Students in the Master of Arts in English program may apply for permission to offer a thesis. Students who are permitted to submit a thesis will be responsible for one subject area on the comprehensive exam (as opposed to the normally required two subject areas).


Application Process

The Application to submit a thesis (PDF) should be made to the Graduate Director program once the student has completed eight courses. The student must have obtained the prior approval of a faculty member who will direct the project.

One term of independent study, directed by that faculty member, may be used to research and write the thesis. Thesis applications will be reviewed by the English Graduate Program Director in consultation with the graduate faculty. If no faculty member is willing or available to direct a project, the application will not be accepted.

The student is expected to work closely with the project director. The thesis or portfolio will be approved by both the project director and a second reader upon completion of any revisions or corrections they may request. The thesis should be at least 40 and no more than 60 pages in length. The content will consist of new work written by the student for this project.

Completing and Submitting a Thesis

The finished thesis must conform to the Style Guide for Thesis and Dissertation Preparation published by the Graduate School of Rutgers University.

You can find the thesis and dissertation guidelines by going to the Graduate School Graduation website and then downloading the Capstone and Thesis Style Guide. This is a comprehensive guide, including examples of title pages.

Once the thesis is approved, it is submitted electronically. See the information for electronic submission of a thesis.

If upon completion of the thesis the director and second reader agree that the thesis is of a superior quality, the student may graduate with “Thesis with Distinction.”