19 Best writing courses online to improve your writing skills
Have you ever wanted to learn how to become a better writer? If the answer is yes, then there are plenty of options available for you to help you reach your writing goals. Taking online writing courses is one of the best ways to improve your writing skills and refine writing techniques that you have been using for years.
From re-learning basic fundamentals to tackling more advanced concepts, there are classes available to meet the needs of any learner. In this post, we cover some of the best writing courses online for students, professionals, freelancers, and individuals. Improve your writing style, and text structure, narrative, and develop a strong voice and intonation.
Writing Courses Online – Overview
Writing is a powerful form of communication and expression. It allows us to express ideas, feelings, and experiences in a way that often can’t be expressed verbally. Great writing connects us to history, root us in our present, and provides a window into the future.
It also provides us with a way to document our thoughts, experiences, and memories and is a blank canvas we can use to explore new ideas and create exciting new stories.
From health benefits and personal development to self-education and entertainment, writing is, furthermore, an excellent way to relieve stress, express your creativity, and work through difficult situations in your life through self-reflection.
Whether you are interested in writing blog posts, journals, books, or research articles, it is a worthwhile endeavor to consider refining your writing skill set. We have compiled a list of the best writing courses online to help you get off on the right foot and begin your journey to improving your writing ability. For creative writing classes, please look here.
Best Writing Courses Online 2023 – Top Picks
|Various Genres||Professional Writing||For Beginners||Various Genres|
|from $15/month||$1,800||from $11.99/class||from $13/month|
|Visit Website||Visit Website||Visit Website||Visit Website|
*Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. Read the full disclosure at the end of this post.
Note: This review provides a review of the best writing courses online. We cannot claim comprehensiveness as there are many other online writing classes available.
1. MasterClass Online Writing Courses
Online writing courses on Masterclass (visit website) are one of the best ways to learn from published famous and successful writers. They currently provide 22+ writing courses in a broad range of topics, such as general writing, business writing, dramatic writing, script writing, storytelling, creative writing, fantasy, science fiction, and poetry writing.
Participating in Masterclass's online writing courses gives you access to the wisdom of famous authors such as David Baldacci, Salman Rushdie, Judy Blume, James Patterson, R.L. Stine, David Sedaris, and over 22 other accomplished writers across all genres.
The writing courses are presented in an online streaming service format that allows people to watch or listen to a plethora of videos. Students can access those online lessons on any device, such as smartphones, computers, Apple TV and Fire TV streaming media players.
For learners looking for a more structured, task-based, and interactive way of studying, the Masterclass Sessions Program contains learning projects and materials developed by famous world-class writers in each genre. MasterClass certainly offers some of the best writing courses online, suitable for both beginners and experienced writers. A membership subscription offers access to all classes (180+), including all 22+ writing courses.
2. Academic English: Writing Specialization – Coursera
Academic English (visit website) authorized by UCI is a popular specialization on Coursera to develop your academic writing skills and also earn a certificate from their university partner. This can be used for a college resume or future employment.
Coursera offers online academic courses from some of the world's top universities and educational institutions, which enables students to learn at their own pace and on their own schedule. Online courses range from beginner to advanced levels.
The online writing courses in this Specialization include grammar and punctuation, essay writing, advanced writing, and an introduction to research-based composition, culminating in a final research project. To get the most out of this class, students should have a good grasp of both reading and writing English, similar to the level of a high school education.
The main focus of this writing course is to ready recent high school graduates for the writing and research standards in college. It is also intended for people who did not have the opportunity to take rigorous English classes during high school, non-native English speakers, and anyone wanting to improve their written English communication abilities.
Provider: UCI Division of Continuing Education, Coursera | Type: Specialization
Pricing: Free trial. $59/month Coursera Plus. | Review: 4.8 ★★★★★
Info: View course. Browse: Search all online writing courses on Coursera.
3. Professional Communication: Business Writing and Storytelling – The Economist, GetSmarter
Professional Communication (visit website) is a business writing course offered by Economist Education, a subsidiary service owned by the reputable The Economist magazine and newspaper.
Available on the renowned GetSmarter platform, the writing course helps learners to be more precise when narrowing down what they are trying to express in an academic or business writing article. It also helps identify the target audience and hone writing skills towards becoming more succinct and authoritative when writing.
