TO: First-Year English Majors

Department of English Physical Address:
Brink Hall 200
(208) 885-6156 phone
(208) 885-5944 fax

Mailing Address:
English Department
c/o University of Idaho
875 Perimeter Drive MS 1102
Moscow, Idaho

Dear prospective English majors,

Good to learn of your interest in English as a major course of study at the University of Idaho (see also the UI catalog.) On behalf of the department's faculty and students, welcome! In advance of registration for fall semester, here is information and advice about planning your classes. This advice is intended to complement the primary/general information for First-Year students at the university's Academic Advising site--please be sure also to review the information at that site:

To get started on planning your schedule, let's see what a first semester schedule may look like, then refer to department and university requirements that guide such a schedule.

Example of First Semester Schedule for First-Year Students:

• Possibly a foreign language (typical choices are Spanish, French, or German, 4 crs and often an accompanying lab section, 1 cr)

• or defer foreign language until spring semester and take instead a social science core course (such as Psych 101, Hist 101 or 102, Anth 100, Soc 101, Geog 165 or 200, Hist 111 or 112, Pol 101 or . . . .);

-ISEM 101 section of an Integrated Seminar (3 crs) required for first-year students—a priority to take in the first semester Fall 2012 or if necessary, in the second semester Spring 2013;

-English 102 or 101 (3 crs)—according to English Composition Placement Guidelines;

• MATH/or CS/or STAT course or a SCIENCE course: that is, Math, or Computer Science, or Statistics (3-4 crs)—see Math Placement Guidelines and Course Options (some majors simply take Math 123)

• or CORS Integrated Science (for example, CORS 217, or 220 or see other sections listed under CORS in UI time schedule, 3 crs)

• or lab core science (4 crs)—keep in mind that if you do not satisfy the core requirement for Math or CS or Stat in your first semester, university requirements specify that you are to do so in your second semester;

-English 215 (if necessary, with exemption from Engl 102 or English department override permission along with concurrent enrollment in Engl 102), or English 257 Lit. of Western Civ. I or Engl 258 Lit. of Western Civ. II —may be deferred to second semester; don't be worried by the 200-level designation of these introductory, entry-level courses, and Engl 257 or Engl 258 do not need to be taken in sequence).

Aim then for 15-17 total credits: you should try to average 15 or more credits each semester to make good progress toward your degree, which requires a total of at least 120 credits.

How and why such a schedule? Please see information at the department’s website to take a look at the different emphases in the major (Literature Emphasis, Creative Writing Emphasis, Professional Emphasis, Teaching Emphasis), the university's requirements in general core curriculum studies (also see this core curriculum site) English and Math Placement guidelines (see links above), and also keep in mind the foreign language requirements for the Bachelor of Arts degree, that is, competence in one foreign language equivalent to that gained by the completion of four semesters of college courses is required as an English major (because the degree is a B.A. degree).

The foreign language requirement may be satisfied by completing either of the following options: (1) 16 credits or four high-school units in one foreign language, or (2) 12 credits in one foreign language, and one three-credit course in literature translated from the same language. The 12 credits may be satisfied by three high-school units in one foreign language.

Examples: If you have completed one year of high school Spanish, French, or German, you may enroll in Spanish 102, or French 102, or German 102 (this fall semester or next spring semester); two years of HS, then 201-level course; three years HS, then 202-level course; four years HS, then 301-level course.

If it does not seem straightforward to you to start out at a particular level of a foreign language, you may need to discuss this with a faculty member in the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures (Phone 208-885-6179 or E-Mail: ); note also that those who may be prepared to enroll in a foreign language class beyond the first semester can hope to be successful in the class and then arrange to receive academic credit for courses earlier in the sequence that have been bypassed (for instance, if you complete Spanish 201, you could then pay for credits for Spanish 101 and 102).

Read on below, and let us know if you have questions about your schedule of classes and/or about "majoring" in English to achieve the B.A. degree in English.

Consult the online UI Fall Time Schedule (see link via to be precise in your options and scheduling, including making note of the 5-digit CRN numbers for each course/section and noting that there's a link specifically for a subset of courses that satisfy core curriculum requirements. This registration process (in addition to the prior link, see also this link to the Registrar's guidelines for registration, especially how to set up your VandalWeb account with your student ID# and PI) is not quite as daunting as it may appear.

If you have some dual-enrollment or transfer credits, also see these guidelines:

Also, please take the opportunity when speaking with an advisor to introduce yourself—let us know about your interests in the UI, in English as a major, whether you are thinking of a double major or a minor in another field of study, your tentative career possibilities if you have some in mind, and ask questions.

Again, on behalf of the department's faculty, staff, and students, we look forward to meeting you in person and also possibly communicating with you by email or phone to complete your advising.


Stephan Flores
Associate Professor of English

Further Information on Courses, on the Four Emphases in English, and on Spring semester of the first year

Further Information on Core Requirements and Degree Audit Resources

How to Register