Graduate Studies in English at the University of Wisconsin-Madison

Graduate reception with Prof. Timothy Yu and students

Consistently ranked as one of the top graduate programs in English in the U.S., our Department offers numerous rigorous and rewarding programs in a collegial setting. Graduate study in English at UW-Madison provides students with exceptional graduate instruction and mentorship in order to prepare them for high-level research, writing, and teaching. More than 40 professors and more than 100 graduate students, all with wide-ranging interests and backgrounds, contribute to a rich, intelligent, and genuinely warm educational environment, both in advanced graduate seminars and in numerous colloquia, reading groups, and mentoring programs. Our degree recipients regularly go on to teach and research at top institutions throughout both the country and the world, while our current students are regularly published in leading journals and invited to major conferences.


Welcome from the Director of Graduate Studies

Prof. Susan Bernstein
Director of Graduate Studies
English Department

The University of Wisconsin Department of English offers three graduate degrees with areas of focus: the MFA degree in Creative Writing; the MA degree in English (Applied English Linguistics, Literary Studies); the PhD degree in English (Composition and Rhetoric, English Language and Linguistics, Literary Studies).

While it is my job to insure that all these areas are functioning well and in harmony with one another, each area has its own advisor. I primarily direct the Literary Studies program; prospective students who are interested in studying in other areas and who need assistance should contact the appropriate area directors. You’ll find contact information by clicking on the graduate area listed in the menu on the right side under “Programs.” As the Director of Graduate Studies for the English Department, I am happy to meet with any graduate student, from any area, should the need arise.

I extend a warm welcome to all the incoming students arriving from across the U.S. and around the globe.  While you are here, those of us on the English Department faculty will do all we can to make sure you acquire both breadth of knowledge and the particular skills you need to excel in your area of focus, and that you do so in a climate that is both supportive and intellectually challenging.  If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to your area director, to me, or to Robyn Shanahan, the Graduate Program Degree Coordinator.

I hope too you’ll stop by my office (7195F Helen C. White) or email me if you’d like to make an appointment, if only to introduce yourself. I’m eager to meet all of you!