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Master of Arts Program
English Graduate Student Handbook.
English Graduate Studies Page
English Graduate Student Association
About the M.A. program
The strength of the M.A. in English lies in its ability to address the professional needs of a variety of students: those who plan to continue in a Ph.D. program, those who want to teach at the high school or college levels, and those who wish to acquire professional training in writing or research. While pursuing a generalist background in literature, students also choose to focus on one of several options, including English and American Literature, American Culture, Creative Writing, TESOL, Folklore, Linguistics, Reading, or Rhetoric.
Application Information
Applicants to the M.A. program should possess an undergraduate degree with a minimum of twelve semester hours of upper-division English courses. When submitting their materials, applicants must include
  • an online application (which can be found at the Graduate School site)
  • an assistantship and/or fellowship application (if applying for funding, downloadable at the Graduate School)
  • official GRE scores (General Test only)
  • undergraduate and graduate transcripts for all schools attended, testifying to solid academic preparation for advanced work
  • three letters of recommendation (preferably academic)
  • a critical writing sample (10-20 pp.)
  • a personal statement describing motivations and interests in choosing masters work (1-2 pp.)
  • Curriculum Vitae (if applicable)
  • Applicants in creative writing should submit electronically to the graduate coordinator, in addition to a critical work, a sample of their creative writing to englgrad@louisiana.edu, preferably in PDF format. (15-20 pp.)
All application materials, with the exception of the creative writing sample, should be sent directly to the Graduate School, The University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Lafayette, LA 70504-4610. For Fall admission, the deadline for submitting all materials is 15 February for prospective students seeking support. For those not seeking support, applications and supporting documents must be submitted at least 30 days before the beginning of the semester for which admission is sought, and at least 90 days for applications from foreign countries. The Graduate School will notify applicants of its decision after receiving all required credentials. The department will notify applicants of fellowships and assistantship decisions.
For more information or questions about the application write to the

Graduate Coordinator
Department of English
University of Louisiana at Lafayette
LA 70504-4691
Phone: 337-482-6919
Email: englgrad@louisiana.edu
M.A. Degree Requirements
The M.A. requires a total of 27-33 hours, depending on whether an individual candidate opts to write a thesis. Students writing theses must complete a minimum of 27 hours of course work plus 6 hours of thesis credit. Students who choose not to write theses must complete 30-33 hours of coursework, depending on the course requirements specific to the option they have chosen (American culture, creative writing, English or American literature, folklore, linguistics, or rhetoric and composition). For the most part, these requirements aim to provide a generalist education, the flexibility needed for each candidate’s option and research interests, and preparation for the M.A. comprehensive exam. M.A. students holding teaching assistantships are required to take two pedagogical courses in preparation for their teaching duties. Before taking the comprehensive exam, M.A. candidates must fulfill all course requirements and demonstrate reading proficiency in one foreign language. M.A. candidates usually complete their coursework in one to one-and-a-half years and take their comprehensive exam at the end of their second year.
M.A. Comprehensive Exam
M.A. students choosing to write a thesis are exempt from the written comprehensive exam. M.A. candidates may take their comprehensive exams in the semester they complete their coursework and foreign language requirements. Two components make up the four-hour comprehensive exam: a standardized component and a component tailored to each candidate’s specific research interests.
To view M.A. plans of study, contact the Graduate Coordinator


Document last revised Thursday, February 11, 2016 2:58 PM

Copyright 2003 by the University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Department of English · P.O. Box 44691, Lafayette LA 70504
Griffin Hall, Room 221 · english@louisiana.edu · 337/482-6908