Students admitted to the master's program in English and American Literature will receive an English Department Scholarship, which covers 50% tuition (not registration and services fees). Further funding is available through our Charles Wickham Moore Scholarship, which are awarded on a competitive basis.
M.A. Only applications for Fall 2019 due January 14, 2019, with late applications accepted until January 31, 2019.
All application materials must be received by 5 p.m. eastern time on the deadline date. If an application deadline falls on a Saturday, Sunday or legal U.S. holiday, then the next business day will be the deadline date.
Your application to the M.A. program should consist of the following components:
- The Online Application.
- A Curriculum Vitae (CV) or resume. This should provide an overview of your academic and, if applicable, professional experience.
- A Statement of Academic Purpose. Your statement of purpose should avoid excessive personal or autobiographical anecdotes and offer a clear sense of your training in literary studies, your strengths as a scholar, and the reasons you are applying for the masters or doctoral degree. While applicants need not indicate a precise field of specialization, it will be helpful to the admissions committee to have a sense of their main area(s) of scholarly interest and the critical questions and/or conversations that drive their interest in pursuing the degree. Finally, applicants should address their particular reasons for wanting to work within the Department of English at New York University. No more than 1200 words.
- A Writing Sample should not exceed 20-25 double-spaced pages. Candidates with a good sense of their area(s) of interest would be well-served by submitting a writing sample that matches or reflects their area(s) of primary interest, but this is not required. Please do not send a sample that exceeds the page limit with instructions to read only certain pages; applicants should instead edit the writing sample to meet the length requirement.
- Three Letters of Recommendation. It is important to have strong letters of recommendation that come from professors and instructors who know you and are familiar with the your academic work. Applicants who have been out of school for several years should make every effort to reconnect with former teachers to ensure that their letters of recommendation address their academic preparation and abilities and their readiness to pursue the degree for which they are applying.
- Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Test Score(s). General Test Scores are required. Taking the GRE Subject Test in Literature is recommended but not required (Note: This is the up-to-date information. Please ignore the line mentioned elsewhere on the website that the Subject Test results also have to be submitted.). Scoring well on the Subject Test may strengthen your application, but not taking the Subject Test will not adversely affect your application. We do not have a minimum GRE score requirement, nor do we publicize the GRE scores of past, admitted applicants. It is important that applicants arrange to take the GRE at least six weeks before the application deadline to ensure that test scores arrive in time to receive full consideration.
- Transcript. An official, electronic copy of your transcript.
The department considers applications for the M.A. program in English and American literature for fall admission only. Applicants for the M.A. programs are accepted into that program only; admission to the the Ph.D. program requires submission of an application to the Ph.D. program. Applicants whose native language is not English must submit Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) results unless they have received their undergraduate degree from an accredited American college or university where the language of instruction is English. Near-native fluency in English is crucial for successful completion of all the programs offered by the department. All application materials and supporting documents must be submitted online through Graduate Enrollment Services (see the GSAS Application for Admission and Financial Aid for instructions). Applications submitted directly to the department are not considered. The department withdraws from consideration all applications that are missing supporting documents one month after the posted deadline.
For further Admissions information, please visit the Application Resource Center.
If your question is not answered, please contact the Director of MA Graduate Admissions: Lytle Shaw.
Scholarly and Professional Development in the M.A. Program
One of the primary purposes of NYU’s MA program in English and American Literature and Language is to enable students to explore their scholarly interests, to develop their skills in critical thinking and writing, and to provide pre-doctoral training. Degree recipients pursue a variety of professional goals, including 1) further study in the fields of literature in English or cultural studies through acceptance into distinguished doctoral programs, usually with the long-term goal of college teaching; 2) careers in community colleges or junior colleges; 3) professional advancement for in-service teachers, both secondary school teachers and post-secondary; 4) careers in publishing, especially in the New York City area; 5) careers in such fields as journalism, law, and non-profits where expertise in writing and critical thinking is highly valued; 6) the learning of digital skills transferable to all the above as well as to other professional goals.
As of March 2018, our MA students have had outstanding success in applying to PhD programs this year: they have received offers from Columbia, NYU, Brown, Princeton, UC Boulder, Vanderbilt, UC Santa Barbara, CUNY, UCLA, USC, Rutgers, University of Illinois, Oxford, University of Virginia, and Toronto.