The Department of English offers a Master’s degree, a Post-Master’s Certificate, and options to jointly pursue a Master’s degree with a certificate in several other disciplines.

Villanova has been granting the MA in English for more than 50 years. We wed that sense of history with a cutting-edge awareness of the vitality of English as a global discipline. We also offer highly innovative curricular opportunities to explore non-PhD-track career options.

Earning a Master's degree or a post-master's certificate from Villanova is an enriching experience, allowing you to establish true expertise as a scholar of literature while studying among like-minded students. If you choose, you can use your degree as a stepping stone to further graduate study, a launching pad to a career, or a way to enhance your existing career with new skills. 

Are you curious about our program, but not ready to commit to pursuing an MA? We welcome you to apply as a non-matriculated student.

For the latest news from the Graduate English Program, see our official blog, The Yawp.

If you have any questions about our program, or would like to arrange a visit, please contact the Graduate Program Director, Evan Radcliffe.




Why Villanova English?

Your coursework will be conducted in small seminars with a maximum enrollment of 15 students. Our professors are equally passionate about teaching and scholarship, developing innovative strategies to enhance your learning, while also writing books that are shaping the field of literary study.

Learn more about English faculty scholarship.

Graduate English's unique theory seminar allows you to learn about a wide variety of current scholarship as different Villanova English professors share the latest theoretical debates in their areas of discipline. You can explore aspects of literary theory with Villanova faculty on our podcast.

The Irish Theatre Summer Studio takes place in Dublin, Ireland at the Abbey Theatre (the National Theatre of Ireland) and the Lir Academy (the National Academy of Dramatic Art) and involves students from University College, Dublin. It also involves research in the extensive theatre archive held at the National University of Ireland, Galway. The class, which runs just short of four weeks from mid-July to early August, carries course credit and scholarships are available. It’s a program that only we offer!

In addition, The Villanova Center for Irish Studies offers two summer internships at The Jackie Clarke Collection, a museum and archive in Ballina, County Mayo. The internship is limited to Villanova graduate students (or undergraduate students in their junior or senior years) who are pursuing a degree in a relevant discipline, such as English. You can read one VU English grad student's account of their time in Ballina.

Finally, interested students can also take advantage of the Joseph McGarrity collection in Falvey Library, which consists of around 3,000 monographs focusing on Irish history, literature, folklore, geography, music, and Irish-American history. This archive can be visited in person, and has been partly digitized.

Villanova offers a Teaching Internship Program that allows you to work one-on-one with a graduate faculty member as a teaching intern. Unlike other graduate programs that require students to serve as TAs, TIP is a strictly optional program that offers you a unique opportunity to assist a faculty member in the teaching of an undergraduate English course. Teaching interns meet with the faculty member weekly to discuss the class, design and execute lesson plans under their guidance, and confer with students on their written work.

A number of our students go on to pursue their PhD at well-regarded doctoral programs. Others choose to use their degrees to teach in non-university settings such as private schools or community colleges. Still others pursue non-academic careers that place a premium on strong writing and interpretive skills, including publishing and academic administration. You can read more about our alums' career journeys in our informational pamphlet.

Villanova’s Career Center is a valuable resource available for all graduate students.

This option for second-year graduate students is an independent study in which students identify one or a cluster of professions in which an advanced degree in English is a benefit. Students work on a research paper that explores this history and future prospects of the field of interest. Learn more about the Professional Research Option (PRO).


Hear from our students, alumni and faculty about the Villanova Graduate English experience and the opportunities available through our unique theory class and Irish Theatre Summer Studio.

Graduate English at Villanova
Professional Research Option
Graduate English Theory Course
Irish Summer Studio

Department of English
St. Augustine Center
Room 402

Dr. Evan Radcliffe
Graduate Program Director

Mike Malloy
Graduate Program Coordinator


March 1: For admission with funding consideration

August 1: For admission without funding for the fall

December 1: For admission without funding for the spring

If you have missed a deadline, please contact Dr. Radcliffe to discuss your options.

Begin your application.


Hannah Kahn and Caitlin Salomon, grad students at a conference

Graduate English Students Present at Christianity & Literature Conference

English MA students Hannah Kahn and Caitlin Salomon recently presented at The Conference on Christianity and Literature’s (CCL) 2022 Western Regional conference, “Literary Geographies – Space, Place, and Environments.” READ MORE