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Graduate Programs

 

The English department offers a variety of master's-level degree programs and non-degree programs for graduate students at Sac State. Details about these program options are available below.

 

English Master of Arts (MA)

The English MA program is designed for students who have had substantial undergraduate preparation in English, and is of special value to students who plan to teach English in a community college, who wish to further develop their creative writing talent, or who expect to pursue a Ph.D. in English. The program is divided into three concentrations: literature, creative writing, and composition.

The literature concentration covers a wide range of American, British, and world literary works. Students in this concentration will gain a familiarity with a wide variety of literary traditions, periods, and genres; an understanding of diverse critical perspectives available in the field of literary studies; and an interpretive engagement with the complexities of literary texts.

The creative writing concentration focuses on achieving clarity of imaginative expression. Students in this concentration develop an ability to understand and express ideas through or in dialogue with literary forms; to write with a tone of authority; and to critique their own or each other's works using the fundamental terminology of the craft.

The composition concentration offers students a working knowledge of praxis--the ways rhetoric and composition theory and practice inform one another. Students in this concentration will cultivate the ability to theorize and practice a variety or writing classroom pedagogies; to engage in writing as a process, which includes critical self-reflection; and to understand the ways in which all language is meaning making, especially within the contexts of academic discourse communities. Students will also gain an understanding of appropriate teaching strategies for students who speak and write a wide variety of English dialects.

 

Admission Requirements

The Graduate Coordinator will screen all English MA applicants according to the requirements listed below and a ranking system devised by the department. Applicants who have deficiencies in these admission requirements which can be removed by specified additional preparation will be ranked accordingly, but may be admitted with conditionally classified graduate status. Any deficiencies will be noted on a writted response from the Graduate Coordinator to the student's admission application.

Please note: GRE scores are not required for admission to the English MA program. None of the requirements listed below are subject to waiver.

Literature and Creative Writing Concentrations

  • 3.0 GPA in the English major as listed on the transcript of your graduating institution
  • at least 27 units of upper division coursework in English
  • a minimum of 5 literature courses including:
    • at least 3 upper division courses
    • at least 1 British literature course (upper or lower division)
    • at least 1 American literature course (upper or lower division)
  • TOEFL score (for foreign student admissions only--see below)

Composition Concentration

  • 3.0 GPA in the English major as listed on the transcript of your graduating institution
  • 27 units of upper division English coursework
  • TOEFL score (for foreign student admission only--see below)

Foreign Student Admissions

Students from foreign universities must take the TOEFL test, which is administered in different formats; students need take only one format of the exam. Required scores for each format are as follows:

  • paper based TOEFL: 600, with a score of 5 on the Test of Written English (TWE)
  • computer based TOEFL: 250, with a score of 5 on the Test of Written English (TWE)
  • internet based TOEFL (IBT): 100, with a minimum of 25 on the writing section

 

How to Apply

The English MA program is currently accepeting applications for Spring 2015 admission.

Applying to the English MA program is a two-step process. Both steps must be completed in full by the application deadline to be considered for admission to the program.

Step 1: University Application

Applicants who meet the admission requirements listed above should submit a university application to the Office of Graduate Studies via the CSU Mentor online application system, pay the application fee, and submit official transcripts for all undergraduate coursework completed.

For more information about the university application process, please contact the Office of Graduate Studies or visit their application information and procedures webpage.

Step 2: English MA Program Application

Applicants should then submit a completed English MA Program application packet, along with all requested supplementary materials, directly to the English department. Please review the application packet for complete details.

 

Application Deadline

To be considered for Spring 2015 admission, Step 1 of the application process must be completed online by September 15, 2014, and all materials for Step 2 must be received in the department by September 22, 2014.

 

For More Information

For course requirements and further details about the three concentrations, please review the Literature Concentration Requirements Worksheet, the Creative Writing Concentration Requirements Worksheet, and the Composition Concentration Requirements Worksheet.

For useful, general information about the English MA program, please review the English Grad Student Handbook.

For upcoming dates and preparation for the English MA Literature and Creative Writing comprehensive exams (culminating experience), please review the English MA Comprehensive Exam Reading Lists archive.

If you have further questions, please contact the department office or the Graduate Coordinator.

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TESOL Master of Arts (MA)

The Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) MA program, first established at Sac State in 1983, is designed for students who plan to teach English to non-native speakers in community colleges, in adult education programs, or abroad. The TESOL MA program also prepares students planning to pursue Ph.D. programs in applied linguistics or education.

