+ Curriculum – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \


The English and Comparative Literature curriculum at HWS begins with traditional coverage of great literature, renowned authors and classic genres. The English department not only focuses on the conventional, it encourages students to explore special concentrations through programs in critical theory, film, theatre, and particular century or national tradition.

English offers a disciplinary major, a B.A., and a disciplinary minor.



If you’d like to view a full listing of our course options in English or any other subject, please visit the Online Course Catalogue.

Click for the Course Catalogue

Requirements for the Major (B.A.)

disciplinary, 12 courses

ENG 200; 10 courses; a capstone experience. Of the 10 electives, three should be at the 300-level or above. Up to three courses may be taken outside the department and may count towards the major and the fulfillment of requirements, with permission of the adviser. Requirements include the following areas: one Early Period course; one American Literature; one Global Literature; one UK/European Literature; two Literary History. (A single course may fulfill more than one requirement.)

Concentrations may be defined by literary history, genre or field of study. A genre concentration could, for example, include three courses on poetry, while a literary history concentration might provide an overview of literary history, or focus on one particular era. Field of study concentrations in creative writing, film studies or theory are options for students with particular interest in those areas.

Requirements for the Minor

disciplinary, 6 courses

Introductory Requirement (ENG 200); two courses at the 300-level or above; three elective courses, only one of which may be at the 100-level. With permission of student’s adviser, one elective may be a literature or writing course from outside of the department.