C A L I F O R N I A S T A T E U N I V E R S I T Y B A K E R S F I E L D
Faculty Towers, 202A
(661) 664-2063 (fax)
Program Coordinator: Robert S. Carlisle
Faculty Towers, 201E
Faculty: S. Adjaye, M. Ayuso, R. Carlisle,
S. Carter, E. Case, L Clymer,
K. Flachmann, M. Flachmann,
S. Frye, G. Hudson, S. Iyasere,
M. Pawlowski, A. Troup
The English graduate program provides a carefully planned and integrated program ensuring a foundation of professional skills through a common core of courses; some uniform degree of coverage in the areas of English and American literature; intensive training in reading, critical analysis research, and writing; and breadth through an emphasis on the fields of literature, language, and composition. The MA qualifies students to teach in the California community college system or secondary schools as well as prepares them for careers in editing, advertising, and public information.
The Master of Arts in English provides: (1) a carefully planned and integrated program ensuring a foundation of professional skills through a common core of courses; (2) some uniform degree of coverage in the areas of English and American literature; (3) more intensive training in reading, critical analysis, research, and writing than is possible in undergraduate work, and (4) breadth through an emphasis on the fields of literature, language, and composition.
To meet these objectives, our program has been designed primarily to provide: (1) a well‑balanced program for those who wish to terminate their studies at the master’s level and whose primary aim is to teach in a community college; (2) advanced training for teachers who wish to improve their professional skills and status; (3) a variety of courses for students who plan to continue towards the Ph.D. degree at another institution, and (4) continuing education for those who wish to extend their knowledge as an end in itself through an interesting and stimulating series of classes in literature, criticism, language, as well as the teaching of composition and English as a Second Language.
APPLICATION AND ADMISSION
Persons seeking graduate study in English must first apply for admission to the University Office of Admissions. Applications are available in the English Department office, as well as the Office of Graduate Studies and Research. Admission to graduate study by the university does not constitute acceptance into the English MA Program. It does, however, permit students to take courses as unclassified post-baccalaureate students and to begin the process leading to classification (see “Classification of Graduate Students” below).
Upon admission to the university, students must immediately notify the English Department’s Graduate Program Coordinator of their intention to pursue the MA degree. The Graduate Coordinator will familiarize the student with the requirements and timetable of the MA Program. Students wishing to pursue graduate studies culminating in a master’s degree in English file an application with the Department of English. To obtain this application, students may write to the graduate coordinator of the Department of English, or they may go to the web site described above. Though the application asks for scores for the Graduate Record Examination, students do not fill out that section.
Admissions Requirements – Admission to the graduate program leading to the Master of Arts in English requires the following:
1. A baccalaureate degree in English from an accredited college or university, including the equivalent of ENGL 300, ENGL/LING 414 (previously ENGL/LING 318), and two period courses;
2. A 2.5 GPA (A=4.0) for the last 90 quarter units (60 semester units) attempted;
3. A combined score of 1000 on both the verbal measure of the Graduate Record Exam General Test and the Literature in English Subject Exam, with a minimum of 500 on the verbal measure or an overall undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) with 3.0 in the major;
4. Submission of the department’s application form.
5. For international students or those whose first language is not English, a TOEFL score of 550 or higher (or 213 on the new conversation scale for the computer-based TOEFL). Documentation must be provided in original form by the testing institution; copies submitted by the applicant are not acceptable.
Students who have a baccalaureate degree in a subject other than English must complete the eight-course (41 unit) undergraduate core requirements for English with a GPA of 3.00 before being considered for admission to the master’s degree program in English. The undergraduate core requirements are described below. All courses are to be selected in consultation with the Graduate Program Coordinator for English.
