Graduate Assistantships

Each year the English Department makes approximately eighteen Graduate Assistantship awards to students in our Master’s and certificate programs.  Awardees receive (1) a full tuition waiver for all required coursework and (2) a stipend.  (The stipend amount for the 2017-18 academic year is $8772.)  For new Master’s students, this funding typically extends for two years.  See Graduate Assistantships for funding and eligibility details.

English Department Graduate Assistants are assigned a variety of duties.  The most common assignment is two sections per semester of ENG 110 Writing I.  However, there are opportunities to teach other introductory-level courses, and some of our Graduate Assistants divide their assistantship time between teaching and other kinds of work (e.g., serving as a Writing Center consultant or serving as a faculty assistant).  English Department Graduate Assistants receive extensive training in the teaching of writing.

Application Process

Of course, applicants must also submit admissions applications.  An applicant seeking both admission and an English Department Graduate Assistantship should submit the items listed below.  Students who have already been admitted to the Accelerated M.A-Writing Program and who are now applying for an English Department Graduate Assistantship must also submit all of the items listed below.

  1. the application form and application fee (see Apply Now);
  2. official transcripts for all college and graduate school coursework (to be sent directly from the institutions to the Graduate College; MSU transcripts will be accessed electronically by the Graduate College and the English Department, so they need not be supplied by the applicant);
  3. a statement of purpose (a 200- to 250-word description of the reasons for the applicant’s interest in English graduate studies; to be mailed to Etta Madden, at the address below, or emailed to;
  4. at least two letters of recommendation from persons able to comment on the applicant's academic achievements and potential (to be mailed, by the recommenders, to Etta Madden, at the address below);
  5. a writing sample (a 10- to 15-page piece of writing or a few pieces totaling 10 to 15 pages; to be mailed to Etta Madden, at the address below, or emailed to; and
  6. a Graduate Assistantship application (See Graduate Assistantships; to be mailed to Etta Madden, at the address below, or emailed to 

* International applicants may be required to submit additional admissions application materials.  Contact for more information.

Applications for Graduate Assistantships are due by March 1, and, in order to apply for an Assistantship, applicants must make sure that all of the materials listed above are received by March 1.  (However, applicants seeking only admission may apply at any time.)

For more information about English Department Graduate Assistantships, please contact Dr. Etta Madden (

Other Graduate Assistant Positions

Some students may wish to apply for Graduate Assistant positions outside of the English Department.  (A student may apply simultaneously for multiple positions, though a student may of course accept only one assistantship offer.)  For information about graduate assistantships outside of the English Department, see Graduate Assistantship Openings

Applications and letters of recommendation should be sent to:

Etta Madden
Graduate Program Director
Department of English
Missouri State University
901 S. National Avenue
Springfield, MO 65897
(417) 836-5422