Graduate Degree Program Summary

Graduate degrees offered


  • M.A.; Ph.D.


A specialization is a well-defined area of study that will appear on your transcript with your degree and major. Specializations are optional in most UNL programs.

Areas of Study
  • Nineteenth Century Literatures (American, 18th Century, Romantic, and Victorian British Literatures)
  • Twentieth Century Literatures (American Literatures and British Modernism)
  • Composition and Rhetoric
  • Creative Writing
  • Critical Theory
  • Digital Humanities
  • Ethnic Literatures
  • Medieval and Renaissance Literatures
  • Place-Based Writing (Literatures of the Great Plains and the American West)
  • Women's Literatures
Graduate CertificatesSpecializations
  • Nineteenth Century Studies
  • Ethnic Studies
  • Great Plains Studies
  • Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs
  • Women's and Gender Studies
Promo image for English

Contacts for English

On the Web


Graduate Chair

Dr. Julia Schleck


Graduate Secretary

Ms. Sue Hart



Campus Address

202 Andrews Hall

Lincoln NE 68588-0333

Application checklist and deadlines

Required by the Office of Graduate Studies

See also: steps to admission.

Required by English in GAMES

After you apply, allow one business day for us to establish your access to GAMES, where you'll complete these departmental requirements:

  • Entrance exam(s): None
  • Minimum English proficiency: Paper TOEFL 600, Internet TOEFL 100, IELTS 6.5
  • Critical paper in English (15-20 pp.)
  • Curriculum vitae or resume
  • Statement of education goals (1-3 pp.)
  • Teaching experience or evidence of teaching potential
  • Three recommendation letters
  • Creative writing applicants only: Creative writing sample (See department website for details)

When sending GRE or TOEFL scores, UNL's institution code is 6877 and a department code is not needed.

Application Deadlines for English
Fall: December 7


The Department of English offers the M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in the areas of literature studies, creative writing, and composition and rhetoric. Students with a B.A. may apply for the M.A. or for direct admission into the Ph.D. degree program. Students with an M.A. or M.F.A. may apply for the Ph.D.

We offer graduate course work in all listed areas of study. There are also opportunities for students to obtain a specialization in ethnic studies; Great Plains studies, human rights and humanitarian affairs, 19th century studies, and women's and gender studies. We also have certifications in Digital Humanities and the Teaching of Writing.

Diverse opportunities are available for professional development, including development of scholarly and teaching portfolios, participation in critical/literary study groups, a fiction and poetry reading series, and collaboration with faculty on research, teaching, and creative activities.

In addition, the department houses a number of prestigious journals and projects, including Prairie Schooner, one of the most respected literary journals in the nation, The Western American Literature Journal and the Quarterly Review of Film and Video. We also have the Walt Whitman Archive, the Cather Project, the Nebraska Writing Project, the Nebraska Literacy Project, the Corvey Collection of 19th Century British Literature and the Studies in Writing and Rhetoric Monograph Series. Graduate students regularly enrich their academic experience through work on these major departmental projects.

Courses and More

Students in English are most likely to take courses in: See also: Course Catalog in the Graduate Bulletin.

Students will work with an advisor to create a Program of Studies or Memorandum of Courses during the first half of their coursework.

Faculty and research

Marco Abel
Film Studies; Critical Theory; 20th & 21st Century American Literature
Jonis Agee
Fiction; Creative Nonfiction; American Literature
Grace Bauer
Creative Writing; Contemporary Poetry
Stephen Behrendt
Women Writers; William Blake; Romantic Period
Robert Brooke
Rural Education; Community Development
Stephen Buhler
Early Modern England; Shakespeare; Spenser; Milton
Peter Capuano
19th Century British Literature; Victorian Literature and Culture; 19th Century Science and the Novel
Joy Castro
Creative Writing; Latina Literature; Women's Literature; 20th Century Literature
Kwame Dawes
Creative Writing and Prairie Schooner Editor
Basuli Deb
Women's and Gender Studies; Literature Theory; Cultural Studies; War Literature
Wheeler Winston Dixon
Film History, Theory, and Criticism
Kwakiutl Dreher
African-American Literature; Popular Culture; Film
Gwendolyn Foster
Film Studies; Women's Studies; Cultural Studies; Screenwriting
Amanda Gailey
Digital Humanities; 19th Century Literature; Editorial Theory
Tom Gannon
Native American Literatures; Romanticism; Literary Theory
Amy Goodburn
Composition; Rhetoric; Literacy Studies; Pedagogies
June Griffin
Pedagogy; Basic Writing and College Access; Teaching with Technology; Learning Transfer; Digital Rhetoric
Melissa Homestead
American Literature; History of the Book; Women's Authorship
Maureen Honey
Women Writers; Harlem Renaissance; Popular Culture
Andrew Jewell
The Digital Age
Matthew Jockers
Digital Humanities; Irish and Irish American Literature
Frances Kaye
Canadian Literature; Great Plains Studies; Native American Literature
Ted Kooser
Creative Writing; Poetry
Thomas Lynch
Ecocriticism; Western and Southwestern American Literature
Amelia Montes
American Literature; Chicano Literature; Creative Writing; Fiction
Laura Mooneyham White
British Literature; Narrative Theory; Genre Theory; History of Manners; Anglo-American Modernism; Jane Austen
Kenneth Price
American Literature and Periodicals; Textual Editing; Digital Humanities
Stephen Ramsay
Digital Humanities; Critical Theory; Drama
Guy Reynolds
Willa Cather; Women's Fiction; American Studies
Gregory Rutledge
African-American Literature and Culture; American Literature
Timothy Schaffert
Creative Writing; Fiction Writing
Julia Schleck
Renaissance Literature and History; Early Modern Travel Literature
Kelly Stage
Renaissance Literature; Literature of 16th and 17th Century London
Shari Stenberg
Composition and Rhetoric; Critical and Feminist Pedagogies; Literacy Studies; Teaching and Writing Development
Roland Vegso
Critical and Literary Theory; Psychoanalysis; Contemporary Political Theory, 20th Century Literature; Modernism; Cold War Stories
Stacey Waite
Composition; Rhetoric; Literacy; Queer Theory/Queer Pedagogies; Teaching of Writing; Feminist and Gender Studies; Creative Writing/Poetry
Deborah Williams Minter
Composition; Literacy Studies; Rhetoric

Departments: Have an update for this page? Contact Stacy Dam.

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