About the M.A. Degrees
The English Department offers three Master of Arts degrees: the M.A. in English; the M.A. in Rhetoric, Composition, and Professional Communication; and the M.A. in TESL/Applied Linguistics.
Credits and time restrictions
For the M.A. in English, M.A. in Rhetoric, Composition, and Professional Communication, or M.A. in Teaching English as a Second Language/Applied Linguistics, students must complete a minimum of 27 credit hours of graduate course work plus three hours of credit in 599 or 699.
Students with a B.A. or B.S. degree are expected to complete a master's program at Iowa State University within five years. Cases in which the student leaves ISU during his or her graduate career and later returns are dealt with individually by the Director of Graduate Education, the student's POS committee, and the Graduate College.
Graduate courses used to meet the requirements for a bachelor’s degree cannot be counted toward the credits required for your graduate degree; however, they can be used, where appropriate, to argue for a waiver of a POS requirement. For instance, you could substitute an advanced linguistics course for a required linguistics course, if you have taken the equivalent of the required graduate course. You would still have to take 30 credit hours as a graduate student in order to graduate. Up to 9 credits of graduate course work taken as a non-degree graduate student or an advanced undergraduate before being admitted to the major can be applied towards your degree (see Graduate courses taken as an ISU undergraduate).
M.A. in English areas of specialization
Changing your area of specialization
Admission to the M.A. in English with a specialization in Literature does not automatically guarantee your acceptance into the specialization in Literature and the Teaching of Reading. If you wish to change your specialization from Literature to LTR, you must meet with Prof. Donna Niday to determine if you are qualified for the LTR specialization. Generally, only those students with current teaching licenses will be accepted into the LTR specialization.
M.A. in Rhetoric, Composition, and Professional Communication
Students admitted to graduate study for the M.A. in Rhetoric, Composition, and Professional Communication do not declare a specialization but may choose electives from a particular area of concentration to strengthen their understanding of that area (e.g., teaching composition and/or professional communication, writing professional documents, understanding communication technology, analyzing visual design).
M.A. in TESL/Applied Linguistics areas of specialization
Students admitted to graduate study for the M.A. in Teaching English as a Second Language/ Applied Linguistics can declare up to two of the five elective disciplinary specializations: Computer-Assisted Language Learning (CALL), Language Assessment, English for Specific Purposes (ESP), Literacy, and Literature in ESL.
Co-majoring in English Department M.A. programs
Co-majoring in English Department M.A. majors requires that all requirements in each of the two majors (including areas of specialization), not counting the thesis credits, be met to complete this single M.A. degree. POS committees include co-major professors, each representing one of the co-majors.
In order to co-major, you will need to meet all the requirements for both majors.