scholarship, and vigorous support of creative literary activity.