Children's Writing Courses and Degrees

Find information on children's writing courses and programs, including certificate, and master's degree programs. Continue reading to learn more about course topics and options for online study. Schools offering English Reading & Writing degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Study Options Are Available in Children's Writing?

Credit and non-credit courses in children's literature and writing for children are available online and on-campus at several schools. Certificates in writing for children and children's literature are also available. Some programs are available at the graduate level, and others are for any skill level. The most common degrees in children's writing are available at the master's level, through children's literature and writing-for-children programs.

Learning Opportunities Individual credit and non-credit courses, certificate programs, master's degrees available
Common Courses Writing, character development, creating proposals, creating dialogue
Online Availability Courses are available online. Residency may be required for select courses.
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 Topics Are Covered?

The graduate certificate in children's literature is suitable for you if you're a writer interested in children's writing, a teacher or a librarian. Your courses could include studying the work of famous children's literature authors, tackling common problems in children's lit and defining characteristics in children's stories. Other certificate programs in writing for children are more hands-on and include topics in creating characters, plot and setting. Information about the publication process may also be included as you learn to write, edit and critique children's stories.

The courses in a master's degree program are likely to prepare you for a career in writing, editing, publishing, selling or promoting children's stories. In children's lit courses, you could study poetry, fairy tales, fantasy fiction, realistic fiction and picture books. This provides the backdrop for what sells and the literary styles that capture children's attention, which you can use as you write. Some courses give you the chance to put together picture books or other pieces of literature designed to meet children's needs and interests.

Credit and non-credit courses that aren't part of a degree program allow you to choose the topics you want to study based on your level of experience and your interests. Some include suggestions from published children's book authors about their experiences and what they feel makes a children's book sell. Other courses are set up as workshops, where you may study the following:

  • Developing characters
  • Writing a book proposal
  • Creating dialogue
  • Giving and receiving feedback
  • Generating ideas
  • Creating picture books

How Do Online Courses and Programs Work?

Some certificates, master's degree programs and individual courses can be completed online. These work differently depending on the school you choose, but they generally include assignments with due dates and scheduled meeting times; during these meetings, you can participate in online critiques or discussions. In some cases, the non-credit courses are offered over a short period of time, such as a weekend or a week, where you will complete intensive study of the topic.

For some online programs, you may have to complete residency requirements. This could entail attending seminars or writing labs on-campus before you return home to complete the individual course requirements online.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
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