Department of English Language and Literature

Admission Requirements

Applicants who fulfill the following requirements may qualify for regular admission to the College of Graduate Studies and the Department of English. Applications are online, available at the College of Graduate Studies website (click on the "I'm Ready to Apply Now" link after reviewing their process). Applications for admission-only are accepted on a rolling basis, year round, although we strongly suggest students begin their studies in the Fall semester.

Applicants for admission with funding through a Graduate Teaching Assistantship (also known as a TAship or GAship) are considered as long as slots are available, with preference given to applications received before March 1st for a Fall semester start. Interested students should submit an application for a Graduate Assistantship (PDF) with their application for admission. Opportunities for admission with funding to begin in Spring semester are occasionally available; interested applicants should contact the Director of Graduate Studies.

Follow these links for more information about our Literature concentration and our Writing Studies concentration.

Admission and application requirements:

  • A baccalaureate degree earned from a department of approved standing and granted by an accredited college or university.
  • A minimum 2.7 cumulative point-hour ratio (on a 4.0 scale) for all previous academic work or indicated performance as explained below.
  • A minimum of a 3.0 average for all English courses taken is expected.
  • Transcripts from all institutions attended must be submitted to the College of Graduate Studies. (Do NOT send them to the department.)
  • Prerequisite academic work which gives evidence that the applicant should be able to pursue effectively graduate work in English (whether in literature or writing studies). Students need not have been English majors or minors, but must show evidence that they are prepared for advanced studies in their concentration.
  • All applicants must submit a critical essay on a topic relevant to their concentration (literature or writing studies) to be reviewed by members of the English Department Admissions Committee. The essay can be uploaded with the rest of the application at the site linked above.
  • All applicants must submit three letters of recommendation from college faculty members acquainted with the student's ability and potential for advanced study in English. (Online submission is available through the College of Graduate Studies.)
  • Applicant's Statement of Purpose, submitted as part of the application form, should provide a concrete description of why the applicant wishes to attend graduate school in English, how the applicant has prepared for advanced study in the field, and what the applicant's intended plans are after the degree. Other details about areas of particular interest are also helpful.
  • All applicants with lower than a 3.0 cumulative grade-point average are required to forward results of the Graduate Record Examination Aptitude Test.
  • Foreign students who are adequately prepared for graduate study may apply for admission to the College of Graduate Studies. In addition to the requirements for regular admission, however, all applicants from non-English speaking countries must take both the Graduate Record Examination Aptitude Test and either the Test of English as a Foreign Language Internet-Based Test (TOEFL iBT) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Admission to graduate study in English requires a TOEFL iBT score of at least 100 or a IELTS score of at least 7.0 overall.
Last Updated: 7/9/19