English and Cultural Studies

This application will close to International applicants on April 30th. Only complete applications will be reviewed.

The Masters Program in English and Cultural Studies

The English Department offers MA students a program that best suits their interests and goals. We provide a valuable learning experience to those students interested in the MA as a terminal degree, while also providing those students interested in further study with the skills and knowledge they need to pursue doctoral studies. Graduates with a BA, HBA or Concurrent Education degree majoring in English have a number of good reasons to continue their study of literature with us.

Innovative and Traditional Program Options

Our MA program offers students the opportunity to pursue their scholarly interests in the way that best suits them, as we offer a number of different program options: the traditional thesis option for those students who want the experience of writing an in-depth study on their topic of choice; a coursework option that provides students with coverage of many fields and the experience of working with a larger number of professors; and a research-project option that combines the two.

We also offer two innovative programs that are unique to Lakehead. The creative-project option allows students to write a creative work, while still engaging in critical analysis of the genre and form in which they are writing. Past creative-projects have included works in fantasy, children’s literature, poetry, and creative non-fiction. Our program also offers a collaborative graduate program with a specialization in Gender and Women’s Studies, giving students the opportunity to benefit from the expertise of both departments, to focus more closely on issues of gender, and to graduate with a combined degree, qualifying them for further education in both fields.

For more information on our programs, please visit the English department’s graduate studies site: https://www.lakeheadu.ca/academics/departments/english/graduate-studies-english/graduate-program-description

Skilled, Supportive Supervisors

As a relatively small department, we are able to offer our graduate students personal attention that larger departments may not be able to provide. At the same time, our faculty members cover the range of periods, national literatures, and theoretical approaches in the field of English literature, and also have expertise in film studies, cultural studies, and new media. Many of our graduate faculty members have won teaching awards and grants, and all are active researchers. They welcome the opportunity to work closely with students in graduate seminars, and in supervisory roles for projects. 

For more information on our graduate faculty and their individual areas of expertise, please see our English and Cultural Studies Graduate Faculty site: https://www.lakeheadu.ca/academics/departments/english/graduate-studies-english/english-graduate-faculty

Work Experience

We also offer our incoming Canadian students the opportunity to work as a Graduate Assistant (for up to two years). In addition to providing some funding, being a GA provides valuable experience, including the opportunity to teach classes and work one-on-one with undergraduate students.

MA English and Cultural Studies: Gender and Women's Studies Specialization

The Department of Gender and Women's Studies at Lakehead University is dedicated to furthering an understanding of the importance of gender as a category of analysis in scholarly inquiry. Through interdisciplinary instruction, students will critically assess the relevance of existing models of knowledge in reflecting gendered experience and scholarship.

The aim of the program is to encourage the development and integration of gendered teaching, learning, and research within the university community and the community at large. This Collaborative Master's program allows students to combine advanced disciplinary research with gendered scholarship from the interdisciplinary field of Gender and Women's Studies. Upon completion of the program, the degree awarded specifies the discipline of the participating academic unit and notes the Specialization in Gender and Women's Studies.

For additional information on the Interdisciplinary Graduate Specialization in Gender and Women's Studies, please visit the Gender and Women's Studies website.

MA English and Cultural Studies: Social Justice Studies Specialization

The MA in English and Cultural Studies with Specialization in Social Justice Studies gives students the opportunity to engage in interdisciplinary work focused on social justice and literary/cultural studies. 

NOTE: Students in these programs must complete all requirements within six terms (2 years) of continuous registration.

Admission Requirements for Masters

Applicants for admission must be graduates of a recognized university, college, or institute as well as show evidence of scholarly achievement. Except where otherwise stated in the Admission Requirements of a particular program, degree students must have a four year bachelor's degree or its equivalent with at least second class standing (B) based on their last 20 half courses or equivalent.

For applicants from countries that follow a British-patterned grading system, please note:

  • Overall standings are normally reported in lieu of an average. The CGPA can be determined on the basis of annual or overall standings as reported on the transcript or degree certificate.
  • A minimum grade of B, or Second Class, Upper Division, is required.
  • The National Diploma and Higher National Diploma are not recognized for admission to a graduate-level program.
  • Be sure to include a copy of your institution grading scale when uploading your transcripts.
  • If in doubt, you may wish to order a WES International Credential Advantage (iCap) report from wes.org

An applicant holding a degree other than one in the discipline area to which admission is sought will be considered on the basis of courses taken and academic standing. A Qualifying Year at the undergraduate level may be required to meet the admission standards. Courses taken as part of a Qualifying Year can not be used as credit towards a graduate degree.

