Best Online Master’s in English

Reading and writing are critical skills in any professional field, so earning one of the best online master’s in English is an excellent choice. 

Best Online Master’s in English

These degrees can provide meaningful boosts to your career, and especially in liberal arts professions. These days, you can find top-tier online options that let you finish your education from a distance. Of course, finding the right programs can be tricky if you don’t know where to look. In this guide, we’ll show you the 20 best online master’s in English programs and explain what you can do with this flexible credential.

What Is a Master’s in English Degree?

A master’s in English further specializes your understanding of the English language and the literature that enforces it. While an English degree at a bachelor’s level provides you with greater command of the rules and intricacies of the language, a master’s degree shows that you truly comprehend the subtlety of its syntax and grammar and can apply that knowledge to your own written content.

As a result, master’s degrees in English are incredibly versatile in regard to the positions they prepare you for. Those with these degrees can become teachers from the elementary to the college level, or they can become business professionals. Marketing and content creation are other avenues that allow English majors to express their creativity. All in all, a master’s degree in English is versatile and valuable.

How Much Can You Earn With a Master’s in English Degree?

Your potential earnings with a master’s degree in English depend on your chosen profession. Postsecondary teachers at the college level typically make around $78,470 per year. These jobs are valuable because of their stability and the importance they have in society.

On the other hand, you can become an editor, which will have you reviewing, planning, and revising content for publication. You can work with fiction as a novel editor, or you could become an editor for a company that double-checks all marketing copy before it is sent for publication. Editors usually make around $59,480 per year.

All in all, salaries for those with a master’s in English are quite competitive and comfortable.

What Is Required for a Master’s in English Degree?

A master’s degree in English will require that you complete several classes that provide you with advanced writing and reading comprehension. Courses will often cover subjects like:

  • Communication
  • Literature
  • History
  • Social studies

Many English degrees also allow you to specialize in a concentration, such as a type of fiction or a particular style of writing. Others might even include certification to be an English teacher in a specific state.

What Are the Best Online Master’s in English Degrees?

OSR uses six data points: three school-wide and three program-specific. For school-wide, OSR uses Student Satisfaction, Admission Rates, and the number of programs the school offers online. For program-specific, OSR checks the Median Debt of graduates from that program, how many degrees are offered within that program’s umbrella department, and what percentage of students at that school graduated from that department.

The six statistics are displayed by each school. The sliding bar under each statistic represents how that school compares to other US institutions. “Not reported” means a school did not release that information to the US Department of Education. A more detailed description of the OSR process can be found on the methodology page.

  1. Southern New Hampshire University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $18,810(in state) / $18,810(out of state)
    • $40 application fee
    • Requires 36 credit hours
    • 25% discount for US service members or spouses

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction74.60%
    Admission Rate78%
    Programs offered online43

    Program Level

    Median Debt$41,000
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    100%
    OSR Score

    This program emphasizes the exploration of the greatest works of American and English literature. It’s fairly customizable, allowing for several concentrations and not requiring any GRE or GMAT scores for admission. Several internship opportunities are available as extensions of the program.

  2. Arizona State University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $6,144(in state) / $6,144(out of state)
    • Multiple start dates available
    • Requires 30 credit hours
    • No GRE requirement

    School Wide

    Student SatisfactionNot Reported
    Admission Rate63%
    Programs offered online45

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    96%
    OSR Score

    This unique program provides courses across several disciplinary areas of study like rhetoric and literacies, linguistics, film and media studies, and literature. It emphasizes not only reading and writing but also understanding the cultural backgrounds of great works of art and the formation of the English language. For students undecided on a profession, ASU’s MA in English is a strong choice as a well-rounded, versatile degree.

  3. National University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $14,976(in state) / $14,976(out of state)
    • Features four-week classes
    • Start dates available throughout the year
    • Requires 30 credit hours

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction70.80%
    Admission RateNot Reported
    Programs offered online46

    Program Level

    Median Debt$29,774
    Programs in Department2
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    94%
    OSR Score

    This MA in English focuses on cultivating critical reading and writing skills, with a particular emphasis on research. As a result, it’s a particularly good choice for future English teachers or professors. Courses are small and interactive and often come with individual attention from professors.

