Admission is competitive for all programs, especially for the PhD. In considering applicants, the Graduate Studies Committee looks for students who will benefit from our programs, who will succeed in our programs, and who will add vitality and diversity to the intellectual community of the English department through their contributions as graduate students and teachers. The Graduate Studies Committee takes care to look at the whole application, basing its decisions on several kinds of information: grades, letters of recommendation, GRE scores, a statement of purpose or professional goals, and a writing sample.
When considering qualified applicants for the PhD program, the Graduate Studies Committee pays careful attention to the variety and quality of their earlier course work and to the intellectual promise of the writing sample and Statement of Purpose. The writing sample is generally a 10-25 page term paper or critical essay, typically one which demonstrates the candidate's ability to work with scholarship and interpretation. The Statement of Purpose is a 1-2 page statement of goals for graduate study at Auburn. The three letters of recommendation should come from professors who are able to assess the applicant's potential for success in doctoral study.
Review of applications for Fall semester begins in January. To receive full consideration for admission and financial aid, your completed application must be received in our office by the first business day after January 15.