Steps in the English Graduate Program

steps in program

1. Admission: Submit all required materials for admission. 

2. Satisfy any conditions attached to your admission: You must fulfill any requirements that made your acceptance into the MA program probationary or conditional—including reporting your GRE scores—and do so in the time stipulated by the conditions. Any credit hours taken beyond those allowed under the restrictions of conditional or probationary admission will not be counted toward the degree. 

3. Methods of Research and Bibliography: During your first long term, as it is available, complete ENGL 5330, Graduate Research: Methods and Theories, with a grade of A or B

4. Declaration of Major: File a declaration of major form after completing no fewer than twelve and, preferably, no more than fifteen semester hours, including ENGL 5330 and, ideally, a Block I course. At this time you declare your degree plan and establish “candidacy.” The declaration of major is required before you may take the comprehensive examination, write a thesis, transfer credits from previous graduate work, and substitute courses. 

5. Coursework: Complete all coursework required by your degree plan, including at least one class from each of the five course blocks. Students on the thesis track must complete the following steps: 

5a. Begin work on the thesis. Ask a member of the graduate English faculty to serve as thesis director. File an appointment of committee form with the Director of Graduate Studies

5b. Enroll in ENGL 6398 (Thesis I): To earn credit for this first semester of thesis work, you will submit a prospectus approved by the members of your committee and complete any other thesis steps required for the class. The final draft of the prospectus, with the signed approval sheet, is typically due on the last class day of the semester, but the committee may require that you submit it sooner so that you can make a good start on writing the thesis itself during this first term. 

5c. Enroll in ENGL 6399 (Thesis II): In this second semester of thesis work, you will complete the project begun in ENGL 6398. You must continue to enroll in (and pay tuition for) ENGL 6399 every term until you have completed the thesis; if you withdraw for any amount of time after beginning ENGL 6399, you will be required to pay back-tuition upon re-enrolling in the course. You will receive a grade of IP (In Progress) until the completion of the work, at which time you will receive a final grade of CR (Credit) and three credit hours for the course. 

6. Written Comprehensive Examination: Submit a comprehensive examination declaration form in the semester before you plan to sit for the exam. Consult the posted reading lists to prepare for each of the three examination areas. Then sit for the exam, which is offered three times annually (February, June, and October). You must be enrolled at the University during the semester in which you take the comps; you must stay enrolled during that semester. 

7. Oral Examination: If you are a thesis student, defend your completed thesis orally and submit it through the proper administrative channels. If you are a non-thesis student, take the oral comprehensive exam. You must be enrolled at the University during the semester in which you take the oral examination. 

8. File for graduation with the Office of the Registrar. Be sure to fulfill any missing requirements. If you decide not to graduate after having filed, be sure to notify the Registrar. 

9. Graduate. Proudly collect your degree, celebrate, and go out to do good works in the world. 


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