  4. Texas Tech University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $5,724(in state) / $13,068(out of state)
    • Several start dates available
    • GRE exam not required
    • Requires a writing sample for admission

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction74.60%
    Admission Rate69%
    Programs offered online7

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department2
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    90%
    OSR Score

    Texas Tech provides an online program that is a copy of the on-campus MA in English offering. This program focuses on rigorous classwork and a broad understanding of classic English literature and writing techniques. It’s an English degree well-suited both to teaching and other professions after graduation.

  5. University of Central Florida

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $6,916(in state) / $25,759(out of state)
    • Requires 33 credit hours
    • Additional certificates available
    • Features eight-week classes

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction74.80%
    Admission Rate50%
    Programs offered online93

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    89%
    OSR Score

    This online program helps you hone your critical thinking skills, particularly in the area of writing. Many of the classes focus on helping you develop your ability to make technical ideas accessible and impactful, making this curriculum closer to that of a communication degree than of those in many other English degrees at the graduate level.

  6. The University of Texas at Tyler

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $5,220(in state) / $12,690(out of state)
    • Requires 36 credit hours
    • Tutoring opportunities available
    • Several concentrations available

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction72.60%
    Admission Rate65%
    Programs offered online2

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    85%
    OSR Score

    This online English MA degree can be pursued either entirely online or in a blended online and on-campus format. There are both thesis and non-thesis tracks available. The curriculum focuses on an in-depth study of literature as well as on rhetoric and composition; all students are assigned a pair of professors to guide them in relatively individualized studies.

  7. The University of West Florida

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $7,088(in state) / $22,166(out of state)
    • Requires 30 credit hours
    • Features primarily asynchronous format
    • Several start dates available

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction74.60%
    Admission Rate50%
    Programs offered online8

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    84%
    OSR Score

    This online program offers specializations in either Literature or Creative Writing, making it a great choice if you want to pursue a career in either of those fields. Class sizes are restricted to 20 students, and most courses meet in the evenings to allow for synchronous digital lectures. Several grants are available to most students.

  8. Western Governors University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $6,500(in state) / $6,500(out of state)
    • Can be completed within 18 months
    • Features Christian teachings 
    • Requires 18 courses

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction64.80%
    Admission RateNot Reported
    Programs offered online29

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in DepartmentNot Reported
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    83%
    OSR Score

    This MA in English program leads straight to a teaching license and prepares you to teach at the college level. It includes teacher certification and classes not only on English understanding and writing but also in teaching the subject to others. Licensure preparation is valid across all 50 states.

  9. University of Nebraska at Kearney

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $5,712(in state) / $12,528(out of state)
    • Requires 36 credit hours
    • Several start dates available
    • $45 application fee

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction71.40%
    Admission Rate82%
    Programs offered online7

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    82%
    OSR Score

    This online program is designed with a writing emphasis in mind, so it’s good for students who want to study advanced composition across several genres. Several classes are also specially tailored for high school teachers wanting to move to the college level. This program, however, does not include certification to teach English.

  10. Tarleton State University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $3,775(in state) / $11,245(out of state)
    • Requires 30 credit hours
    • Multiple start dates available
    • Summer classes available

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction73.40%
    Admission Rate50%
    Programs offered online9

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    81%
    OSR Score

    The MA in English program focuses on the enhancement of your education in the subjects of literature, rhetoric, and eloquence of language. There are two program tracks available: thesis or non-thesis. The non-thesis track designed for students who want to pursue a teaching career and are eager to enter the field.

  11. University of Memphis

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $9,054(in state) / $17,838(out of state)
    • Requires 33 credit hours
    • Several certificates available
    • Several start dates available

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction76.40%
    Admission Rate85%
    Programs offered online18

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    79%
    OSR Score

    This online MA in English program comes with a concentration in English as a Second Language. This program is a perfect choice if you want to become a teacher with students who don’t speak English as their primary language. A thesis is required for graduation, and many of the classes focus on issues in second-language writing.

  12. University of Louisiana at Monroe

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $6,490(in state) / $18,590(out of state)
    • Requires 33 credit hours
    • Some graduate assistantships available
    • Multiple start dates available

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction74.00%
    Admission Rate75%
    Programs offered online14

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    79%
    OSR Score

    This MA in English degree covers a wide range of literary topics as well as several classical texts. Course requirements are especially flexible, and students are allowed to emphasize either creative writing or literary studies depending on their interests. This customization makes the program a good choice for future editors and English teachers alike.

