CSULA Department of English | MA Comprehensive Exam

English MA Comprehensive Exam

The MA Comprehensive Exam in English can be taken in any one of the
following exam areas:

American Literature

Beginnings to 1860
1914 to present

British Literature

and Eighteenth Century

Nineteenth Century
Twentieth Century

World Literature in Translation

Middle Ages-1600

Postcolonial and Anglophone Literatures
(1947 to present)

Composition, Rhetoric, and Language

At least two quarters before they sit for the Comprehensive Exam,
students must select their examination area and inform the Graduate
Studies Committee of their choice.

Students will write two three-hour exams: one exam on a historical
period selected from the list above and one exam on a specific text
from the same historical period selected in advance by the Graduate
Studies Committee in consultation with faculty members specializing in
the period.

Students opting to take the Comprehensive Exam in the Rhetoric,
Composition and Language area will write two three-hour exams: one exam
derived from readings on the Rhetoric and Composition list and one exam
derived from readings on the Language and Literacy list.

Students are allowed three attempts to pass each part of the
Comprehensive Exam. NOTE: Once a Comprehensive Exam is attempted,
students cannot make a program change to another culminating activity.

A passing exam will demonstrate a student’s ability to convey a deep
understanding of a particular period or area and to develop sophisticated
textual analyses.