English - Publishing Studies


The Publishing Studies sequence is designed to prepare graduates for careers in all types of publishing. Undergraduate students interested in nonprofit presses, journals, and scholarly publications are well suited for this sequence.

Skillsets acquired by completing the sequence includes proofreading, editing, design and layout, marketing, advertising, permissions, graphic work, record keeping, archiving, and bulk/distribution mailing. By providing a broad work experience, students not only build their portfolios, but also enter the marketplace with valuable and current skills.

Why Study English - Publishing Studies?

The Publishing Studies sequence requires students to hold an internship set up in consultation with the English Studies internship director. The purpose of this internship is to give students practical experience in the publishing field to better prepare them for their careers.

Many students in the Publishing Studies sequence receive their practical experience—a requirement of the program—at the Publications Unit in the Department of English.

Related Majors


Related Skills

  • Accuracy, coherency and clarity in speech and writing
  • Ability to simplify and understand jargon
  • Problem solving
  • Creativity
  • Honesty and integrity
  • Strong work ethic
  • Teamwork skills
  • Analytical skills
  • Flexibility and adaptability
  • Good computer skills
  • Detail oriented
  • Developing hypothesis
  • Good presenter
  • Think independently

Being Successful in the Field

  • A bachelor's degree in English is sufficient for many entry-level positions in business and industry.
  • A graduate degree is required for teaching at the college or university level.
  • Develop a specialty area of interest via additional coursework and/or work experience for greater marketability within that specific career field.
  • Save samples of written work to be used for a portfolio.
  • Be prepared to be proactive, determined, assertive, and confident in order to secure freelance writing opportunities. Writers typically experience many rejections for each piece that is accepted for publication.
  • Obtain additional areas of expertise such as journalism, broadcasting, technical writing, or politics for specialized positions.
  • Conduct informational interviews or shadow professionals in careers of interest to learn more about their jobs.

Related Fields


  • Creative writing: poetry, plays, novels (fiction and nonfiction), screenplays, scripts, lyrics/jingle writing, blogs
  • Journalism: writing/columnist, reporting, editing, critique
  • Technical writing: science-medical, information technology, corporate communications and training
  • Grant writing
  • Freelance writing
  • Advertising/marketing/sales
  • Circulation/production


  • Publication companies: books, newspapers, magazines, alternative media (e-books and audio books)
  • Mass media (television, radio, internet sites, and the movie industry)
  • Government agencies
  • Universities and university presses
  • Self-employed/freelance

Career Advising

Name Office Email Phone
Laurenn York  110 Student Services Building  ldjarem@ilstu.edu  (309) 438-0735 

Internship Coordinator

Name Office Email Phone
Jim Kalmbach  421H Stevenson Hall  kalmbach@ilstu.edu  (309) 438-7648 

New Freshmen

Applying to Illinois State

For new transfer and readmitted students only. New freshmen may be placed in the program at a later date. Refer to department for specific requirements.

Plans of Study and Progress Tracking

New Transfer

Applying to Illinois State

Illinois State's preferred filing period for fall transfer students is September 1-January 15. For the spring semester, the preferred filing period is from April 1-August 1. You are encouraged to apply early in the preferred filing period for best consideration for admission into competitive majors. Visit the Office of Admissions to apply today!

Minimum GPA

2.50-3.29 with required coursework listed below or 3.3 with no coursework required

Middle 50% GPA

2.88 - 3.60

Required Courses

Students with a GPA between 2.5-3.29 are required to complete of the following courses with a grade of B or better:

  • Introductory-level composition (ENG 101) or Introductory-level speech (COM 110) and
  • At least one of the following:
    • English literature (110)
    • American literature (ENG 130)
    • Children's literature (ENG 170)
    • Introduction to creative writing (ENG 227)
    • Major elective

Recommended Courses

  • Foreign language equivalent to Illinois State’s 115 level
  • American, British, and non-western literature courses

Plans of Study and Progress Tracking

Academic Advising

Name Office Email Phone
Mark Vegter  Stevenson Hall 414J  mavegte@ilstu.edu  (309) 438-5783 

Illinois State Students

Middle 50% GPA

2.88 - 3.60

Plans of Study and Progress Tracking

Application Period

Applications are always accepted, but reviewed during September and February.

Major Requirements

Applications will be reviewed based on GPA, performance in English courses at time of application and a well-written persuasive personal statement. Admission is competitive.

Academic Advising

Name Office Email Phone
Mark Vegter  Stevenson Hall 414J  mavegte@ilstu.edu  (309) 438-5783