Meeting the minimum requirements does not necessarily guarantee admission. No candidate will be admitted unless the academic unit recommends admission. All applicants will be advised by the Office of Graduate Studies in writing of their admission status.

Program Specific Requirements

In addition to the general admission requirements for Master programs, the following requirements also apply:

  • Theory Requirement - As prerequisites and/or co-requisites for graduate work, candidates must have taken/be taking at least one FCE in literary and cultural theory, such as English 2913 or its equivalent. Should the candidates be lacking in this area, they must take one FCE in literary and cultural theory, normally English 2913, in addition to the other courses in order to qualify for the Master of Arts degree.
  • Candidates should communicate with the Graduate Coordinator of the Department of English concerning offerings for the ensuing year.
  • Thesis, research-project, and creative-project program candidates should also discuss possible thesis, research-project, or creative-project topics with the Graduate Coordinator of the department in order that a thesis, research-project, or creative-project supervisor may be assigned.
  • Graded English Essay - International applicants must provide a graded English essay from their undergraduate studies, as part of the application process.


Graduate Funding

At Lakehead University, we realize the importance of financial support for graduate students.

Therefore, financial assistance opportunities are available in several forms and are generally awarded to students by individual programs on the basis of academic promise and financial need.

The different funding options available include:

For your convenience, a searchable database of graduate scholarships, bursaries, and awards is provided below. Award eligibility, criteria, and application procedures for graduate funding is indicated for each award. Please use the general search tool to find available funding by program. Alternatively, you may also click the advanced search link to specify available funding by program level, award category and/or award amount.

Although financial support cannot be guaranteed to all graduate students in all programs, we encourage you to inquire about financial assistance with your Graduate Coordinator in your program of study. You may also contact the Graduate Funding Officer in the Faculty of Graduate Studies to learn more about your graduate funding options.

Conditions of Graduate Awards

Graduate scholarships are based on academic merit. Graduate bursaries are based on financial need, although there may be a merit component to the bursary. Where the award designates that an application is required, only those students who have submitted the specified application by the deadline will be considered for those awards. Late and/or incomplete applications will not be considered. Only successful applicants will be notified.

Recipients of scholarships, awards and bursaries must be registered in order to receive funding. Graduate awards are applied to any outstanding balance on the student's account. Students are entitled to their awards only after their fees are paid in full. Only students with credit account balances will be refunded the balance of the overpayment. Overpayment refunds of these awards will be issued at the end of September, January and May each year.

The University reserves the right to make changes without prior notice to the terms, conditions and award values listed in this section and in the University Calendar.

The most up-to-date internal awards and applications are on our new award system MyAwards

Graduate Studies Funding Database

Required Application Documents

Applicants for admission must be graduates of an accredited university, college, or institute as well as show evidence of scholarly achievement. Except where otherwise stated in the admission requirements of a particular program, domestic degree students must have a four year bachelor's degree or its equivalent with at least (B) based on their last 20 half courses or equivalent. We recommend that International applicants have an overall standing of Second Class - Upper Division or higher.

Meeting the minimum application requirements does not guarantee admission. The Faculty of Graduate Studies will advise all applicants in writing of admission decisions once they are received from the program. Applicants are encouraged to regularly monitor their Lakehead University email and application portal for the most current information.

The first step in the application process is to complete the online graduate studies application form.

After you have submitted the online form along with the required $125 CAD application fee, you will be provided with an online account where you can complete the remaining steps of the application process which include uploading the required supporting documents and monitoring the status of your application.

Click here to Apply to Graduate Studies

After you have applied 

After you have submitted the online application form, you can access your account here. Any change in your application status will be reflected in this portal.

Graduate Studies Reference Form
  • An electronic reference form will be automatically sent by email to the references you identify on the graduate studies application form
  • This form is requested in support of the applicant's ability to undertake advanced study and research
Official Transcript
Proof of Degree
Program Specific Supporting Documents (If required)
  • For a list of program specific documents, please see this program's Additional Application Information section (if required, see above)
Official English Test Results (If required)
Additional Application Information
Supplemental Information Form
Specialization in Social Justice Studies
  • To specialize in Social Justice Studies, you must provide a one (1) page statement of interest and submit it with your application.
Specialization in Gender and Women's Studies Form

Next Steps

Registration Procedures

Before Registering!

Check to make sure all of your course selections are currently being offered by referring to the University Course Calendar and the University Course Time Tables.

University Graduate Studies & General Regulations & Policies