The goal of the TESOL MA program is to provide students with a thorough grounding in the structure of English; to give students a solid background in language acquisition theory; to provide practical training, including a unique methodology series, a carefully designed practicum, and a large variety of for-credit and paid internships; and to offer multiple opportunities to gain teaching experience.

In addition to the TESOL MA program, the English department partners with the Peace Corps to offer the Master's International Program option. This option gives students a chance to earn credit toward their MA in TESOL in conjunction with their Peace Corps volunteer service, providing Peace Corps volunteers with solid training and an academic degree which will help them during and after their Peace Corps service.

 

Admission Requirements

TESOL MA applicants (including those who wish to pursue the Master's International program option) must meet all of the following requirements for admission to the program. Some of these requirements may be satisfied with equivalent coursework or experience; the TESOL Coordinator (tesol@csus.edu) will review all application materials and approve equivalencies on a student-by-student basis.

  • a bachelor's degree in any field, completed with
    • a minimum 3.0 overall GPA and
    • a minimum 3.0 GPA over the final 60 units
  • prerequisite courses (or equivalents), completed with grades of 'B' or better as part of the applicant's undergraduate coursework:
    • English 110A: Linguistics & the English Language
    • English 110Q: Grammar for ESL Teaching
  • TOEFL score (for foreign student admissions only--see below)

The following additional qualifications are preferred, but not required, for admission to the TESOL MA program:

  • one year of college-level foreign language study or equivalent

TOEFL Score Requirement

Students from foreign universities must take the TOEFL test, which is administered in different formats; students need to take only one format of the exam. Required scores for each format are as follows:

  • paper based TOEFL: 600 or higher, with a minimum score of 5 on the Test of Written English (TWE)
  • computer based TOEFL: 250 or higher, with a minimum score of 5 on the Test of Written English (TWE)
  • internet based TOEFL (iBT): 100 or higher, with a minimum of 24 on the writing section

 

How to Apply

The TESOL MA program is currently not accepting applications.

Applying to the TESOL MA program is a two-step process. Both steps must be completed in full by the application deadline to be considered for admission to the program.

Step 1: University Application

Domestic Students (including Master's International Program applicants)

Submit a university application to the Office of Graduate Studies via the CSU Mentor online application system, pay the application fee, and submit official transcripts for all undergraduate coursework completed.

For more information about the university application process, please contact the Office of Graduate Studies or visit their application information and procedures webpage.

International Students

Contact the Office of Global Education's International Admissions unit and follow their directions to complete the international application process.

Step 2: TESOL MA Program Application

All Students

Submit the completed supplemental department application packet directly to the TESOL Coordinator. Please review the Supplemental Department Application Packet for MA and MI in TESOL for complete details.

Step 3: Peace Corps Application (Master's International Program Option applicants only)

Master's International candidates must be admitted to the MA TESOL program first, then accepted for Peace Corps service. After you receive admission notification from the Office of Graduate Studies, visit the Peace Corps website to apply online.

 

Application Deadline

The TESOL MA program is currently not accepting applications.

 

For More Information

For course requirements and further details, please review the TESOL MA flyer and the TESOL Master's International flyer.

For useful, general information about the TESOL MA program, please review the TESOL Student Handbook.

For upcoming dates for the TESOL comprehensive exam, please see the Comprehensive Exam Dates & Reading Lists page.

If you have further questions, please contact the department office or the TESOL Coordinator (tesol@csus.edu).

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Teaching Composition Certificate

This 15-18 unit, supplemental program of study provides advanced training in composition teaching. The Teaching Composition Certificate prepares graduate students who wish to teach English composition at the college level.

The Teaching Composition Certificate is not a degree program or teaching credential. The certificate represents formal recognition of completion of an organized, integrated, specialized program of study. In conjunction with a master's degree, it may be helpful in obtaining employment as a composition teacher at a community college or university.

Please review the Teaching Composition Certificate Requirements Worksheet for course requirements and more details. If you have further questions, please contact the English department Writing Programs Coordinator.

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TESOL Certificate B

This 18-unit, supplemental program of study provides advanced training in language teaching. Certificate B prepares graduate students who want to teach English to speakers of other languages at the college level.

The TESOL Certificate B is not a degree program or teaching credential. However, it is recognized abroad as evidence of advanced training in language teaching. In conjunction with a bachelor's or master's degree or a state teaching credential, it may also be helpful in obtaining employment as an ESL teacher in the United States.

Please review the TESOL Certificate Option B Information Flyer for course requirements and more details. If you have further questions, please contact the English departmentTESOL Coordinator (tesol@csus.edu).

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