How to Apply

Designating Your Degree Choice

Applicants to the doctoral program who have not completed an M.A. in English should indicate the M.A. program as their degree choice on the electronic application. Students admitted at this level will be advanced to the doctoral program upon completion of 30-32 hours of relevant graduate work (with a cumulative GPA of 3.7 or higher), and demonstrated proficiency in one language. Applicants who have completed an M.A. in English should indicate the Ph.D. program on the electronic application.

While generally the English department does not offer a terminal M.A., it does offer a dual M.A. with ILS (Information and Library Science), and a 4 + 1 M.A. for IU undergraduate majors. Additionally, in rare circumstances, application for the M.A. may be approved by the Director of Graduate Studies. Applicants to these programs should indicate their choice in their personal statement.

International students

International applicants must also meet International Admissions requirements. For those whose native language is not English, TOEFL exam scores are required. Please also note that there is a university deadline of December 1 for International applications.

M.F.A. in Creative Writing

Applications for the M.F.A. in Creative Writing are required to take the GRE general exam, but not the subject exam. (GRE scores are acceptable for a period of five years from the taking of the tests.)

For complete requirements for the M.F.A. in Creative Writing, please see the Creative Writing webpage regarding admissions. M.F.A. Creative Writing supplemental materials should be mailed to:

M.F.A. in Creative Writing
IU English Department
1020 E. Kirkwood Ave.
Ballantine Hall 442
Bloomington, IN 47405-7103

Ph.D. with a Concentration in Literature

Admission to the Ph.D. program requires an undergraduate major or its equivalent. In exceptional cases, superior students who have not majored in English may be admitted conditionally.

Admission also requires the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), both the aptitude and the advanced test in English literature. An applicant ordinarily should have at least an overall GPA of 3.2, a GPA in English of 3.7. Scores on the GRE should exceed 160 on the Verbal and Subject tests. The Analytical Writing score should be 5.0 or higher.

For admission to the Ph.D. program with an M.A. from a department other than our own, the undergraduate GPA requirement remains the same. Add to this a 3.9 GPA in graduate courses (out of a possible 4.0). Scores on the GRE Verbal and Subject tests should ordinarily approach 166. More significant than scores and grades, however, are an applicant's personal statement, letters of recommendation, proficiency in foreign languages, and especially, a writing sample. These materials may offset lower scores on the GRE exams or lower grade point averages.