Online English Degree Programs

Masters and bachelors degrees in English by distance learning

An online English degree program offers a variety of study options, from English literature, to teaching and writing.

More than just reading and writing, English degree online programs also provide students with valuable skills for a wide variety of careers.

Resulting career opportunities include working as a writer, teacher, editor, journalist, translator, technical writer, or analyst, just to name a few.

English remains one of the top 10 college majors, according to the Princeton Review. Most of this major focuses on reading and writing, but students also gain many other practical skills that can jumpstart several career paths.

English majors learn how to influence and persuade; manage information; think independently; work collaboratively; and read critically. In addition, project management and research skills are emphasized in English courses, both of which are essential for most careers.

Why earn an English degree online?

For working professionals and traditional students who would rather study at their convenience, an online English degree program makes sense. The convenience and flexibility of studying by distance learning enables them to maximize the return on their investment, without sacrificing the collaboration and interactivity of classroom-based programs. Many English literature and writing courses center on the workshop approach, where students discuss and debate information. Online tools provide a rich learning environment that emphasizes this kind of interaction with peers. In addition, these programs include independent study options that allow students to work at their own pace.

What focuses and levels are available for online English degree?

English is a broad topic. Some schools, however, break it down into separate specializations, such as English literature, creative writing, technical writing, or teacher certification. Explore your options before committing to one path. Consider the differences between a broad major and a more focused one. Available degree level options include an online bachelors in English and a masters degree in English which can be earned by distance learning.

Featured English Degree Online Colleges

The following accredited online colleges offer English and related programs, including communication, creative and technical writing courses.

Southern New Hampshire University - offers the following masters in English degree online programs:

  • MA - English
  • MA - English & Creative Writing
  • MA - English & Creative Writing - Fiction
  • MA - English & Creative Writing - Nonfiction
  • MA - English & Creative Writing - Poetry
  • MA - English & Creative Writing - Screenwriting

Grand Canyon University

  • B.A. in English Literature
  • Bachelors Elementary Education - English (Eligible for IR/Cred)
  • M.Ed. in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) (Does not lead to initial teacher licensure)

How to capitalize on English education

Unless you plan on teaching English or becoming a writer, a love of literature or writing will not automatically lead to a career. Graduates of English degree programs have many skills, but they need to leverage those skills in order to find employment after graduation.

  • Emphasize the skills developed while analyzing Shakespeare or writing short stories: such as strong analytical and persuasion skills, and the ability to write with clarity and accuracy. Make these skills relevant to the job that you are applying for.
  • Highlight the skills learned through the program: technical and computer, presentation, web layout, collaboration, research.
  • Develop your skills outside of the class: join student organizations, volunteer in the community, intern at a local business.
  • Learn other skills that complement your English degree. Bachelor's degrees in English online have general education requirements. Use these to focus on areas other than English, such as business or project management. Look for opportunities to develop hands-on or technical skills like website or magazine layout design.

What are the career options with an English degree

The top three jobs for graduates of English degree programs are editors, teachers and writers. The ability to communicate effectively, think clearly, and solve problems, however, enable English majors to pursue a broad range of careers. Graduates may work in management, advertising, sales, editing, program management, reporting, medicine, non-profit organizations, or financial services. They may also pursue graduate studies in English, law, or journalism.

Employment for writers, authors, and editors is expected to grow as fast as average, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. More opportunities may be available for freelance positions as businesses downsize regular writing staff. Employment for news reporters will decline as news agencies reduce staff. Smaller local papers and news stations, however, will offer more opportunities.

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