An English Master of Science degree will prepare you to become a highly skilled teacher.

The English M.S. program requires a deep study of the literature of a specific author, period, or place. These classes will allow students to discover a topic for a scholarly thesis. Unlike the M.A. program, there can be no addition of a creative thesis. Over the two years of this program, students work closely with an advisor to develop the thesis.

To obtain an English M.S. students must take two graduate courses of Professional Education. Students in the program must have licensure to teach high school English. The M.S. degree requires a second language, a graduate course in computer application or statistics on teaching with technology.

English MS Curriculum

This 32-credit MS program in English is intended for certified teachers who wish to further develop their knowledge of literature and writing while at the same time enhancing their skills in teaching English. It is especially suitable for students who want to teach in secondary or middle schools and may also be useful to those who wish to teach in community colleges. It is open to students with an undergraduate major in English, a liberal arts background or a teacher education degree.

For more information on the courses in this program, visit the course catalog.

Master of Arts Language Requirement

To graduate with a M.A. in English, students must demonstrate competency in a second language at the second year, second semester level of a minimum grade of a B.

Comprehensive Exams

For the M.A. and M.S., satisfactory completion of three essay exams is required.

Thesis Defense

For M.A. and M.S., satisfactory completion of an oral thesis is required.

Graduate Competency Requirements

Choose one:

  • Modern Language: A reading knowledge of French, German, Russian, or Spanish. In specific cases, other languages may be substituted with the consent of the Graduate Committee of the Department of English. This requirement may be satisfied in either of two ways: successful completion (with a grade of a B or better) of the final second-year course for one of the above languages or passing a standardized reading test at a second-year level.
  • Statistics: Candidates may elect to complete the competency requirements by passing a college level course in the computer applications of statistics with a grade of B or better, or by passing a proficiency exam.
  • Teaching with Technology: Candidates may elect to complete the competency requirements by passing a college level course in the use of technology in teaching with a grade of B or better, or by passing a proficiency examination.

Application Process

  • Apply for admission to graduate study at Bemidji State, following the Graduate School guidelines. The Graduate Office will send copies of your documents to the Department of English.
  • Submit the additional materials described below to the School of Graduate Studies Office, Memorial Hall 310. These documents will be forwarded to the Department of English. The necessary additional documents are as follows:
    • A letter of application for graduate study in the Department of English addressed to the Department of English Director of Graduate Studies. The letter should include the following information:
      • The degree you wish to obtain (M.A., M.S.)
      • If applying for Graduate Assistantship (GA), a statement of intent.
      • A statement regarding the reasons for applying for graduate study and or applying for a GA.
      • A summary of experience, academic study, skills and interests that will be brought into your studies.
      • Other pertinent information that the Department of English should consider regarding your application.
    • The Graduate School requires two letters of recommendation. The Department of English accepts those used for Graduate School and also requires a third letter. If you are applying for a teaching Graduate Assistantship, ask the recommenders to comment on your potential as a classroom teacher. All three letters must be sent to the Graduate Office in Memorial Hall. They will send copies of the letters and other materials to the Department of English.

Application Deadlines

  • Applications are accepted at any time for graduate study in English.
  • Applications for Graduate Assistantships must be received by March 19 for assistantships for the following academic year. Applications received after March 19 will only be considered if assistantships are available.

Tuition & Aid

We offer in-state/reciprocity tuition rates to all of our graduate students. Please visit the Financial Aid website for more information on options for funding your education.

Some students may qualify for a graduate assistantship, which includes a tuition waiver and stipend. GAs, in return, are expected to complete certain teaching and/or research assignments for the department.

Graduate Assistants

In the Department of English, graduates usually teach one section of freshman Composition each semester. They also enroll in a pre-teaching workshop, a composition seminar and a class in rhetoric and composition.