  13. Heritage University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $9,240(in state) / $9,240(out of state)
    • Several specializations available
    • Requires 32 credits
    • Multiple start dates available

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction75.00%
    Admission RateNot Reported
    Programs offered online1

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    78%
    OSR Score

    Heritage offers an English program for students who want to teach the subject at a secondary or college level or those who want to move into a Ph.D. program. This degree offers the opportunity for Washington-state-residency teaching certification. Classes are asynchronous but are taught predominately on weekends and evenings if you want to virtually attend.

  14. Central Washington University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $8,775(in state) / $20,555(out of state)
    • Requires 74 credits
    • Features only one start date each year
    • Several certificates available

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction74.20%
    Admission Rate86%
    Programs offered online14

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    77%
    OSR Score

    This online program is quite small and personalized compared to others online. It only admits eight to 15 new students per year, and each program’s class is required to attend several graduate seminars and benefits from a flexible course of study. Three specializations are available in Literature, Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, and Professional and Creative Writing.

  15. Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $12,000(in state) / $18,000(out of state)
    • Requires 30 credits
    • Requires capstone course
    • Includes real-world classroom practice sessions

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction73.20%
    Admission Rate71%
    Programs offered online1

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    77%
    OSR Score

    This university offers a 15-month program that focuses on contemporary literary practices to help you teach and understand reading and writing techniques. There are extensive research opportunities and practical applications contained within most of the courses. Several concentrations are available as are a variety of writing classes offered for different professions.

  16. Louisiana Tech University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $6,592(in state) / $13,333(out of state)
    • Thesis or non-thesis tracks available
    • Requires 33 credit hours
    • Several start dates available

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction75.60%
    Admission Rate65%
    Programs offered online3

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    77%
    OSR Score

    Louisiana Tech offers both a master’s-level degree in English and a graduate certificate in technical writing and communication. The MA program trains all students in the advanced knowledge and writing of both British and American literature and technical writing. It’s also well suited as a prelude to doctoral-level education.

  17. Ohio University-Main Campus

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $9,444(in state) / $17,436(out of state)
    • Requires 32 credit hours
    • Features seven- to eight-week-long classes
    • Can be finished in 16 months

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction75.20%
    Admission Rate74%
    Programs offered online9

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    75%
    OSR Score

    Ohio University provides an English program that is ideal for working professionals and teachers alike. The curriculum emphasizes the study of literary history and the analysis of rhetoric and composition at an advanced level. What’s more, no GRE is required for applicants, so eager students can begin their studies sooner than later.

  18. Mercy College

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $15,426(in state) / $15,426(out of state)
    • Several minors available
    • Features options for English teaching certification
    • Requires 30 credit hours

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction76.60%
    Admission Rate79%
    Programs offered online15

    Program Level

    Median Debt$41,000
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    75%
    OSR Score

    This program focuses on English literature, making it a strong choice for future English teachers or art critics. The curriculum emphasizes classical and modern literature and trains students in literary critic methodology. Attention is paid to several eras and genres throughout the program, ensuring that students graduate well-versed in the field.

  19. Minnesota State University-Mankato

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $7,120(in state) / $7,120(out of state)
    • Includes some mandatory virtual meetings 
    • Requires 30 credit hours
    • Can be completed in less than two years

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction73.80%
    Admission Rate61%
    Programs offered online4

    Program Level

    Median Debt$35,801
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    73%
    OSR Score

    This online program is a Master of Arts in Literature and English Studies. Its curriculum focuses on theory and understanding of British and American literature as well as on teaching these concepts to others. Electives can be chosen from a diverse English department catalog, and a capstone project is required to demonstrate your specialization or English expertise.

  20. Murray State University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $8,631(in state) / $26,811(out of state)
    • Requires 30 credit hours
    • Oral exam required for graduation
    • Several start dates available

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction73.80%
    Admission Rate87%
    Programs offered online6

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at SchoolNot Reported
    73%
    OSR Score

    This MA in English program is ideal for teachers, editors, or those who just want to learn more about literature. It includes a diverse curriculum with plenty of opportunities to choose the electives best suited to your interests. Best of all, this program can be completed in two years or less depending on your schedule.