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MA in English

Note to Prospective Online Students: The online MA program, which we expect to be approved and available in Fall 2015, will be the same as the onsite program, with a different mode of delivery (electronic vs. face-to-face). The requirements for the MA online will be the same as for on-campus students and can be found in the Graduate Student Handbook as noted below. The application process is the same; visit the Admissions page for the relevant application deadlines. Admitted MA students may take courses either online or face to face. At this time, we do not plan to offer the Creative Writing concentration online.


The MA program in English encourages students at once to prepare across several literary periods and genres and--if they wish--to focus their work upon a particular area of study that will lead to a specialized MA thesis. Our goal is a program that is flexible enough to allow at once for broad study of English for those wishing to prepare for a career in secondary teaching, and for sustained work in an area of the student's choice, as preparation either for pursuit of the PhD or for a career in publishing, writing, or a related field. Recent MA graduates have gone on to our own PhD program and to programs at LSU, UMass, Indiana, Maryland, Claremont, Purdue, Florida, Rice, Kansas, and Texas A & M, among others. Others have gone on to successful careers in teaching, publishing, technical writing, and similar fields.

Our MA requires 36 hours of coursework and requires students to take courses in American literature (6 hours); British literature (6 hours); critical, research, and/or pedagogical methods (6 hours); and Writing for Publication (3 hours). The other 15 hours may be distributed across additional courses in literature, linguistics, and (when permitted) creative writing. Up to 6 of these hours may even come in the form of a degree minor in another discipline, including but not limited to women's studies, history, philosophy, religion, art history, and theatre.

On average, the graduate program in English offers eighteen to twenty seminars each semester in fields ranging from Beowulf to Virginia Woolf, and from the history of the British novel to contemporary world drama. Specific information is available about study in early British literature, later British literature, American literature, CLGT (Comparative Literature, Globalization, and Translation), creative writing and linguistics, and our newest areas of emphasis in Book History, Film & Media Studies, Nineteenth-century Studies, and Literature, Social Justice, and Environment. A student wishing to specialize may elect courses in any of these fields.

Besides these opportunities, MA students participate in our innovative Professional Development Curriculum, which offers students the chance to prepare for whatever their professional future might hold: a career based upon the work done for the MA, or pursuit of a PhD in English or a related field. Students in our MA program are also eligible for assistantship support from the Department of English, annual support for travel to professional conferences, and state of the art library and computer facilities.

For more information about any aspect of the MA program in English, you may download and view theGraduate Student Handbook.  MA requirements begin on p. 14.