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Prospective Applicants

Degree Programs and Deadlines

Graduate Program Application Deadline How to Apply
MA in Literature January 1 Admission Information
MA in Rhetoric & Composition January 1 Admission Information
MFA in Creative Writing January 1 Admission Information
PhD in Literature January 1 Admission Information
PhD in Rhetoric & Composition January 1 Admission Information

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MLK bust overlooking fountains

Advice for Prospective Students

Graduate Assistantships

Graduate Teaching Assistantships are offered once annually in the fall semester for a one-year appointment, and are renewable for one year for the MA degree, for two years for the MFA degree, and for three to four years for the PhD degree (for a total of two, three, and four or five years of funding respectively). We offer a limited number of assistantships, and they are competitive. Assistantships are offered to the top-ranking applicants, as determined by the admissions committee. Interested prospective students should submit an assistantship application with their admission materials. The initial teaching assignment is usually two sections of First Year Composition in fall and two in spring. Most sections of Composition I and Composition II at USF are taught by English Graduate Teaching Assistants.

The GAship carries a stipend as well as payment for the cost of graduate tuition, minus fees. Additionally, out-of-state GAs receive a reduced tuition rate. The GA stipend is divided into biweekly paychecks and deposited directly into the student's bank account throughout the term. In order to meet eligibility for a Graduate Assistantship, students must maintain at least nine hours of program-relevant enrollment in the fall and spring terms and six hours of enrollment in summer (not all GAs will receive summer appointments, nor is enrollment required in summer).

All new GAs also must enroll in ENC 6745 (Practice in Teaching Composition) during their first semester as a GA. The practicum counts as elective credit toward the degree. New GAs are also required to attend a two-week orientation conducted by the Director of Composition and appointed staff. New GAs with fewer than 18 graduate credits in their discipline will be assigned a mentor until 18 graduate hours are earned.

All graduate students whose native language is not English who apply for a Teaching Assistantship must earn a minimum score of 50 on the new Test of Spoken English (TSE)/SPEAK, or "3" on the Foreign Service Institute Language Proficiency Interview (LPI), prior to accepting the position.

Campus Visits

Some funds are available to reimburse students accepted to the program who are traveling from out of state. If you would like a campus visit, please notify the graduate director in your application letter or by email.

Program Brochure

Alumni Accomplishments

To read about the accomplishments of recent USF graduate alumni, visit our Alumni page.


To schedule with an appointment with an advisor, please visit our Advising page.