Department of English
Kimpel Hall, 333
Fayetteville, AR 72701
Phone: 479.575.4301
Fax: 479.575.5919

Graduate Studies Admissions/Applications

M.A. and Ph.D. in English  |  Comparative Literature  |  Creative Writing and Translation

M.A. and Ph.D. in English

Only applications received between October 1st and February 1st will be considered for the following Fall semester.

first, apply to the graduate school

The application process for admission to Graduate Programs in English has two separate components: an application to the Graduate School and a separate application to the Department of English. Instructions for the Graduate School application can be found here.

The following should be submitted to the Graduate School rather than to the Department of English. We will be able to view these materials once the Graduate School posts them on the administrative computer system:

  1. Official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate work.
  2. GRE General Test Scores. (Typically, Ph.D. students have a GRE Verbal score in the 85th percentile or above, and M.A. students have a GRE Verbal score in the 80th percentile or above. We do not put much emphasis upon the Quantitative score.)
  3. Letters of Recommendation. (The Department of English requires 3 letters of recommendation, and you will be prompted by e-mail to submit them electronically to the Graduate School after you submit your application to the Graduate School. It would be best to have all three of your letters of recommendation submitted to the Graduate School no later than January 1st.)
Second, apply to the department of english

You may submit the English Department application at the same time as the application described above, but we will not look at your materials until we receive word that you have been accepted into the Graduate School. They act as gatekeepers, with intentionally lower admission requirements.

The English Department application must be submitted online, via the link below. Because the online form does not allow you to save a partly completed application and return later to finish, you should do the following before clicking on the link to begin the form:

  1. Prepare a "statement of purpose" in a Microsoft Word Document or PDF (.doc, .docx, .pdf).
  2. Prepare a "writing sample" in a Microsoft Word Document or PDF (.doc, .docx, .pdf).

***The online application form for the Department of English may be found here.***

All inquiries concerning the application process should be directed to Professor Slattery at:
Application Deadlines

December 1 is the latest date by which you should apply to the Graduate School in order for your Graduate School acceptance forms to reach the Department of English by our own application deadline.

January 15 is the date by which those wishing to be considered for fellowships should submit their applications if at all possible; please see the section below titled “FELLOWSHIPS.” In addition, this is the date by which all applicants should have submitted the names of three recommenders.

February 1 is the date by which the Department of English must receive all of your application materials, including those forwarded from the Graduate School after they have admitted you to the university.

Note that these dates apply to admission for fall semester. We do not admit students for spring semester except when a student can demonstrate that he or she has full outside funding lined up for all of the years of his or her graduate study. In other words, we will not admit a student in the spring if that student is hoping to be able to apply for a Teaching Assistantship or Fellowship in some later semester or year.

Application Review Process, teaching assistantships, and registration for classes

All completed applications received by February 1 of a given year for admission in fall semester of that year will be reviewed by March 31. Applicants will be advised of their admission decision soon after that date. An email will be sent first, followed by a hard-copy letter. If your email address changes after you have submitted your application, please notify our graduate secretary at:

The Graduate Studies Committee's numerical ranking of applicants for Teaching Assistantships will have produced a prioritized ranking of those applicant by March 31. Teaching Assistantships will then be awarded on the basis of that ranking as they become available in the judgment of the Director of Composition Studies, who is charged with managing the Department's financial resources for assistantships and who keeps track of which current students are relinquishing Assistantships as they graduate. Some of the current students postpone their graduation until summer, which means that additional Assistantships may become available as the summer progresses.

Most students admitted into our graduate programs receive Teaching Assistantships.

New Teaching Assistants must be prepared to come to campus one week before fall classes begin, in order to take the week-long Composition Pedagogy Workshop. This workshop then merges into a fall Pedagogy COURSE. Both of these are required of all new T.A.'s, even those with considerable prior teaching experience.

advising and registration

Incoming graduate students cannot register for fall classes until the week before fall semester. During that week, each new graduate student in the M.A. and Ph.D. programs in English will have an advising session with the Director of Graduate Studies to decide upon courses. (Course descriptions with a great deal more material than is available in the University Catalog will be posted on the English Department web site shortly before the semester begins.) You do not need to email the Director of Graduate Studies to ask for an advising appointment; simply turn up by the Monday before fall semester begins-at the latest-and ask the Graduate Secretary to see the sign-up sheet.


There is no separate application process for fellowships, but applicants wishing to be considered for doctoral program fellowships are encouraged to submit their applications by mid-January. All applicants to the Ph.D. program will automatically be considered for any fellowships that are available to students in that program. Click here for information on available doctoral fellowships. Fellowships are not available to M.A. students.

Contact us

If you have questions, contact either the Graduate Secretary at or the Director of Graduate Studies, Dr. Patrick Slattery, at