Online Bachelors in Creative Writing: Degree Program Summary

Learn about online bachelor's degrees with creative writing courses. Get an overview of the program types, requirements and course descriptions available for this field.

Essential Information

Online bachelor's degree programs in creative writing are rare, but are available at mostly for-profit, private institutions. Although many programs are entirely online, some degree programs may require that students meet with faculty once on campus during a semester to develop a study plan. Students then can usually proceed through the program at their own pace. Individuals may concentrate in fields like poetry, fiction and screenwriting. They may also take courses in horror, mystery, comedy and science fiction writing. Programs can prepare graduates for jobs as technical writers, journalists, editors, marketing specialists or instructors.

Online Availability Available fully online and in blended format
Online Requirements Text editing software
In-Person Requirements May need to meet on campus to develop a study plan once per semester

Bachelor's Degree in Creative Writing

An online bachelor's degree program in creative writing provides students with a broader comprehension of the context of literature and helps them develop their style or voice as a writer. Coursework explores multiple forms of writing, including essays, fiction, nonfiction, memoirs, journalism and poetry. In addition to writing, students are exposed to Asian, English and European literary traditions and consider them from perspectives of gender, ethnicity, class and culture. Enrollment in a bachelor's degree program requires a high school diploma or GED.

Information and Requirements

An online bachelor's degree program in creative writing is typically earned in four years. Course materials generally are distributed through the school's website. Students usually need a personal computer, e-mail and text editing software to participate in an online creative writing program. A broadband Internet connection is recommended for Web video and streaming audio.

Creative Writing Courses

In some instances, online bachelor's degree programs in creative writing have a loose approach to curricula, in which students receive guidance on devising their own course concepts. More traditional programs are structured around a core set of courses.

Composition

This course has a pair of objectives. The first is to improve the kind of research and argumentation skills needed in expository writing. The second is to gain greater competence with such elements of writing style as tone, precision, diction and figurative language.

Poetry

Students work with assorted poetry styles, such as traditional rhyme, haiku and free verse, and explore trends in contemporary poetry. Discussion with other students is a significant component of this class.

Short Story

This course develops students' capacity to interpret and think critically about short fiction, with the intent of improving their own story writing skills. Topics covered in the course include such literary tools as point of view, dialogue, character and narrative distance.


Career Information for Creative Writing Graduates

An online bachelor's degree program in creative writing can lead to a career as an author, editor, journalist or technical writer. With additional education or training, it can also facilitate a career in marketing or teaching. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov) projected that over the years 2012-2022, employment of writers and authors would grow 3%, employment of technical writers would increase 15% and employment of journalists would decline 13%. As of 2012, the median salary of writers and authors was $55,940, while editors earned $53,880. Reporters and correspondents made a median salary of $35,870 annually, and technical writers earned $65,500.

Continuing Education Information

Students who earn an online bachelor's degree in creative writing might go on to pursue a master's degree in the field. Online creative writing programs are more readily available at the master's level than the bachelor's level.

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