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Department of English Applying for Admission

Read our Frequently Asked Questions Here

Deadline Date:

Application materials are reviewed by the Graduate Studies Committee in the spring semester of each academic year. Application materials must be received before the deadline of January 10 for those applying for admission the following fall semester.

Graduate Admissions Process:

Each applicant is required to submit materials for a file which, when complete, is reviewed by members of the Graduate Studies Committee in English. Since the file cannot be circulated until complete, it is important that applicants promptly supply all materials within their immediate control and keep informed of the progress of materials due from other sources. Please submit all materials through the WSU graduate application system.

Application Materials for all M.A. and Ph.D. Programs:

NOTE: The general GRE General and Subject exam scores are NOT required for graduate programs in English.

1.  Application form.  This form, supplied by the WSU Graduate School, must be filled out completely. Even when applicants are not applying for a Teaching Assistantship, they must fill out the entire application. The application form is available online at: graduate application

2.  Academic transcripts.  One copy of each transcript representing study beyond high school is required. Send these copies to the WSU Graduate School. Transcripts representing work from the current year (not yet finished) are acceptable. Unofficial transcripts are also acceptable; however, if admitted you will need to submit certified official transcripts directly from the college or university where the academic work was completed.

3. Three confidential letters of recommendation. The applicant is required to list three referees, each with his/her email address.  The WSU Graduate School will then contact these referees, sending them electronic recommendation forms which will subsequently be made available to the admissions committee members in the English Department.  Applicants should select referees who are capable of evaluating their qualifications for graduate study in English; at least one of the referees should address the applicant’s qualifications as a potential college level teacher (if the applicant is applying for a Teaching Assistantship).

4. Non-Native Speaker Requirements:

  • Official record of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).   Applicants who are not native speakers of English must take the TOEFL exam or the Michigan Test of English Language Proficiency. For more information and minimum scores required, visit here.

5. International Student Requirements: Please visit the graduate school page.

6. Brief independent statement.  The applicant should send a description of his or her interests in English studies, along with reasons for wishing to begin (or continue) graduate work, background or experience in teaching, career goals, and expectations regarding WSU.  This statement should be approximately 500 words (two double-spaced pages). Send the statement directly to the WSU Graduate School.

7. Writing sample.  All applicants should submit a recent sample of scholarly or critical writing.  For those applying to the M.A. program, this sample would most likely be an essay written for an upper-level undergraduate course.  For Ph.D applicants, the sample might come from a graduate seminar in literature, rhetoric, cultural studies, theory, etc.  In either case, the sample should represent the applicant’s critical thinking skills and ability to write effectively for an academic audience.  Essays with a significant research component are especially appropriate. The writing sample can be sent directly to the WSU Graduate School.


View the WSU graduate admissions page for more information about the graduate application process.

Visit the WSU Financial Assistance page for information on receiving financial aid, loans, scholarships and more.




Contact Information:


Jon Hegglund
Director of Graduate Studies
English Department P.O. Box 645020 Pullman, WA 99164-5020 USA