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M.A. in Comp Lit

Contact | Introduction | Admission Requirements | Application | Program Curriculum | Forms and Guidelines

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Graduate Program Coordinator: Yomi Braester (
Graduate Program Advisor: Yuko Mera (


The master’s program prepares students for advanced studies in Comparative Literature or in related fields such as individual national literatures, philosophy, or religion, or for careers in teaching on the elementary, secondary, or junior college levels. The M.A. curriculum requires a minimum of 45 credits and completion of a master’s essay. Students who enter our M.A. program normally continue to the Ph.D. following a departmental review.  The procedure and the Ph.D. requirements can be found by clicking here.  

The core faculty in the Department of Comparative Literature, Cinema & Media has particular strength in comparative world cinema; silent-era film and fin-de-siècle media technologies; Asian film and literature (Chinese, Southeast Asian and South Asian); 19th Century German, British and American literature; Latin American literature and film and Textual Studies. 

Admission Requirements

Requires the completion of a Bachelor of Arts degree in Comparative Literature, Film Studies, English, or any other literature, or equivalent training. Advanced knowledge of at least one language besides English is also required.


Comparative Literature supports programs leading to both the M.A. and Ph.D. degrees. Applications for both programs are received for the Autumn quarter, with a January 15th deadline.

The application and directions for submission are now available at the following Graduate School website:

Please refer to the following for information to apply to the Graduate School.

If you are interested in a Teaching Assistantship, you must upload a copy of the following form with your online application:

Assistantship and Fellowship Application

Note: The Department of Comparative Literature, Cinema & Media has relatively few teaching assistant positions of its own. Most Comparative Literature TAs are assigned to teaching duties in one or another of the national literature departments. All applicants will be considered for slots in Comparative Literature, but if you would like to be considered for an appointment in any of the following areas- Spanish, French, Italian, or German, you should also supply: 1) an academic autobiographical statement in the language, and 2) an audio recording of the statement.  Please fill out the form and upload to your online application.  Supplementary materials should be sent as an email attachment to:

Program Curriculum

Course work

Minimum of 45 hours of graded graduate credit at the 500 level.  Graduate students may also take 400-level courses related to their field of interest for degree credit, with approval of the Graduate Program Coordinator.  Of the required work, three courses must be taken in comparative literature. The remaining credits must include study in two or more literatures with at least three courses being taken in each of two literatures.

Language Requirements

Advanced reading knowledge in at least one language other than English and a basic reading knowledge of a second must be demonstrated before starting to write the M.A. essay. Language competence is attested either by exams or by completion of satisfactory coursework in the language.

M.A. Essay

After completion of course work students prepare a master’s essay under the supervision of two faculty members. Essays normally run 25-30 pages on the model of scholarly articles in the student’s field of interest.

Information for Current Students

Progress Guidelines 

Independent Study Policy (PDF)

Travel Award Request Form (PDF)