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Department of English & Cultural Studies Graduate Application Instructions

Please read these instructions carefully before starting your application process.

Required Documentation:
The following materials are required to be uploaded before your online application will be considered complete. *Please make sure to include all required documents, when the application asks for the Statement of Interest and the CV. 

PhD Applicants

  • A 500-word (2 pages, double spaced) Statement of Interest: this is an opportunity for students to outline the project they wish to undertake. The statement of interest should indicate both the critical or theoretical debates and the primary texts students will engage. Students are advised to include the name of a faculty member (or members) with whom they wish to work.
  • Writing Sample (15-22 pages): preferably a paper written for a graduate course or a section of the MA thesis.
  • Scholarships & Awards: if applicable, applicants are to include a list of scholarships, awards, and bursaries received during their academic studies. Please include the following: title of the award, duration, a brief description of significance, and the value of the scholarship received.
  • Additional Information: if appropriate, list on a separate sheet any research, teaching, or work experience related to your proposed area of specialization. You may also include your C.V. as part of the uploaded documents. If applicable, please provide a list of courses you are currently taking.
  • One original transcript (scanned copy) for each university and post-secondary institution attended and each program in which you have studied, including both undergraduate and graduate degrees and course work: official transcripts must be scanned and uploaded directly to the online application system. If your application is accepted for admission to the program, you will be required to submit original, paper transcripts to the Department of English & Cultural Studies, c/o the Graduate Administrator to the address below:

Chester New Hall 321
McMaster University
1280 Main Street West
Hamilton, ON
Canada, L8S 4L9

  • Two confidential letters of recommendation from instructors most familiar with your academic work: McMaster University uses the Electronic Referencing System. By entering the email address of your referee through the online application, the system will automatically send an e-Reference request on your behalf. Please note that the system will only recognize email addresses of academic institutions. If for some reason you/or your referee are unable to use the Electronic Referencing System, you can download the Reference form using this link: Confidential Report Form
  • International Students: applicants whose native language is not English will be required to provide an official record of the Test of English as a Foreign Language. A TOEFL score of 92 (iBT), 580 on the regular test and a score of 237 on the computerized test are required. If you are submitting the IELTS test, a score of 7 is required.
  • Application Fee: To finalize the application, applicants must agree to the online terms and conditions, and pay the required $110 (CND) application fee. This fee is non-refundable and must be paid in Canadian dollars by means of a debit or credit card payment.  Your application will not be considered for admission until your application fee has been received.  Please see the Student Accounts & Cashiers website for information on the acceptable methods of payment.

Start the online application process.

Information for scholarships and awards for graduate students can be found on the School of Graduate studies website.