Bachelor of Arts in English: Professional Writing Degree Overview

A Bachelor of Arts in English with a concentration in Professional Writing allows English majors to focus on developing their writing and publishing skills. Get more information on this degree and the possible careers it can prepare you for.

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Essential Information

A Bachelor of Arts in English with a concentration in Professional Writing intertwines aspects of technical writing, editing, rhetoric and publishing. Students in these programs can acquire the skills necessary to find work as proficient writers and editors, as well as in print and digital media. Applicants to a bachelor's degree program will need to have a high school diploma or the equivalent, and many colleges prefer students who have received high grades in their English courses.

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  • Creative Writing, General
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Bachelor of Arts in English with a Concentration in Professional Writing

Undergraduates who choose to concentrate in professional writing will typically take more courses in technical writing than other English majors. The curriculum may also involve a practical experience component, allowing students to take part in internships and develop a professional portfolio. The required courses, which commonly combine topics in English and professional writing, will prepare individuals to take on a writing or publishing job after college. Some common courses include:

  • News reporting
  • Business writing
  • Style and editing
  • Technical writing
  • Research methods for writing

Career Outlook and Salary Information

Graduates with a Bachelor of Arts in English with an emphasis in the field of professional writing will be equipped for a multitude of jobs. Possible job titles may include grant writer, editor, marketing director, publication specialist and technical writer.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment for authors and writers was expected to increase by only two percent, slower than the national average, between 2014 and 2024, while technical writers could anticipate a ten percent employment growth in this time frame, which is faster than the average for all occupations. Data from the BLS shows employment opportunities for editors over the 2014-2024 period to be limited, with a decline of five percent.

In May 2014, the BLS reported that technical writers earned an average annual salary of $73,350; meanwhile, editors made an average of $64,910 per year, and writers and authors received an annual average wage of $69,130.

In conclusion, if you want to focus your English degree on the technical aspects of writing required for specific careers, you may want to pursue a bachelor's degree with a concentration in professional writing. Depending on the career you decide to pursue, you may face stiff competition in the near future.

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