The Master of Arts in English, Plan B, Literature Specialization is designed to facilitate the intellectual growth of passionate teachers, insightful scholars, and engaged public citizens. Graduates have gone on to highly-ranked Ph.D. programs, publishing houses, and careers in the non-profit sector; whatever their aspirations, the training students receive at CSU prepares them for a more vibrant future. M.A. students specializing in literature have two options for completing their degree. Plan A students write a thesis of approximately 100 pages; Plan B students write a project of approximately 25 pages and must complete several additional hours in the classroom. 

Effective Fall 2019

Plan of Study Grid
First YearCredits
E 600AResearch Methods/Theory: Literary Scholarship3
E 615Reading Literature-Recent Theories3
E 635Critical Studies in Literature and Culture3
One course from outside the English department13
 Total Credits18
Second Year
E 610Literature Program Colloquium1
E 698Research Project3
Pre-20th century literature course23
 Total Credits16
 Program Total Credits:34

 A minimum of 34 credits are required to complete this program. 


The out-of-department course should be 300-level or above. Students with an undergraduate major other than English may waive this requirement and select an additional 3 credits of elective courses instead. 


One course in pre-20th century literature is required at the 500-level or above. Select course in consultation with advisor.

In addition to required coursework, the following is required:

  • Pass an oral defense of the final project.
  • Courses used to complete another degree cannot be counted toward the master's degree.
  • A minimum of 24 credits applied to an M.A. degree must be earned at CSU. Of these, at least 21 must be earned after admission to the program.
  • Graduate courses taken at CSU prior to admission to the Graduate School can be applied to an M.A. degree if the grade earned is B or higher.
  • At least 16 credits earned at CSU and applied to an M.A. degree must be at the 500-level or above; of these credits, at least 12 must be in “regular” courses. English courses considered to be other than “regular” include E 684A, E 684B, E 684CE 684DE 684EE 687A, E 687BE 687CE 687EE 687HE 687I, E 687J, E 687K, E 687LE 687ME 694, E 695, E 698, E 699, and any courses graded pass/fail; see the Graduate Bulletin for more detailed information.
  • Courses transferred to an M.A. program must have a grade of B or higher and must have a CSU equivalent at the 500-level or higher.  Credits used to fulfill requirements for previously earned degrees are not accepted.
  • Up to nine credits of coursework for an M.A. degree can come from CSU programs outside the English department.  These credits must be at the 300-level or higher.  (English Education students in Plan B may count up to 12 credits.)
  • A maximum of six credits of  E 684A, E 684B, E 684CE 684D, E 684E and E 687A, E 687B, E 687C, E 687E, E 687HE 687I, E 687JE 687K, E 687L, E 687M (combined)  can count toward an M.A. degree. 
  • A maximum of two credits of E 695 can count toward an M.A. degree.
  • No E 699 credits can count toward a Plan B M.A. degree.
  • With the exception of specified courses in the English Education M.A., all courses taken in the English department and applied to an M.A. degree must be taken at the 500-level or above.
  • Both international students and students holding a GTA need to maintain 9 credit hours per semester.