In the Department of English students are trained to read critically and to attend to the imbricated histories of language, literature, culture, and power. Students read widely across genres and periods of British, American, and Anglophone literature as well as across a variety of critical and theoretical approaches. In addition to lectures and seminars devoted to poetry, prose, and drama, English offers courses on cinema, photography, architecture, the public essay, and data and culture, among other media and topics. We encourage students to think across disciplines and languages, and we offer vital skills and resources that support independent research.

An English minor serves Princeton undergraduates from all majors, sharpening thinking and writing in ways that support work in their respective concentrations. English courses foreground language, style, and rhetoric; they train students' attention to effective writing as well as to a variety of analytical, critical, and interpretive modes. In English courses, students pay close attention to the structures of arguments, to specific aspects of language and expression, to the history of literature in English, and to the cultural and grammatical aspects of the language. English courses also foreground the historical operations of language and power, affording students invaluable resources for not only addressing the inequities and disparities that shape our world but also imagining the futures that can reinvent that world.


There are no specific prerequisite courses for the minor in English, but prospective minors are encouraged to take at least one course in English during their first or second year.

Admission to the Program

The Department of English will hold an "open enrollment" period every spring for prospective minors. While students are encouraged to declare in their sophomore year, to take advantage of departmental guidance and the potential "clusters" curated by faculty, they may declare a minor any time before the beginning of their junior spring term. A student might join the minor after that, but only with the support of the Director of Undergraduate Studies and their residential college dean, and after having a detailed conversation about advising and guidelines.

English courses taken prior to the formal declaration of the minor may be counted retroactively.

Program of Study

English minors must take five courses, at least two of them seminars. Just as there are no prerequisites, there are also no required courses for the minor. As detailed above, the department will offer suggestions as to possible clusters but we will also invite students to chart their own paths and propose a new cluster.

Minors are required to complete a reflection paper after completing the requirements for the minor. In this reflection paper students are tasked with describing their paths through the minor and outlining the knowledge and skills they've acquired across their English courses.

Students may submit their reflection papers at any time after they've completed the course requirements for the minor, but no later than March of their senior spring term. The reflection paper, submitted to the director of the English minor and read by members of our committee on departmental studies, is the equivalent, for minors, of the senior departmental exam that graduating majors must take, which also includes, as one component, a reflection paper.

No more than one elected P/D/F course may be counted towards the requirements for the minor.

Students are not able to count courses taken to fulfill the requirements of their major towards the requirements for the minor.