Frequently Asked Questions for Graduate Program Applicants

When does admissions begin and end?

We begin accepting applications in September.
  • The MFA program’s deadline for applications is Jan. 3. The application deadline for MA and PhD programs in both Literature and Composition & Rhetoric is Dec. 2. Admitted students typically matriculate in the fall semester, following admission. In addition, full-time students on teaching assistantships must arrive at least two weeks before fall semester classes begin to participate in English 731, our teacher training course.

Is the tuition really 100% waived?

Yes, but on the Registrar website, tuition is called ‘instructional fee’ and this is confusing to students. Please note that tuition fees are 100% waived. But there are instructional fees in addition to tuition, which are approximately $1,000 a semester. Students pay these instructional fees, but not the tuition-instructional fees. 

How much are teaching assistants paid?

The amount of the stipend will be stated in the official letter offering an assistantship. This year (2022-23), the stipend for MA and MFA students is $17,138 and the stipend for PhD students is $23,730, covering late August to early May.

Is health insurance required?

Yes, Miami University requires all students to have health insurance. An Aetna student health insurance plan is available through the university if you do not already have coverage. There are two payment options. The first option is to pay all of it up front; the second option is to have it come out of your stipend in monthly payments over the course of a semester. Go to Miami student health insurance for cost and coverage info.  

How do I apply to waive the application fee?

You are eligible for a fee waiver if you meet any of the following conditions:
  1. You have earned a graduate degree (masters or higher) from Miami University. 
  2. You are a Ronald E. McNair Scholar or alum. 
  3. You are from a low income country designated by the World Bank.
Please contact Sarah Broome at for the fee waiver form.

What is the teaching load for graduate assistants?

For MA and MFA students, students will teach one course each semester for the first year. In the second year, students typically teach two courses during the fall semester and one course during the spring semester. PhD students normally teach one course during the fall and two during the spring, although this order can be reversed beyond the first year. And the teaching load would change if you apply and are selected for an administrative position or for a dissertation fellowship.

What courses will I have the opportunity to teach?

All first-year graduate students teach English 111, our introductory Composition & Rhetoric course. As you move through the program, you have opportunities to teach other kinds of courses. For MFA students, the spring semester of the second year will likely include teaching English 226, the Introduction to Creative Writing course; and MA and PhD students will have an opportunity to teach an Advanced Composition course such as English 225. In addition, Literature PhD students will be able to apply for the Literature Apprenticeship program, which prepares them to teach a literature course, and Composition and Rhetoric students can request to teach a course from this list.

In addition to teaching, are there administrative assistantship positions?

Yes. We have positions for both MFA/MA students and PhD students in the Howe Center for Writing Excellence. This could give you experience advising undergraduate students and running a writing center.There are several other positions available for PhD students, including Assistant Director of Composition and Coordinator of the Portfolio Project.

Do you require the GRE?


What are the supplemental materials required for applying?

Each of our programs require three letters of recommendation. Each program requires a CV, a personal statement, and a sample of written work.
  • The length of the personal statement is typically 2-3 pages.
  • The writing sample varies in length, but is typically between 8 and 15 pages. If the sample is longer, it will still be accepted but please keep in mind that the admissions review committee values quality over quantity. 
  • Unofficial transcripts are sufficient for the initial application process, but once you are accepted, official transcripts will be required. 

ENG Graduate Application Requirements

Will I be allowed to work an outside job or more hours?

In order for you to do this, the Director of Graduate Studies will need to submit a petition on your behalf to the Dean of the Graduate School for approval.

What is the acceptance rate?

Please contact Sarah Broome at for this information.

Does your department or university offer any fellowships?

Yes, we have fourth-year and fifth-year dissertation fellowships. The application procedures are sent out prior to the deadline, which is typically in March.