The National University Master of Arts in English provides graduate training in the study of language and literature.  The program assists students in developing the advanced critical reading, writing, and research skills necessary to engage confidently and meaningfully with other English Studies scholars and professionals, and to apply disciplinary knowledge beyond the field of English Studies.


The MA in English is offered entirely online with small and interactive courses. Students know each other and benefit from the individual attention of professors. Faculty engage students in a variety of ways including threaded discussions which are the heart of most of our classes.  These discussions provide a space for students to interact with each other, their professor, and the course material, testing their ideas, questioning others’, and building knowledge through collaboration in an invigorating and supportive learning community.  Students also have the opportunity to develop, collaboratively build wikis on course topics, blog about literary topics, and video conference with their professors. In the English Capstone Course, students work closely with a faculty mentor for two months to develop and polish a scholarly article for a peer reviewed journal. All courses offer synchronous chats, which provide students with an opportunity to ask questions of their professors and talk with classmates.In addition to core courses that provide a strong foundation in the literary tradition, students choose from a variety of elective course offerings, including Romanticism, Modern Gothic, Sensation Fiction, and Poetry.


Although most students take our general MA English program, we offer two optional specialization paths.  Students should choose the degree that best suits their interests and career goals.

  • The first of its kind in the US, NU’s Gothic Studies specialization allows students to explore the Gothic from the 18th century to modern horror in fiction and film.
  • Students interested in teaching writing will find the Rhetoric specialization particularly useful.

Full descriptions of these programs can be found by following the links above.  For any questions about the different specializations contact your admissions advisor or the English MA Faculty Advisor, Dr. Franz Potter, at fpotter@nu.edu.


A diverse student body is one of the strengths of our programs as it contributes to dynamic classroom interactions and enhances our curriculum’s focus on diversity. Students in our programs pursue their education for many different reasons and represent many different stages of life: some students are teachers while others are moving forward in the pursuit of a Ph.D, or enriching their life pursuing a passion for literature. Many students take courses while managing family responsibilities and holding full-time jobs. Some of our students are actively serving in the military.

The uniquely flexible format of our classes helps students balance coursework with their other commitments:

  • Courses are one month long, completed one at a time, so students have the chance to  focus on a single subject.
  • Classes are accelerated, so students who are interested can complete NU programs more quickly than they could on a traditional schedule.
  • Students can choose not to take classes during certain months to take a break or deal with life circumstances without losing half a year of coursework.
  • All of our program courses are asynchronous, which means that although it is necessary to regularly carve out time to complete course readings and assignments, students do not have to be available to log into courses at specific times.


If you have any questions about our MA in English Program, please feel free to contact the program Faculty Advisor, Dr. Franz Potter, at fpotter@nu.edu.