The University of Massachusetts Amherst
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Applying to the Graduate Programs

Applications to the graduate program are due by January 5, 2024. Please note the following prerequisites.

Undergraduate Degree

Applicants must possess a bachelor’s degree or a recognized foreign equivalent, with either a major in a language-literature field or a substantial literary background. A GPA of 3.0 or higher is expected.

Language Preparation

Applicants for admission must demonstrate proficiency in English and in one language other than English; they must also demonstrate a working knowledge (intermediate level) of a third language.

Note: Applicants to the Masters program without adequate language preparation may need to pursue summer immersion programs in their target languages and may require an additional semester or year to meet the degree requirements. 

Critical Essay

Applicants are required to submit, with the application, a substantial critical essay (15-25 pages) in literature or theory that demonstrates the candidate's ability to analyze texts. Essays written in a language other than English should be accompanied by an English translation done by the candidate. 

TOEFL; TA Examination

The Test of English as a Foreign Language is required of all non-native speakers of English who are not U.S. citizens. University regulations require that all non-native speakers of English who are not U.S. citizens pass, at level 1 or higher, the University of Massachusetts English Language Screening Program for Teaching Assistants before they assume teaching responsibilities. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is not required for acceptance into our MA or PhD program.

Transfer Credits

Subject to the approval of the Graduate Studies Committee, MA candidates may transfer from other institutions up to six hours of graduate credit graded "B" or higher, and taken within three years before admission (see Graduate School Bulletin). Students are strongly encouraged to request transfer of credits within the first semester after admission.

Apply Online

The Graduate School at the University of Massachusetts Amherst offers an online application. Please note that application fees can be waived for qualifying US students; unfortuantely we cannot waive application fees for international applicants. 

Note: There are separate requirements for applying to the Translation Studies Track for the MA in Comparative Literature. University Entrance Requirements and other Graduate School regulations can be found in the Graduate School Bulletin.