2.2 MA in English Degree Requirements

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Students admitted to graduate study for the MA in English choose one of two disciplinary specializations: Literature or Literature and the Teaching of Reading (LTR).

Students who choose the Literature specialization will cultivate broad expertise in English and American literature and film and their historical, cultural, and theoretical contexts.

Students interested in the Literature and the Teaching of Reading (LTR) specialization will cultivate a broad expertise in English and American literature and prepare to teach reading in middle schools and high schools. These students must be interviewed by Prof. Brandon Sams (blsams@iastate.edu). Generally, only those students with current teaching licenses will qualify to specialize in LTR.

2.2.1 Degree Requirements

(Effective Fall 2023)

Requires 30 credits of coursework.

Area of CourseworkCoursesCredits

Choose from the following courses::
Engl 521, 522, 523, 531, 532, 533, 534, 535, 538, 539, 540, 543, 545, 546, 561, 562, 590A, and 595A
9 each
Three elective courses from English Dept graduate offerings in any of the graduate majors (LIT, RPC, CWE, or AL).

TAs may count 3 credits of either ENGL 500 or SP CM 513.

With prior approval as a POS waiver/substitution, 3.0 credits of appropriate graduate Education (EDUC) coursework may be used.

*Courses strongly recommended for students planning to teach include:
ENGL 503: Composition Theory
ENGL 521: Teaching of Literature and the Literature Curriculum
ENGL 547: The History of Rhetorical Theory
Literature & the Teaching of Reading
Students interested in this specialization must be interviewed by Brandon Sams (blsams@iastate.edu); generally, only those with current teaching licenses will qualify for this specialization.
EDUC 552: Assessment for Literacy and Learning
EDUC 588: Supervised Tutoring in Reading
One of the following:
EDUC 553: Teaching Adolescent Readers with Reading Difficulties
EDUC 556: Integrating Technology into Literacy
Engl 699: Thesis Research
Engl 599: Creative Component
TOTAL30 minimum

2.2.2 Curricular Policies and Guidelines

Language requirement

The MA in English program does not have a foreign language requirement; however, students who intend to pursue a PhD should be aware that most PhD programs require demonstrable skill in one or two foreign languages.

2.2.3 Final Oral Defense of the Thesis or Creative Component (Final Oral Examination)

Students should refer to Guidelines for Thesis and Creative Component (MA) as soon as they begin to establish their POS Committee and share their research interests. See the section on Graduation for more details and information on finishing up as well as resources with links to very helpful information.

2.2.4 Student Learning Outcomes

Learning outcomes students in this program are expected to meet include:

  • Expand knowledge related to the study of literature and film that includes a diversity of authors/directors, genres, theories, and cultural-historical contexts.
  • Communicate research effectively through oral and written presentations.
  • Conduct independent scholarship in ways that consistently demonstrate ethical practice and professionalism.
  • For graduate students who receive a teaching assistantship, develop strategies for the effective teaching of undergraduate students.