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2023 Best Online Writing Degrees

By OnlineU Staff Writers | Updated 6/12/2023
2023 Best Online Bachelor's Degrees in Writing Badge

The need for the creative and technical skills of talented, articulate writers spans virtually all industries. An online bachelor's degree in writing can help would-be technical writers, communicators, and content creators develop expertise in areas such as composition, grammar, and critical analysis. The skills gained can be applied in various workplace settings, from large corporations and the healthcare field to academia and freelance work. Additionally, an online degree in creative writing can help provide a skillset suited to fiction writing for the aspiring author or screenwriter. On our list below, we've included the best writing degree programs and associated schools organized by online enrollment, so you can see which programs are popular with students who may share similar goals to yours.

View our methodology for more details about our list, or learn more about OnlineU.

2023 Best Online Bachelor's Degrees in Writing Badge
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Online Writing Bachelor's Degrees You May Be Interested In

List Of Accredited Online Writing Schools

Southern New Hampshire University Online

  • Annual Tuition: $9,600
  • Locations: Manchester (NH)
  • Accreditation: NECHE

Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) Online is a public institution offering an online Bachelor of Arts in Creative Writing and English, with concentrations in Fiction Writing, Non-Fiction Writing, Poetry, and Screenwriting. This 120-credit program takes full-time students approximately four years to complete. Similarly, SNHU offers an online Bachelor of Arts in Communication - Professional Writing that explores emerging technologies. SNHU has a 94% acceptance and a 40% graduation rate.

SNHU uses Brightspace to deliver its online curriculum. Distance learners in its online creative writing and English program participate in courses such as Writing for Film, Genre Studies, Literary Theory, and Writing and Digital Media. Students choosing concentrations also take workshops specific to their writing genre. Graduates pursue careers in fields such as journalism, publishing, communications, and law.

American Public University System

  • Annual Tuition: $7,324
  • Locations: Charles Town (WV)
  • Accreditation: HLC

American Public University System (APUS) is a public, for-profit institution offering an online Bachelor of Arts in English - Writing and Communication that explores diverse perspectives in World, British, and American literature. A general concentration is offered, as well as concentrations in Literature and Writing and Communication. Graduating requires 120 credits, which may take full-time students up to four years to complete. APU has a 100% acceptance rate due to its open admissions policy, and 18% of students end up graduating with degrees on average.

APUS delivers its online coursework and instruction via Canvas. Depending on their chosen concentration, online writing and communication students engage in classes such as The Work and Life of Ernest Hemingway, Gothic Literature, British Poetry from Blake to the Beatles, and Scientific Writing.

Liberty University

  • Annual Tuition: $11,700
  • Locations: Lynchburg (VA)
  • Accreditation: SACS COC

Liberty University (LU) is a large, private, Evangelical Christian institution offering an online Bachelor of Science in English and Writing for students interested in careers creating and writing content. Specializations include the following tracks: General, Christian Literature, Creative Writing, and Journalism. Students must complete 120 credit hours to graduate, which generally takes 3.5 years if enrolled full time. LU has a 50% acceptance and a 34% graduation rate.

LU's distance learners access the Canvas learning management system to participate in class. Those enrolled in the online English and writing program take courses such as Literature of the Bible, American Realism and Naturalism, Introduction to Creative Writing, and Lewis and Tolkien — depending on the specialization chosen.

It's important to note LU is not an LGBT-friendly institution. According to its 2022-2023 Student Code, "statements and behaviors that are associated with LGBT lifestyle are prohibited."

Florida International University

  • Annual Tuition: $18,963
  • Locations: Miami (FL)
  • Accreditation: SACS COC

Florida International University (FIU) is a public, Hispanic-serving institution offering an online Bachelor of Arts in English - Writing and Rhetoric for students interested in exploring the written language and its role in human creativity. Graduating requires completing 120 credits, which generally takes full-time students around four years. FIU has a 65% graduation and a 58% acceptance rate.

FIU delivers online lessons and lectures to its distance learners via Canvas. Distance learners in the online writing and rhetoric program enroll in courses such as Writing and New Media, Studies in 19th Century African American Literature, Scientific Writing, and Writing About the Environment. Graduates often find work in fields such as public relations, technical writing, education administration, and advertising.

