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Course content

The M.A. in Literature offers you a rigorous, individualized program of advanced study of literature written in English. You will choose from an array of courses and select a thesis/project or exam option. Although allowed flexibility in your course of study, you are required to complete courses in English, American, and World Literatures, as well as Literary and Critical Theory. Our program has a variety of goals: to further your understanding of literature, to strengthen your teaching qualifications, to broaden your writing experiences, or to prepare you for doctoral work. Most of all we hope to sharpen your critical abilities and to provide you with the skills that bring a rich and fulfilling intellectual, cultural, and social life.

Students in both the Thesis/Project and Exam options (described below) take a minimum of 48 credits. At least 30 credits must be at the graduate level (i.e. 500-level) in the English department. You may take as many credits as you wish at the 400-level, but only 12 will count towards the required 45 credits of the program. You may take more than the required 48 credits. Up to 10 credits may be taken in approved courses offered outside the English department.

Approved courses at the 400 level may be taken for graduate credit after admission to the program. However, graduate students are expected to complete requirements additional to those expected of undergraduates in the course. Courses at the 100, 200, and 300 levels cannot be applied to the degree.

You are required to take ENG 512 (Introduction to English Graduate Study), ENG 518 (Advanced Literary and Critical Theory), and at least one course in each of the following fields: ENG 515 (Advanced Studies in American Literature, ENG 517 (Advanced Studies in World Literature) and ENG 519 (Advanced Studies in British Literature). English 512 is the prerequisite to all other 500-level courses, and it is offered every Fall. Typically students take 512 in their first year. English 515, 517, and 519 may be repeated for credit under a different title.

If you choose the Thesis/Project Option, you must complete either a research thesis or a creative writing project. To prepare for and complete this written project, and the oral exam which you must pass at its culmination, you must take ENG 588 (Thesis Colloquium) and 6 credits of ENG 700 (Master's Thesis / Project Study) with the chair of your thesis/project committee. English 588 is the prerequisite to writing a thesis, and it is offered every Fall. Typically students take 588 in their second year.

If you choose the Exam Option, you will create, in conjunction with a three-member faculty exam committee, an individualized reading list of the material covered in your course work while at CWU. You must pass a comprehensive written examination developed by the committee over that material. To prepare for and complete this exam, you will take 3 credits of ENG 596 (Individual Study) with the chair of the exam committee.






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