Jul 21, 2024  
2021-2022 General/Graduate Catalog - Expires August 2027 
2021-2022 General/Graduate Catalog - Expires August 2027 [Archived Catalog]

English (MA)

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Affiliation: School of Arts & Letters

The field of English study has become increasingly diverse. It has responded to the theoretical challenges of deconstruction, feminism, Marxism, psychoanalysis, and New Historicism; it has engaged emerging interdisciplinary fields such as disability studies, cognitive science, and the digital humanities; it has tried to make sense of the postmodern and postcolonial present; it has watched its anthologies swell with the expansion of the canon. A revolution has been occurring in the discipline, and it is not over yet.

Given this continuing revolution in the field, the Truman graduate program in English offers students flexibility and possibility. In keeping with the mission statement of the University, our program “grows naturally out of the philosophy, values, content, and desired outcomes of a liberal arts education.” Graduate faculty in the program assist students in finding their niche of disciplinary interest, be it in literary theory, pedagogy, linguistics, a particular literature, or creative writing and each student accepted to the program works closely with the Director of Graduate Studies to tailor a course of study that best meets their personal and scholarly goals.

Our program offers a variety of courses in literary theory, composition theory, pedagogy, creative writing, and linguistics. We also offer, based on needs and interests, advanced courses with rotating topics. In accordance with the University mission, students in the program approach “creative and critical thought through effective reading and research.”

English MA candidates who show exceptional promise in college teaching may compete for teaching stipends. As apprentice teachers, they hone their professional techniques and shape philosophies of teaching and composition. 

Our ultimate aims are leadership development in a select community of exceptionally able students, scholars, teachers, and creative writers; the nurturing of a lifetime commitment to writing and literature; and, for those who desire it, serious preparation for work at the doctoral level.


  • Complete the online application ($40 application fee)
  • Professional statement (uploaded in online application)
  • Three letters of recommendation (submit recommender’s information in online application)
  • Transcripts from all colleges and universities from which you earned college credit, including high school dual credit (Truman applicants do not need to submit Truman transcripts). Current Truman Students Please Note: You do not need to upload your Truman transcript but please list Truman in the Academic History portion of your application.
  • Graduation Administrative Assistantships (GAA) and Graduate Teaching Research Assistant (GTRA) materials (optional—submitted with online application)


English MA options:

Thesis Option: Students electing the thesis option complete 32 credits in English graduate coursework and a 4 credits of ENG 611G - Research in English (Thesis) , to a total of 36 credits.  At least half of the English graduate coursework credits must be at the 600-level. 

Non-Thesis Option: Students electing the non-thesis option must complete 35 credits in English graduate coursework and ENG 625G - Graduate Portfolio Seminar , to a total of 36 credits. At least half of the English graduate coursework credits must be at the 600-level. 

Required Courses: 1-4 Credits


No more than 12 combined credits of ENG 609G  and ENG 650G  may count toward the MA in English.

All English GTRAs are required to take

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