1. ENGL 300 Approaches to Literature
2. One course in a major figure or group: ENGL 325, 335, 336, 337, or 375
3. One course in language: ENGL/LING 318 or 414 (previously ENGL/LING 318)
4. One course from the period 450-1785: ENGL 320, 330, or 340
5. One course from the period 1785 to the present: ENGL 350, 351, 360, 361, 380, 381, or 382
6. One genre course: ENGL 475
7. Any other upper division literature course
8. ENGL 490 Senior Seminar
Classification of Graduate Students
There are four classifications for students in the English graduate program:
Post-Baccalaureate/Unclassified – Students accepted by the university for post-baccalaureate study may take English courses with approval from the instructor. These courses may be taken solely for personal pleasure, for professional development, or as a means of establishing a record in the English Department that will lead to classified standing. However, it is important to note that a Post-Baccalaureate Unclassified Student may take no more than two five-unit courses that count towards the requirements for the MA in English.
Classified – A student who meets all the requirements for admission to the master’s degree program in English will be admitted as a Classified Graduate Student. A Classified Graduate Student may take any graduate-level course meeting the requirements of his or her plan of study as long as the appropriate prerequisites have been met.
Conditionally Classified – A student who meets most but not all of the requirements for admission as a Classified Graduate Student may be admitted as a Conditionally Classified Graduate Student. The Graduate Committee for English will determine the conditions which the student must meet in order to be advanced to Classified Graduate Student status. A Conditionally Classified Graduate Student may take no more than two five-unit courses that count towards the requirements for the MA in English while meeting the specified conditions.
Candidacy – Classified students who have maintained a 3.25 GPA will be advanced to candidacy in the term in which they intend to graduate.
It is essential that MA students stay in contact with the Graduate Coordinator and especially their advisors, so the department can provide current information to help the student move expeditiously through the program. It is the student’s responsibility, in consultation with the Graduate Coordinator, to choose appropriate courses and to organize a thesis or examination committee. Meeting with the Graduate Coordinator is an important first step in the MA program. The Graduate Coordinator advises and guides students during the period of graduate study and responds to any misgivings students may have while in the program. Students have a responsibility to schedule regular meetings with the Graduate Coordinator.
Committee Selection – Each MA student in English must have a committee, either to provide examinations or to read and guide the thesis. The Graduate Coordinator can provide assistance in forming an MA committee.
Note: Students who wish to pursue the doctorate in English are strongly encouraged to begin or continue the study of one or more foreign languages. Courses in French and Spanish are available at CSUB in the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures.
Each master’s candidate must complete a minimum of ten English graduate courses of five units each plus two three-unit courses (ENGL 500 Methods of Scholarly Research and either ENGL 690 Comprehensive Examination or ENGL 691 Thesis). Students must earn a GPA of 3.0 (B) or better. (No course in which the student receives less than a “B-” will count toward the degree.) The ten courses will include:
A. Required courses:
1. ENGL 500 Methods of Scholarly Research. Must be taken as one of the student’s first three graduate English courses.
2. ENGL 515 Theories of English Grammar or ENGL 518 History of the English Language
3. ENGL 570 Criticism
B. One course from each of the six fields listed below:
1. ENGL 525 Chaucer
ENGL 533 Seventeenth-Century British Literature or ENGL 535 Shakespeare
2. ENGL 541 Eighteenth‑Century British Literature
ENGL 552 Nineteenth‑Century British Literature
ENGL 564 Twentieth‑Century Poetry or
ENGL 568 Modern British Novel
3. ENGL 582 Early American Literature or
ENGL 583 Later Nineteenth-Century American Literature
ENGL 584 Modern American Literature or
ENGL 585 Contemporary American Literature
4. ENGL 504 Approaches to the Analysis of Writing
ENGL 505 Rhetorical Theory
5. ENGL 506 Composition Theory and Practice or ENGL 578 Special Methods in the Instruction of Literature
ENGL 507 Writing in a Second Language or ENGL 508 Teaching Basic Writers
6. ENGL 580 Ethnic Literature
C. At least one elective course from the fields above. These ten courses will ordinarily be selected from those courses numbered in the 500-600 level series but as many as two 400-level classes (supplemented by additional graduate-level work) may be substituted with the permission of the instructor and the Graduate Committee. With the approval of the student’s advisor and the Graduate Coordinator, up to two courses may be taken by independent study; however, ENGL 500, 515, 518, and 570 are not available through independent study.
