No matter what you do with your life, the ability to think critically and use effective communication is important. An undergraduate degree in English Language Learning prepares students to do just that, through a variety of courses in literature, history, art, and other liberal arts courses. Students will not only improve their writing skills, but also learn how to express their ideas more creatively and effectively.
A typical bachelor’s in English program will consist of 120 credit-hours and will take about four years to complete. However, some degrees, especially online degrees, can completed in less or more time depending on if students want to enroll part or full-time.
What type of degree in English Language Learning should you get?
While some may worry that an online degree at the undergraduate level will limit one’s experiences, many online programs these days still offer a collaborative and community-oriented component. An online degree may be ideal for those who do not have the time to attend classes on a tradition time schedule. Most online degrees are flexible, allowing students to log in on their own time to finish assignments and tests.
Online degrees are also often times more affordable than traditional on-campus degrees. Many schools also do not have a difference in tuition for in-state and out-of-state students. In addition, online students still have access to financial aid and scholarships just like regular students.
Check out College Choice’s ranking of the Most Affordable Online Colleges.
How much money do people make with a degree in English?
As of 2016, undergraduate English majors made an average starting salary of $36,180. While this may seem low, many studies have shown that in the long run English majors make at least $60,000. Because of the versatility of English, graduates are not limited to just one field or job after graduation. Therefore, soon-to-be graduate should look at the average salary for particular fields and not just the above number.
According to Monster, the five top paying jobs for English majors are: software developer ($84,300 median salary per year), content marketing manager ($73,700), regional sales manager ($70,000), advertising account executive ($69,600), and business development manager ($69,600). Keep in mind that these salaries are for people with five to eight years of experience.
What can you do with a degree in English?
For some reason, the common misconception is that English majors must go into a job that is directly related to literature or teaching. While those are two very respected fields, English majors are not limited to just one career path. Because the study of English encompasses courses from a variety of disciplines such as art, history, and writing, students learn critical thinking and communication skills that can be useful for any job.
Some common jobs for people that studied English in college include digital copywriter, editorial assistant, English as a foreign language teacher, or web content manager. English Language Learning is also great when paired with business-related classes so students can also be exposed to things such as accounting or finance. Surprisingly, many people in top corporate positions majored or studied English in college!
What are the requirements for a degree in English?
Admission to an undergraduate English degree requires a high school diploma from an accredited school. Students should also submit their ACT or SAT test scores along with any teacher recommendations or personal essays that are required. If students are transferring from a two-year college, many online programs will accept a certain number of credit-hours.
Although not required, students highly passionate about English are also suggested to take advanced English courses in high school. These classes could be honors or Advanced Placement courses as they prepare students best for the college level environment.
What are the best online English Language Learning degrees?
College Choice has compiled the 15 Most Affordable Online English Language Learning degrees. These schools were compiled based on institutional excellence and return on investment. Institutional excellence was decided based on a variety of data points such as graduation rate, overall reputation, and student-to-faculty ratio. For return on investment, things such as average student indebtedness, financial aid, and tuition costs were taken into consideration. Data comes from the National Center for Education Statistics’ IPEDS database, PayScale, individual college websites, and the U.S. News & World Report.
See our rankings methodology page.
Louisiana State University of Alexandria
Average Net Price: $7,981
The Louisiana State University of Alexandria was established originally as a two-year college by the Louisiana Legislature in 1959. Beginning in the mid-70s, the school began to offer upper division courses. Today LSUA is made up of 11 different departments. Within these departments, the university offers an array of online degrees. Because of LSUA’s affordable online programs, students can earn their bachelor’s for as little as $20 a day.
LSUA’s online BA in English is an affordable program that deepens one’s understanding of English principles, composition, and literature.
- $249.40 per credit-hour
- Accepts large amount of transfer credits
- 7 start dates
LSUA’s pay-as-you-go system allow students to pay only for the credits they are currently taking, rather than pay everything up front.
Indiana University East
Average Net Price: $8,548
Indiana University East is a regional campus of Indiana University located in Richmond. Its online English Language Learning program is located through its School of Humanities and Social Sciences. All online programs at IUE can be completed virtually anywhere even on a busy schedule. Students can also be assured that their diploma will not say “online,” but is identical to a traditional on-campus one.
An online BA degree in English with an emphasis in Technical & Professional Writing at IUE is perfect for those who want to pursue a career in writing.
- Exposure to a wide variety of media
- Upper-division program
- Sample Courses: Digital Writing, Native American Literature, Technical Editing
Because this is an upper-division program, students only have to complete 60 credit-hours, assuming they have at least 60 credit-hours’ worth of transferable credits.
