Mapping Your Future logo

Career Profile: English Language and Literature Teachers, Postsecondary

Teach courses in English language and literature, including linguistics and comparative literature. Includes both teachers primarily engaged in teaching and those who do a combination of teaching and research.

Salary and Outlook

According to the US Department of Labor, there are 75,000 people employed as english language and literature teachers, postsecondary in the United States. The median annual salary is $69,000. Entry level employees earn approximately $39,320 per year and senior employees earn approximately $141,190 per year.

Estimates do not include other potential benefits such as health insurance, overtime pay, or retirement benefits that may be offered by employers.

Job Duties

  • 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 poetry, novel structure, and translation and adaptation.
  • Provide assistance to students in college writing centers.
  • Conduct staff performance evaluations.
  • Write original literary pieces.
  • Act as advisers to student organizations.
  • Write grant proposals to procure external research funding.
  • Review manuscripts for publication in professional journals.
  • Provide professional consulting services to government or industry.
  • Teach writing or communication classes.
  • Evaluate and grade students' class work, assignments, and papers.
  • Prepare course materials, such as syllabi, homework assignments, and handouts.
  • 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, and participating in professional conferences.
  • 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 professional journals, books, or electronic media.
  • Advise students on academic and vocational curricula and on career issues.
  • Teach classes using online technology.
  • Schedule courses.
  • Collaborate with colleagues to address teaching and research issues.
  • Select and obtain materials and supplies, such as textbooks.
  • Write letters of recommendation for students.
  • 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.
  • Supervise undergraduate or graduate teaching, internship, and research work.
  • Perform administrative duties, such as serving as department head.
  • Recruit, train, and supervise department personnel, such as faculty and student writing instructors.

Career List

Job Outlook


Total Current Jobs:
75,000
Annual Openings:
7,500
Increase in Openings by 2030:
6%
Annual Salary Range:
$39,320 - $141,190
Education Requirements:
Master's degree or higher