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Grad application FAQ

View some commonly asked questions you may have about applying for graduate studies in the Department of English

The deadline is December 15 to complete your online application including the Statement of Intent.  After submitting your application, the deadline is January 10 for all supporting documents (reference letters, transcripts, sample(s) of writing, and English Language Proficiency documentation, if applicable).

You are required to list ALL post-secondary institutions attended regardless of whether the degree was completed.  This includes any short-term enrolment, courses taken for upgrading, transfer credit, and any previous attendance at the University of Calgary. Failure to disclose full post-secondary records is a serious matter.

Provide official transcripts from ALL the institutions where you have studied regardless of whether you completed a degree, by January 10.  Both domestic and international applicants will be considered for funding so long as their complete application has been received by the deadline.

After you submit your online application, you will receive an email with your UCID number and instructions on how to access your Student Centre to upload your supporting documents.

Proof of English Language Proficiency is required for applicants whose first language is not English.  The Faculty of Graduate Studies sets out minimum qualifications; however, the Department of English requires the following minimum level:  TOEFL 105 internet based; IELTS 7.5 with no band less than 7.

Even though you may be enrolled or have previously completed a degree in English, the requirement is in place.  Our selection committee needs to have the information as part of their review.

The Department of English does not require applicants to sit the GRE exam.

Ensure your university sends your official transcripts in a sealed envelope to directly to our department:

Graduate Program Administrator
Department of English
2500 University Drive NW
Calgary, Alberta  Canada
T2N 1N4

Prospective students should apply to all award competitions for which they are eligible, including Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) awards and the Graduate Award Competition (GAC).  See UCalgary Graduate Award Opportunities and the English Graduate Funding & Awards page for details.

For Master’s degrees: Admitted students will be considered for departmental Entrance Awards as long as their complete application is received by the deadline.

For Doctoral degrees: See our Funding Policy for Doctoral Students

You are not required to submit a research proposal. Your Statement of Intent is where you need to describe your intended area of study, research plans and reasons for pursuing a graduate degree with our program.

All students in our graduate programs complete Literature in English requirements for their specific degree. If approved for the Creative Writing option in the Master’s program, thesis students may be permitted to submit a substantial work of poetry or fiction as a creative project for their thesis ; course-based students may be permitted to submit a creative project for ENGL 710 (Capstone Course) which will normally be based on work done in a CW course. PhD students may be permitted to submit a substantial book-length manuscript of poetry or fiction for their dissertation.

Applicants are not required to have a confirmed supervisor before admission.  You may want to communicate with faculty members whose research aligns with the area you want to study; however, there is no expectation that supervisory arrangements will come from that communication.

Students in our program normally have a degree in English or in a closely related discipline.  Admissibility will depend on the strength of all parts of your application and evidence that you have enough background in literature and critical theory courses. In some cases, applicants may need to ask their referee(s) to address gaps in those areas.

The course-based MA is an intensive program designed to be completed in a year including the final  ENGL 710 capstone research project and allows students to move into PhD studies relatively quickly.

The thesis-based MA normally takes two years and has a slightly slower pace to allow for thesis research and examination.  MA students from both programs are admissible to a PhD program and both degrees can be considered a “terminal degree”.

Graduate program contacts

Contact us for any questions you may have about the programs we offer in the Department of English.

Graduate Program Advisor

Ask me about graduate program advising

Lori Somner

Associate Head (Graduate Program)

Ask me about graduate degree requirements

Morgan Vanek

Creative Writing Coordinator

Ask me about the Creative Writing Program

Clara A.B. Joseph