CSULA Department of English | MA Culminating Activities

English MA Culminating Activities

The English MA Program (45, 46, or 47 units) is completed with
one of the following four culminating activities:

These multiple pathways to completing the MA degree in
English are aligned with and at the forefront of the best
practices recommended by the Modern Language Association,
the governing professional body for the study of language and
literature. They are also in full compliance with the language
of Title V of the California Code of Regulations and university
policy for master’s degree programs.

Students who have not yet begun the culminating activity listed
on their official MA Program and would like to change their
culminating activity may have two choices – namely, they may select
a different culminating activity already within their program or,
if in an older program (extant prior to Spring 2012), they may
change to the current program (approved Spring 2012).

NOTE: Students cannot switch to the Comprehensive Exam if
they have already taken an ENGL 599 or to the project/thesis if
they have attempted the Comprehensive Exam. A change of culminating
activity or degree program might require additional units and
coursework. Students need to consult with the Graduate Adviser
about any such change.

Newly matriculated students must complete the requirements of
the Spring 2012 program, which offers all four culminating
activities – Comprehensive Exam or Thesis (46 unit program) or
Pedagogical-Portfolio Project or Journal-Article Thesis (47 unit

General Guidelines

Students must complete coursework in the areas of specialization
in which their culminating activity is grounded. The culminating
activity will be supervised and assessed by faculty members with
expertise in the chosen field.

Students must be able to work independently and competently. They
must take responsibility for initiating and maintaining contact with
the Graduate Adviser and their faculty advisers (if applicable) and
for obtaining information about the approval and submission process
and guidelines in a timely fashion. Students must produce work that
is, in content, form, and style, of the highest quality.

Students with a culminating activity of the project/thesis must
also comply with the procedural and submission requirements
established by the College of Arts and Letters, the Office of
Graduate Studies and Research, and the University JFK Library.
Successful submission compliance will require that students become
familiar with information, directives, and deadlines provided by the
University Library at the following general link:


At the beginning of the project/thesis, students should attend a
workshop (see the link immediately above for workshop dates) and
familiarize themselves with the requirements described in “Master’s
Theses and Project Reports” (especially chapter 4). See the following


Early in the drafting of the project/thesis, students should
become generally familiar with format and submission requirements, and
consult with the assigned College of Arts and Letters Thesis Reviewer for
specific questions. See the following link for Thesis Reviewer contact


Students are expected to complete the culminating activity within
two years
after finishing their coursework. For more information on
department and university deadlines and formats, see the Advisement
Secretary (ET A638) or the Graduate Adviser.

For more information

Use the links below to learn more about each of the MA culminating

Comprehensive Exam (ENGL 596, 0 units)

Pedagogical-Portfolio Project (ENGL 599, 2 units)

Journal-Article Thesis (ENGL 599, 2 units)

Thesis (ENGL 599, 5 units)