Can I Get an English Degree Online?

If you love reading, analyzing what you read and learning more about literature and the English language, you might look at getting an English degree online. These programs often offer a lot more freedom and flexibility than what you might find in a traditional on campus program. You may even have the option of choosing the types of books you want to read or the specific area of literature you want to study. With so many online schools now offering English classes, it’s important that you get some idea of what each program is like.

What Courses Will You Take?

Students often look at a college’s course catalog to gain more information about the type of courses they will take. As an English major, you can expect to take many courses on writing and research. You’ll learn how to cite references in different ways, how to create a bibliography and the importance of indexing your work. Students today must also meet some general education requirements, which usually include classes on life sciences, sociology or psychology and mathematics.

Can You Specialize a Degree?

When you earn an English degree online, you will usually have the option of specializing your degree or selecting a concentration/minor in a related field. Those who select creative writing take classes designed to strengthen their abilities as a writer, and those who study journalism focus more on creating well-researched content used by newspapers, television stations and online news sites. Some English majors choose an education concentration because they want to teach English and literature to others. These programs may help you meet the requirements needed to obtain a teaching license in your state. Some online schools also offer programs in fine arts, classic literature and other topics.

Benefits of Online Degrees

There are many benefits to getting a degree in English online. You might work as a tutor or a substitute teacher while you finish your degree, and studying online lets you complete your assignments when you aren’t working at your job. Online programs often offer more courses than traditional programs. Colleges can only offer a certain number of classes each semester, but online schools can offer even more classes. Many students find that they can take specialized classes online not offered by local colleges.

What to Avoid

Before enrolling in an online college, you might hear a lot about scams and diploma mills. Diploma mill is a term used to describe a college that does not have accreditation and requires that students borrow a lot of money from private lenders to attend. The United States Department of Education warns students against attending any online school that charges one set rate for all the courses they take and those that give students a large amount of credit for the work they did prior to enrolling. These schools do not give students the valuable skills that they actually need, and you may find that you have an English degree that is worthless.

Earning an English degree can prepare you for teaching students, writing popular books and stories or working in other fields (please see, What Types of Jobs Can I Get With an English Degree?). Before you look at completing an English degree online, get an idea about the classes you might take and make sure the college isn’t a diploma mill.