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Home ยป What Credentials Do I Need to be an Online Creative Writing Instructor?

What Credentials Do I Need to be an Online Creative Writing Instructor?

What will your major be? Creative writing, probably. While it’s great to be able to tell stories and put thoughts into words, it’s not all that great when it comes to getting paid for it.

Whether you’re a seasoned professional or you’re just getting started, becoming an online creative writing instructor takes some serious dedication and a lot of research. Your ability to find and retain competent students will determine your success as an instructor. Let’s take a look at what credentials you need to become an online creative writing instructor.


As a creative writing instructor, you’ll most likely be instructing students online via some form of online learning. While it’s not mandatory to have a college degree to become an instructor, it certainly doesn’t hurt. Many successful educators have obtained their degrees through online learning platforms like Connected Learning University, which offers degrees in technology management, computer science, and more.

If you’re looking to teach creative writing, having a degree in literature, English, or journalism will certainly put you at the top of your class. However, you don’t need to limit yourself to traditional four-year undergraduate degrees. There are plenty of online learning platforms that can help you attain your degree.

Credentials Can Be Obtained Through On-the-Job Training

Even if you complete your undergraduate degree and manage to land a job as an instructor, you won’t necessarily be making the same amount of money as you would with a traditional degree. That’s because not all colleges and universities hand out degrees as easily as they do with a four-year undergraduate degree. Some degree programs, like Master of Arts in Teaching, require serious in-field experience before you can earn your degree.

If you want to be a successful creative writing instructor, you need to have either a) a Master’s degree in English, journalism, or a related field; or b) at least 5 years of teaching experience, 2 years of which must be at the secondary level. If none of these seem like a good fit, you could consider getting a PhD in English or a related field and then teaching at the undergraduate level. You may even consider becoming a TA (Teaching Assistant) and helping students with their writing assignments. Teaching experience can also be attained through online learning; if you’re looking to avoid having a formal teaching background, this is the next best thing.

Aside from a formal education, you can also gain teaching experience by doing volunteer work. If you’re looking for extra cash, you can also earn money online by taking on-side gigs as a private tutor or by becoming a freelance writer.

Professional Development

Just because you’re an online teacher doesn’t mean that you’ll be able to teach every subject matter you’re equipped to handle. To be able to effectively instruct students, you should focus on three main areas:

  • Curriculum Development
  • Classroom Management
  • Engaging Students

Like many other jobs, the above three areas can be enhanced by getting additional training and education. If you’re serious about being a successful creative writing instructor, it’s important to examine the curriculum you’ll be using and the platforms you’ll be teaching from. While a Bachelor’s degree in English can get you far in the field, it’s not a guarantee that you’ll have the training and experience necessary to effectively use the subject matter you’re learning.

The best way to learn is by doing. You can take advantage of one of the countless digital marketplaces that allow you to find online tutors and instructors who offer one-on-one coaching sessions. This is a good option if you want to enhance your training with someone who has extensive experience in your field.

Another excellent option is to volunteer for a mentored teaching project. A mentored teaching project is just what it sounds like: an assignment that’s designed to help you learn while also assessing your effectiveness as an instructor. You’ll be working with an experienced teacher or lecturer who can provide you with feedback on your lesson planning and delivery. If you’re looking for experience, this is a great option as well.

If none of the above seem like a good fit, consider getting a certification in elementary school teaching or social studies teaching. There are also teacher trainings you can participate in online that will qualify you to teach English as a Second Language (ESL) or English for Academic Purposes (EAP).

Availability To Serve As An Online Instructor

If you feel you’re going to be able to make a profitable living out of being a creative writing instructor, it’s important to look into your own personal schedule to assess whether or not you’ll be available to serve as an instructor. Just because you have a degree in English and teaching seems easy enough; however, there’s a lot more to it than meets the eye. You have to be available to serve as an instructor, which means making sure your classes are going to be able to connect with you at the times they’re scheduled. Some universities and colleges have drop-in labs that teachers can use, which is another great option if you want to be able to make use of your availability as an instructor.

If none of the above seem like a good fit, consider getting a job as a high school English teacher. You don’t have to have a Master’s degree to get a job teaching English as a Second Language (ESL). However, you will need to have at least 2 years of teaching experience, and ideally, that experience should be at the secondary level. If that seems like a daunting task, consider getting a job at a community college and then applying for a teaching fellowship at a 4-year university. Many teachers at community colleges make a decent living, have adequate benefits, and can use their degrees to advance their careers. If none of the above seem like a good fit, you might want to think about getting a job as a proofreader or copyeditor. You’ll get good training and have the opportunity to climb the ladder quickly.


As a creative writing instructor, you’re going to need to know how to find and retain students. While a part of your job is going to be to help your students learn to write, you’re also going to need to be responsible for generating revenue. How much you make will depend on a number of factors, but one of the most important factors is the number of students you have.

If you have fewer than five students, you’re not going to make much money. However, if you have more than twenty students, you’re going to be able to make a decent living. Beyond that, it gets a bit more complicated. The more students you have, the more you can charge. When it comes to earning potential, more students equal more money. There’s also the potential to make more than you could ever dream of if you get popular enough. However, just because you can charge more doesn’t mean that you’ll make more money. The key is in how you can convert students into paying customers.

Luckily for you, we’ve compiled a comprehensive list of the top 13 earning blog posts in the world in 2019 (as of January 22, 2019). While it’s great to be able to boast about how much you make off your blog, it’s also important to know how you’re able to do that. Many of these bloggers use affiliate marketing, which earns them a commission when a product they promote is purchased. Some of them even have their own stores, where they sell affiliate products, which brings in even more money.

If you want to be able to make decent money off your blog, learn how to use affiliate marketing seamlessly integrating your blog posts with your affiliate products. You’ll be able to make money off your blog without cluttering it up with ads, pop-ups, or unnecessary links.

The Rise of Online Creative Writing

In today’s world, the lines between schools, students, and teachers are blurring. While in the past, students could look to their schools for support with assignments and seek help from their teachers when necessary, today’s students are doing their homeworks in the comfort of their homes and turning to online communities for help.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor, employment in the fields of writing and publishing is projected to grow by 12% from 2018 to 2028, which is faster than the average for all occupations. If you’re looking to enter the field, now is the perfect time to do so. There’s a whole world of opportunities online, and if you’re looking to make money off your creative writing, you may find it easier than you think.