15 Best Accelerated English Degree Online [2024 Guide]

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Get an accelerated English degree online with accelerated English courses that take half the time or less to complete compared to traditional classes.

Get an accelerated English degree online with accelerated English courses that may take half the time or less to complete compared to traditional classes.

Accelerated English Degree Online

An English degree in a liberal arts degree can help set you up for a fulfilling and meaningful career. The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that the average salary when you have a Bachelor of Arts in English is $50,000.

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Every career field could potentially benefit from employees that are good writers. That is how you get a company message out to your customers! Or your boss. Or the people you are supervising.

English is also the most dominant language in the world. More than 60% of the information on the internet is in English (Wikipedia). Nearly every country around the world has an interest in the English language. Being able to communicate well in English may allow you to pursue a career not only as an English professor but also to teach English as a second language.

Types of Accelerated English Degree Programs

English degrees typically involve a focus on reading, writing, and analyzing the English language. Usually through literature and writing assignment. But there are many different slants that a degree in English can take. Which of these Bachelor of Arts in English sounds most appealing to you?

  • American Literature
  • Comparative Literature
  • Creative Studies: Literature
  • Creative Writing
  • Linguistics
  • Literary Journalism
  • Literature and Cultures
  • Literature and Writing
  • Literature of the World

There are so many different options for what direction you may take your English degree. You get to choose the one that will best suit your interests and your future career plans. You might learn marketable skills like critical analysis, clear communication and how to be an effective and creative writer.

Accelerated English Degree Course of Study

Accelerated English Degree Course of Study

An English degree program can help teach you how to write intelligently. Beautifully. The written word can convey so many messages, whether you are writing a novel, business memos, or blog posts!

And literature can teach you to look at all aspects of the world from science, politics, history, religion, philosophy, psychology, economics, music, art, film, and even the greater human emotions of romance, desire, love, power, identity, and change.

Your classes could include the following:

  • American Poetry
  • British Literature
  • The Genre of Shakespeare’s Plays
  • How to Write Fiction
  • How to Write Poetry
  • Introduction to Children’s Literature
  • Multiethnic Literature
  • Postcolonial Literature
  • Professional Writing and Speaking
  • Studies in Young Adult Literature (yes, you might be reading Harry Potter or Twilight!)
  • The Written Legends of King Arthur

These are classes that not only let you explore common themes throughout human existence but can help you become a well-rounded communicator and prepare you for a career that you love.

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Careers with an Accelerated English Degree

Careers with an Accelerated English Degree

The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that jobs in the media and communication field will grow by 14% over the next ten years, about as fast as the average for all other occupations.

But writing is not the only career that an English Degree leads to. Common examples of careers you can pursue with an English degree include:

  • Administration
  • Business
  • Editing
  • Journalism
  • Law
  • Management
  • Public Relations
  • Teaching

The skills you learn have the potential to make you highly valuable to future employers. There are great differences in the salaries you might find though – from $49,000-$126,000 (or beyond!).

J.K. Rowling (famous author of the Harry Potter series) graduated with a degree in Literature Classics and has been consistently ranked among the highest earning authors worldwide. Not all who write will become rich and famous. But there is potential!

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, some careers in the English field include:

Career Annual Median Salary
Lawyer $126,930
Public Relations and Fundraising Manager $118,430
Administrative Manager $98,890
University Professor $80,790
Technical Writer $74,650
Writer or Author $67,120
Editor $63,400
High School Teacher $62,870
English as a Second Language Teacher $55,350
News analyst, Reporter, or Journalist $49,300

A degree in English can help you develop skills that can prove to be valuable over your entire life. What you do with your knowledge will be up to you.

Why Choose Accelerated English Degree Programs Online?

english degree major student studying online

Here are a few reasons to choose to take accelerated classes online:

  1. You can usually start whenever you want – no waiting for the new semester.
  2. You do your classwork when you want – no class schedule to fit into your life.
  3. You do your classwork where you want – no commuting to campus.

The biggest advantage of accelerated online classes is that you finish your degree sooner. Instead of lingering on a course for 16 weeks (the length of a typical semester), you may knock out each class in 5-8 weeks and immediately start the next class.

