You are here

For Prospective Students

English Master of Arts Program

cyclist on lift bridge

Earn a Master's Degree in English at the University of Minnesota Duluth

The Master's in English Program at the University of Minnesota Duluth is ideally suited to students who are looking for smaller-sized classes, high-quality instruction, and close interaction with graduate faculty—in a spectacular natural setting.

Choose Your Own Emphasis

In this two-year program, students select the emphasis that best suits their interests and professional objectives:

Literary Studies Emphasis

This emphasis provides students with an opportunity for graduate study concentrated in the field of literature. Students who select this emphasis take graduate seminars in critical theory and in American, British, and World Anglophone literatures and cultures, as well as more specifically focused courses such as Shakespeare, the Irish Literary Revival, and the American Literary Marketplace.

Literature, Language, and Culture Emphasis

This emphasis provides coverage and development in diverse fields of literary, language and cultural studies, with an emphasis on comparative analysis of diverse discourses.

Publishing & Print Culture Emphasiscampus from above

This emphasis includes both practiced training in publishing and a scholarly background in the field of print culture studies. Courses offered regularly in this emphasis include Reading & the History of Books; Small Presses, Little Magazines & Modernism; New Media Writing; Internships; and Web Design and Digital Culture.

Writing Studies Emphasis

This emphasis provides concentrated study of the practice and pedagogy of writing, and scholarly background in the history and theory of writing.

Creative Writing Emphasis

This emphasis offers advanced study in the writing of literary genres and the cultural contexts of literary production.

The University

The University of Minnesota Duluth is a comprehensive regional university, with selected graduate programs. UMD consistently ranks among the top Midwestern, regional universities in U.S. News and World Report's “America's Best Colleges” issue. Providing an alternative to both large research universities and small liberal arts colleges, UMD attracts students looking for a personalized learning experience on a medium-sized campus of a major university. Our campus consists of more than 50 buildings on 244 acres overlooking Lake Superior. UMD is also home for the Tweed Museum of Art, the Marshall Performing Arts Center, the Large Lakes Observatory, and the Natural Resources Research Institute.

The Community

Duluth, a beautiful city of approximately 90,000, rises on cliffs and hills above Lake Superior. Numerous parks provide facilities for outdoor recreation including downhill and cross-country skiing, snow boarding, hiking, climbing, swimming, biking, skating, kayaking, and canoeing. Duluth supports a professional symphony and ballet and a variety of theater groups and live music venues. The Twin Cities of Minneapolis-St. Paul are an easy two-hour drive away, as is the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness.

Research Facilities

The UMD Kathryn A. Martin Library features thirty group-study areas with network connections, an interactive television classroom, three electronic instruction classrooms, and a multimedia laboratory, in addition to a collection of more than 650,000 volumes, 2,181 periodical subscriptions, and 2,306 electronic journal titles. Graduate students also have full borrowing privileges at the libraries of the University of Minnesota Twin Cities campus (5 million volumes). Free inter-library loan service is available to all UMD students.

UMD Graduate Students

High-caliber students from a wide variety of backgrounds are at home in our program. Recent students received undergraduate degrees from institutions across the country (UC Berkeley, San Diego State, Carleton College) and the world (Turkey, Russia, Kenya, Germany) as well as from schools closer to UMD (UW-Superior, College of St. Scholastica, UMD).

Students are active contributors to the discipline, presenting papers at national conferences and publishing articles in academic journals. Recent graduates have gone on to Ph.D. programs at Georgetown, University of Nebraska Lincoln, Marquette, and UW-Madison. Others teach English at the secondary and post-secondary level, or pursue careers in fields such as publishing and professional writing.

Teaching Assistantshipsumd library

Applicants to the English MA Program have the option to apply for a Graduate Teaching Assistantship appointment that provides a salary, a 90% reduction in tuition, and other benefits. Assistantship positions begin the the fall semester and are awarded on a competitive basis. 

For details about these positions and applying, see the page "Teaching Assistantships" page. 

Recruitment Fellowships

Tuition waivers and cash-stipend awards are available on a competitive basis. For details contact the UMD Graduate School at, or the English MA Director of Graduate Studies, Evan Brier, at or (218) 726-7839.

For more on financial aid, see the page "Funding Your Graduate Education" from the UMD Graduate School site.