Successful and waitlisted applicants to all graduate programs will be notified by the middle of March via email. Unsuccessful applicants will be sent written notification by early May.
Please review the English Proficiency Requirement on the School of Graduate Studies website: https://www.sgs.utoronto.ca/admissions/admission-requirements/english-language-proficiency-testing/
Admission to all graduate programs in English is based on the candidate’s undergraduate and graduate record, on the evidence of the academic references, on the writing sample, and on the statement of purpose. Please consult the School of Graduate Studies Calendar for admission requirements and program regulations, including English language facility. Admission is competitive: the minimum qualifications do not ensure acceptance.
Entry into the MA program requires an appropriate bachelor's degree [i.e. a 4-year undergraduate degree] or its equivalent, (preferably in English) with a minimum GPA of 3.3 (B+average). Students also need a minimum of 7 full (full-year) courses or the equivalent of full-year and half-year courses in English. Evidence of first-class work (A) in some English courses and a course (or a half course) in the following major periods would strengthen the student's application: Medieval, Renaissance non-dramatic, Renaissance dramatic, 18th-century and Romantic (or Victorian). While historical coverage is especially important, a strong grounding in the major literary genres is also an asset, as is study in the varieties of literary writing in English, across national cultures and ethnic/racialized, gendered, and sexually diverse communities.
The Department of English does not require GRE scores for the PhD, PhD Direct Entry, MA, and the MA in the Field of Creative Writing programs.
Current M.A. students who are planning to apply to Ph.D. programs are strongly encouraged to apply for SSHRC and OGS awards in preparation for first-year doctoral studies.
Students wishing to apply for admission into a collaborative program must apply to (and be accepted into) both the Department of English and the respective collaborative program.
Once all documents are received your application will be reviewed for admission. It is your responsibility to monitor the status of your documents in the online application and to follow up with your referees if references are not received in advance of the deadline. The Department of English will ONLY accept paper documents for the following admission materials:
The SGS on-line application will close on 10 December (scanned transcripts, Statement of Purpose and Writing Sample must also be uploaded by 10 December). Official transcripts and electronic letters of reference are due 14 January. This is a STRICT deadline. LATE APPLICATIONS will not be accepted and incomplete applications will not be reviewed.
Fields of Study
Deadline for Applications:
On-line applications must be complete and supporting documents (with the exception of letters of reference and official transcripts) received in the department by 10 December 2020*. Letters of reference and official transcripts will be received until 14 January 2021*. We recommend you allow at least 15 business days for mailing any supporting documents.
PLEASE READ THE INFORMATION IN THE YELLOW BOX BELOW, BEFORE PROCEEDING TO THE SGS ONLINE ADMISSIONS APPLICAITON.
HOW TO APPLY (SGS Online Applications):
PLEASE NOTE THAT THE DEADLINES FOR THESE EXTERNAL AWARDS ARE MUCH EARLIER THAN THE DEADLINE FOR OUR APPLICATION FOR ADMISSION.
|CHECKLIST FOR A COMPLETE GRADUATE APPLICATION PACKAGE
Programs of Study
The Department of English offers three graduate degree programs: MA (including MA in the Field of Creative Writing or MA CRW), PhD and Direct Entry (PhD U), and it also participates in a number of Collaborative Specialization Programs. Students who will have finished their B.A., and who have not yet enrolled in any M.A. program, should, under normal circumstances, apply to the M.A. program. However, a small number of B.A. students may be considered for direct entry to the PhD program. Students applying to the MA program who wish to be considered for direct entry should indicate this in their statement of purpose and submit a second application to the Direct Entry program. However, if you are interested only in the Direct Entry program and not the MA, please apply to the Direct Entry Program only.
Collaborative Specializations offered through the Department of English are: Book History and Print Culture (MA and PhD), Diaspora and Transnational Studies (MA and PhD), Editing Medieval Texts (PhD only), Jewish Studies (MA and PhD), Sexual Diversity Studies (MA and PhD), South Asian Studies (MA and PhD), Women and Gender Studies (MA and PhD), Women's Health (MA and PhD).
A Combined Program in Law and Literature (MA only) is offered through the Department of English.
The Department requires applicants to submit one electronic or scanned transcript from each post-secondary institution attended to begin the application process. Applications will not be considered complete and will not be reviewed by the Admissions Committee until official paper transcripts have been received. The deadline for submitting official paper transcripts is 14 January.
