The Department of English offers an intensive, accelerated
combined degree program leading to both the B.A. and M.A. degrees
in five years of full-time study. Students who have been accepted
into the program take one graduate course each semester of their
junior and senior years; this course counts toward both the B.A.
and M.A. degrees. In the fifth year students take the remaining
seven graduate courses needed to complete the degree.
All of the English graduate courses at St. John’s are seminars
taught by research faculty who are committed to teaching and
mentoring graduate and undergraduate students. The English
Master's degree curriculum offers students the opportunity to
develop programs of study that meet their intellectual and
professional goals. Because there is only one required
foundational course (Modern Critical Theories), the program
provides flexibility for students seeking either broad exposure to
advanced English studies or more intensive concentrations in
specific fields. Among the areas of study featured in the
program are British and American literary history, creative writing
and composition studies, and interdisciplinary fields such as
gender studies and postcolonial studies. The English
department has especially strong numbers of faculty in American
studies, modernist studies, and writing and composition
studies. It also features excellent faculty in British
The graduate program offers approximately 12 courses in the late
afternoon and evening each semester as well as several summer
classes. The graduate program offers a wide range of courses
each semester in the late afternoon and evening on the Queens
campus. It also offers on-line courses during the
summer. The Master’s program consists of 33 credit hours, or
11 courses, including the option to write a 3-credit Master’s
thesis in place of one course. In the final semester of
their coursework, all students submit a portfolio of their graduate
work. The portfolio consists of three graduate course papers,
including one extensively revised paper, and a 10-page critical
overview of the student's growth as a reader, scholar, and
writer. M.A. students are also encouraged to participate in
the annual St. John’s English graduate student conference.
Complementing the graduate courses in the M.A. program are
opportunities for practical experience in tutoring, editing, and
research. A limited number of Graduate Assistantships are
available on a competitive basis to all qualified full-time
graduate applicants, while additional opportunities for tutoring
are available for all English graduate students. With the
2006 opening of the Institute for Writing Studies, the graduate
program in English features an exceptional new environment for
professional training and development in writing instruction.
Qualified undergraduate students who have completed their sophomore
year with a 3.0 cumulative average and a 3.5 for 12 or more credits
in English are encouraged to apply.
How to Apply
The process takes about 3-4 weeks. You may download an application,
or obtain one from the Graduate Office, St. John Hall, Rm. 135.
- Consult the most recent graduate bulletin to check your
eligibility for the program.
- It is recommended that you make an appointment with the Chair
to discuss the suitability of the program for your career and
graduate studies interests.
- Complete the top portion of the application. Be sure to include
email and a list of former undergraduate institutions you have
- Bring the application to the Registrar (Newman 106) in order to
print your transcript and have it certified.
- Bring the application and certified transcripts to the Dean's
office in St. John Hall, Rm. 135. The Dean will calculate your GPA
and forward it to the undergraduate Dean's office for review.
- The undergraduate Dean will review the application and forward
it to the English department chair.
- The English chair will review the application and make a
recommendation to the graduate Dean.
- The graduate Dean will then review all recommendations and
confirm whether each applicant meets the entrance requirements and
has enough cumulative credits, as well as credits available in the
major or electives for the twelve (12) graduate credits required as
an undergraduate. The Dean will inform applicants in writing of
their admission to the program.
A limited number of Graduate Assistantships are available on a
competitive basis to all qualified full-time graduate students.
Interested B.A./M.A. students should complete an English Master’s
program application, which includes a statement of purpose and two
letters of recommendation, and submit this application to the chair
by March 1. The application forms are available in the
Graduate Office, St. John Hall, Rm. 135.
Dr. Steven Mentz, Graduate Director
Department of English
St. John Hall