D. ENGL 690 Comprehensive Examination or ENGL 691 Thesis. Upon completion of all course work, students enroll in ENGL 690 (3 units) or ENGL 691 (3 units). ENGL 690 is an independent reading which culminates in a written comprehensive examination based on the department’s standardized reading list. The examination must be passed with a grade of “B-” or better, and it may be taken no more than two times.
E. Additional Requirements
Writing Competency Requirement – All graduate students must satisfy the Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement as soon as possible, unless they have already done so as undergraduates or graduates at CSUB or at another California State University. This requirement may be met by passing the regularly scheduled examination or by successfully completing ENGL 304, 305, or 310, or 311; this requirement must be satisfied before the student may take the final comprehensive examination.
Time Limitation on Course Requirements – State law mandates a seven-year limitation on course credits. Students who fail to complete their degree programs within the seven-year limit may petition the Department’s Graduate Committee to permit the revalidating of outdated courses. If granted, such revalidation will normally require an oral or written examination on the course content supervised by a specialist in the field.
Teaching Assistant Program in Writing – The Teaching Assistant Program begins with a one-quarter apprenticeship in a composition course or courses in the department. If the faculty mentor’s evaluations are positive and enrollment is sufficient, the student will be assigned to his or her own class for a maximum of three quarters. Students are required to take ENGL 600: English Practicum (3 units) in conjunction with their apprenticeship. Prerequisites for the Teaching Assistant Program are: (1) completion of ENGL 506 with a grade of “B+” or better, and (2) completion of 20 hours of tutoring.
Teaching Assistant Program in Literature – The Teaching Assistant Program begins with a one-quarter apprenticeship in a literature course in the department. If the faculty mentor’s evaluations are positive, the student may apply to work as a teaching assistant for an instructor in Engl 101. Students are required to take Engl 600 English Practicum (3 units) in conjunction with their apprenticeship. Prerequisite: Engl 578 Special Methods in the Instruction of Literature with a grade of B+ or better.
ENGL 500 Methods of Scholarly Research (3)
The study of the nature and function of imaginative, expository, and argumentative writing. The resources for scholarship in composition and in literature and the problems of method in the major areas of research in English. Must be taken as one of the student’s first three graduate English courses.
ENGL 504 Approaches to the Analysis of Writing (5)
A study of various linguistics approaches for analyzing the structure of written texts.
ENGL 505 Rhetorical Theory (5)
An introduction to recent research on written composition, the most current theories of rhetoric, and the implications of these theories for the teaching of writing.
ENGL 506 Composition Theory and Practice (5)
Emphasis on the understanding of grammar, syntax, structure, and form, in principle, as well as of the problems in communicating effective and acceptable language usage in a classroom situation.
ENGL 507 Writing in a Second Language (5)
The writing process and the written products of people composing in English as a foreign language. Topics of discussion include contrastive rhetoric, error analysis, and evaluation. Special attention will be given to the writing problems of international students learning English and to appropriate instructional procedures helpful to such students.
ENGL 508 Teaching Basic Writers (5)
This course includes both the traditional underpinnings and the practical applications for teaching developmental writers and addresses the diverse cultural, emotional, and academic needs of these students.
ENGL 515 Theories of English Grammar (5)
Study of the assumptions, systems, and applications of one or more modern approaches to the English language.
ENGL 518 History of the English Language (5)
Studies in the development of English phonology, morphology, and syntax from the Old English period to the present.
ENGL 525 Chaucer (5)
Studies in The Canterbury Tales and/or Troilus and Criseyde, and a selection of Chaucer’s shorter poems.
ENGL 533 Seventeenth-Century British Literature (5)
Study of seventeenth-century poetry, prose, and/or drama. (Note: May be repeated with permission of advisor if different course content.)
ENGL 535 Shakespeare (5)
Study of selected plays. Prerequisite: ENGL 335 or consent of the instructor.
