1. The applicant for the degree of Master of Arts in English should have completed with a 3.0 (“B”) average a minimum of seven upper division undergraduate English courses. For applicants to the Literature Emphasis, at least six of these courses should be in literature. For applicants to the Creative Writing Emphasis, at least two of these courses should be in creative writing and at least four in literature. Applicants to the Rhetoric/Composition Emphasis should have undergraduate preparation in literature and theory, and/or creative, and/or professional writing courses. Any undergraduate preparation in Rhetoric or Composition, linguistics or peer tutoring/ writing lab experience is welcomed though not required. Any deficiency in grades or course work in undergraduate preparation will require that prerequisite courses at the undergraduate level be taken before work on the ten courses for the Master’s degree may be begun. No course at the 600 level may be taken before the prerequisites are completed. A 600-level course taken before the completion of the prerequisite may be counted toward neither the prerequisites nor the requirements for the Master’s degree.
2. Applicants must submit an application, $50 application fee, and two letters of recommendation. Recommendations should be obtained from individuals who are in a position to comment on the applicant’s academic and personal suitability for pursuing graduate work in English.
3. Applicants should write an ambition statement (1½–2 pages) in which they indicate which emphasis (Literature, Creative Writing, Rhetoric/Composition) they wish to enter. Applicants should also discuss relevant prior experiences (i.e., academic, research work, creative writing, or other life experiences) and their career goals. This statement should be included with the basic application.
4. A 10–15 page writing sample is required of all applicants. Applicants to the Literature or Rhetoric/Composition Emphasis should submit a sample of their critical writing; applicants to the Creative Writing Emphasis should submit both a 10-15 page critical writing sample AND a sample of their best creative writing. The two combined samples may not exceed 30 pages total. Both writing samples should be combined into one document for upload to the application website.
5. The General Test of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is a prerequisite requirement for all applicants. A score of 160 (600 on the previous GRE scale) or higher on the Verbal component of the test is highly recommended.
6. Each fall, the Department accepts applications for merit based scholarships which take into consideration financial need. The amount of the scholarship varies. To apply, applicants and students returning for their second year must submit the form and narrative no later than March 15th. This application is available here and should be emailed to Dr. Dermot Ryan at firstname.lastname@example.org.
7.The deadline for the receipt of all materials is March 15. Applications completed after that date will be considered on a rolling basis, but only if space is available.