English, MA

The Master of Arts degree launches students into the study of literature, writing, and rhetoric at the graduate level. The program offers two years of intensive study in the major fields of British and American literature, covering the debates and approaches that animate the discipline of English. Our MA graduates are fully prepared to proceed to study at the doctoral level, and their training in critical thinking, language skills, and cultural history has also proven to be fruitful preparation for a range of careers outside of academia.

The master's program offers an optional cooperative education experience (co-op) to eligible students.  Co-operative education is central to both the Northeastern experience and to the College of Social Sciences and Humanities experiential liberal arts framework. Northeastern’s signature co-op ecosystem provides qualified master's students with six-month work experiences in businesses, nonprofits, and government agencies in Boston and across the United States. Graduate students take their work from campus learning spaces, apply their knowledge outside of the classroom, and then bring knowledge and skills gained in community learning spaces back to our campus learning spaces during the cocurricular experiential integration course.

Academic Standing/Progress

To be considered in good academic standing, MA students must be making progress toward their degree requirements, including maintaining a 3.000 minimum cumulative grade-point average (GPA).

General Regulations

Program requirements are described in the CSSH Graduate Programs General Regulations and the Graduate Program in English MA Guide. Both documents are updated annually. 

Milestones

Annual progress review
One language
Comprehensive examination (timed examination and thesis options)

Core Requirements

Proseminar
ENGL 5103Proseminar4
Theories and Methods
Complete 4 semester hours from the following:4
Topics in Criticism
Topics in Literary Study (selected topics only)
Topics in Literature and other Disciplines (selected topics only)
Topics in Digital Humanities
Theorizing Gender and Sexuality
Directed Study (GCWS Consortium, selected topics only)
Writing and Rhetoric
Complete 4 semester hours from the following (if completing 12 semester hours of Literary Period requirements).4-8
Complete 8 semester hours from the following (if completing 8 hours of Literary Period requirements).
ENGL 7111
ENGL 7112
ENGL 7121
Topics in Rhetoric
ENGL 7391
Writing and the Teaching of Writing (Master's students may register with permission from the instructor)
ENGL 7393
Topics in Writing
ENGL 7396
ENGL 7397
ENGL 7398
Literary Periods
Complete 8 semester hours from TWO of the following Literary Periods (if completing 8 semester hours of Writing and Rhetoric requirements), or Complete 12 semester hours from THREE of the following Literary Periods (if completing 4 semester hours of Writing and Rhetoric requirements):8-12
Literature Pre-1700
Topics in Early American Literature
ENGL 7261
ENGL 7262
ENGL 7263
ENGL 7271
ENGL 7274
Topics in Medieval Literature
Topics in Renaissance Literature
Topics in 17th-Century Literature
Topics in Criticism (selected topics only)
Topics in Literature and other Disciplines (selected topics only)
Literature 1700–1900
ENGL 7212
(selected topics only)
Topics in 19th-Century American Literature
ENGL 7233
ENGL 7264
ENGL 7266
ENGL 7275
Topics in 18th-Century Literature
ENGL 7285
ENGL 7286
ENGL 7291
Topics in Literary Study (selected topics only)
ENGL 7352
(selected topics only)
Literature Post-1900
ENGL 7211
(selected topics only)
Topics in 20th-Century American Literature
ENGL 7224
African-American Novel
ENGL 7251
ENGL 7287
Topics in Literary Study (selected topics only)
ENGL 7355
(selected topics only)
Topics in Literature and other Disciplines (selected topics only)
ENGL 7359
(selected topics only)
ENGL 7361
ENGL 7362
Comprehensive Examination Options
Timed, Written Exam or Thesis
Master's Qualifying Exam
ENGL 7000Qualifying Exam (Required for students who must maintain full-time status while completing the comprehensive examination)0
Thesis
A minimum 3.500 GPA is required to pursue this option.
ENGL 6960Exam Preparation—Master’s (Required for students who must maintain full-time status while completing the MA Thesis. Not repeatable.)0

Electives

Complete 8 semester hours of ENGL courses.8

Optional Co-op Experience

Requires two consecutive semesters of Co-op Work Experience and Experiential Integration:2
Co-op Work Experience
and Experiential Integration

Program Credit/GPA Requirements

32 total semester hours required (34 with optional co-op)
Minimum 3.000 GPA required