Electronic or Scanned copies of Transcripts:
Scanned copies of transcripts must be up to date and must include the transcript “legend” which is usually printed on the back of the paper transcript. More detailed requirements for scanning and submitting can be found below. The application review process will begin based on this electronic or scanned transcript. Please ensure that the file is complete and readable before submitting.
The following option applies to transcripts from Canadian universities only: In lieu of a scanned copy of a paper transcript, applicants may upload a PDF file of their academic history from their university’s student web service. Printing to pdf directly from your web browser is ideal; if this is not possible you may copy and paste the information into a word processing program and print to pdf from there. Where possible, the file should include the university’s grading legend and your name. Some universities do not include the same information on the student web service as they do on the transcript (e.g., class size or average). If the admissions committee determines that the file is incomplete you may be asked to submit a copy of the transcript instead.
Please scan your transcript in grayscale at the lowest dots per inch (dpi) setting that results in a legible document. We recommend 72 dpi whenever possible.
Letters of Reference
Two academic letters of reference are required. As soon as you have entered all the referee’s contact information and paid the application fee, the system will send an invitation to the referee to submit an appraisal electronically (using a link to a form). Please allow 15 days for the submission of appraisals. Letters of reference must be submitted electronically. Paper copies will not be accepted.
For MA CRW applicants: Two academic letters of reference submitted online by referees, each addressing your performance in university English and/or Creative Writing coursework. At least one letter must discuss your performance in English coursework. Do not use editors, publishers, or fellow writers as referees.
PhD and PhD Direct Entry applicants are required to upload a CV (of no more than 3 pages) with their SGS on-line application. This is a mandatory requirement.
MA and MA CRW applicants can choose to upload a CV (of no more than 3 pages) with their SGS on-line application.
Please do not send a hardcopy of your CV to the Department of English.
Statement of Academic Purpose
You should submit a statement of purpose outlining the particular strengths and interests you would bring to us. Discuss the areas of literary history and the literary forms that your work has engaged and is likely to engage in future, as well as the theoretical approaches that inform that work. (If you are a PhD applicant you should, in addition, outline in detail the kind of dissertation you might ideally write). You should also consult our web site and mention faculty members whose work is particularly relevant to your proposed studies and research. The statement should be limited to 500 words.
PhD and Direct Entry PhD applicants should upload a writing sample (with their SGS on-line application) of not more than 5,000 words (15-20pp), inclusive of footnotes and endnotes. The bibliography is not part of the required word count.
MA applicants should upload a writing sample (with their SGS online application) a maximum of 12 to 15 double-spaced pages (inclusive of footnotes and bibliography). Portfolio submission requirements for the MA in the Field of Creative Writing are different, see below for details. The writing sample should be an accomplished piece of the applicant’s own academic writing, such as an advanced undergraduate seminar paper. Preference is for essays focused on literary studies and criticism. Applicants from other academic backgrounds should submit a sample that demonstrates their skills in close reading and analysis.
NOTE: MA, MA in the Field of Creative Writing & PH D Applicants
Multiple writing samples or portfolios will not be considered, so please choose the one that best exemplifies your skills as a scholar.
Writing samples must be less than 1 megabyte in size in order to be uploaded to the SGS online application.
Portfolio (for applicants to the M.A. in the Field of Creative Writing only)
Please submit a portfolio consisting of 20-25 pages of prose (drama, fiction, or creative non-fiction), and/or poetry. Manuscripts cannot exceed the maximum of 25 double-spaced pages of prose or 25 pages of poetry (double-spacing not necessary) or a combination of double-spaced prose and poetry (not to exceed 25 pages).
If you wish to be considered for admission to a collaborative specialization program, please follow the instructions in Step 4 of the online Program Application. You should also contact the specific Collaborative Specialization Program Office to determine the admissions deadlines and to see if they require any additional documentation.
Proposed Area of Study
If you have identified an area of particular research, please note this in the section on Program Selection of the Program Application. If not, please leave the section blank. Applicants to the MA in the Field of Creative Writing should specify Creative Writing.
Applicants applying to the M.A. in the Field of Creative Writing and who would like to be considered for entry into the regular MA in English (or vice versa) MUST complete an SGS on-line application and submit the required supporting documentation for each program.
English Language Proficiency testing (updated Sept 2020)
English Language Proficiency is a requirement of the School of Graduate Studies. Please see our Admission FAQ webpage. Detailed and specific information about accepted tests, minimum required scores, procedure for submission of the scores to the University of Toronto, and exemption procedures is available from the SGS website here: https://www.sgs.utoronto.ca/admissions/admission-application-requirements/english-language-proficiency-testing/
Please send supporting materials (official transcripts/English Language Test scores) to:
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