Best English Language and Literature colleges in the U.S. 2021

"The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go." ― Dr. Seuss, I Can Read with My Eyes Shut!

About 40,000 years ago, the first human wrote down a story — albeit it was a simple depiction on a cave wall, but an idea and message was delivered to other humans even centuries later all the same. Since then, throngs of talented writers have put ink to paper, fingers to typewriter, and hands to keyboard to fill our libraries with works of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, essays, and prose, both long and short. Authors filled pages upon pages with writings that captured moments in history, truths of human nature, ideas of what the future held. Those insights, those tastes of cultures and classes and past zeitgeists are waiting to be remembered and experienced. And you can discover them and live vicariously through the words of our Western world’s greatest authors — as an English language and literature major.

Best English Language and Literature colleges in the U.S. for 2021

Brown University
Providence, RI
Image by thurdl01

Brown University offers 3 English Language and Literature, General degree programs. It's a large, private not-for-profit, four-year university in a midsize city. In 2019, 89 English Language and Literature, General students graduated with students earning 84 Bachelor's degrees, 4 Doctoral degrees, and 1 Master's degree.

Rice University
Houston, TX

Rice University offers 3 English Language and Literature, General degree programs. It's a medium sized, private not-for-profit, four-year university in a large city. In 2019, 35 English Language and Literature, General students graduated with students earning 26 Bachelor's degrees, 5 Doctoral degrees, and 4 Master's degrees.

Boston College
Chestnut Hill, MA

Boston College offers 3 English Language and Literature, General degree programs. It's a large, private not-for-profit, four-year university in a small city. In 2019, 124 English Language and Literature, General students graduated with students earning 111 Bachelor's degrees, 12 Master's degrees, and 1 Doctoral degree.

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Degree Programs: English, Comparative Literature

Berkeley, also known as “Cal,” is recognized for its laboratories, research, notable faculty, publications, and — get excited now — libraries. This public university boasts a student population of more than 27,000 with over a thousand student organizations (weekly reading group anyone?). And it is situated in the San Francisco Bay area, so you’ll have plenty to points of inspiration around the city. The English major sits at the top of Berkeley’s most popular majors, but the university also offers comparative literature. “Our courses in literature have many different focuses: major authors, historical periods, genres, critical theories and methods, as well as cultural and multicultural studies.” The comparative literature major requires courses in Shakespeare, literature before 1800, and literature from Chaucer through the 20th century that includes British, American, and Anglophone writing. As an English major studying literature, you can tuck yourself away in one of the large libraries that together take up 12 acres of campus — like Doe Memorial Library or Bancroft Library — and stay there for the next four years. If you do find yourself outside of the aisles of books, you may come across student activism about the latest hot social topic or a Greek organization event.

University of Notre Dame
Notre Dame, IN

University of Notre Dame offers 3 English Language and Literature, General degree programs. It's a large, private not-for-profit, four-year university in a large suburb. In 2019, 75 English Language and Literature, General students graduated with students earning 60 Bachelor's degrees, 9 Doctoral degrees, and 6 Master's degrees.

Tufts University
Medford, MA

Tufts University offers 3 English Language and Literature, General degree programs. It's a large, private not-for-profit, four-year university in a large suburb. In 2019, 66 English Language and Literature, General students graduated with students earning 60 Bachelor's degrees, 4 Master's degrees, and 2 Doctoral degrees.

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Northwestern University offers 4 English Language and Literature, General degree programs. It's a very large, private not-for-profit, four-year university in a small city. In 2019, 81 English Language and Literature, General students graduated with students earning 64 Bachelor's degrees, 11 Master's degrees, and 6 Doctoral degrees.

Johns Hopkins University
Baltimore, MD

Johns Hopkins University offers 3 English Language and Literature, General degree programs. It's a very large, private not-for-profit, four-year university in a large city. In 2019, 23 English Language and Literature, General students graduated with students earning 20 Bachelor's degrees, and 3 Doctoral degrees.

University of Virginia-Main Campus offers 3 English Language and Literature, General degree programs. It's a very large, public, four-year university in a small suburb. In 2019, 211 English Language and Literature, General students graduated with students earning 175 Bachelor's degrees, 22 Master's degrees, and 14 Doctoral degrees.

University of Southern California offers 3 English Language and Literature, General degree programs. It's a very large, private not-for-profit, four-year university in a large city. In 2019, 30 English Language and Literature, General students graduated with students earning 17 Bachelor's degrees, 8 Doctoral degrees, and 5 Master's degrees.

List of all English Language and Literature colleges in the U.S.

School Average Tuition Student Teacher Ratio Enrolled Students
Brown University Logo Brown University Providence, RI
5/5
11 : 1 10,333
Rice University Logo Rice University Houston, TX
5/5
10 : 1 7,282
Boston College Logo Boston College Chestnut Hill, MA
5/5
17 : 1 14,747
University of California-Berkeley Logo University of California-Berkeley Berkeley, CA
3/5
24 : 1 43,185
University of Notre Dame Logo University of Notre Dame Notre Dame, IN
5/5
10 : 1 12,683
Tufts University Logo Tufts University Medford, MA
5/5
14 : 1 11,878
Northwestern University Logo Northwestern University Evanston, IL
5/5
15 : 1 22,448
Johns Hopkins University Logo Johns Hopkins University Baltimore, MD
5/5
18 : 1 27,079
University of Virginia-Main Campus Logo University of Virginia-Main Campus Charlottesville, VA
4/5
16 : 1 25,012
University of Southern California Logo University of Southern California Los Angeles, CA
5/5
22 : 1 48,321
Carnegie Mellon University Logo Carnegie Mellon University Pittsburgh, PA
5/5
11 : 1 14,180
The University of Texas at Austin Logo The University of Texas at Austin Austin, TX
3/5
20 : 1 51,090
Cornell University Logo Cornell University Ithaca, NY
5/5
13 : 1 24,027
University of Chicago Logo University of Chicago Chicago, IL
5/5
12 : 1 17,452
Vanderbilt University Logo Vanderbilt University Nashville, TN
5/5
11 : 1 13,131
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor Logo University of Michigan-Ann Arbor Ann Arbor, MI
4/5
12 : 1 48,090
University of Minnesota-Twin Cities Logo University of Minnesota-Twin Cities Minneapolis, MN
4/5
21 : 1 51,327
University of Pennsylvania Logo University of Pennsylvania Philadelphia, PA
5/5
18 : 1 26,675
University of Maryland-College Park Logo University of Maryland-College Park College Park, MD
3/5
22 : 1 40,743
Princeton University Logo Princeton University Princeton, NJ
5/5
9 : 1 8,419