Nicholls State University
Average Net Price: $10,169
Nicholls State University is named after Francis Redding Tillou Nicholls who fought during the Civil War. Nicholls became governor of Louisiana in 1876. The university first opened in 1948 in order to serve the area’s diverse population. Located on the banks of the Bayou Lafourche, the campus takes advantage of the local community by establishing partnerships with businesses and schools.
Nicholls online BA in English degree exposes students to a wide variety of literary works with its extensive choice of electives.
- Concentrations: Creative Writing, Literary Studies, Writing and Rhetoric
- Capstone course
- Career-focused curriculum
This program was ranked the #1 Online Bachelor’s in English and Creative Writing in 2017.
Average Net Price: $10,283
Known as the Trojans, Troy University is a public school want an excellent history of teaching since 1887. Originally founded as a school to train teachers, the school quickly grew during its prosperous years following World War II. Troy is known for its student-centered degree programs and meaningful partnerships with the community. Those who study English at Troy will not just study literature composition but will also be exposed to a variety of art and history through active participation.
Troy’s online bachelor’s in English degree is offered through the College of Communication and Fine Arts. Students will learn to communicate effectively through different mediums.
- 36 major credit-hours
- Professional writing emphasis option
- Sample Courses: American Literature before 1875, Introduction to Linguistics, Professional Document Design
Students interested in gaining an Alabama teaching certification can study English as well as education at the same time.
Clayton State University
Average Net Price: $10,330
Clayton State University is a relatively new university that began in 1969. Located in the suburbs of Atlanta, CSU is known for its small class sizes, personalized attention, and affordability. Almost 7,000 undergraduates and graduates are enrolled currently. Students are actively engaged in internships, student organizations, and athletics. According to James Magazine, CSU was a Best Buy for Georgia Universities due to its low cost to students.
CSU’s online BA in English develops strong writing and analytical skills among its students.
- Literature or Writing concentration
- For-credit internship available during the fourth year
- Online writing portfolio during the first year
Courses in this program rotate between a seated forum and an online forum, meaning some courses will be taught live while others can be completed on one’s own time.
University of Illinois at Springfield
Average Net Price: $11,444
The University of Illinois at Springfield began when a group of Illinois citizens had the goal of creating a four-year university in the state’s capital. Beginning with the name of Sangamon State University, the school held its first classes in 1970. Today the campus offers a total of 52 degrees, with 31 of them at the undergraduate level. Students have access to many opportunities at UIS, with one of them being scholarships and financial aid. In the 2018-2019 school year, UIS will award about $350,000 worth of scholarships.
UIS’s online BA in English degree prepares students for a variety of fields while appreciating the power of language.
- Personal academic advising
- English Honors Program for high-achieving students
- Sample Courses: Children’s and Young Adult Literature, Introduction to World Literature, Fiction Writing
Applications for the online program are taken on a rolling basis, but priority is given to those who apply by April 1st.
Rogers State University
Average Net Price: $12,338
Rogers State University has over 100 years of history providing quality higher education to those in northeastern Oklahoma. Founded just two years after the state was formed, the school went through a variety of changes until it gained university status in 2000. RSU reaches students around the globe through its online programs. RSU Online has been offering distance learning programs since 1992. Today RSU is ranked as one of the top 50 public regional colleges in the West by the U.S. News & World Report.
An RSU online BA in Liberal Arts with an option in English exposes students to the world of written and literary culture.
- Personalized help at the writing center
- Ability to submit work for the journal of arts and letters published by the university
- Sample Courses: Shakespeare, Cinema, Composition
Because this is a liberal arts program, students will be able to take classes from a variety of disciplines. These courses may include writing, art, history, and world languages.
University of Maryland University College
Average Net Price: $12,483
The University of Maryland – University College is an online university that was founded over 70 years ago. With the focus of providing strong education to working individuals, all programs are affordable and flexible. UMUC is the largest online public university in the nation, with more than 90 programs to choose from. The university has won numerous recognitions for its affordability, excellence in teaching, and specific online degrees.
UMUC’s online BA in English builds students critical thinking through the study of language and literature.
- Hybrid courses available
- Accepts up to 90 transfer credits
- Sample Courses: Renaissance Literature, Standard English Grammar, Modern American Literature
Those that finish this program and wish to continue on with an MA in Teaching may be able to take less classes due to the articulation agreement between schools.
Arizona State University
Average Net Price: $13,007
Arizona State University is a nationally and internationally recognized university known for its research and excellence. It has been ranked the #1 most innovative university in the country for the past three years. Its humble beginnings, with its founding 30 years before Arizona became a state, has led the university to be one with over 500,000 alumni worldwide. ASU also has an extensive online school, with over 150 online degree programs. ASU’s online degrees are ranked #4 in the nation.
