Graduate English Admissions

Application Deadline: January 15th.

Application submissions after January 15th each year may or may not be considered on a space-available basis. It frequently takes time for applicants to assemble all of the required materials and collect letters of recommendation, so begin early. You can expect to hear about the status of your application six to eight weeks from the application deadline. First round offers  are generally sent beginning in March. Admission into the program is for fall quarter of the calendar year for which you apply.

Our graduate program offers two options:

You must make a choice between these options when you submit your application online.

Your online application must include:

  • Statement of purpose: This statement should explain your intellectual and/or creative interests, and your professional goals. Reviewers value statements that are intellectually mature, coherent, and well-organized. If you are interested in being considered for a funded Teaching Assistantship, please include relevant experience and information that will aid us in making funding decisions.
  • TA statement of interest: If you are applying for and wish to be considered for a Teaching Assistantship, check the box “Y” (yes) as well as include your statement of interest in your application. This should speak to your relevant experience, work experience and any other information you feel will aid us in making our decision. The number of TA spots we have to offer each year is small as compared to the number of applications we review.
  • Writing sample:
    • MA: 7 to 12 pages of analytical written work in literary study.
    • MFA: TWO samples total: 10 to 15 pages of prose (fiction or creative nonfiction), OR 10 to 15 pages of poetry, OR a combination of genres but no more than 15 pages total; AND a critical writing sample of 7 to 12 pages of analytical work in literary study.
  • Appropriate admissions forms
  • Payment
  • A minimum of 3 Letters of Recommendation (seek these in advance)

All application materials should be submitted online at the Graduate School of Western Washington University. Your application will be processed only when all of these materials have been received. Please view the Graduate School to see if you are eligible to apply.

Once an initial review is completed by the Graduate School, they will provide you with link to a website where you can track the status of your online application to ensure that all materials have been received.

English Department Teaching Assistants teach sections of English 101 (Freshman Composition) and will register each quarter for a minimum of 8-10 credits of graduate work. Check the Graduate School website for details on teaching assistantship stipends, tuition waivers and fees.

We are glad to know that you are interested in pursuing a Master of Arts Degree (MA) or Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in English at Western Washington University. If you have further questions after reading these directions, contact the English Department Graduate Program office at (360) 650-3232 or the Director of Graduate Studies, Lysa Rivera at

Submit your application.