Jun 14, 2024  
2023-2024 Academic Catalog 
2023-2024 Academic Catalog [Archived Catalog]

English M.A.

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View information for the Department of English .

Applications for admission to the Master of Arts program in English should be filed in the Office of the Graduate School, which will then forward them to the Department of English for processing.

The Master of Arts Programs in English serve the personal and professional needs of various students: those currently teaching or intending to teach high school; those intending to teach at the community college level; those anticipating doctoral studies; and those simply interested in the personal growth that advanced studies in English provides.


  1. A Bachelor of Arts degree, normally with a major in English. Students from other majors may be required to take the GRE General Examination and/or prerequisite courses to prepare for the program.
  2. An undergraduate grade point average of 3.0.
  3. Two letters of recommendation from former college instructors, or appropriate equivalents, who can comment on the applicant’s ability to succeed in graduate studies.
  4. A 5-10 page critical or analytical paper. It may be one written in an undergraduate class.
  5. Upon acceptance to the program, students with a Bachelor of Arts in English with at least a 3.0 grade point average can be admitted as Fully Classified students.


  1. Complete at least 30 graduate units.
  2. Earn at least a grade of B- in each course.
  3. Complete comprehensive exams, thesis, or project as indicated by program.


In addition to the requirements listed above, students electing the literature program must take ENGL 5000 - Critical Theory and Research  and complete an additional 12 units of 5000-level literature seminars.

Students who maintain a grade point average of at least 3.5 may elect to write a thesis. Students electing to write a thesis may apply a maximum of six units of ENGL 5990 - Thesis  toward the Master of Arts coursework requirements. Students not eligible or not electing to write a thesis will instead complete six units of 5000-level literature seminars.

Students who plan to teach at the college or university level are strongly advised to take ENGL 5894 - Teaching Composition .

Program Learning Outcomes

Successful M.A. students will:

  1. Master the techniques and practices of literary analysis.
  2. Become familiar with the history and current theories of literary interpretation.
  3. Acquire the abilities necessary to become professionals in the fields of literature, whether as teachers or as other professionals.

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