Double Major in English & Psychology

Writing skills are important in both English and psychology. Students who pursue a double major in these fields can develop the writing and research skills needed to pursue careers in writing, research or the treatment of mental health issues.

Information About a Double Major in English and Psychology

Students studying English may take general studies or pursue concentrations in areas such as writing. All English students develop strong writing skills through course assignments. Psychology students explore the factors that influence human behavior. Written communication skills are also important in psychology, and the study of human behavior in psychology can be complimented by studies about different societal issues in literature. Students who pursue a double major in English and psychology are expected to complete all of the required courses for each major.

Admission Requirements for English and Psychology Programs

In order to be accepted to a college or university, students must complete core course requirements in high school and provide a high school transcript and standardized test score results to the postsecondary institution. In some cases, schools also consider extracurricular participation, academic reference letters and application essays.

Once students have been accepted to a postsecondary institution, they might also have to complete the introductory courses required to apply to the majors they are interested in. Some programs require students to earn a specific GPA in assigned courses in order to be accepted to the major.

Program Coursework for a Double Major in English and Psychology

Introductory courses in literature and psychology prepare students for more advanced studies in these disciplines. Students who pursue majors in these fields can expect to produce a lot of written materials about their assessments of topics in both subject areas.

American Literature

Students become familiar with significant works of literature written by Americans. Schools may offer studies in this area through several courses broken up by the era the work was published in. Students might focus on works that predate the Civil War or that were published after the Civil War. Authors commonly studied include Henry David Thoreau and Emily Dickinson.

Culture and Literature

Students explore works related to a specific ethnic group to learn how literature reflects members' cultural values and practices. Students may also learn how culture can affect an individual's interpretation of literature or explore the structure of language and how it can affect its use.

Gender and Literature

Students study texts to examine how each gender has been treated in literature. They might also learn about books that specifically address gender issues. Some schools offer courses that focus on works written by women and how women have been presented in literary works.


Students explore psychological theories related to learning. They might also explore the theories surrounding motivation and emotion. Some courses include instruction in the applications of these theories to the field of counseling as well.

Drugs and Behavior

Psychology students explore the ways drugs affect a person physically. They also learn about the psychological impact of taking drugs. This course familiarizes students with drug-related issues, such as drug abuse. Students also learn about different approaches to treating drug addiction.

Human Sexuality

Students explore topics related to how sexuality influences human development and behavior. Issues related to sexual identity and discovery are explored. Students may take courses that emphasize the psychological aspects of human sexuality or may concentrate more on biological factors, including human reproduction.

How to Choose English and Psychology Programs

There are a number of areas that English majors can concentrate their studies in, such as literature, education or writing. Psychology majors can also opt to focus on such areas as health or behavioral psychology. Opportunities to pursue a specialized study area may be factors that some students consider when choosing where to pursue a double major in English and psychology. Other factors may include school location, whether the school is public or private and the undergraduate courses offered in both majors.

Career Options with a Double Major in English and Psychology

Students with a double major in English and psychology develop strong writing skills and can opt to pursue a career as a writer or author. Writers and authors earned a median annual salary of $61,240 as of 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The BLS also reported that writers and authors should see an 8% job growth from 2016 to 2026. Other career options include:

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