They advertise that by following their step-by-step process to create a piece of work, you can achieve the same level of eloquence and analytical rigor that is associated with The Economist. The writing course also focuses on improving how a writer both persuades and informs to create engaging content for a diverse audience.
The program contains six modules and aims to help participants present data with clarity, become more consistent in meeting deadlines, and develop more confidence in writing. They also provide access to the assistance of 6 professionals in the field for guidance.
Additionally, the writing courses explore the psychology, craft and motive of data-driven reports, memos, social media posts, and presentations. Learners study useful phrases and metaphors to learn how to structure any document more efficiently.
Provider: Economist Education, GetSmarter | Time: 6 weeks | Certificate: Yes.
Level: Professionals, Freelancers | Pace: Instructor-lead | Price: $1,800 or £1,475
Info: Visit course website. Get free prospectus. Browse all online courses in this category.
4. Malcolm Gladwell Teaches Writing – MasterClass
Malcolm Gladwell Teaches Writing (visit website) is among the best writing courses that offer a unique perspective on improving your writing ability. Malcolm Gladwell is a Canadian journalist and writer of books who began writing for The New Yorker in 1996.
His bestselling books include: Outliers, Talking to Strangers, and Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking. He offers a four-hour and 54-minute writing class and teaches lessons on producing creative content.
His philosophy is based on speaking to other people for inspiration. He believes that everyone has a collection of random ideas and reflections in their heads and that drawing on an individual's perspectives instead of your own can broaden your worldview.
Gladwell also suggests using other people's experiences to expand your own stories. His writing courses are helpful for learners who want to learn how to create unique stories, develop titles with an impact, and use interviews to create better content. With a membership, you will get access to all courses and also writing classes on the platform.
5. Online Writing Courses on Udemy
The Complete Creative Writing Course (visit website) on Udemy is intended to be a fun and useful way to learn how to write fiction, poetry, drama, and creative non-fiction. The program teaches the writing techniques, literary devices, and special abilities you will need to craft your own unique writing style.
To measure your progress, there are quizzes on the major topics discussed, as well as the authentic assignments that must be completed to improve your writing abilities. This online writing course will help you build and refine your own writing style while getting acquainted with each style through examples. It also encourages learners to self-critique their own written work while exploring what writing style best suits them.
Additionally, you learn how to navigate the many potential avenues of publication and study the step-by-step process of how to make your writing available to a public audience.
The Complete Creative Writing Course includes Poetry Primer, which explores different writing styles and tasks; Creative Non-Fiction Writing, which focuses on forming imaginative stories; Fiction Crash Course, which teaches techniques for effective writing; and Beginning Playwriting, which outlines how to create a play, from start to finish.
Online writing courses: 900+ | Rating: 4.4-4.8 ★★★★☆
Info: Browse category for all Writing Courses on Udemy. From $11.99. Up to 95% off.
6. Neil Gaiman Teaches the Art of Storytelling – MasterClass
Neil Gaiman Teaches the Art of Storytelling (visit website) is another great example of Masterclass's popular writing courses. Neil Gaiman is renowned for his ability to mix different types of genres in his works, and this is a skill you can learn too.
This is evident in his fantasy book American Gods, his novel geared towards his young adults, Coraline, and his award-winning graphic novel series, The Sandman. He is presently is a Professor of the Arts at Bard College in New York and involved in writing different projects for both Netflix and Amazon Prime television series.
His class explores the fundamentals of storytelling and provides various resources for novices. He teaches how to create characters, develop tension in the plot of stories, and find your own writing style. He also utilizes short tales to demonstrate these techniques.
Learners who take this online writing course will also discover new methods of how to come up with novel/fresh ideas. With an annual membership on MasterClass, you will get access to all their courses and also 22+ online writing courses in one bundle.
7. Professional Writing – Arizona State University, edX
edX provides courses that link students to various universities around the world. The Professional Writing course (visit website), authorized by Arizona State University, is an English research and composition course that teaches students to plan, research, design, and complete an action-driven research project in a span of eight weeks.
