Graduate Admissions

Graduate Admissions

Graduate Academic Information


Application Procedures and Requirements



We begin accepting applications annually on November 1. Applicants to the Master’s Degree Programs must submit a Western Michigan University application and a Department of English application. Both applications are due by January 1 (department applications must be postmarked no later than January 1). Applicants are typically informed about admission by late February or early March.

International Applicants:

International Students must also apply to International Admissions and Services.

Master's Program Prerequisites:

Applicants to the Master’s Degree Programs must present a 34-hour undergraduate major with a GPA of at least 3.0. At least 20 hours of the student’s undergraduate major must be in literature, including 15 hours of literature coursework at the junior/senior level. If a student has taken substantial English coursework, but cannot meet the 20-hour literature course requirement, he/she may still apply for admission, but may have to remedy any deficiencies through undergraduate or graduate level coursework.

Doctoral Program Prerequisites:

Applicants to the Doctoral Degree Programs should have an M.A. in English, an M.A. in English with an emphasis in teaching, or an M.F.A. in Creative Writing with a minimum GPA of 3.0. In rare instances, a student may be admitted directly from the B.A. to the Ph.D. level, if he/she also has a great deal of professional or academic experience. Students with Master’s Degrees in areas other than English, English Education, or Creative Writing may have to take extra coursework in order to make up deficiencies.

Application Materials:

Complete instructions may be found on the application forms below:

Master's Program Application Form

Doctoral Program Application Form

Letter of Recommendation Cover Sheet

Applicants must:

  1. Complete the Western Michigan University application online, here.
  2. Attach the following in .pdf form to
  • A completed Department application cover sheet
  • A writing sample
  • A statement of purpose
  • A current CV or resume
  • Unofficial transcripts
  • GRE General Test scores (for all Master's level applicants; doctoral applicants must submit GRE English Subject Test scores as well)
  • A teaching essay (for those seeking funding)
  • Three letters of recommendation.  Download the cover sheet from this page (above),  fill out your portion at the top, then give the sheet to your recommenders for submission with their letters.  This sheet should accompany all letters.  You may submit letters in any of the following ways:
    • Mailed in hard copy by your recommenders, on university letterhead, in envelopes signed across the seal by the recommender.  Mail to: Graduate Director, Department of English, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI 49008-5331.
    • Attached in .pdf form, saved on electronic university letterhead, electronically signed by your recommender, and attached to an email sent by your recommender from his/her institutional email address to  Please request that your recommender put “Your surname, LOR” in the subject line.
    • Submitted by you using Interfolio, following protocol for confidentiality.  Instructions for Interfolio submission are here.


Note to M.A. in English with an emphasis in teaching Applicants:

M.A. in English with an emphasis in teaching applications are accepted any time of the year; however, M.A. in English with an emphasis in teaching applicants who seek funding must meet the January 1 deadline.


Department of English
6th floor Sprau Tower
Western Michigan University
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5331 USA
(269) 387-2572 | (269) 387-2562 Fax