Students can gain the opportunity to enhance their ability to read and write critically through ASU’s online BA in English degree.
- 7.5-week courses
- Condensed fast track degree available
- Only 39 courses
This program will prepare graduates for a variety of careers. For instance, postsecondary teachers are expected to experience a 9.3 percent growth and earn a median salary of $62,330.
University of Memphis
Average Net Price: $13,291
The University of Memphis is a public research university with over 21,000 enrolled students. Although most students are from Memphis and West Tennessee, students from all over the country and world attend U of M. In fact, U of M Global, the school’s online platform, connects people from every corner with its 60 degree programs. As all programs are 100 percent online, students can earn their degree in a time frame that is comfortable with them, from the comforts of their own home.
Students who enroll in U of M’s online BA in English program can improve their writing skills while also concentrating on specific genres of literature.
- Concentrations: African American Literature, Professional Writing
- Hundreds of academic scholarships available to undergraduates
- Sample Courses: Advanced Composition, British Lit to 1750, Web Design/Online Writing
As first-years, students will undertake the writing program which consists of two courses. Students will learn analytical and research strategies.
University of Colorado
Average Net Price: $13,751
Since 1996, CU Online has been reaching people around the globe through its distance learning programs. With the goal of being a leader in digital education, students gain personalized attention and the necessary skills they need to thrive in the workplace.
An online BA in English Writing from CU Denver develops strong communication skills that can be applicable in any job or discipline.
- 17:1 student-to-faculty ratio
- Internships available
- Taught by the same professors as on-campus program
Possible job industries upon graduation include publications, business and advertising, or entertainment.
Adams State University
Average Net Price: $13,888
Adams State University is a liberal arts school located in Colorado. Its campus, which sits in the heart of the San Luis Valley, recently underwent a $65 million transformation. Currently ASU’s enrollment is at an all-time high, with over 3,700 students enrolled in its undergraduate and graduate programs. ASU also offers a comprehensive distance learning program. Students can be confident that an online degree will be career-focused and student-centered.
ASU’s online BA in English/Liberal Arts degree combines English language principles with other disciplines for a holistic learning experience.
- Submission of a writing portfolio
- Use of the Blackboard system
- Sample Courses: Contemporary Literary Theory, Romantic & Victorian Literature, Reading Poetry
Because this program is interdisciplinary, students may be able to take electives in other areas and have it count towards the major.
Central Washington University
Average Net Price: $14,080
Central Washington University is a public school that was founded in 1891. Its name represents the fact that the school’s curriculum branched out from just teaching education to a variety of subjects. CWU is known for its friendliness, active student campus, and notable faculty. The Economist ranked CWU as the #1 university in the state for economic impact on graduates. CWU is also one of the most LGBT-friendly and veteran-friendly institutions.
CWU’s online BA in English: Professional and Creative Writing is a liberal arts degree that combines writing styles from various fields.
- 74 credit-hours
- Ability to earn up to 12 credit-hours at an internship
- Sample Courses: Poetry and Poetics, Principles of English Studies, Rhetoric for Professional Writers
An online education at CWU is fully supportive, with academic and individual program advisors available.
Eastern Oregon University
Average Net Price: $14,973
Eastern Oregon University is a public, four-year university that was established in 1929 as the Eastern Oregon Normal School, a teacher college. Currently EOU has over 3,000 students enrolled in both their on-campus and online degrees. An EOU Online degree offers quality programs with the one-on-one support students need. A notable feature is their Assessment of Prior Experiential Learning, which allows students to get academic credit for their prior life or work experiences.
The online BA in English degree at EOU prepares students to be critical thinkers with effective communication skills.
- Capstone project
- Part or full-time options
- Sample Courses: Intermediate Fiction, Screenwriting Fundraising, Literature Discrimination & Power
All of EOU’s undergraduate majors are only $232 per credit-hour. The average in the state of Oregon is $385 per credit-hour.
University of Central Florida
Average Net Price: $15,533
The University of Central Florida is one of the state’s major public research universities with over 66,000 students. Founded in 1963, the college offers both on-campus and online degrees through its 13 colleges. Through UCF’s undergraduate online degrees, students can get the experience they need to grow and finish in as little as two years. UCF is also a highly affordable institution, with 44% of its students graduating debt free.
UCF’s online BA in English with an emphasis in Literature degree is ideal for future scholars who are passionate about language, literature, and writing.
- 36 major credit-hours
- $179.18 per credit-hour for in-state students
- Three start dates
Forbes has ranked UCF one of the most affordable universities in the nation.