It requires roughly 18 to 20 hours of work each week, and those who participate can acquire a program certificate upon completion of the course. If a student is interested, they can obtain official college credits. EdX has partnered with Thomas Edison State University, a higher educational institution in New Jersey that specializes in educating adults, and it offers this service to anyone interested.
The writing course aims at fostering the competence to create written content suitable for diverse audiences. It also teaches you how to decide which elements to include or exclude from your writing. Students also learn how to organize the different stages of writing, from generating ideas to revising and editing.
Last but not least, the class gives instructional lessons on using digital technologies to increase your writing effectiveness and efficiency while stressing how to cultivate curiosity, openness, creativity, and reflection in your writing process.
Provider: Arizona State University, edX | Type: MicroBachelors Program
Duration: 2 months. 18-20 hours/week | Pricing: $898-$998
Info: View course page. Browse: Search all online writing courses on edX.
8. Writing Course for Beginners – Domestika
Creative Writing for Beginners on Domestika (visit website) is ideal for those who are looking to improve their writing skills, no matter where they are in their writing journey. It teaches how to construct narratives by learning to become a better observer and to describe and draw inspiration from everyday life experiences.
This popular online writing class is also beneficial for those who are teaching creative writing as it offers novel approaches to getting started from step 1, with a blank page. You don't need to have any experience with writing to be able to take part in writing activities.
In terms of supplies, you'll need writing utensils like pens or pencils, as well as two or three notebooks of different sizes. The sequence of activities on Domestika is meant to refine your writing skills and help you create a complete written work inspired by something you are truly enthusiastic about. This is one of the best writing courses online for beginners.
Tip: Browse our lists of best Italian courses or Spanish courses or English courses or French classes. For productivity and communication skills, see our lists of the best online public speaking classes or productivity courses.
9. CreativeLive Online Writing Courses
CreativeLive (visit website) is always an excellent option for anyone looking to take writing courses online. Here you can find 45 writing courses, ranging from beginner to advanced. They have topics such as writing for the web, blog writing, and copywriting, persuasive writing, and how to edit and revise your finished work.
Students can also learn about writing for social media, creating dialogue, and the basics of storytelling. Moreover, CreativeLive has a series of non-fiction instructional lessons, as well as how to write for children. The platform's overall goal is to help prospective writers gain confidence. Thus, they also have live courses if you’re interested, and these classes are taught by professionals who work in their respective creative fields.
One of the most popular writing courses is “Stories that Sell: 7 Secrets to Creating Killer Content” with Jon Youshaei. Jon shows you the essential fundamentals of copywriting, whether you are crafting emails, articles, sales pages, social posts, or speeches.
In Jon's class, you will learn how to perfect your headlines, make your writing easier to understand and make a lasting impression. You also get access to comprehensive case studies, guidance, and practice activities to test your understanding.
Provider: CreativeLive | Rating: 95% ★★★★★ | Level: All levels
Plans: Access to all classes, including 45+ writing courses.
Info: Visit website. $149/year or 39/month. View pricing plans on CreativeLive.
10. Aron Sorkin Teaches Screenwriting – MasterClass
Aron Sorkin (visit website), the creator of the award-winning show The West Wing, and the writer of the movie A Few Good Men, teaches this great 35-step MasterClass on Screenwriting. In this class, students will learn the tools and techniques Aron has used to create some of the most iconic films and television shows of the past few decades.
This popular online writing course teaches the fundamentals of screenwriting such as structure, character development, and dialogue via compact video lessons. Sorkin also covers topics such as simple storyboarding and the challenges in the art of storytelling.
Throughout the class, Aron provides personalized feedback and advice to help students improve their work. He also shares his tips on how to find inspiration and stay motivated throughout the writing process. This class is among the best writing courses online if you want to learn the basics of screenwriting and start writing for film and television.
Writing is an essential skill in the modern world, from creating blog posts to full-length books. Skillshare (visit website) is another great platform that offers an extremely wide range of online writing courses for people of all skill levels.
Their writing courses range from creative writing and copywriting to story structure and productive writing. Through Skillshare, you will be exposed to the fundamentals of writing, such as grammar, punctuation, and syntax, as well as more advanced techniques, like character development. Additionally, you can develop new skills, such as writing for SEO, or learning how to create a portfolio of your work.
