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Children's Literature Degree Programs

Degree programs in children's literature can help you sharpen your writing skills, while also preparing you for a number of related careers. Keep reading to find out more about degree levels, online study options, course topics and possible careers.

What Degrees Are Available in Children's Literature?

Studies in children's literature are typically found in undergraduate degrees in English, early childhood education or writing. Graduate-level programs focusing on children's literature award certificates, master's degrees or doctorates. Some schools offer courses or concentrations in children's literature through graduate-level degree programs in English, education or another area. Other programs offer dual degrees in children's literature and another field, such as teaching or library services.

Prerequisites for graduate degrees typically consist of a bachelor's degree from an accredited school and satisfactory Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores. You may need to submit writing samples for consideration.

Program LevelsBachelor's, master's, graduate certificate and doctorate
Common CoursesIllustrated text, research, history of children's literature, fantasy literature and more
Possible CareersLibrarian, writer, teacher or illustrator
Online OptionsMaster's programs and graduate certificates available
Median Salary (2018)$62,170* (for writers and authors)
Job Outlook (2016-26)8% growth* (for all writers and authors)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Courses Are Offered?

Courses in a graduate degree program in children's literature cover a wide array of topics, such as literacy, genres of children's literature, learning processes and the role reading materials play in children's lives and development. In addition to coursework, most programs require the completion of either a thesis or an independent study project. Some of the courses you can expect to find include:

  • History of children's literature
  • Illustrated text
  • Children's literature across cultures
  • Research in children's literature
  • Fantasy literature

What Can I Do With My Degree?

Master's degree programs in children's literature prepare you for a number of careers in different areas. You may pursue a career as a writer or illustrator for children's books, or look for other jobs in the publishing industry. You may also teach, after completing the requirements for licensure, or work in other areas of education working on the development of curricula or literacy programs for children. You could also land a job as a librarian at a school or public library.

Can I Find Programs Online?

Master's degrees in children's literature are available online, though distance learning programs with specific degrees in this area are rare. You may also find graduate-level certificates in children's literature online if you're looking to gain a greater understanding of the field without committing to a degree program. Online programs offer flexible scheduling, and you'll interact with instructors and other students using e-mail and discussion boards.