Jun 23, 2024  
2018-2019 Cal State East Bay Catalog 
2018-2019 Cal State East Bay Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

English, M.A.

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English, M.A. Program

Program Description

The university offers the Master of Arts degree in English. Although there is no separate degree offered in creative writing, it is possible to satisfy the thesis option for the M.A. in English by work in fiction, poetry, or drama. Students seeking a degree must observe the general university requirements stated elsewhere in this catalog as well as the specific departmental requirements stated here. (Note: The M.A. TESOL program is a separate M.A. program.)

Program Learning Outcomes

Students graduating with an M.A. in English from Cal State East Bay will be able to:

  1. analyze and interpret various kinds of diverse texts in clear and cogent prose;
  2. discuss diverse theoretical perspectives about literature, pedagogy, or  linguistics;
  3. demonstrate facility with conducting research in traditional/nontraditional ways, including print and electronic library research and data analysis;
  4. demonstrate the ability to learn collaboratively and independently.

Admission for the M.A. in English (Literature, Composition, Creative Writing)

To apply for admission to the Master of Arts program in English, students must complete the online university application at CALSTATE Apply. Please contact the Graduate Coordinator for details on additional materials to be sent directly to the English Department. The Office of Graduate Admissions will then send the application to the English Department where it will be accepted or rejected.

To be admitted to the M.A. program in English, applicants must:

  1. hold the B.A. degree from an accredited college or university, with a major in English, and
  2. have an undergraduate GPA in English courses of at least 3.0.

If applicants cannot comply with these requirements, they may petition the department by letter for special consideration.

Upon admittance to the graduate program in English, students should immediately arrange through the English Department Office to consult a graduate adviser on selecting courses.

“Classified Graduate” Status and Advancement to Candidacy

Students are normally admitted to the program in English as a “Conditionally Classified Graduate” student. One condition to their being a “Classified Graduate” is that they pass ENGL 600 with a grade of “A” or “B”. Another is that students must satisfy the University Writing Skills Requirement. There may be other conditions to the “Classified Graduate” status if they have been admitted to the program with deficiencies; students should consult with a graduate adviser to determine whether this is the case. After all conditions have been met, students will be granted “Classified Graduate” status as a graduate student in English. To Advance to Candidacy for the M.A. in English, students must complete 20 semester-units of graduate coursework (including ENGL 600) acceptable for the M.A. For information on meeting the University Writing Skills Requirement, see the Testing Office website at www.csueastbay.edu/testing.

Applying for Graduation

Students must apply formally to graduate with a master’s degree, by submitting a “Candidate for Degree” application by the filing deadlines (March 1 for Summer/Fall graduation or October 1 for Spring graduation).

English Degree Requirements (32 units)

Degree Requirements

Students must complete, with a grade point average of 3.0 or better, 32 semester-units of credit approved by a graduate adviser. 

Required Course

The following one (1) course for 4 units is required:

Elective Courses

Choose 24 units of electives from the following two groups as outlined:

Capstone Requirement

Students must select one (1) of the capstone experiences for 4 units to complete the program requirements:

University Thesis Experience

Students may petition to write a critical or creative thesis. Students who elect to submit a thesis must comply with the thesis instructions of the Department of English as well as those in the University Thesis Writing Guide available online at: www.csueastbay.edu/thesiswritingguide. Thesis proposals must be approved by two regular members of the English faculty, one as “director” and one as “second reader,” before a thesis can be undertaken. Faculty members are not obliged to accept thesis proposals or to direct theses.

For those who elect to submit an approved thesis, ONE (1) exit examination in the following areas is additionally required:

  • an historical period of British literature
  • an historical period of American literature
  • in composition studies
Comprehensive Exams Experience

For those who do not elect to submit an approved thesis, TWO (2) exit examinations in the following areas are required:

  • an historical period of British literature
  • an historical period of American literature
  • in composition studies

Plus the student must take 4 units of coursework.  Students should consult a graduate adviser for details.

Other Graduate & Post-Baccalaureate Degree Requirements

In addition to departmental requirements, every student must also satisfy the University requirements for graduation as described throughout this catalog. These include the 70% unit residence requirement; the five-year rule on currency of subject matter; the minimum number of units in 600-level courses; the “C” minimum grade for each graduate course; the 3.00 cumulative grade point average; and the University Writing Skills Requirement.

Note: For information on meeting the University Writing Skills Requirement, see the Testing Office website at www.csueastbay.edu/testing or call (510) 885-3661.

Department Courses Listed by Course Type

English Courses

Department of English

Go to information for this department.


English: American/Global Literature

English: American Literature

English: British Literature

English: Education

English: Film

English: Foundation

English: Global Literature

English: Graduate

English: Language/Grammar

English: Literary Theory

English: Rhetoric and Composition

English: World Literature

English: Writing Workshop


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