Rather than simply a website containing educational materials, Skillshare has thousands of classes and learning paths. Some of the more popular online writing courses offered include: “Creative Writing”, “Crafting Personal Essays with Impact”, or “Selling Your Writing: How to Publish Your Novel and Get Published”.
Other classes float around topics such as “Writing Authentic Fiction: How to Build a Believable Character”, and “The Creative Toolkit: 6 Techniques to Spark Original Ideas”. The choice is impressive, and surely there is something for any prospective writer.
12. Develop Your Writing Skills – LinkedIn Learning
Develop Your Writing Skills on LinkedIn Learning (visit website) offers a great resource to help refine your writing skills. With a range of courses available, you can choose the one that best suits your needs. From beginner to advanced, the online writing courses cover various topics, including grammar and punctuation, storytelling, copywriting, and more.
One of the online writing courses offered is Grammar Girl’s Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing. Mignon Fogarty, aka Grammar Girl, provides clear illustrations to help you better you’re writing immediately. She offers guidance on how to use active voice, how to create a rhythm in your writing, and how to use commas correctly.
Mignon also debunks some common grammar myths and advises how to avoid run-on sentences. LinkedIn Learning offers a subscription that grants access to any of its online courses and video lessons. There are other online writing courses available.
13. Become a Journalist: Report the News – Coursera
For those looking to break into journalism, Coursera (visit website) offers the right course to get you started. Become a Journalist is an online writing course specialization in teaching you the fundamentals of reporting, such as researching and interviewing, as well as the various types of news coverage, including broadcast, print, and digital media.
By the end of the Report the News course, you should be able to create a compelling news story that is ready for publication. Throughout this online writing course, you will gradually understand the appropriate techniques and ethical regulations for collecting and crafting a news report.
Additionally, you will look into how journalism impacts social issues and investigate potential career paths in print media, digital media, television, radio, corporate, and community journalism. The final project is a journalistic portfolio, where you create, report on, and complete news stories that are of professional quality.
Provider: Michigan State University, Coursera | Type: Specialization
Pricing: Free trial. $59/month Coursera Plus. | Review: 4.7 ★★★★★
Info: View course. Browse: Search all online writing courses on Coursera.
14. Writing with Flair – Become an Exceptional Writer – Udemy
Writing with Flair (visit website) aims to help you become an exceptional writer, no matter what type of writing you do. Through the comprehensive lessons, you’ll learn the essential elements of writing, such as creating compelling characters, structuring stories, and developing engaging dialogue. You’ll also get tips on making your writing stand out from the rest and be more memorable.
Shani Raja, an ex-editor of The Wall Street Journal, is your instructor. Along with The Wall Street Journal, Shani has also written for other renowned news sources such as The Economist and Bloomberg News. In his program, Shani presents to non-journalists a series of insider tactics that the greatest editors use in their daily work.
Working with Flair contains four main sections: Simplicity, Clarity, Elegance, and Evocativeness. Students will learn how to detect ideas that are too vague and unclear, keep readers focused on their words, clearly define terminology, abstain from blending time periods together, and avoid convoluted writing that can confuse readers.
Additional Best Writing Courses Online
15. Come Write with Us
Come Write with Us is a website that offers a range of best-rated online writing courses. It provides lessons on various writing topics, such as creative writing, business writing, and academic writing. It also has a library of resources such as templates, checklists, and worksheets to help writers hone their skills.
The staff and teachers have each spent more than ten years as full-time independent authors and reporters. The website was created with the following learning goals in mind. Helping people put together a portfolio of their writing. Learning to offer their work to publishers and connecting with other writers. It's also about polishing their current writing skills, earning money through writing, and enjoying themselves while writing.
16. Writer's Digest
Writer's Digest offers online writing courses and resources designed to help writers improve their writing skills. It has an extensive collection of articles, tutorials, and advice on writing, as well as a forum to discuss writing topics. An interesting point about this website is that they offer yearly and quarterly competitions. The prize is often publication, which can be an excellent chance to build your writing resume.
17. Catapult Online Writing Courses
Catapult provides a variety of online writing courses suitable for writers of all levels. From beginners to experienced writers, each course is tailored to help writers improve their skills and become better writers. The writing courses take place online in a space called the ‘Salon'. There, you can communicate with classmates and the teacher of the course.