Old Dominion University

  • Annual Tuition: $30,840
  • Locations: Norfolk (VA)
  • Accreditation: SACS COC

Old Dominion University (ODU) is a public institution offering an online Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies - Professional Writing for those interested in developing technical writing, business, human resources, and communication skills. This is a 120-credit program that generally takes full-time students four years to complete. ODU has a 95% acceptance and a 58% graduation rate.

ODU uses Canvas as its online learning platform so distance learners can access coursework and instruction. Those enrolled in the online professional writing program take classes such as Organizational Communication, Work-Life Communication, Digital Leadership, and Personnel Psychology. Students also complete an e-portfolio project to graduate. Popular careers after graduating include media analysis, grant writing, advertising, and public relations.

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Overview of a Bachelor's Degree in Writing

If you have a passion for writing and are interested in a career in communications, earning an online bachelor's degree in writing can help you develop your skill set and adapt your writing capabilities for a broad range of styles. An online writing degree is designed to provide students with a deep understanding of the written word. Students learn to effectively convey ideas, arguments, and narratives through various styles of writing. The program aims to develop students' creative, analytical, and technical writing skills, preparing them for careers in fields such as journalism, publishing, content creation, and technical writing.

Online degrees also offer a high level of flexibility, making it much easier to fit higher education into a busy schedule, especially for working adults or those with family responsibilities.

A bachelor's degree in writing can open a world of opportunities for students who have a creative streak and want to combine their writing skills with . It provides the tools needed to succeed in a variety of writing roles in today's digital age. Whether you're interested in creative, technical, or business writing, an online writing degree program can equip you with the skills you need to thrive in your writing career.

Degree Requirements

Most bachelor's degrees require around 120 credit hours to finish and are designed to be completed in four years for full-time students. Students who opt for part-time programs will take longer to graduate. Some online colleges also offer accelerated degree options which allow students to finish their degree sooner.

Online writing students will complete general education courses in areas such as math, science, and history, as well as major-specific courses and electives. To earn this degree, students must maintain a minimum GPA (usually around 2.0 or higher), and some programs may require a capstone project or a portfolio showcasing the student's best work.

Wondering if your online degree will be respected? Hear from experts on what recruiters and employers think about online degrees.

Common Courses

The core curriculum for an online writing degree includes classes designed to provide a comprehensive understanding of the different writing styles and techniques, allowing students to develop skills necessary for a broad range of different writing careers. 

Some of the most common classes for writing majors are:

Creative Writing

While many people think creative writing only applies to fiction, writers can also bring creativity into the non-fiction and poetry spaces. In this class, students learn how to develop their voice, create compelling characters, and craft engaging narratives.

Technical Writing

A cornerstone for those interested in an online technical writing degree, this course focuses on writing clear and concise documents such as manuals, reports, and proposals. Students learn to translate complex technical information into easily understandable text.

Business Writing

Written communication is critical in the business world. This course teaches students how to write effectively in a business context, including writing memos, business letters, and corporate reports. The emphasis is on clear, concise, and persuasive writing.

Digital Media

This class covers writing for various digital platforms, including websites, blogs, and social media. Students learn to adapt their writing style to different online audiences and to use SEO techniques to help readers find their content online.

Literary Analysis

One of the best ways to become a better writer is through reading other writers' work. This course helps students develop their analytical skills by studying various works of literature. Students learn to interpret, analyze, and critique literary works.

Research and Writing

This course focuses on academic research and writing skills. Students learn how to conduct research, cite sources accurately, and write research papers.

What Can You Do With a Bachelor's in Writing?

A bachelor's degree in writing can open up a range of opportunities for graduates. Some students continue their education, going on to graduate school or pursuing an internship. Others opt to enter the workforce after college, pursuing careers in marketing, communications, business, or education.

Further Education

Graduate programs in writing, literature, journalism, or related fields can deepen your understanding of the written word and its uses. Many students go on to earn their Master of Fine Arts in creative writing, poetry, or nonfiction writing, which will allow them to teach at the college level. Certificate programs can also offer focused instruction on specific types of writing, such as technical writing, creative writing, or business writing. 

Internships are common in the writing world because it's difficult to get a job without writing samples, and having published work for your portfolio will make it easier for employers to assess your work. Internships also offer a hands-on way to gain experience in the field while building a professional network.

