Master of Art Degree in English

The department offers a program leading to the Master of Arts degree in English. While many students enter the master of arts degree program to prepare themselves for teaching composition or literature in schools or on the post-secondary level, others enroll for the degree to acquire background and skills for careers in writing, publishing, and a variety of business fields. Courses that address such professional interests are built on a firm foundation of core studies in literature and criticism and are complemented by the traditional skills that the program also develops: analytical abilities; techniques of investigation and organization and presentation of ideas. For some students, the Master of Arts degree in English is essential preparation for the doctorate degree. It is the highly recommended background for some professions such as law. But, above all, the degree supports professional aspirations by enriching the student’s personal life through its varied knowledge of cultural history, and the modes of vision that literature has taught men and women to use and enjoy.

In addition to the general master’s degree program, the department offers a concentration in Black Literature. Graduate level courses are also available in television and theater arts and communication studies.

Admission Requirements

Students applying to the master’s degree program in English must include a graded English paper. Students must also write a paper on literary analysis during a 90 minute period scheduled at Chicago State University. The date of the scheduled writing period can be obtained from the Department of English (773) 995-2189. Graduate applicants are not required to complete the English Qualifying exam.

Depending on the assessment of the graded English paper, the assessment of the paper on literary analysis, and whether students have fulfilled general requirement #2, students could be: (1) denied admission; (2) conditionally admitted; (3) fully admitted. Students conditionally admitted will be assigned to Eng 2280 and to other courses deemed necessary. Conditionally admitted students must successfully complete Eng 2280 or other courses deemed necessary for full admission into the master’s degree program. Fully admitted students who do not produce an acceptable paper on literary analysis will be assigned to Eng 5427.

General Requirements

  • Fulfillment of the general requirements for admission to the graduate program.
  • Completion of twenty-four semester hours of undergraduate work in English and the baccalaureate degree, with an acceptable grade point average.
  • A minimum of half of the courses applied to the satisfaction of Master’s degree requirements must be at the 5000-level, including one seminar in American literature and one seminar in British literature.

Option #1

  • Completion of at least thirty credit hours of graduate level course work, exclusive of teaching methods courses, with grades averaging B (3.0) or above.
  • Successful completion of a comprehensive examination in English or American literature or linguistics after the student has accumulated at least twenty-one hours in the master’s degree program. Students will be given only two opportunities to successfully complete the comprehensive exam.

Option #2

  • Completion of at least thirty-three credit hours of graduate level course work (including the thesis), exclusive of teaching methods courses, with grades averaging B (3.0) or above. (See graduate advisor for MA thesis guidelines.)

Specific Requirements

  • Completion of thirty semester hours of graduate work in English selected with the approval of the graduate advisor. Teaching methods courses are excluded.
  • Completion of the following courses, or their equivalents, is required on either the undergraduate or graduate level: Eng 4311 or 5411; 5331 or 5428; 4336 or 5436; 5415 and 5427; plus three courses in some combination of British and American literature.

