Graduate Information

students and professor in class

The Department of English offers a full range of courses and faculty expertise in nearly all fields of literary, language, and creative writing study, with strengths in Early Modern studies, American Studies, ethnic literature, New England studies, gender studies, linguistics, and creative writing. 

We offer the following graduate degrees: Ph.D., Literature track; Ph.D., Rhetoric, Literacy, and Composition Studies track; M.A., English Studies; M.A., English Language and Linguistics; M.F.A. in Creative Writing, Options in Fiction, Nonfiction, and Poetry Writing; M.S.T., Master of Science in Teaching.

The array of these programs is unusually broad. What makes our programs distinctive are the interconnections among them. The scope and relatively small size of graduate studies in this department encourage integration and mutual reinforcement among programs and among students.

Individual programs are characterized by high faculty/student ratios and offer an unusually supportive community. Courses are characteristically small in size, and students receive close attention from faculty as they hone skills in critical reading, writing, and teaching. Other full-scale graduate programs at larger institutions cannot offer such close attention to students’ aspirations and abilities.

Excellence in teacher training is critical to the English graduate program’s mission. The graduate student experience in the classroom begins at an earlier stage at UNH than at other institutions, and beginning students are closely supervised. Students do not serve as assistants in large lecture courses but teach their own sections independently. The effectiveness of this system is documented by a remarkable rate of job placement and the professional success of our graduates.*

In addition to the teacher training it provides, the English Department supports other means of preparing graduate students as future faculty and working professionals. We encourage students to publish their research and to present papers at conferences, and the Department, as well as the Graduate School, provide funding to enable professional travel and encourage publication.

Graduate students are active participants in the Department. They sustain the English Graduate Student Organization (EGO) and have representation on the Department English Graduate Committee as well as the University’s Graduate Student Senate.

For information about tuition, fees, housing, and graduate life at UNH, visit the UNH Graduate School

*The department’s record of Ph.D. job placement is remarkably good. Because of the national shortage of tenure-track positions in literature, as in other areas of the humanities, less than half of English Ph.D.s nationally find tenure-track positions. However, in the last 10 years, 70 percent of our Ph.D. graduates secured tenure-track positions either in the year of graduation or in the following years. Ph.D.s in Literature had a success rate of 53 percent, while 89 percent of Ph.D.s in Rhetoric, Literacy, and Composition Studies found tenure-track jobs. However, if we take into account decisions of UNH graduates not to search nationally for a position but to remain in the area, our figures are much higher: 80 percent tenure-track placement in literature and 100 percent in composition.

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