• Master of Arts in English program at ESU 1


    ESU has it all: 29 graduate degree programs, many of which can be completed entirely online! But it’s the high-impact, real-world learning experiences and commitment to student success that sets us apart.

    • ESU is the No. 1 university in Kansas for least student debt load and No. 2 for regional Midwest universities by U.S. News and World Report.
    • Emporia State University is the only public university in Kansas to have earned national recognition as a College of Distinction, an honor for universities demonstrating innovative application of high-impact education.
    • 98% of our students found jobs in their field of study or were enrolled in postgraduate studies within six months of graduation. *

    *Of those who responded to surveys.

Why the Master of Arts in English at Emporia State University?

Established over sixty years ago, the Master of Arts in English can now be completed either on campus or entirely online. The Graduate Certificate Program provides an opportunity for students who want to earn graduate credits without completing the full master’s degree.

Master of Arts in English program at ESU 2

All online classes are taught by regular Emporia State faculty and are taken by on-campus as well as distance students. Some are offered on video via lecture capture and some employ interactive video, with students in the classroom participating along with online students.

Financial Assistance

Graduate teaching assistantships and graduate research assistantships are available in composition/rhetoric, creative writing/literary arts, and other areas. Travel grants, research grants, and scholarships are also available.


Students, mentored by ESU faculty, craft personalized degree plans to suit their needs and interests. A variety of different classes can be used to satisfy area requirements, and only one specific class, Introduction to Graduate Studies, is required by all.


Our long-established program has grown in enrollment nearly sixty percent since 2015.

Study Options

Students may choose to focus their programs on literary studies, composition and rhetoric, creative writing, and pedagogy.


Our MA graduates have chosen to pursue corporate and government employment, writing, editing, and publishing, secondary teaching, community college teaching, and educational administration. Many have entered nationally-ranked PhD programs.


Since 1889, Emporia State University has built a proud heritage of attracting intelligent, competitive students and helping each one reach his or her full potential. We are dedicated to intellectual leadership, collaboration, public service, innovative research and a winning spirit — in academics, athletics and life.
Brian Hollenbeck

Dr. Katherine Daily O'Meara

Assistant Professor, Rhetoric and Composition

Campus Box 4019 Plumb Hall 404
Emporia, KS 66801

Rob Catlett

Prof. Amy Sage Webb

Professor, English; Director, Creative Writing

Campus Box 4019 Plumb Hall 404U
Emporia, KS 66801

Marvin Harrell

Dr. Mel Storm

Professor, English; Director of Graduate Studies

Campus Box 4019 Plumb Hall 404S
Emporia, KS 66801

English, Modern Languages, & Journalism Faculty and Staff Full List
  • "Because of my education in Emporia State University's graduate program in English, I believe my skills as a writer, a scholar, and a teacher have strengthened exponentially."

    Allyson McNitt, PhD (MA English student)

  • "The Department of English at ESU not only fosters intellectual curiosity, creativity, and critical reflection, but also encourages its students to set high standards for themselves and achieve their goals."

    Alice Bardan, PhD (MA English student)

  • "During my program, I was constantly pushed to do what I thought was beyond me, but I was given the encouragement and the tools to succeed."

    Lanesa (Mackey) Poulton, MA English

  • "The coursework and thesis option prepared me to be successful in a doctoral program, and I still draw upon the training I received as a beginning teacher to help shape my pedagogical approaches in the classroom."

    Damon Kraft, PhD (MA English student)

  • "The classes through the English Graduate Program at ESU provided me with the essential tools for living in the twenty-first century."

    Ryan Diehl, MA English

  • "The English graduate program at Emporia State University was my oasis of inspiration, knowledge, and kindness."

    Paula Prisacaru, MA English

  • "The small classes, the feedback and the richness of resources our professors offered to us made the experience at Emporia State memorable and hard to match anywhere else."

    Oana Pusca, MA English

  • "The ESU English graduate program presented me with flexibility in scheduling so I could maintain a healthy balance in my life with my family and with my full time job as a high school English teacher."

    Derek Tuttle, MA English

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