You could take 2 or 3 classes at a time. If you work on your degree full-time (including the summer), you could finish in 2 years instead of 4.

How to Accelerate Your English Degree Even More

english degree students running across campus

Besides taking accelerated classes on a full-time basis, you may test out of classes and get credit for your previous experiences.

Test Out of Classes

A bachelor’s degree will normally have at least 39 credits that are your core competency classes. But with a program like the College Level Examination Program, you may register to take the exam instead of the whole class.

A class will take you about 48 hours. An exam takes you 90 minutes. You may take up to 30 credits through Credit by Exam and check off those necessary core competency classes in hours instead of months.

You don’t even need to be an expert on the subject; you can pick up the study guide and study for a couple of days beforehand. The exam is only 90 multiple choice questions, and if you get 50% right, then you might earn 3 college credits.

Get College Credit for Your Life and Work Experience

If you have been working for a few years before starting this degree, you might already have earned credit without even knowing it.

Universities often have a program called Credit for Prior Learning. Ask your advisor about this option. You may need to put together a portfolio with your training, experiences, credentials, and letters of reference. The portfolio will show the faculty how you have already met the course objectives for the classes you are applying for credit in.

If your portfolio is approved, you could be eligible for 15 credits. Just because you already know stuff.

Transferring Your Existing College Credits

Did you start a degree program or take a few college classes in the past? If you were attending an accredited college and passed those classes with at least a C, you may want to transfer in that credit.

Pre-existing credit is valuable to you now! Every credit that you have already earned might save you time and money with your English degree.

Ideally, the class you took would fit perfectly into your English degree, but even if it doesn’t, you still want to use it. The class may be used as an elective and save you from taking another class.

English Degree Accreditation

logos of six regional accreditation boards

The classes and professors will differ from school to school. But the one thing that should always be the same is accreditation.

Accreditation might be regional or national, but it is important to attend an accredited school. When your future employer or grad school looks at your online bachelor’s or online master’s degree in English, accreditation will prove that you received a high-quality education.

The regional accrediting boards include the following.

You can check if the university you want to attend is accredited by searching its name on the U.S. Department of Education’s database website.

How to Lower Tuition Costs

screenshot of FAFSA website

Tuition and time are the two biggest obstacles to conquer when you are looking at getting a degree. You have already seen how you can accelerate your degree and save yourself years in getting your degree. Spending less time in school might save you thousands of dollars.

You may save yourself even more by taking advantage of all of the financial aid opportunities available to you. By filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), you’ll see what grants, student loans, and work-study options you qualify for.

You can then look into funding from:

  • Your state – more grants
  • Private organizations – scholarship opportunities
  • Your university – scholarship incentives to attend

Apply for as many of these funding sources as you can to save yourself money in both the short and long-term.

List of Schools Offering an Accelerated English Degree Online

Methodology: The following school list is in alphabetical order. To be included, a college or university must be regionally accredited, offer degree programs online or in a hybrid format, and have accelerated classes that are 8 weeks or less in duration.

Arizona State University

Arizona State University campus

Arizona State University offers an online Bachelor of Arts in English program. Students have access to 39 different classes, with each class designed to take approximately 7.5 weeks to complete.

To graduate, students are required to complete 120 hours of credits. These credits can be completed through electives such as creative writing, environmental nonfiction, and medieval literature.

ASU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

California Baptist University

California Baptist University campus

California Baptist University offers an online program for earning a Bachelor of Arts in English. The program takes an average of 16 months to complete. There are 49 major units required to obtain the bachelor’s degree. Of these units, 2 are prerequisites to the program, and 6 are courses from other programs as a general requirement.

California Baptist University is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior College and University Commission.

Cameron University

cameron university campus

Cameron University offers a Bachelor of English program. Students may take concentrations in Literature or Creative Writing.

To graduate, 124 credit hours must be completed, with 24 of those hours being for electives. The program can be completed entirely online. While the courses are asynchronous, each one requires one proctored exam to be completed.

Cameron University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

College of DuPage

College of DuPage campus

College of DuPage offers a certificate in English and offers four different online programs: Creative Writing, Film, Literature, and Writing Studies.

