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English (MA)

Students in the MA program take advanced courses in a range of literary periods and critical approaches. You’ll work towards a research-based master’s essay or project.

This program will prepare you for PhD programs or secondary advanced credentials (e.g., education, library and information sciences or archival studies).

You can complete this degree in 12 months. Students taking the Cultural, Social and Political Thought concentration normally need 18-24 months.

Funded MA students receive a one-year funding package of $15,000-$17,500 (including a mix of fellowships, awards and teaching assistantships).

Expected length Project or thesis Course-based
1 year Yes No

Quick facts

Program options:
Master's
Study options:
Full-time study
Program delivery:
On-campus
Dynamic learning:
Co-op optional

Outcomes

Students in this program will:

  • evaluate and employ theoretical, methodological, material, generic, historical and thematic approaches to literature, culture and media in English
  • conduct sophisticated critical analyses that demonstrate advanced research skills
  • construct complex arguments and express them persuasively
  • employ practical experience from the classroom and/or co-op learning
  • evaluate colonial and post-colonial dimensions of English as a discipline
  • demonstrate practical and analytical skills needed for higher levels of employment and doctoral programs

Find a supervisor

You do not need to identify, or have the agreement of, a supervisor before applying to this program.

It’s a good idea to explore our faculty listings and consider who you might like to work with. You don’t need to have anything confirmed for your application.

When we review your application, we’ll consider who would be best to supervise your work, depending on your proposed research.

Adrienne Williams Boyarin

Professor Medieval literature

Alison Chapman, FRSC

Professor Nineteenth-century literature and culture, Victorian poetry, women's writing, Anglo-Italian studies, Digital Humanities.

Allan Mitchell

Professor Medieval Literature

Andrew Murray

Assistant Teaching Professor

Christopher Douglas

Professor Contemporary American Fiction; multiculturalism; postmodernism

Eric Miller

Associate Professor Poetry; the lyric essay; Friedrich Hoelderlin; Ann Radcliffe; Elizabeth Simcoe

Erin Ellerbeck

Associate Professor Renaissance literature; Shakespeare

Erin Kelly

Associate Professor & ATWP Director Rhetoric; Renaissance; Shakespeare; sixteenth- and seventeenth-century English drama

G. Kim Blank

Professor English Romantic poetry; cultural studies; theories of influence; university writing

Gary Kuchar

Professor Renaissance Literature; Seventeenth-Century Poetry and Prose; Intellectual History; Reformation Culture and Thought; Shakespeare; Literary/Critical Theory; Philosophy of Religion

Iain Higgins

Professor & Student Liaison Medieval English and Scottish literature; poetry; travel writing; utopian and dystopian fiction

James Dopp

Associate Professor Canadian literature; hockey

Janelle Jenstad

Professor Shakespeare; Renaissance drama; London studies; bibliographical and print culture; digital humanities

Jentery Sayers

Associate Professor Media studies; American literature; critical theory; interactive fiction; prototyping; praxis and pedagogy

Joseph Grossi

Professor & Acting Undergraduate Adviser Old and Middle English literature

Kim McLean-Fiander

Assistant Teaching Professor & AWR Adviser Academic writing, early modern literature, book history, women writers, digital humanities

Lincoln Shlensky

Associate Professor Cultural studies; Film and media studies; Postcolonialism; Caribbean literature; Jewish and Hebrew studies

Lisa Chalykoff

Associate Teaching Professor Canadian literature

Lisa Surridge

Professor Victorian fiction and culture; illustrated Victorian serial fiction; legal writing

Luke Carson

Associate Professor & Chair Modern and contemporary American poetry; aesthetic theory

Magdalena Kay

Professor Twentieth- and twenty-first-century British poetry; Irish poetry; Polish poetry; comparative literature; poetics

Mary Elizabeth Leighton

Professor Victorian Literature

Michael Nowlin

Professor 19th - and 20th-Century American literature

Misao Dean

Professor Early Canadian writing on animals and the natural world; the Canadian novel; representation; contemporary critical theory; feminisms

Monika Smith

Assistant Teaching Professor Academic and Technical Writing

Nancy Wright

Professor Shakespearean drama; seventeenth-century English poetry; literature and legal history; literature, religion and film.

