Graduate Studies

English (MA)


Application Deadlines

  • Fall: April-1
  • Spring: November-1 (October-1 for international applicants)

Two letters of recommendation, statement of purpose, and analytical writing sample. Additional creative writing sample required for creative writing applicants.

Program Coordinator
Laura Sparks

student holding books on campus bridge

Is the MA in English for you?

Do any of the following describe you?

  • Would you like to spend a couple more years reading and writing and discussing and presenting on cool things with other interested people?
  • Do you have a burning need to complete that short story or poetry collection that you keep starting?
  • Would you love a job that allowed you to use your excellent writing and reading skills?
  • Do you want to teach at the community college or university level?
  • Interested in a job in publishing?

student presentation

Do these jobs sound interesting to you?

Our alumni are:

  • College instructors
  • Literary editors & publishers
  • Higher education administrators
  • High school teachers
  • English as a second language teachers

Other possibilities are:

  • Technical writer
  • Public relations specialist
  • Reporter
  • Grant writer
  • Librarian
  • Editor and content manager

student working hard on laptop

Is this the kind of salary you are seeking?

Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, shows the following outlook for Postsecondary Teachers(opens in new window):

Median Pay
$79,640 per year

Job Outlook
12% (Much faster than average)

Most postsecondary teachers work in public and private colleges and universities, professional schools, and junior or community colleges. Most work full time, although part-time work is common.

English faculty member Corey Sparks surrounded by books

What if my bachelor’s isn’t in English?

The typical feeder major for this master’s program is English. If you don’t have the equivalent of a major in English, you may be eligible if you complete the equivalent of a general English minor, and you can be admitted to the program while you’re still finishing your requirements. Talk with the graduate coordinator for details.

Arts and Humanities Building Exterior

How long will it take?

  • The MA in English is a 30-unit program that can be completed in two years, with three semesters of coursework and at least one semester focused on independent research.
  • Additional time may be needed to complete the master’s thesis.

What is it like to be an English master’s student?

collaboration in action

Work with Faculty on Teaching & Research

  • Work with departmental faculty with a wide range of teaching and research interests in creative writing, composition, literacy studies, literature, and rhetoric.
  • Get hands-on teacher training and experience.

Chico State students working together

Join the English Graduate Student Council (EGSC)

  • To join the English Graduate Student Council (EGSC), present your research at an annual colloquium, and publish that work in our academic journal, The Manzanita, please contact the EGSC faculty advisor Dr. Ayde Enriquez-Loya at in new window).
    New EGSC officers are recruited every spring for the following year.

Student writing and smiling

Teach Introductory-Level Courses

  • Assist international students and heritage language learners in the ESL Resource Center on campus.
  • Teach introductory-level courses in composition, creative writing, and literature as the instructor of record.

Contribute to The Watershed Review

Work as an editor and publisher of The Watershed Review, one of the oldest, continuously published, student-edited literary magazines in the nation.

Watershed Review Logo

Here's What Our Students are Doing


Winner of the 2022 CSU, Chico Outstanding Project Award

Alondra Adame was a fellow in the Graduate Equity Fellowship Program where she was given a stipend to support her research and writing for her collection of essays The Audacity to Live which won the 2020-2021 Outstanding Project Award.

Alondra was president of the English Graduate Student Council where she organized and participated in the 19th annual EGSC symposium. This helped her develop more skills in handling large amounts of submissions and student research.

As a graduate teaching assistant in the English department, Alondra taught both ENGL 130W: Academic Writing and ENGL 220W: Beginning Creative Writing.


Examining a Models of Undergraduate Support

Keaton Kirkpatrick’s master’s thesis, titled “Understanding Embedded Mentoring,” examined a model of undergraduate support that placed experienced students in first-year writing classrooms to offer mentorship and give first-year students support that is rarely embedded into courses. Keaton is currently pursuing his PhD at Michigan State University.

Kyler Dill

Working on a PhD at the University of Iowa

Kyler Dill received his MA in English, specializing in medieval and renaissance literature, in 2019. The following semester he began a PhD program at the University of Iowa in English literature. He is currently working on his dissertation, which explores how seventeenth century writers navigated the complex nature of "ambition" and "improvement" in the early stages of Capitalism - and he has an article publication forthcoming on the topic.