Why English Classes Aren’t Just For English majors

“I don’t need to know how to write papers! I’m a science major!”

“Can you help me write this paper? I don’t know how to write papers, I’m a science major!”

Both of these things have been said to me on many occasions, maybe not exactly, but very similar implications.

The idea that people not pursuing an English or Writing degree don’t need to know how papers work or how the English language works is crazy and unrealistic. Everyone can benefit from the knowledge attained in English classes and the sooner peoples start realizing that, the better.

Here are four ways that they could benefit your life.

  • They can help you write better papers.

No matter what major you are pursuing, you will be required to write some sort of paper. And although you might think that the science teachers reading your essay won’t be too worried about syntax or grammar, they do care. Being able to clearly write down your thoughts in an orderly fashion that both embodies your point and clearly states it is something that everyone needs to learn. You might be talking about the human body or chemical reactions but your paper should still convey the message properly. Not only will your grade improve but your instructor will be impressed with you ability to write an eloquent paper.

  • Reading will help improve your vocabulary.

 It should come to no surprise when I say that you’ll have to read if you do end up taking an English class. And as you consume more literature, you’re vocabulary will begin to expand. Now, I’m not saying that this is an automatic or quick process, but as you read more, you’ll encounter more words and how they are used. This means that while reading you’ll have to do your job in either looking it up, looking for context clues, or asking to make sure you know what the word means. If you do that and also pay attention and actively read, your vocabulary will blossom into something a lot more rich and clear.

  • Looking in depth into readings will help improve critical thinking. 

Critical thinking will help you in every area of your life. It can help from big life decisions to confusing work question that will come out of nowhere. When analyzing and digging deep into readings, you are developing a sense of critical thinking. It is important that you have the skills and abilities to be able to come across a situation, take a step back, dig through it, and come out on the other side with a more clear sense of what is happening or what needs to happen. When you have developed this skill, many situations that you’ll encounter will become easier to handle, making life so much better.

  • It will help you communicate better.

This goes along with the idea of being able to write papers more clearly. You will learn how to effectively communicate to others in a manner that is concise and direct. Sometimes looking at other people’s work can help boost the way you communicate and write. All of the things listed above will make your communication better by being able to sort out your thoughts, use proper words, and critically thinking about what you’re trying to convey. Communication is a key aspect of going through the working world and if you can’t do that properly, you’re going to have a tough time getting what you want and need.

I know I’m sick of hearing people tell me they don’t need to take English classes in order to excel in their career and so should you. So next semester when you’re signing up for classes, take a moment to look at some of the English classes and consider signing up. It’ll only benefit you in the long run.

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Abby Thomas

Abby Thomas

Abby Thomas is a freshman at University of Iowa studying Journalism and Nonfiction Creative Writing. She plans to one day be able to get paid to travel around the world writing about her adventures. The day you can find her travel book on the shelves of bookstores will be the day she has finally reached her life goal. When she is not pursuing her dreams of travel writing, she is either at the University's radio station or on her computer wasting time on Tumblr and Netflix.