ENGL 541 Eighteenth-Century British Literature (5)
Study of eighteenth-century poetry, prose, and/or drama. (Note: May be repeated with permission of advisor if different course content.)
ENGL 552 Nineteenth-Century British Literature (5)
Study of nineteenth-century poetry, nonfiction prose, fiction, and/or drama. (Note: May be repeated with permission of advisor if different course content.)
ENGL 564 Twentieth-Century Poetry (5)
Survey of major British and American poets from about 1914 to the present. (Note: May be repeated with permission of advisor if different course content.)
ENGL 568 Modern British Novel
Survey of major British novelists from 1900. (Note: May be repeated with permission of advisor if different course content.)
ENGL 570 Criticism (5)
Problems in the application of critical methods in both literature and language studies, with emphasis on the formation and development of major trends in critical theory.
ENGL 572 Poetry and Poetics (5)
Study of selected poets, their works, and their poetics. (Note: May be repeated with permission of advisor if different course content.)
ENGL 576 Development of the English Novel (5)
Study of continuity and change in the structure and style of the English novel and novella.
ENGL 578 Special Methods in the Instruction of Literature (5)
An introduction for graduate students intending to teach high school or community college English, this course explores the implications of modern literary theory for classroom instruction of the literary text.
ENGL 580 Ethnic Literature (5)
Study of American ethnic writers, their viewpoints, and their aesthetics. The social and cultural contexts of the literature will also be studied. May be repeated with permission of advisor when course content changes, as in African-American Literature, Chicano Literature, Asian-American Literature, etc.
ENGL 582 Early American Literature (5)
Studies in American literature from the Colonial Period to the Civil War. (Note: May be repeated with permission of advisor if different course content.)
ENGL 583 Later Nineteenth-Century American Literature (5)
Studies in American Literature from the Civil War to 1900. (Note: May be repeated with permission of advisor if different course content.)
ENGL 584 Modern American Literature (5)
Studies in Twentieth-Century American Literature to WWII. (Note: May be repeated with permission of advisor if different course content.)
ENGL 585 Contemporary American Literature (5)
American Literature since WWII. (Note: May be repeated with permission of advisor if different course content.)
ENGL 591 Theories of Second Language Acquisition (5)
This class examines and compares the most recent and influential theories of second language acquisition including the monitor model, interlanguage theory, linguistic universals, cognitive theory, and acculturation/pidginization theory. The class applies towards the TESL Certificate, not towards the MA in English. Prerequisite: ENGL/LING 319 or 415 or 420 or ENGL 514.
ENGL 600 English Practicum (3)
A requirement for participation in the Teaching Assistant Program in English, this course allows students to observe and participate in the design and daily work of a college-level writing class (at BC or at CSUB). Students will work with a master teacher in and outside of class (inasmuch as we can accommodate specific requests) and be responsible for some independent work outside of class that is directly relevant to the assigned course. Can be repeated for different course content.
ENGL 690 Comprehensive Examination (3)
A comprehensive written examination on a reading list covering major works of English and American Literature. Readings selected in consultation with the student’s graduate committee. The examination must be passed with a grade of “B-” or better, and it may be taken no more than two times. Prerequisite: successful completion of the graduate course work.
ENGL 691 Thesis (3)
A carefully designed study of a selected topic or area in English or American literature. Emphasis placed on original insights as contributions to graduate scholarship. Prerequisites: Classified Status and approval of the department’s Graduate Committee.
ENGL 698 Directed Study in the Instruction of English (variable units)
A class in the theory and methods in undergraduate and graduate instruction in English. Weekly meetings with faculty sponsor and supervised experience which may include developing, administering, and scoring examinations; leading small group discussions; tutoring; and directing students in researching term papers. Offered on a credit, no-credit basis only. Prerequisites: consent of instructor who will serve as the sponsor and approval by chair of the Department of English.
ENGL 699 Individual Study (variable units)
Admission with consent of department chair.