M.A. in English: Composition & Communication
This section provides information on admission requirements, degree requirements, and the
To become a candidate for the MAECC, a student must have an undergraduate degree with a grade point average of at least 3.0 on a four-point scale and a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.7 or demonstrate equivalent academic or professional experience.
All candidates for admission to this program must submit a portfolio of representative writing (see below). 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 for admission.
The theory, practice, and pedagogy of nonfiction writing are at the core of the MAECC program. With this in mind, the program requires the submission of a writing portfolio as part of the admission process. There are two ways to fulfill this requirement. Full acceptance into the program requires that applicants submit a complete Admissions Writing Portfolio.
Alternatively, candidates may request “provisional acceptance” into the program and submit a
Provisional Writing Portfolio as part of their application process. A description of each of
these portfolios follows.
Admissions Writing Portfolio
[submitted by students seeking full acceptance into the MAECC]
- Combined with other application material, the Admissions Writing Portfolio leads to final
acceptance into the MAECC program; the material in this Admissions Writing Portfolio will
allow the program’s faculty to assess candidates’ current and potential literacy skills.
- The material constituting the Admissions Writing Portfolio should be a representative
sampling of past and current writing experience which cumulatively offers an understanding of the student's background and abilities in writing.
- The emphasis in the portfolio must be on nonfiction writing and one submission must be a conventional academic paper based in scholarly research and using current
bibliographical citation formats. The remaining contents of the portfolio may include:
-- technical and professional documents produced for job-related publication or circulation;
-- original or revised unpublished or ungraded nonfiction compositions indicative of
the kinds of writing the student is interested in pursuing as part of the MAECC program;
-- excerpts of nonfiction work in progress; and/or
-- a “literacy narrative” describing and reflecting upon the evolution over time of the
student’s literacy skills and attitudes, especially with regard to written literacy.
- The total number of pages submitted should be no less than 20 and no more than 35. One paper must be at least 8-10 pages long. No more than 5 pages should be imaginative prose (fiction, drama, screenplay). No poetry should be submitted.
- A one-page single-spaced rationale for the material submitted must accompany the portfolio.
It should introduce the material included and explain the relationship between this writing and
the student's past experience in composition and communication.
The Admissions Writing Portfolio will be evaluated on the quality of writing submitted, including the
evidence of mature critical thinking, flexible range of voice and persona, facility with language and style,
and command of text presentation skills (copyediting and proofreading), as well as the promise of growth
in writing ability. Candidates must submit two copies of the entire portfolio. Photocopies are acceptable.
Provisional Writing Portfolio
[submitted by students seeking conditional acceptance into the MAECC]
Combined with other application material, the Provisional Writing Portfolio leads to conditional acceptance into the MAECC program. [Note: To officially continue in the MAECC program beyond their first semester, applicants who select the Provisional Portfolio option for acceptance into the MAECC must submit a complete Admissions Writing Portfolioby the end of their first semester of classes in the program. See above for description.]
In combination with the application letter required of all candidates, the material in this Provisional Writing Portfolio will allow the program’s faculty to assess candidates’ current and potential literacy skills.
The Provisional Writing Portfolio must contain one or two pieces of nonfiction writing totaling 8-12 pages and be indicative of the applicant’s general writing skills and ability to reflect seriously and articulately on a subject. The writing submitted may be from the applicant’s past work, newly-generated work, work in progress, or a combination thereof, and may include a “literacy narrative.” [For further guidance, see item 4 above, for a list of forms of writing appropriate to full Admissions
Portfolio. Such pieces are also appropriate for the Provisional Writing Portfolio.]
A one-page single-spaced rationale for the material submitted must accompany the portfolio.
It must introduce the material included and explain the relationship between this writing and the student's past experience in composition and communication.
The Provisional Writing Portfolio will be evaluated on the quality of writing submitted, including the evidence of mature critical thinking, flexible range of voice and persona, facility with language and style, and command of text presentation skills (copyediting and proofreading) as well as the promise of growth in writing ability.
Candidates must submit two copies of the entire portfolio. Photocopies are acceptable.
Candidates who are not accepted into the program may submit a revised portfolio no sooner
than one semester after the original submission and may only resubmit once.
REMINDER: Submit two (2) copies of the entire portfolio. Photocopies are acceptable.
Mail the portfolios to
Dr. Nicole Sparling Coordinator of Graduate Studies in English
Dept. of English Language & LiteratureAnspach 215
Central Michigan University
Mt. Pleasant MI 48859
Students must complete at least 15 of their 30 total semester hours at or above the 600 level.
To view descriptions of the courses listed below, visit the Graduate Bulletin. Search by course designator (i.e., ENG)
Required Courses (9 hours)
- Graduate Writing (3) : ENG 601 (3): Graduate Composition
- Rhetorical Analysis (3) : ENG 637 (3): Seminar in Rhetoric & Composition
- Editing (3): ENG 638 (3): Seminar in Textual Analysis & Editing
Elective Courses (15 hours)
Restricted electives (9 hours ) Advanced courses from among any of the following,
chosen in consultation with an advisor.
- ENG 503: Document Design (pending curricular approval)
- ENG 504: Technical Editing (pending curricular approval)
- ENG 510 (3) Writing Center Practicum
- ENG 513 (3) Special Topics
- ENG 514 (3) Language & Media Discourse
- ENG 517 (3) Reading in the English Classroom
- ENG 519 (3) Teaching of Composition
- ENG 539 (3) Seminar in Major Nonfiction Writers
- ENG 571 (3) Teaching of English to Speakers of Other Languages
- ENG 573 (3) Linguistics and Reading
- ENG 576 (3) Fundamental Issues in Reading
- ENG 593 (3) Seminar in Writing Nonfiction
- ENG 603 (3) Seminar in Technical & Professional Writing
- ENG 615 (3) Problems in the Teaching of English
- ENG 618 (3) Empirical Research Methods in English
- ENG 672 (3) Applied Linguistics in Written Communication
- ENG 675 (3) Seminar in English Linguistics
- ENG 691 (3) Seminar: Writing Fiction
- ENG 693 (3-6) Seminar in Writing Nonfiction
Unrestricted Elective Courses (6): Advanced
courses chosen in consultation with an advisor.
Thesis (6 hours) or Internship (6 hours)
- ENG 718 (6) Teaching Internship & Report
- ENG 719 (6) Professional Communication Internship & Report
- ENG 799 (6) Thesis plus oral examination over thesis
Plan B option: 30 course hours + an Exit Portfolio
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