The Ideal Jobs For English Degree Graduates

The Ideal Jobs For English Degree Graduates

Studying towards an English degree helps you to develop and refine communication and analytical skills that are marketable in most job sectors. With an abundance of career choices, it’s no surprise that graduates enter into a broad range of professions post-study.

Whilst it’s wonderful to have so many opportunities to venture into, it can also be difficult to decide what will be a good fit for you. We’ve, therefore, put together a list of jobs ideal for English Degree graduates to help inspire you!

Careers in Media, Journalism & Publishing

English studies and media industries undoubtedly work in tandem and the sector boasts a host of smaller industries, meaning that graduates are bound to find their niche!

With the digital revolution causing major disruption, traditional print publishers are dwindling in size and numbers and online publishers are thriving. Graduates hoping to enter into this sector will be tasked with supporting this transition. 

Bear in mind that media careers are notoriously competitive, so it’s important you demonstrate a dedication to the industry and your specific interests within that landscape. It would be beneficial to look into internships or work placements whist also maintaining a strong media presence or to improve your graduate employability.

Job roles within the media industry include:

Editorial Assistant

You’ll perform a variety of administrative and editorial tasks to support all stages of the production of publications. You’ll be able to contribute to projects from beginning to end.

Magazine Journalist

You’ll be researching and writing articles and features, typically for periodicals including; interest/specialist pieces, magazines for customers of shops and supermarkets or trade publications (business-to-business magazines).

Newspaper Journalist

You’ll be researching and writing stories for the press, either nationally, regionally or locally. They report on many areas such as news, politics, science, business, arts, culture and sports. You may even be tasked with covering local events or human interest stories.

Copy-Editor/Proofreader

Strong spelling and grammar is essential for publishing as you’ll be responsible for ensuring that material is clear, consistent and credible. You’ll also need to check it’s grammatically correct and accessible to its target audience. You’ll be tasked with making sure any copy is ready for publication. Roles of this nature are increasingly being offered on a freelance basis.

Lexicographer/Dictionary Editor

Your choice of studies most likely means you’re a love of words and their definitions. Lexicographers use specialist databases, hosting thousands of examples of language from a range of sources, searching for evidence and usage of various words in order to write and edit dictionaries.

Social Media Manager

A role of this nature will combine your love for literature and marketing by taking care of a brands online visibility. You’ll need to engage with audiences and handle campaigns, so strong analytical skills are a must!

Careers in Teaching and Education

Teaching is popular amongst English graduates, and it’s not difficult to understand why. Teaching provides security that is harder to come by in other sectors, as well as a regular paycheck. That being said, a career in teaching can be extremely demanding and you need to be in it for the right reasons. If teaching is suited to your skills and personality, you’ll no doubt find it incredibly rewarding.

Many teaching jobs require additional qualifications, and English graduates have a great foundation with which to develop their skills for this. However,  teaching English as a foreign language (EFL) does not require any further study. 

Jobs within the industry include:

Secondary School Teacher

You will also need to complete a postgraduate teacher training course before you can start applying for jobs; search for training courses. Alternatively, you can work for 2 years teaching in more challenging schools and acquire a Postgraduate Diploma in Education.

English as a foreign language teacher (EFL)

You’ll be responsible for planning, preparing and delivering lessons to students of all ages, who wish to learn English. Many of these positions provide you the opportunity to work overseas, however, virtual teaching is also becoming more popular! Some opportunities may require additional qualifications/certifications, so if you’re interested, check out TEFL for more information.

Private Tutor

A job choice which offers greater flexibility and doesn’t require further qualifications. A private tutor requires patience and a sound understanding of academic subjects and curricula. You’ll tailor your teaching to suit particular students needs to help prepare them for upcoming tests and exams. You’ll usually visit students at home, however, online tutoring is increasing in popularity.

Academic Librarian

You’ll be tasked with making academic resources more accessible to staff and students. You’ll be teaching information literacy skills that help facilitate and support learning, and the role is heavily customer-focused. To work as an academic librarian, your degree needs to be accredited by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) - however, you may be able to enter as a library assistant and undertake training on the job to acquire further qualifications.

Careers in Advertising, Marketing and PR

Elements of marketing, advertising and PR can be found across many sectors have been coveted positions amongst English graduates. These roles require creativity and strong communications skills as a means to generate profit. As such, the starting salaries are usually higher compared to purely creative media roles. 

Jobs within the industry include;

Digital Copywriter/Content Writer

Whether as a freelancer or an employee, you’ll be tasked with persuading your reader to buy a product or use a service. You may also write content which is designed to give readers valuable information about an industry, brand or topic.

Social Media Manager - a role of this nature will combine your love for literature and marketing by taking care of a brands online visibility. You’ll need to engage with audiences and handle campaigns, so strong analytical skills are a must!

Other Career Routes To Consider

Nothing tickling your fancy so far? The beauty of an English degree is that it is an incredibly versatile subject, helping cultivate skills which are key in an evolving digital age and transferable across a number of industries. So why not opt for something different?

Charity Fundraising

Charities rely on effective communicators to establish and maintain relationships that bring in large-scale donations for worthy causes. Why not consider using your degree in a highly rewarding humanitarian role? Search for opportunities

Social Work

If your communication skills are just as strong off the paper, then a career in social work can be a meaningful way to use them. The demand is high, and whilst not without its challenges, it’s an opportunity to support vulnerable people when they really need it. There are a number of graduate schemes that can help you get into social work such as Think Ahead and FrontLine.

Law

Careers in law are also popular with English graduates, perhaps unsurprisingly given the emphasis English studies give to analysing texts and arguing a case! You’ll need to complete a Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL), a one year conversation course, that’ll bring you up-to-date on the relevant knowledge required to enter the legal profession. Find out more here!

If you need a little guidance to help you decide what next steps to take, why not begin with completing a Prospect’s Job Match survey.