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Frequently Asked Questions about the Grad Program in English

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What are the requirements to get into the MA program in English?

These are the basic requirements stated by the College of Graduate Studies

To be granted full admission to the Graduate School, the applicant must have:
•    Bachelor's degree from a regionally-accredited U.S. institution (or equivalent from a foreign institution)
•    At least a 3.0 GPA on the last 60 hours of completed coursework
•    Completed graduate application with essay and $30 fee
•    Submitted GRE, GMAT or MAT scores (GRE is generally preferred)
•    Submitted all official transcripts
•    Satisfied other applicable program prerequisites
An applicant who does not qualify for full admission may be granted conditional admission. 

Conditional admission will not be granted to an applicant whose GPA is less than a 2.5 on the last 60 hours of completed coursework. A student who is conditionally admitted must satisfy all conditions before receiving full admission.

In addition to these requirements, each applicant's transcripts are individually assessed by the graduate English admissions committee.

Any leveling that might be required will be addressed at that time.  Leveling is usually required when the applicant does not have a BA in English.

What is required to complete the MA program in English?

The degree requires thirty hours of courses, including departmental courses in four categories:

  • American literature
  • British literature
  • Rhetoric and composition
  • Other [professional writing, post-colonial literature, etc.]

The six-hour M.A. thesis, which offers students an opportunity to specialize in an area of literature,
language, or composition and rhetoric, concludes the program. Students who choose not to complete a thesis take an additional six hours of course work.

If the student did not complete 12 hours of a foreign language during his/her undergraduate degree, this requirement must be met during the MA program. The requirement can be satisfied through coursework, examination and/or immersion.

Contact  the graduate program director for more information.

What courses are offered for the MA?

A variety of courses are offered in American and British literature, rhetoric, composition, linguistics and other topics. 

Courses are offered on a rotating basis.

Do I have to write a thesis?

A thesis is not required but it is strongly recommended, especially for those students who want to
go into a Ph.D. program or who might want to go into one in the future. 

Writing a thesis demonstrates a scholar’s ability to write, think and research at a high academic
level and allows the scholar to contribute to the body of knowledge in his/her field.

All thesis students work closely with a committee of three professors.

Do I have to take comprehensive exams [comps]?

Comps are required of all MA students, thesis and non-thesis track.  They are taken in the second year. 

Students work with a committee to prepare for the exams.  A reading list is provided to students upon entry to the program.

How do I get an advisor?

All students are initially advised by the graduate program director, and then are advised
by their thesis committee chair and other faculty as necessary.

PEEPs students are advised by the PEEPs coordinator.

Are there assistantships available?
Yes. Interested students should contact the graduate program director for further information.
What kinds of jobs can I get with an MA in English?
Traditionally, an MA prepares one to teach at a community college or to teach dual credit in high school, but an MA also
prepares one for any number of career options:
  • editor or sales representative at a publishing company
  • copywriter for a public relations firm
  • human resource officer
  • media specialist
  • manager

Some fields may require additional training or education, but the MA tells employers that an applicant has strong research and writing skills, which are often more significant than specific degrees.

Do you have a PhD program?
Not at this time but our graduates have entered PhD programs at the University of North Texas, Texas Women’s University, Michigan State University, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and other programs.
What is the PEEPs track?

PEEPs (Professional Educators in English Program) is an option on the non-thesis track designed for credentialed
high school English teachers who need graduate credit in order to teach dual credit courses.

Our philosophy is that it is better for teachers to have a full master’s degree when they teach courses for college credit;
both the students and the schools benefit when highly educated professionals teach the courses. 

PEEPs students take the regular MA courses but they have an internship requirement that is offered during the summer so
it does not interfere with their work schedules.

PEEPs students generally take online courses, although they may take face to face courses if they wish.

Are your courses offered during the day, at night, and/or online?
Our graduate courses are offered at night during the long semesters and we have one or two online courses per semester; these differ from the face-to-face courses. 

In the summer, we offer online courses and may offer both daytime and nighttime classes. 

Check the schedule or contact the graduate program director for more information.

How do I get more information?
For general information about the program, contact:
Program Director  Dr. Moumin Quazi  254-968-9893