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What Can You Do with a Master’s Degree in English?

Do you have a love of the written word and a passion for language arts? Consider the many benefits of studying writing and English literature as you earn a Master of Humanities in English. By studying the fundamentals of writing, you can have your pick of jobs for English majors with a master’s degree—from teaching to technical writing, journalism to corporate communications and more.

As part of your studies, you’ll refine critical thinking and writing skills that are valuable if you want to become an educator or continue on to earn your Ph.D. One of the benefits of studying English literature is that you build skills—like interpersonal communication, the ability to independently manage time and projects, and problem-solving skills—that apply to just about any job.

What Does a Master’s Degree in English Look Like?

You might be wondering, how long does it take to get an English degree? At Tiffin University, an online Master of Humanities in English can be completed in as little as a year and a half for full-time students, and two and a half years for part-time students. In addition, an entirely online flexible learning environment means you can earn your degree at your preferred pace. That flexibility means you can work toward your degree when and where you want.

If you’re unsure of how to get a master’s in English, you should know that the first step is receiving an undergraduate degree, often a bachelor’s in English or a related subject like communications.

Your online Master of Humanities in English means you’ll be taking a wide variety of classes including creative writing, literature and research courses. At the end of your program, you’ll complete a capstone project that will allow you to explore one topic in more depth. Once you’ve earned your degree, there’s no limit to what you can do with a master’s in English.

What Type of Career Options are There with a Master’s in English?

hand with pen editing documentJobs for English majors with a master’s degree are varied and plentiful. You can teach, or be a professional writer or work in the communications department of a nonprofit or a corporation—what you can do with a Master’s in English is really up to you.

College Professor

Post-secondary instruction, specifically teaching first-year composition, is one of the more popular jobs for English majors with master’s degrees. As a professor, you’d apply your experience to the next generation of students. One of the benefits of studying English and becoming a college instructor is the opportunity to have a flexible schedule. You can work full-time or part time, plus have semester breaks and seasonal breaks. All English professors need at least a master’s degree, though a Ph.D. can expand your opportunities in the field, like teaching literature at the college level.

High School Teacher

College isn’t the only thing you can teach with a Master’s in English. High school teachers at religious, private, or charter schools can take advantage of many of the same career benefits of studying English literature. High school teachers generally work during regular school hours during the week, though sometimes meetings with parents, students or colleagues require time in the morning or evenings. Summer and winter break is the norm for most teachers, who typically work a 10-month school year. Public schools in all states require state licensure, and while a Master’s in English will not lead to that licensure, some religious, private or charter schools hire teachers with master’s degrees. If you’re already a teacher, you can bump up your salary on the pay scale with a master’s degree.


What can you do as an editor with a master’s in English? You can work in a newsroom or a publishing house, reviewing and revising content for pre-publishing. If you’re working at a daily publication, your workdays may be hectic as you’re trying to make a deadline. Or, if you’re working at a book publisher, you may work on a single editing project for weeks or several months. You might even have the benefit of working for yourself, and in that case you can control your schedule and how much or little you work, especially if you freelance.

Technical Writer

Technical writers use their strong command of the English language to write detailed instruction manuals or guides in a way that’s clear and easy for everyone to understand. Most technical writers are employed by a company usually focused on information technology, science or research. As a technical writer, you can expect to work full-time during normal business hours, though evenings and weekends may be a part of your schedule occasionally. One of the benefits of studying English means a master’s degree will make you a more competitive candidate among job seekers who might only have a bachelor’s degree.

What Salary Can You Make with Your Master’s in English?

So now that you have a few examples of what you can do with a master’s in English, you probably want to know how your hard work pays off. Jobs for English majors with a master’s degree are generally more high-paying than jobs without a master’s degree, though your salary also depends on where you live and the particular job you’re doing.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average median pay for English language and literature professors is $75,930 annually. The median annual wage for public high school teachers is $62,420 and teachers at private schools on average make $56,510 annually, though that amount can vary quite a bit, depending on your local school district.

If being an editor is more your speed, know that the median annual wage for newspaper, magazine and book publishers is $61,060. For technical writers, the median annual wage is $78,060.

Changing Career Paths

Earning an online Master of Humanities in English opens up a wide and rewarding field of job opportunities. Because there are many jobs for English majors with a master’s degree, you can apply your existing work history and knowledge to a new career with your degree. Most students earn a master’s in English because of a love for the English language and its uses. Having the opportunity to earn a living doing what you love is probably number one on the list of what you can do with a master’s in English.

At Tiffin University, your professors are highly-qualified academically and professionally, and can provide mentorship support and potentially connect you to networking opportunities as you complete your capstone project.

How Can You Earn a Master’s in English?

Earning a master’s of English at Tiffin University means you’re earning an opportunity to make your mark on the world through the written word. You’ll gain a broader perspective of the world through diverse reading assignments, and you can put your creative talents to good use thanks to a variety of writing exercises.

If you’re wondering how long it takes to get an English degree, because of TU’s online only format, you can earn your degree at the pace that’s best for you. Flexible registration dates and class hours means that you are in control of your destiny.

To learn more about our online Master of Humanities in English degree program, reach out to our admissions team for more information.

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