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Career profile English Professor

Also known as Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, Creative Writing Professor, English Instructor, English Professor, Humanities Professor, Instructor, Lecturer, Literature Professor, Professor

English Professor

Also known as Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, Creative Writing Professor

Interests Profile
  • Social
  • Artistic
  • Investigative
Pay Range
$39,320 - $141,190 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Instructing
  • Writing
Knowledge Areas
  • Education and Training
  • Communications and Media
  • History and Archeology
Core tasks
  • Teach writing or communication classes.
  • Evaluate and grade students' class work, assignments, papers, and oral presentations.
  • Prepare course materials, such as syllabi, homework assignments, or handouts.
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What does an English Professor do?

English Professors teach courses in English language and literature, including linguistics and comparative literature.

In addition, English Professors includes both teachers primarily engaged in teaching and those who do a combination of teaching and research.

What kind of tasks does an English Professor perform regularly?

English Professors are often responsible for overseeing or executing some or all of the following tasks:

  • Teach writing or communication classes.
  • Evaluate and grade students' class work, assignments, papers, and oral presentations.
  • Prepare course materials, such as syllabi, homework assignments, or handouts.
  • Initiate, facilitate, and moderate classroom discussions.
  • Maintain student attendance records, grades, and other required records.
  • Plan, evaluate, and revise curricula, course content, course materials, and methods of instruction.
  • Prepare and deliver lectures to undergraduate or graduate students on topics such as anatomy, therapeutic recreation, and conditioning theory.
  • Assist students who need extra help with their coursework outside of class.
  • Keep abreast of developments in the field by reading current literature, talking with colleagues, giving presentations at conferences, and serving on committees in professional associations.
  • Compile, administer, and grade examinations or assign this work to others.
  • Maintain regularly scheduled office hours to advise and assist students.
  • Conduct research in a particular field of knowledge and publish findings in scholarly journals, books, or electronic media.
  • Teach classes using online technology.
  • Advise students on academic and vocational curricula, and on career issues.
  • Schedule courses.
  • Collaborate with colleagues to address teaching and research issues.
  • Write letters of recommendation for students.
  • Select and obtain materials and supplies, such as textbooks and performance pieces.
  • Serve on academic or administrative committees that deal with institutional policies, departmental matters, and academic issues.
  • Participate in campus and community events.
  • Participate in student recruitment, registration, and placement activities.
  • Compile bibliographies of specialized materials for outside reading assignments.
  • Participate in cultural and literary activities, such as traveling abroad and attending performing arts events.

The above responsibilities are specific to English Professors. More generally, English Professors are involved in several broader types of activities:

Training and Teaching Others
Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others
Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Thinking Creatively
Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

What is an English Professor salary?

The median salary for an English Professor is $69,000, and the average salary is $81,340. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the English Professor salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many English Professors earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of English Professors earn less than $39,320 per year, 25% earn less than $52,060, 75% earn less than $100,410, and 90% earn less than $141,190.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of English Professors is expected to change by 6.1%, and there should be roughly 7,500 open positions for English Professors every year.

Median annual salary
$69,000
Typical salary range
$39,320 - $141,190
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)
6.1%

What personality traits are common among English Professors?

Interests

Career interests describe a person's preferences for different types of working environments and activities. When a person's interest match the demands of an occupation, people are usually more engaged and satisfied in that role.

Compared to most occupations, those who work as an English Professor are usually higher in their Social, Artistic, and Investigative interests.

English Professors typically have very strong Social interests. Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.

Also, English Professors typically have strong Artistic interests. Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.

Lastly, English Professors typically have moderate Investigative interests. Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.

Values

People differ in their values, or what is most important to them for building job satisfaction and fulfillment.

Compared to most people, those working as an English Professor tend to value Relationships, Working Conditions, and Achievement.

Most importantly, English Professors very strongly value Relationships. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment.

Second, English Professors very strongly value Working Conditions. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions.

Lastly, English Professors very strongly value Achievement. Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.

Psychological Demands

Each occupation brings its own set of psychological demands, which describe the characteristics necessary to perform the job well.

In order to perform their job successfully, people who work as English Professors must consistently demonstrate qualities such as integrity, cooperation, and dependability.

Below, you'll find a list of qualities typically required of English Professors, ranked by importance:

Integrity
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Cooperation
Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Dependability
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Self-Control
Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Adaptability/Flexibility
Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.

What education and training do English Professors need?

Many English Professors have earned a graduate degree. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a doctoral degree, such as a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D..

English Professors may need some on-the-job training, but most candidates will already have the required skills, knowledge, work-related experience, and/or training.

Educational degrees among English Professors

  • 0.6% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 1.4% completed high school or secondary school
  • 2.0% completed some college coursework
  • 1.8% earned a Associate's degree
  • 14.6% earned a Bachelor's degree
  • 32.1% earned a Master's degree
  • 47.4% earned a doctorate or professional degree

Knowledge and expertise required by English Professors

English Professors may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as education and training, communications and media, or history and archeology knowledge.

The list below shows several areas in which most English Professors might want to build proficiency, ranked by importance.

Education and Training
Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
Communications and Media
Knowledge of media production, communication, and dissemination techniques and methods. This includes alternative ways to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media.
History and Archeology
Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.
Philosophy and Theology
Knowledge of different philosophical systems and religions. This includes their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and their impact on human culture.
Sociology and Anthropology
Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures, and their history and origins.

Important Abilities needed by English Professors

English Professors must develop a particular set of abilities to perform their job well. Abilities are individual capacities that influence a person's information processing, sensory perception, motor coordination, and physical strength or endurance. Individuals may naturally have certain abilities without explicit training, but most abilities can be sharpened somewhat through practice.

For example, English Professors need abilities such as written comprehension, oral expression, and oral comprehension in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for English Professors, ranked by their relative importance.

Written Comprehension
The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Oral Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Oral Comprehension
The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Written Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
Speech Clarity
The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.

Critical Skills needed by English Professors

Skills are developed capacities that enable people to function effectively in real-world settings. Unlike abilities, skills are typically easier to build through practice and experience. Skills influence effectiveness in areas such as learning, working with others, design, troubleshooting, and more.

English Professors frequently use skills like reading comprehension, instructing, and writing to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for English Professors, ranked by their relative importance.

Reading Comprehension
Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents.
Instructing
Teaching others how to do something.
Writing
Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Speaking
Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Active Listening
Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

What is the source of this information?

The information provided on this page is adapted from data and descriptions published by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration under the CC BY 4.0 license. TraitLab has modified some information for ease of use and reading, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration has not approved, endorsed, or tested these modifications.

If you have any questions or suggestions about this information, please send a message.