Graduate Studies


"Professors are extremely open to helping graduate students and went out of their way to help me, particularly when I mentioned that I was interested in pursuing PhD work. Overall, I couldn't be happier with my time at WIU. I was prepared academically and professionally to move on in the next stage of my career and the MA program gave me opportunities that I thought were closed-off to me by offering me a chance to teach, learn, and participate in department life." - Nicole Hagstrom-Schmidt, PhD Student, Texas A&M University, Master of Arts in English, 2014

Program Overview

The Department of English and Journalism offers graduate-level study in all areas of English studies. Our graduates pursue information-intensive careers in business and education, including those demanding intensive writing, editing, and sophisticated literacies; secondary or community college teaching in composition or literature. Many also complete further graduate study in the humanities.

The M.A. in English allows students to develop individualized plans of study which suit their professional goals.

Why Choose English at WIU?

We offer individualized programs that encourage students to choose courses and projects tailored to their interests and career goals. While some students focus on literary studies, others work with literature and emerging new media, film, popular culture, professional editing, composition and writing studies. All students take one required introductory course, and consult with faculty to choose elective courses, consider independent work such as internships, and select an exit option.

Exit options offer a choice between the thesis or directed readings and an exam. Both help develop scholarly and professional skills, allowing students to cultivate expertise in one or more areas of English Studies.

Many students earn credits with internships in teaching, professional writing, library science and other fields, gaining hands-on experience and making valuable professional connections.

Our Faculty

The English Graduate Faculty offer cutting-edge courses in every area of English Studies, and publish innovative scholarship in traditional and emerging fields, including textual studies, new media, film, literary studies, and popular culture.

Extracurricular Opportunities

Our graduate students run the English Graduate Organization (EGO). Together, they plan the annual EGO Conference, presenting papers on exciting and emerging fields of study with scholars from around the county and the world. Additionally, EGO students attend regional and national conferences, plan local picnics, softball games, and more.

Other Information

Recent graduates have made careers in editing, technical writing, management, and public relations. Many of our graduates also teach in community colleges, or teach English overseas. Students have also gone on to further graduate study in prestigious schools around the country, including programs leading to the Masters of Library Science and the Ph.D. in English Studies. Visit our web site for student profiles and other

Quick View

Degrees Available:

  • M.A.


  • Quad Cities
  • Macomb

Required GPA:

  • Cumulative: 2.75
  • Last 2 years: 3.00

Admission Requirements:

  • Goals Statement
  • Transcripts
  • Three Letters of Recommendation
  • Writing Sample

Interesting Facts: Fall 2018

  • Currently enrolled: 32
  • International: 3
  • Minority: 5
  • Male: 10
  • Female: 22
  • Students with Assistantships: 18

Department Contact Information:

Simpkins Hall 124