English Graduate Studies

The Graduate Program

The Chronicle of Higher Education published a December 2008 article, "Graduate Students' Pay and Benefits Vary Widely, Study Shows", which lists the Ph.D. program at Southern Methodist University as having the highest teaching assistantship available among 111 universities surveyed across the U.S. Additional incentives and our funding overview can be found here.

Graduate students in English at SMU have the opportunity to learn from a distinguished faculty of scholars and dedicated teachers in a collegial environment. Interaction is fostered by a low faculty-to-graduate student ratio, and a long-standing SMU tradition that all faculty members including senior professors and researchers teach regularly. They offer coursework and research supervision in most areas of literary study, including: British and American literature, courses in literary theory, literature written in English by non-Western writers, critical and rhetorical theory, cultural studies, and women's studies. Students also may pursue independent studies and, with departmental approval, course work in related departments and in the Dallas Area Medieval Consortium. With departmental approval they may also pursue the Graduate Certificate in Women’s and Gender Studies. In our commitment to preparing highly qualified teachers, we offer pedagogical training through course work and classroom experience.

Faculty members are active scholars and researchers have published books and articles in major national venues ranging from scholarly journals and university presses to trade publishing houses and newspapers such as The Wall Street Journal. Our faculty edit three major journals: Configurations, A Journal of Literature, Science and Technology; the Southwest Review, the fourth oldest continuously published literary quarterly in the nation, has been headquartered at SMU since 1924; and Book History, a journal devoted to the creation, dissemination, reception, and use of script, print, and mediacy. Their regular participation in national and international conferences ensures that SMU’s programs reflect the highest scholarship in the field. SMU also offers a remarkably robust literary scene. The SMU Literary Festival, in conjunction with the Department of English's Gilbert Lectures, annually brings many of the nation's prominent writers to campus.

SMU is a private, non-sectarian university located in a residential neighborhood near downtown Dallas, a beautiful mid-sized campus in one of the United States’ most dynamic metropolitan areas. The Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex features a lively arts culture with five renowned art museums, nationally recognized symphony orchestra and opera company, and many other venues and organizations sponsoring the literary, dramatic, and popular arts. This affordable, cosmopolitan center of international culture and commerce complements the intellectual life of the University.