English | M.A.

 studying at Hammes LibraryMaster of Arts (M.A.) in English

Program Description

The Master of Arts (M.A.) in English is a 36 credit hour program. The M.A. in English offers broadly based expertise in English studies, including creative writing, literary analysis, and rhetoric/composition. Full-time students may complete the program in two years. Adjusted courses of study are available to part-time students.

This advanced degree program offers a life-enriching continuation of intellectual study. It fosters the further development of skills valued by current employers, including writing and analytical skills, and provides specialized knowledge in areas such as textual analysis, computer-assisted writing, literacy studies, pedagogy, research, and editing.

The degree leads to teaching careers at both the high school and college levels, as well as to employment in the service and information industries, the news media, advertising, public relations, and in other corporations requiring writing specialists.

Admission Requirements

Students are admitted to the English graduate program by the Graduate Selection Committee. Applicants for the program must have a bachelor’s degree in English, or a closely related field, from an accredited institution and an undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0. A candidate who does not meet the GPA requirement may apply for special student status.

Application Process

The following materials, with the exception of the transcripts and TOEFL scores, should be uploaded to IU South Bend’s electronic application at iusb.edu/graduatestudies

  • A statement of purpose (two- to three-page essay, double spaced) identifying the candidate’s goals and interests in pursuing graduate work in English and describing the educational and work experiences that contributed to that sense of purpose
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Official transcript from each postsecondary school attended. Send transcript(s) to: Department of English | 1700 Mishawaka Avenue | South Bend, IN 46634
  • IU South Bend application fee
  • A recent writing sample that demonstrates the candidate’s analytical skills, research abilities, and command of clear and fluent prose
  • (If applying for special-student status) A request for conditional admission identifying the areas in which the applicant does not meet admission standards and, if appropriate, describing the special conditions, educational or work experiences that contribute to the candidate’s preparedness for graduate work
  • Acceptable TOEFL scores for non-English speaking applicants (recommended score for the traditional version is 600, recommended score for the computer version is 250); a telephone interview may also be required.

Please see the Master of Arts in English website for more detailed information about the contents of application materials.

Application Deadline

Applications are reviewed as received.

Master of Arts in English (36 cr.)

All courses are 4 credit hours, unless otherwise designated.

The M.A. offers a flexible program of study that enables students to shape their course of study. All students take three core courses in literary analysis, prose style, and composition theory, respectively. In addition, each student will choose a concentration in either literary analysis or creative writing and will take most of his or her five electives in that area.

Course Requirements (36 cr.)
  • ENG-G 660 Stylistics
  • ENG-L 501 Professional Scholarship in Literature
  • ENG-L 502 Contexts for Study of Writing
  • ENG-W 609 Directed Writing Project
  • Electives (20 cr.) | Five elective courses

Note: Students must take at least one course in the literary period or genre that they choose for their directed writing project. A student who wishes to complete a creative writing project must take a total of three writing workshops in at least two genres. Any one of those courses may be taken twice for graduate credit.

World Languages Requirement

Students must have completed two college semesters of a single world language by the time the M.A. degree is conferred. Candidates who have completed these two courses as part of other graduate or undergraduate programs need not take additional courses as part of the M.A. degree program. Candidates who have gained world language skills outside of the classroom may take a world languages placement examination to demonstrate their achievement of language skills equivalent to those achieved from two semesters of formal study.

Transfer Credit Hours

Applicants may be allowed to transfer up to two graduate courses or 8 credit hours from another graduate institution (or from previous graduate work at IU South Bend) if those courses demonstrably contribute to the work required for the Master of Arts in English. Unless transfer courses are clearly equivalent to the required core courses for the Master of Arts, those courses are counted as electives. Candidates must include in the application a request to transfer courses, a brief description of each course identifying how it contributes to the Master of Arts in English, and supporting documentation such as syllabi, assignments, papers, or other relevant material.

Academic Regulations

Students must confer with their academic advisors on a regular basis to determine an effective course of study.

An average grade of B (3.0) is required for graduation, and no course with a grade lower than B– (2.7) is counted toward the degree. Students are required to maintain good academic standing, i.e., to maintain a 3.0 GPA. Failure to maintain good standing may result in dismissal from the program.

Academic Bulletins

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