Gardner-Webb University’s Online Master of Arts in English Degree Earns National Honors

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OnlineU Presents Annual List of Top Programs for Quality and Affordability

badge honoring 2018's most affordable online colleges - master's EnglishBOILING SPRINGS, N.C. – Gardner-Webb University’s online Master of Arts in English degree has been named among the best in the nation by an education information website, a distinguished honor for GWU’s recently-revamped English master’s degree program.

OnlineU, an online source for college and career information, honored Gardner-Webb as No. 4 in the U.S. on its “2018 Most Affordable Online Colleges for a Master’s in English” list, a resource produced to help current and future students make smart choices about advancing their education and careers. The ranking earned GWU a placement among schools like Texas Tech (Lubbock, Texas), Valdosta State University (Valdosta, Ga.), and Arizona State University (Tempe, Ariz.).

“Our decision to use an online delivery format reflected our desire to provide in-depth graduate study to students whose careers and geography may prohibit their participation in a seated program,” shared Dr. Jennifer Buckner, associate professor of English and chair of the Department of English Language and Literature. “We are thrilled to be recognized among the most affordable options—but we are more proud that the program we provide is of high quality and value.”

portrait of GWU English Professor Dr. Jennifer Buckner
Dr. Jennifer Buckner

Schools chosen for the list offered an online master’s in English and were ranked on program cost and academic strength. To be considered, institutions must be regionally accredited and must offer at least one fully-online degree in a given subject for the degree level that was required. Gardner-Webb’s online programs have received multiple honors for quality and affordability in recent years, but this marks the first distinction for the University’s Master of Arts in English program.

Students in the 30-hour program select one of three concentration areas: English education studies, literature studies, or writing studies. A thesis or capstone project representing six credit hours rounds out the degree program. For more information about programs available through the Department, visit

“Students who enter our program often express surprise and delight that our online program is so interactive,” Buckner shared. “I think it challenges assumptions many make about online learning being void of human interaction. We’ve found a way to bring the personalization and community of a private, liberal arts university into an online format. While in the program, students develop their scholarly and professional skills, preparing them for a lifetime of critical, informed thinking about a wide range of topics related to English studies.”

OnlineU is a product of SR Education Group and is a free and comprehensive guide that enables students to compare all online colleges in the U.S. OnlineU seeks to help driven people accomplish their education goals in a financially responsible manner. By providing resources that are easy to use but hard to find elsewhere, the goal of OnlineU is to empower more Americans to go to college while lowering the overall cost of earning a degree.  

Located in the North Carolina foothills, Gardner-Webb University is a private, Christian, liberal arts university that prepares students to become critical thinkers, effective leaders and compassionate servants in the global community. Emphasizing a strong student-centered experience and rigorous academics, Gardner-Webb ignites learning and service opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students. Ignite your future at