Frequently Asked Questions

• What is the application deadline for the current year?

The deadline for Summer 2018 applications is April 1st, 2018.

• A brief overview about the program:

The Department of English at the University of California, Irvine offers a Summer Master's in English program designed especially for teachers and returning students who are interested in strengthening their command of literature, as well as honing their critical and literacy skills. Though teachers are the main intended constituency, we also have mature students who, for other reasons, wish to return to a terminal graduate program. The degree offered reflects UC Irvine's emphasis on literary theory, literary history, and expository writing, and is the same as the one earned by the Department's full-time graduate students, with the exception that foreign language proficiency is not required in the summer program.

Approximately 20 students are admitted each summer, with 20 students continuing from the preceding summer. The limited enrollment each summer is intended to ensure small classes and accessible faculty - the essential conditions for intensive literary study.

Students elect eight seminars over two consecutive summers and a dissertation research course over the third summer. The first two summers are comprised of two four-week sessions, with enrollment in two seminars per session.  In the third summer, students enroll in a dissertation research course, an independent study consisting of two classes over one term, designed to assist in writing and completing a Master's essay, the degree's capstone requirement. The research course classes will be available on campus and online.

Annually the sessions are timed to accomodate secondary school calendars as fully as possible.  Typically sessions open in late June and close before labor Day.  Classes take place for two hours on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.

• What are the dates and tuition amount?


Summer 2017 dates are:

Session I - June 19, 2017 to July 13, 2017
Session II - July 17, 2017 to August 10, 2017

Tuition is approximately $3,200 per summer for the first two years.  Third year is $828, subject to change.

Financial aid is available.

Applicants should be prepared to pay a nonrefundable $500.00 tuition deposit if they are admitted.

• How do I apply?

The graduate school application is available in an electronic version at: Application. No paper applications are being accepted.

For more information about admissions and applications, please visit the following link:

• What supporting documents are required?

1. Applicants must complete and pay for the electronic application by the program deadline (no exceptions). Paying for the application is the only way to submit the application.: Application

2.Official GRE General Test scores (subject test not required)

3.Transcripts: One official copy of transcripts from each undergraduate and graduate institution previously attended. Transcripts may be sent directly to the department from the Registrar's Office in a sealed envelope or included in a sealed envelope with your application.  If your institution has the option to email official transcripts, they will be accepted, but must come directly from the institution.  Use the program administrator's email address,

4.Three Letters of Recommendation - uploaded electronically from the link provided in your application.

5.Writing Sample - Mail writing sample to the following address:

UCI-English Department
Summer Masters in English Program
423 Humanities Instructional Building
Irvine, CA 92697-2560

• What is the Personal History Statement?

For applicants who are US Citizens or US Permanent Residents, there will be a section for the Personal History Statement on the University Electronic Application. Applicants must first complete the Residency section of the application in order for the Personal History section to appear.

 The Personal History Statement is about the applicant’s personal background. Applicants may include information about their upbringing, family, culture, socio-economic background, or any personal experiences and challenges. Applicants may also wish to describe how they might contribute to social or cultural diversity within their chosen field of study. The Personal History Statement is used by UCI Graduate Division to help determine whether an applicant is eligible for a fee waiver or a diversity fellowship. There is a 1200 word limit.

• What is a Statement of Purpose?

There will be a section for the Statement of Purpose on the University Electronic Application.

The Statement of Purpose is an essay in which the applicant should try to articulate express how and why the Program may help with the realization of his or her vocational goals. Suggested length is 500 to 1000 words.

• What is the GRE?

Students are required to take the GRE (Graduate Record Exam). You may obtain information, registration and test dates at: GRE. To send an official GRE test score to UCI, please select institution code R4859. We urge you to complete the exam well in advance of the April 1st deadline to ensure timely receipt of your scores by our department.

• What is the TOEFL Exam?

All applicants whose primary language is not English are required to submit TOEFL scores for admission consideration. International graduate students should visit the International Center's website at: International Center and the Graduate Studies website at: for University-wide admissions requirements.

• What is the procedure for submitting my transcripts?

Submit one official original transcripts from all post-secondary institutions you attended (may be sent directly to the department from the Registrar's Office in a sealed envelope or included in a sealed envelope with your application.

UCI-English Department
Summer Masters in English Program
423 Humanities Instructional Building
Irvine, CA 92697-2560

• How do I submit a Letter of Recommendation?

We require three Letters of Recommendation. These letters should specifically address your experience or expertise in working with literature. Your ideal recommender would be one of your former professors - rather than a fellow teacher or principle - who can access your academic abilities.

Electronic letters of recommendation can be set up through the University Electronic Application. Applicants will input the email addresses of their recommenders, and the recommenders will be emailed a link that explains how to upload an electronic letter of recommendation. If needed, applicants can resend their recommenders this link by logging in to the Application Process Review.

For more assistance, applicants can contact UCI Graduate Division at

Online submissions are strongly preferred. However, if hard copies must be submitted, the letters of recommendation must be submitted with a UCI evaluation form and a UCI waiver of access form.

Both the applicant and the recommender will need to sign these forms.

Please send paper submission to:

UCI-English Department
Summer Masters in English Program
423 Humanities Instructional Building
Irvine, CA 92697-2560

• How do I submit a writing sample?

We require a writing sample which ideally should reveal your ability to treat literary texts critically and to write cogently and persuasively. Critical, argumentative, and scholarly papers from related fields are acceptable. No page requirement is set; however, 5-10 pages is an appropriate length. You may submit a paper from a former class, rewrite an old paper and submit it, use an honors thesis, or assign yourself a new topic. The writing sample is the most critical element of your application, and in many cases, becomes the deciding factor.

Because the SMA program takes literature as its subject, we ask that the applicant submit a standard critical essay (the undergraduate version from any literature course is fine) that analyzes a work or works of literature. The applicant's ability to interpret a literary text and construct an argument that aptly conveys that interpretation are essential for admission.

Send your writing sample to:

UCI-English Department
Summer Masters in English Program
423 Humanities Instructional Building
Irvine, CA 92697-2560

• Is financial aid available?

Alternative Loan Programs are available for Summer M.A. in English students, for information about the loans, refer to the preferred Lender list.

If you apply for a loan, please contact Kookie Vu, to notify her that you are applying for a private loan.  Lending institutions will contact the Financial Aid Office to confirm your acceptance into the Program and will delay loan funding if the financial aid counselor has not been notified by you.

Kookie P. Vu
(949) 824-6266

The URL for the Financial Aid Office's website is: Financial Aid. No online forms are required for the alternative loans.

• Am I eligible for campus housing?

A small number of campus rentals are available as summer sublets from the department's graduate students. Students may sublet from undergraduate campus housing as well. Applicants are instructed on the application process when they are admitted.

Please visit the Campus Housing website for more information:

Housing Options

• I am unfamiliar with the campus. Is there a map available?

A map of our campus, an area map of Southern California and driving directions are available at: Campus Map.

• What is the admission criteria?

Criteria for admission seeks to balance GRE test results, GPA, letters of recommendation, and
your writing sample, although in many cases a strong writing sample will count most heavily.

Application deadline (including supporting documents) is April 3, 2017. Applicants are
notified in May.