You can check the list of writing courses to find out which ones use video chat and which ones use text chat. Resources such as written and video lectures, reading assignments, and writing prompts are available for each student. They also have online workshops, where students can post stories and give feedback through comments threads.
18. FutureLearn Writing Online Courses
Online education platform FutureLearn also offers a range of best online writing courses. It has courses covering topics such as creative writing, business writing, and academic writing, as well as courses on grammar and punctuation.
The writing courses are grouped by subject, so you can easily find the one that best suits your needs. If you’re looking for a short course to help you learn a new skill, you can find flexible online classes to choose from.
They also offer Expert Tracks, which are a series of specialist courses designed to help you level up your skill. Additionally, if you’re looking for professional or academic accreditation, micro-credentials and online degrees are available.
19. Writers.com Writing Courses
Writers.com provides a variety of courses for writers. They offer online writing courses for beginners and experienced writers. Those include classes on grammar, writing techniques, and the craft of writing. On a weekly basis, specific feedback that is geared toward each individual student is provided.
Their philosophy is that counseling during the writing process is crucial to progress. It was the very first online writing school, created in 1995. Over the years, they refined their methods, customer service, and content to cater to all levels with great success.
How to Choose the Best Writing Courses Online
When it comes to choosing the best writing courses online, there are a few things to consider. First, think about your own personal writing level; where do you feel you are in your writing journey? Are you a beginner or intermediate, or do you consider yourself advanced? Knowing this will help you narrow down your course choices.
Next, consider what your anticipated learning goals are. What do you want to get out of the online writing courses you take? Are you looking to improve your writing skills, learn a new writing style/genre, or simply brush up on the basics?
Also, research the credentials of the instructors or tutors and the reviews associated with each writing course. Do they have the experience needed to help you reach your goals?
Finally, consider how much free-time that you might have. Some writing courses require a lot of time and dedication, while others can be completed in just a few hours. By taking all these factors into account, you can be sure to choose the best writing course for you.
Best Writing Courses Online 2023 – Verdict
Wrapping up our tour of the best writing courses online in 2023. There are many different ways to go about becoming a better writer. Luckily, through online writing courses, you have a wealth of resources at your disposal.
For beginners on a low budget, Udemy's online writing courses seem to offer a bit of something for any writer. The classes can help you discover your voice, develop your style, and create new stories or even poems.
If you need writing as a professional skill, MasterClass offers some of the best writing courses online in terms of variety, choice, and expertise. A membership gives you access to all classes making this resource a valuable choice. Good alternatives with similar services would be CreativeLive or Skillshare, while Coursera and edX offer more specialized programs.
Overall, self-education and self-improvement are always worthy investments, whether you want to improve your writing or simply learn to enjoy the process.
Best Writing Courses Online 2023
- MasterClass Online Writing Courses
- Academic English: Writing Specialization
- Professional Business Writing – The Economist
- Malcolm Gladwell Teaches Writing
- Udemy Online Writing Courses
- Neil Gaiman Teaches the Art of Storytelling
- Professional Writing – Arizona State University
- Writing Course for Beginners – Domestika
- CreativeLive Online Writing Courses
- Aron Sorkin Teaches Screenwriting
- Skillshare Online Writing Courses
- Develop Your Writing Skills – LinkedIn Learning
- Become a Journalist: Report the News – Coursera
- Writing with Flair – Become a Writer – Udemy
Other Writing Courses Online
- How to Write Descriptively – TedD-Ed, YouTube. View.
- If you Can't Answer These 6 Questions, You Don't Have a Story – YouTube. View.
- The Craft of Writing Effectively – UChicago Social Sciences – YouTube. View.
- Rhetoric: The Art of Persuasive Writing and Public Speaking. Harvard.
- Business writing Techniques – DoaneX, edX
- How to Write an Essay – edX, University of California, Berkeley.
- Screenwriting: Building your Screenplay – University of Cambridge.
What are the best writing courses online for 2023, in your opinion? Which online writing courses have you taken? What have you learned? Please let us know in the comments below, or contact us via email for questions.
Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to some providers of writing courses online. courselounge may receive a commission for purchases made through these links. It does not add any extra costs. All reviews, opinions, descriptions and comparisons expressed here are our own.