Students of literary studies are uniquely positioned to become global citizens who are dedicated to fostering understanding and compassion through the stories we tell. Our graduate programs in English are designed to prepare students for doctoral level studies or to teach at the community college level, equip K-12 school teachers with the most current pedagogical approaches and to enrich a lifelong love of reading through focused explorations of the world of great literature and thought from antiquity to present.
Students in the program can create a personalized course of study. They may choose to concentrate in British, American or World literature in research projects of their own design. The program of study includes seminars on literature, as well as on literary theory, linguistics and research methodology.
Research Opportunities and Assistantships
The English department offers a number of graduate assistantships to qualified students who wish to gain teaching experience. Graduate assistants either teach two sections of ENG 101: Freshman Composition (6 semester hours), assist in the Writing Center, or teach in the TESOL (Teaching English as a Second Language) program. All graduate assistants receive a tuition waiver and a stipend.
Admission to the English language and literature program requires:
- a bachelor's degree or equivalent with a major or minor in English;
- a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0;
- a statement of intent;
- a 7-10 page sample of analytical writing that demonstrates aptitude to do graduate level work in English; and
- for applicants whose native language is not English, a TOEFL score of 550 and a TWE of at least 5 or a MELAB of 85 are required.
Students with undergraduate degrees in other fields will be considered, but may be subject to conditional acceptance.
The application deadline for fall admission is February 15. Deadline for spring admission is November 15. Apply online at
Students must complete a minimum of 30 semester hours of course work with at least 15 of the total semester hours at or above the 600 level. At the advisor's discretion, up to six hours from other departments may be included.
Students may choose between two capstone options: (Plan A) Thesis: 6 hours of ENG 799 + 9 hours of additional coursework and (Plan B) Seminar Paper Revision + 15 hours of additional coursework.