Online English Degree Programs

Degree Subject

Online English Degree Programs

English is the most common language for business, communication, policy and entertainment. People with an English degree have a competitive advantage in today’s marketplace. Online English degree programs provide students with a well-rounded broad education that can lead to a lucrative career in almost any field. Students learn about all the major concepts of literature and develop essential writing, critical thinking, and public speaking skills. Read more about online English degree programs.

Some Stats

In 2006, there were 55,122 bachelor degrees, 8,742 master degrees, and 1,178 doctorate degrees conferred in English language and literature/letters. There were 42,313 bachelor, 5,120 master, and 978 doctorate degrees in general English language and literature; 441 bachelor, 72 master, and 6 doctorate degrees in English composition; 2,097 bachelor, 2,449 master, and 16 doctorate degrees in creative writing; 7,830 bachelor, 559 master, and 92 doctorate degrees in speech and rhetorical studies; and 1,004 bachelor, 152 master, and 41 doctorate degrees in other English language and literature/letters (1).

Employment Outlook

Employment outlook of graduates with English degrees vary by degree, field, and position, but according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, many English related careers are projected to have the largest employment growth from 2006 to 2016 (2). According to, the average annual salary for English degree graduates in from about $32,000 to $52,000 depending on field and position (3).


English is a very large field that encompasses many different topics. There are a wide variety of specialties students can choose from to focus on their interested area and pursue a meaningful career. The specialties include American literature, British literature, African-American literature, Colonial American literature, Medieval/Renaissance literature, gender and literature, literary criticism and theory, American cultures, literature and the mind, literature and the environment, linguistics, English language and culture, composition, creative writing, English education, rhetoric, comparative literature, children’s literature, fiction, and poetry. The specialties are endless and students who are interested in a specific specialty should select schools that offer strong programs in that area.

What to Expect

There are many postsecondary institutions that offer a variety of English degree programs. Undergraduate degree programs require general education courses in areas such as science, mathematics, history, and fine arts. Coursework varies greatly on degree and program, but most undergraduate English degree programs require courses in composition and rhetoric, introduction to literature, literacy methods, linguistics, American literature, technical writing, world literature, English literature, creative writing, language structure, historical literature, fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. Graduate English degree programs focus more in depth on specialties and prepare students for higher level positions.

The End Result

An undergraduate degree in English provides students with a wide variety of career opportunities in many different fields such as journalism, education, business, politics, law, technology, and many others. Graduate degrees provide an even more variety of career opportunities and enable graduates to pursue higher positions with larger salaries in areas such as research and academia. Career opportunities for English graduates include:

An English degree can be applied to a variety of different fields and studying English will be rewarding for individuals who have a strong passion for literature and the English language. Graduates with English degrees apply their knowledge and English language skills to many different careers.

(1) SOURCE: U.S. National Center for Education Statistics, Digest of Education Statistics
(2) SOURCE: Bureau of Labor Statistics, The 30 occupations with the largest employment growth: 2006-2016.
(3) SOURCE:, Salary Survey for Degree: Bachelor of Arts, English