Writing Careers

Every industry in the modern world needs writers to craft memos, instructions, documents, marketing materials, speeches, video and audio scripts, and creative content. Here are some career paths you can pursue with a writing degree, with information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

Writers and Authors

Median Salary: $69,510
Job Growth Rate: 4%

Writers and authors create content for various types of media, including advertisements and marketing, blogs, books, magazines, and movie, play, and television scripts. They choose subjects that interest readers, write fiction or nonfiction scripts, biographies, and other formats, conduct research, and work with editors and clients to ensure the content meets their needs. Writers and authors are often self-employed or freelance workers, and are often able to work remotely.

Technical Writers

Median Salary: $78,060
Job Growth Rate: 6%

Technical writers write highly specialized content such as instruction manuals and training guides. They may focus in an area like information technology, engineering, or manufacturing​. Technical writing tends to be less creative and more informational, and can be a good career option for those with strong analytical skills and attention to detail.


Median Salary: $63,350
Job Growth Rate: -5%

Editors play an essential role in making sure content is error-free and meets the needs of clients and their audience. Copy editors work on a variety of different types of content, including books, magazines and newspapers, blogs, websites, marketing materials, speeches, and technical documents. Managing editors typically work in the publishing industry, overseeing the content and production of books and magazines. They work with writers and fellow editors to ensure content adheres to the vision, guidelines, and goals of a publication. They also supervise staff, engage with advertisers, accept and reject pieces, and oversee daily operations​.

Is an Online Writing Degree Worth It?

  • Skill Development: A degree in writing can help you refine your writing skills, learn to write in different styles and for different audiences, and become adept at crafting compelling narratives.

  • Transferable Skills: In addition to writing, you'll develop critical thinking, research, editing, and communication skills, which are valuable in many different careers.

  • Career Opportunities: A degree in writing can lead to a variety of careers, including roles as a writer, editor, technical writer, content strategist, marketer, and more. You could also use your writing skills in fields like law, business, education, or public relations.

  • Creativity and Self-Expression: For those who enjoy writing, a writing degree can provide an outlet for creativity and self-expression, allowing you to explore and develop your unique voice.

  • Career Stability: Writing careers can sometimes be less stable than other fields, with many writers working on a freelance basis or moving from project to project. As technology continues to advance, writers will need to stay on top of new skills such as SEO or using AI to aid their work to remain relevant.

  • Income: While there are certainly successful and high-earning writers, starting salaries in writing-related fields are often lower than other industries.

  • Job Market Competition: Depending on your specific career goals, the job market can be competitive, particularly for jobs like authors or journalists.

  • Limited Practical Experience: While many writing programs do offer opportunities for internships or real-world experience, some may focus more on theory and academic study, which may not fully prepare you for the practical aspects of a writing career.

Students should look for an accredited college or university that offers low tuition rates, has financial aid options, and has programs that will help them meet their professional goals to get the most out of their degree. Applying to scholarships and finding ways to save money in college will also help lower the cost of a degree to maximize the return on investment.

Wondering how to pay for your degree? Our student loan guide can help you cover the cost of college without borrowing more than you need.

FAQs About Online Bachelor's Degrees in Writing

How Long Does It Take To Get an Online Writing Degree?

An online bachelor's degree in writing usually takes around four years of full-time study to finish. However, some schools offer accelerated programs that allow students to finish in less time.

Can You Get a Writing Degree Online?

Many colleges and universities offer online bachelor's degrees in writing. These programs are designed to provide the same rigorous education as their on-campus counterparts, covering different writing styles and their practical uses.

Is an Online Writing Degree Hard?

How hard an online writing degree will be depends on each person's interests, strengths, and challenges as a student. Like any degree, it will require commitment and hard work. Students who struggle with writing and communications may find this degree more difficult than others. However, writing is a skill that can always be developed and improved upon with practice. Online students need to be self-motivated and disciplined, as online programs often require a significant amount of reading and writing assignments. The lack of in-person interaction can also make it harder for some students to learn, while others prefer the online environment.

What Can I Do With an Online Writing Degree?

Writing majors often work as writers, editors, content creators, or technical writers in a wide range of industries. Some choose to pursue further education such as a master's degree or writing-focused certificates. Others may use their writing skills in fields like marketing, public relations, or education.

Is an Online Writing Degree Beneficial?

An online writing degree can be highly beneficial, depending on your career goals. The skills you gain—such as critical thinking, research, creativity, and communication—are in high demand in many industries. The flexibility of online learning can also make it easier to balance your studies with other commitments, like work or family responsibilities.

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