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Online Education (master Of Arts In English)

By Expert Author: John Srob

The Master of Arts in English (MENG) program is intended for working adults who seek advanced preparation in writing, critical thinking skills, and English language and literature. Classes are offered at night and in the summer to fit around your busy schedule.
You will be able to select courses that match your interests: American literature, British literature, World literature, linguistics, TESOL, and English education.
Work with experienced and enthusiastic faculty who are experts in their areas of specialization and whose work has been published internationally, nationally, and locally.

What program options are available?

Please refer to the WSU Catalog for specific program options. Each option is a minimum of 33 credit hours. You have the flexibility to complete a project or thesis to reach this minimum.

What will I experience in the program?

Reading and discussing literature at an advanced level.

Engaging in literary conversations with faculty and fellow students.
Using critical theory in the analysis of literature.
Conducting research on literary topics.
Reading in depth in areas of personal interest.
Learning how to apply critical thinking and research skills to your workplace.
Expanding your horizons by working with highly-trained faculty.
Working with like-minded and curious students.


The Department of English offers a thirty-hour Masters degree in two concentrations: literature or writing and rhetoric. The flexible degree program enables students to develop intellectually in a stimulating and supportive environment. Designed for students seeking study beyond a bachelor’s degree, the program prepares graduates subsequently to pursue a doctorate, teach in secondary or higher education, or obtain other positions in the public and private sector.

The Master of Arts in either concentration requires thirty graduate hours. Six of those hours may be devoted to the completion of a thesis. Courses are taken primarily within the department, although appropriate course work in other departments may be counted toward the degree with permission of the MA director. All Masters students, regardless of concentration, are encouraged to expand their understanding and knowledge of literature and writing, and the degree requirements are designed with that breadth in mind. Full-time students generally complete the program in two years, part-time students in two to five.

Our English M.A. Graduate Program's highlights include:

Your choice of three concentrations: literature, composition, or creative writing
Small "graduate student only" seminars that focus on intensive discussion
A wide variety of 30+ unique seminars offered each year
Final projects that encourage one-on-one work with faculty members
Mini-courses, volunteering, and internships that explore career directions
Inventive programming that features rare books research and exhibits
Teaching assistantships and research assistantships for qualified students
Class schedules that can accommodate daytime jobs
A diverse student body that includes writers, readers, and educators
A nationally-recognized faculty with a strong record in research and teaching


Our M.A. graduate program in English encompasses both traditional approaches to English studies and reexaminations of those approaches. We offer a flexible program of study with three areas of concentration: literature, composition, and creative writing. Students often create an integrated program of study that includes courses from two or three areas. All of our students engage with the imaginative worlds that texts create—worlds created and shared by literary authors, analytical writers, responsive readers, and reflective thinkers.

One of our M.A. program’s central goals is to create a community of critical readers and writers. Our courses are taught as small seminars with approximately 15 participants, offering students the opportunity for ongoing interaction with each other and with faculty in a challenging yet friendly academic environment. Coursework prepares students to complete an original, self-defined, faculty-advised final project or thesis.

Another of our M.A. program's goals is to offer unique research and teaching opportunities. For example, through a partnership between the English Department and the Boston Public Library, we offer seminars in the Library’s Rare Books Room; students gain experience working with rare books and artifacts. Our teaching assistant program offers a carefully sequenced series of experiences that include tutoring undergraduates, working as an apprentice teacher, and joining a team that creates its own courses. We also offer opportunities for internships, research assistantships, and independent study.

Our MA program attracts a dynamic mix of students who bring a diversity of opinions and ideas to our lively classrooms. Our students come from a variety of backgrounds; while some apply directly from undergraduate or foreign colleges, others have been out of school for a number of years. Our students pursue a broad range of goals, including preparing for PhD study, developing talents as creative writers, honing professional writing skills, or seeking personal enrichment. Many are teachers or are planning to teach at the secondary or community college level.
Course Requirements
English M.A. students must complete 30 semester hours in English courses at the graduate level; exceptions must have prior approval of the Department chair and the Director of Graduate Studies.
Students are encouraged, but not required to, create a focus area with their remaining courses. Possible focus areas include literature, linguistics, professional writing and editing, composition and rhetoric, teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL), and literature for children and young adults.

Students planning to pursue a Ph.D. in literary studies are strongly encouraged to complete a broad selection of courses in British and American literature.
Students must take the following four courses (see lists below for offerings):
1 & 2. Two literature courses
3. One theory or methods course (excluding 6989; graduate assistants must take 6907)
4. One language, discourse and writing course

The Master of Arts program in English offers courses in literature research, history, and theory, genre and figure studies, creative and professional writing, linguistics and composition theory, film, and the teaching of writing and literature.
Faculty members strive to offer students an understanding of the traditions of literary study and familiarity with the latest multicultural and interdisciplinary approaches.

The M.A. in English prepares graduates to pursue opportunities in teaching, professional writing, and further graduate study. Working closely with their advisors, students design individual programs to meet their interests and goals. Students are encouraged to explore a variety of approaches to the study of literature, language, and writing and to develop their abilities as readers, critics, writers, and teachers.

The English M.A. program requires 30 semester hours of coursework in English, during which students complete and present a thesis, or a portfolio of their representative work, to a faculty review committee.


You May Qualify For Financial Aid.

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