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    Salem State University
  Jan 22, 2018
2012-13 School of Graduate Studies Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

English, Master of Arts

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Program Objectives

If you are a lover of books, the M.A. in English program can enrich your reading experience by providing a structure and historical framework, insights and information shared by professors who are experts in their fields, and the opportunity for stimulating exchange of ideas in the classroom. If you are a writer looking to improve your skills, the M.A. in English program offers the opportunity to share your work with faculty and students, many of whom are published writers. If you are a teacher whose professional advancement depends upon a graduate degree, the M.A. in English program offers an opportunity for advanced study and research in the field of literature. Successful completion of the program leads to fulfillment of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts requirements for professional licensure to teach English at the secondary level. If you are interested in pursuing doctoral studies in language and literature, the M.A. in English program offers solid preparation in the field.

Program Requirements

Upon acceptance into the program, you will complete a tentative Plan of Study in consultation with the program coordinator. You must request that any transfer credits be considered at this time. PLEASE NOTE THAT NO MORE THAN THREE COURSES TAKEN AT SALEM STATE UNIVERSITY BEFORE ADMISSION CAN BE COUNTED TOWARDS THIS PROGRAM. You should meet regularly with the program coordinator to discuss your progress and revise your plan of study as needed.

All candidates for the M.A. in English must demonstrate proficiency in a foreign language by one of the following options acceptable to the department graduate committee: a) proof of satisfactory completion of six hours of undergraduate credit beyond the elementary level of a foreign language; or b) a passing grade in a departmental reading language examination. Students who have not completed a foreign language prior to entering the program will have the opportunity to take a foreign language exam.

Course Requirements

Option L – Literary Studies

  1. Eighteen credit hours in Literature courses, including ENG 725   and at least one seminar
  2. Fifteen additional credits, six of which may be taken in a related discipline such as history, theater arts, linguistics, philosophy, or comparative literature, as approved by the program coordinator.
  3. One of the following two capstone options:
    • A thesis (register for ENG 875/876  for three credits)
    • A portfolio drawn from program coursework (register for ENG 875/876  for three credits)

Students choosing the thesis or portfolio options will have both an advisor and a second reader reviewing their work. Students planning to continue on to a doctoral program are strongly advised to choose the thesis option.

Students choosing option “L” may opt to complete a 39 credit program. The capstone writing project would be replaced with an additional six credits (two English electives, as approved by the program coordinator).

Option W - Writing

  1. Eighteen credit hours in writing courses, including ENG 875/876  and at least two workshop courses in the major genre
  2. Fifteen credit hours in graduate English courses including ENG 725  and at least one seminar course
  3. A capstone manuscript in the student’s major genre. The manuscript may be poems, short stories, non-fiction articles, one-act plays, a novella, a longer play or novel.

Total Credits for the Degree: 33-39

Additional Information and Notes

Additional information on any of the capstone options is available from the program coordinator.

Directed Study: A degree candidate who has completed at least twenty-four credit hours may take up to two directed study courses of three credits each with program coordinator approval and when staffing conditions permit.

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