Each certificate requires 14 to 15 credits to be completed. College of DuPage’s Accelerated Learning Program allows students to take additional courses if they meet DuPage’s reading requirements but not their writing requirements.

COD is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Columbia College

Columbia College campus

Columbia College offers a Bachelor’s in English degree program with two separate concentrations: Literature or Creative Writing.

While those seeking the Creative Writing specialization must complete their degree on campus, the Literature specialization can be completed online. Students are required to complete 120 credit hours and pass a 3 hour senior seminar to graduate.

Columbia College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Granite State College

Granite State College campus

Granite State College offers a Bachelor’s in English for those hoping to teach English.

Students from New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Vermont can join one of three streams: Early Childhood Education, Elementary Education, and General Special Education. Depending on the stream chosen, either 120 or 121 credits are required to graduate.

Granite State College is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.

Liberty University

Liberty University campus

Liberty University offers a Bachelor of Science in English and Writing. Students may choose to take a more generalized program or pick a specialization in either Creative Writing or Journalism. The program typically takes 3.5 years to complete, with each online course being completed in 8 weeks.

Liberty University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Marshall University

Marshall University campus

Marshall University offers an online Bachelor’s in English program that can typically be completed in 3 years.

A total of 120 credits are required to graduate, and 36 of those credit hours must be related to the major’s requirements. If selected courses fulfill more than one requirement, then remaining hours may be obtained through elective courses.

Marshall University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Midway University

Midway University campus

Midway University offers a Bachelor of English program that can be completed completely online. The courses take on an 8 week module.

The degree can be completed in 4 years and requires 120 credits to be completed. Students may also work on The Midway Muse, a magazine created by the school to give students writing and publishing experience.

Midway University is accredited by SACSCOC.

Regis University

Regis University campus

Regis University offers a Bachelor’s in English program which can be completed online. To graduate, students must complete 38 semester hours to obtain the degree.

Online courses at Regis University have 5, 7, or 8 week academic terms, which end sooner than the on-campus courses. At least 18 semester hours must be taken from higher-level courses.

Regis University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University campus

Southern New Hampshire University offers a Bachelor’s in Creative Writing degree with the option to focus on one of four genres: Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, and Screenwriting. The program can be completed completely online. To graduate, 120 credits must be completed. These credits can include workshop classes and 36 credits worth of electives.

Southern New Hampshire University is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.

Thomas Edison State University

Thomas Edison State University campus

Thomas Edison State University offers a Bachelor’s in English program that can be completed completely online. Of the 120 credits required to graduate, 27 of them are open electives. The credits may be obtained through alternative means, including portfolio assessments and transferring them from other schools.

Thomas Edison State University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

Troy University

Troy University campus

Troy University offers a Bachelor of English program that can be completed on campus or online. The program requires 96 credit hours to be completed and usually takes approximately 4 years to complete. Each year consists of 5 semesters with each term lasting only 9 weeks.

Troy University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

University of Maryland Global Campus

University of Maryland Global campus

University of Maryland Global Campus offers a Bachelor’s in English program that can be completed online. Students need to acquire 120 credits to graduate from the program, and it usually takes 4 years to complete. Up to 90 credits may be transferred from other programs.

The University of Maryland Global Campus is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

University of Massachusetts – Lowell

University of Massachusetts Lowell campus

The University of Massachusetts Lowell offers a Bachelor’s in English program that can usually be completed online in 12 to 36 months. Graduation requires 40 courses to be completed, with a maximum of 54 credits related to the English major and 66 credits from outside the major.

The University of Massachusetts Lowell is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.

Dive into those Books!

english degree student studying in university library

No matter what your goal is in earning an English degree with online college classes, you may learn skills that will never fade. You are not earning a degree full of technical knowledge; you are learning how to think, write, and read analytically.

Look into the schools above to see which degree program best suits you.

Ready to start your journey?
Joy is pursuing her Ph.D. in Public Policy & Foreign Policy at Liberty University and holds a Master of Business Administration in Strategic Management from Amberton University, as well as a Bachelor's in Business Administration from Columbia College. With over 20 years of experience navigating online degrees and courses, Joy's focus is helping non-traditional students find accelerated degree options and credit for prior learning opportunities.