Nicholas Bradley

Associate Professor & Honours Program Adviser Canadian literature, American literature, literatures of the West Coast

Nicole Shukin

Associate Professor Theories of biopower; politics of nature and animals; cultures of globalization

Raymond Siemens

Distinguished Professor Renaissance literature; textual culture; editorial theory; Humanities Computing

Rebecca Gagan

Associate Teaching Professor Romanticism; Pedagogy; Academic Writing; Scholarship of Teaching and Learning; Community-Engaged Learning

Rebecca Halliday

Assistant Teaching Professor& Professional Communication Adviser communication studies; fashion studies; media studies; performance studies; digital media and mediatization; social media; influencers; AI; fashion and streetwear; affect theory; material culture; immaterial labour; popular culture; corporate communication; crisis communication

Richard Pickard

Assistant Teaching Professor Environmental humanities; composition; 18th C. poetry; BC writing; professional and technical writing

Richard van Oort

Professor Shakespeare; literary theory; generative anthropology; literature and anthropology

Samuel Wong

Assistant Teaching Professor

Shamma Boyarin

Assistant Professor Medieval Hebrew and Arabic literature; the Bible and literature

Sheila Rabillard

Associate Professor Modern drama and theatre criticism

Stephen Ross

Professor & Graduate Adviser Modernism; theory; the novel; literature and theory of climate change

Suzan Last

Associate Teaching Professor Academic and technical writing; curriculum development

Show me program details

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Application deadlines

September entry – apply by January 15
September entry – apply by January 15

Admission requirements

Program specific requirements

  • Completion of a bachelor's degree in English or a related discipline. Preference is given to those with an Honours BA in English or a major that included a range of courses in English literature and literary theory.
  • An A- average or higher in the last two years of study and at least a B average overall is standard, i.e., a grade point average of 7.0 on a nine-point scale, 3.7 on a four-point scale, or a high second-class standing.
  • Unofficial transcripts from every post-secondary institution attended. (If you are offered admission, you will need to submit official transcripts).
  • Names and emails of two academic references. They will be sent assessment forms directly.
  • A statement of intent: one single-spaced typed page. Indicate your area(s) of academic interest and describe your preparation for the program. Explain what research or path you plan to undertake and explain why UVic is suited to these plans. (CSPT applicants should be sure to highlight preparation and research suitable to the CSPT program.)
  • A 10–15-page double-spaced typed essay demonstrating strong academic writing and advanced literary and/or critical abilities. If you don’t hold an Honours degree you may submit two shorter essays.
  • A curriculum vitae. This should include details of your educational background, any relevant training, employment experience (academic or otherwise), awards and honours (academic or otherwise), publications (academic or otherwise), and any experience with leadership, teaching, and/or conference presentation.
  • GRE scores are not required.

Program specific requirements

  • Completion of a bachelor's degree in English or a related discipline. Preference is given to those with an Honours BA in English or a major that included a range of courses in English literature and literary theory.
  • An A- average or higher in the last two years of study and at least a B average overall is standard, i.e., a grade point average of 7.0 on a nine-point scale, 3.7 on a four-point scale, or a high second-class standing.
  • Unofficial transcripts from every post-secondary institution attended. (If you are offered admission, you will need to submit official transcripts).
  • Names and emails of two academic references. They will be sent assessment forms directly.
  • A statement of intent: one single-spaced typed page. Indicate your area(s) of academic interest and describe your preparation for the program. Explain what research or path you plan to undertake and explain why UVic is suited to these plans. (CSPT applicants should be sure to highlight preparation and research suitable to the CSPT program.)
  • A 10–15-page double-spaced typed essay demonstrating strong academic writing and advanced literary and/or critical abilities. If you don’t hold an Honours degree you may submit two shorter essays.
  • A curriculum vitae. This should include details of your educational background, any relevant training, employment experience (academic or otherwise), awards and honours (academic or otherwise), publications (academic or otherwise), and any experience with leadership, teaching, and/or conference presentation.
  • GRE scores are not required.

Completion requirements

View the minimum course requirements for this program.
View the minimum course requirements for this program.

Funding & aid

Tuition & fees

Estimated minimum program cost*

* Based on an average program length. For a per term fee breakdown view the tuition fee estimator.

Estimated values determined by the tuition fee estimator shall not be binding to the University of Victoria.

Ready to apply?

You can start your online application to UVic by creating a new profile or using an existing one.

Apply now    How to apply

Faculties & departments

Need help?

Contact Deborah Ogilvie at englgradsec@uvic.ca or 250-721-6331.

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