When people think of a student earning a bachelor’s degree in English online, they often picture that student huddled over Shakespearean tragedies or thumbing through anthologies of essays, plays and poetry. And their idea of an English degree usually ends there.
While literature is the focus of these programs, studying English teaches you how to think critically. For English majors, this means developing creative thinking and analysis — invaluable skills that you can apply to any career, or in many instances, throughout daily life.
What Is Creative Thinking and Analysis?
Creative thinking and analysis are skills that you can develop in a number of ways, and earning a bachelor’s degree in English is one of the most rewarding.
Analysis is the process of examining and interpreting information. This process includes looking at different parcels of information and figuring out how they relate. This method of parsing information can help with decision-making or problem-solving. Analysis is a rational thought process based on probability and logical thinking. It may elicit a single answer, and it uses left-brain thinking.
In creative thinking, the thinker starts by compiling information from personal thoughts and established theories, rules and procedures. By using this information, the thinker can develop new ideas. The creative thinking process — as opposed to an analytical one — may be more imaginative and intuitive, and it may inspire more than one answer. It uses right-brain thinking.
People use both creative thinking and analysis to come to any conclusion. For instance, you may analyze a situation to understand where it stems from then turn to creative thinking for new ways to resolve any problems. Afterward, thinking analytically about the conclusions can reveal the most suitable option.
How English Classes Teach These Skills
A bachelor’s degree in English online includes courses that cover world literature, novels, short stories, poetry and essays. Students also learn to write critical essays. They pick a topic, outline an argument, and then produce an essay or presentation articulating their thoughts. Through this process, students learn how to analyze what they’ve read — and then to think creatively to form conclusions.
How Is This Important?
In the workforce, employees can apply the process of creative thinking and analysis to many other situations — such as presentations or projects or problem-solving. In the business field, for instance, employers value employees with the skills English degrees bring to the table.
In an article for CNN Money, Ernest Suarez had this to say about the transference of the creative thinking and analytical skills associated with a B.A. in English: “Businesses tell us they like to hire English majors because they feel that they can think. They’ve got the writing and analytical skills they need. The rest they can be trained to learn.”
Professionals with English degrees are invaluable assets in the workforce. For students seeking to develop these skills in a flexible learning environment, bachelor’s degree programs in English are available online. At LSUA, students can expect to take courses that include public speaking, drama, poetry, literary history and foreign languages.
Learn more about the LSUA online BA in English program.
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