Course Offerings

1. ENG 5306 - ADOLESCENT LITERATURE (3)
2. ENG 5314 - VICTORIAN LITERATURE (3)
3. ENG 5316 - WORLD MASTERPIECES (3)
4. ENG 5321 - BLACK WOMEN WRITERS (3)
5. ENG 5322 - BLACK AMERICAN POETRY (3)
6. ENG 5323 - WRIGHT, ELLISON, AND BALDWIN (3)
7. ENG 5324 - GWENDOLYN BROOKS SEMINAR (3)
8. ENG 5326 - STUDIES IN ROMANTIC LITERATURE (3)
9. ENG 5329 - STUDIES IN THE NOVEL (3)
10. ENG 5331 - LITERARY CRITICISM (3)
11. ENG 5332 - BLACK AMERICAN FICTION (3)
12. ENG 5334 - IMAGE OF BLACKS IN AMER PROSE FIC (3)
13. ENG 5338 - LANGUAGE (3)
14. ENG 5339 - CURRENT ENGLISH USAGE (3)
15. ENG 5341 - AMERICAN LITERATURE SINCE 1918 (3)
16. ENG 5342 - ENGLISH LITERATURE SINCE 1918 (3)
17. ENG 5343 - CONTEMPORARY WORLD LITERATURE (3)
18. ENG 5345 - AMERICAN LITERATURE, 1820-1865 (3)
19. ENG 5346 - AMERICAN LITERATURE, 1865-1917 (3)
20. ENG 5349 - THE ENGLISH NOVEL (3)
21. ENG 5355 - MODERN WORLD DRAMA (3)
22. ENG 5356 - THE EXPERIENCE OF FILM (3)
23. ENG 5357 - THE ENGLISH RENAISSANCE (3)
24. ENG 5358 - ENGLISH LIT OF THE 17TH CENTURY (3)
25. ENG 5359 - LITERATURE OF THE 18TH CENTURY (3)
26. ENG 5360 - TEACHING LITERATURE (3)
27. ENG 5361 - LANGUAGE AND CULTURE (3)
28. ENG 5366 - TEACHING ENGLISH AS A SEC LANG (3)
29. ENG 5367 - SPECIAL TOPICS IN ENGLISH (3)
30. ENG 5368 - WORKSHOP IN ENGLISH (3)
31. ENG 5370 - THE AMER ETHNIC EXP IN LIT (3)
32. ENG 5371 - IMMIGRANT LITERATURE (3)
33. ENG 5373 - CAREERS IN PUBLISHING (3)
34. ENG 5374 - BOOK PUBLISHING (3)
35. ENG 5377 - TEACH WRIT IN A MULTICULTURAL SET (3)
36. ENG 5380 - SEMINAR IN NON-FICTION (3)
37. ENG 5381 - SEMINAR IN FICTION (3)
38. ENG 5383 - SEMINAR IN POETRY (3)
39. ENG 5384 - AFRICAN-AMERICAN AUTOBIOGRAPHY (3)
40. ENG 5386 - MORRISON, WALKER, AND HURSTON (3)
41. ENG 5390 - WOMEN’S VOICES (3)
42. ENG 5395 - INTERNSHIP IN WRITING (3-12)
43. ENG 5411 - STUDIES IN SHAKESPEARE (3)
44. ENG 5415 - STUDIES IN CHAUCER (3)
45. ENG 5427 - METH & MAT OF LITERARY RESEARCH (3)
46. ENG 5428 - HISTORY OF LITERARY CRITICISM (3)
47. ENG 5435 - HISTORY OF ENGLISH (3)
48. ENG 5436 - DESCRIPTIVE GRAMMAR (3)
49. ENG 5441 - ADVANCED STUDIES IN ENGLISH LIT (3)
50. ENG 5442 - ADVANCED STUDIES IN AMERICAN LIT (3)
51. ENG 5443 - ADVANCED STUDIES IN BLACK LIT (3)
52. ENG 5447 - SEMINAR IN BLACK LITERATURE (3)
53. ENG 5449 - THE POLITICS OF LANGUAGE (3)
54. ENG 5451 - INDEPENDENT STUDY IN ENGLISH (1-3)
55. ENG 5452 - SEMINAR IN ENGLISH LITERATURE (3)
56. ENG 5453 - SEMINAR IN AMERICAN LITERATURE (3)
57. ENG 5454 - SEMINAR IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE (3)
58. ENG 5455 - SEMINAR IN THE TEACHING OF COMP (3)
59. ENG 5456 - SEMINAR IN PUBLISHING-WRITING (3)

OPTIONAL:
ENG 5498 - MASTER’S THESIS (3)

Program Objectives

For successful completion of the graduate program in English, students must:

  1. be able to write coherent, well-organized exposition in several rhetorical modes using edited American English competently.
  2. understand and be able to use effectively a variety of rhetorical forms and strategies of informative writing and write for a variety of audiences.
  3. be familiar with the literature and major developments and writers of Great Britain and America.
  4. be familiar with a significant body of literature by American writers of color.
  5. be able to analyze works of literature, understand a variety of critical approaches, and demonstrate an awareness of the characteristic elements and techniques of the various genres.
  6. understand basic elements of language and of language development, history, dialects, and language acquisition.
  7. be able to think critically about issues and articulate varying points of view.
  8. be adept in solving problems involved in research and communication.
  9. be competent in operating word processing programs.
  10. be familiar with professional journals in the discipline.
  11. be familiar with professional organizations and become a participating member of at least one.
  12. be willing and able to identify their own strengths and weaknesses and outline a plan of self-improvement.

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