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3. Departmental Information

3.1 Degree Programs

The Department of English offers programs leading to the PhD and MA in English literature. The Department offers the option to obtain the MA with or without a thesis. Details concerning this option appear below.

3.2 History

Over the past ten years, the Department of English has awarded approximately 200 MA's and 50 PhD's. In 2011-2012, there are 88 students enrolled in the Graduate Program in English -- 51 MAs and 37 PhDs.

3.3 Administration

3.3.1 Program Advising

During registration all new graduate students will meet with an advisor in order to discuss course work and other aspects of the Program. The advisor assigned to new students is not the supervisor of the thesis or research project. Advisors advise about programs; supervisors oversee research.

Continuing students should also meet with their advisor or supervisor. Any changes in the student's program must be approved by an advisor and the Graduate Director.

During advising every effort is made to ensure that each student has satisfied all the requirements for the degree. It is ultimately the student's responsibility to ensure that, at the time she/he applies to graduate, all the requirements have been met.

3.3.2 The Graduate Administration Committee (GAC)

The Graduate Program is administered by a four-member Committee: the Graduate Program Director and three other members of the Department. The committee meets on a regular basis in the academic year to consider applications for admission, fellowships, and awards, as well as to approve PhD and MA research proposals.

3.3.3 Graduate Coordinator

The Graduate Coordinator in Arts  270 keeps all records of graduate students, provides information on the program, courses, fellowships, etc., and assists in the administration of the program.

Students must notify the Graduate Coordinator of changes of address or telephone number.

3.3.4 Supervision

The Graduate Coordinator in Arts  270 should be informed of the name of the supervisor of the student's PhD or MA thesis (or research paper) when that has been determined.

3.5 English Graduate Students' Association (EGSA)

Graduate students in English are automatically members of the English Graduate Students' Association. EGSA is a self-governing organization whose interests in student life are social, professional, and political. They provide and circulate information to English graduate students through a variety of channels including their webpage, facebook group, and listserv. EGSA plans several annual parties. EGSA sees as one of its most important functions the welcoming of new graduate students into the program through social events which include returning students as well. Early in the school year, it coordinates a gathering with the faculty so that students can feel at home as quickly as possible. Professional information is available through EGSA's Resource and Professional Development Centre, including national English newsletters (ACCUTE) and the MLA job listing. EGSA's Professional Development Committee also hosts a series of workshops throughout the year, addressing issues varying from writing conference papers to post-graduate job opportunities. As well, EGSA is part of an interprovincial Graduate Lecture Exchange, through which students can deliver papers at Ontario universities and host speakers from those universities as they come to McGill. Finally, EGSA is a political body. Besides having an elected executive and committee members, EGSA participates in various departmental committees so that graduate students are involved in hiring, curriculum, and general departmental policies and decisions.

Political involvement exists outside the department as well. EGSA is a member of the Post-Graduate Students' Society (PGSS) which addresses the needs of graduate students on campus. PGSS operates from Thomson House, located on campus in an elegant Victorian mansion, which contains many social rooms, a bar, and a dance floor. Membership in PGSS entitles the student to specific information on housing, sport, recreation, and social life. This information is available in the Graduate Student Handbook, which you can obtain by info [dot] pgss [at] mail [dot] mcgill [dot] ca (emailing) PGSS or visiting the PGSS office at David Thomson House, 3650 McTavish, Montreal, QC, H3A 1X9, Tel: 398-3755.

Of special interest in this handbook is information on medical coverage. All full-time Canadian graduate students and additional session students are automatically entitled to the benefits of the Student Insurance Plan organized through the Canadian Federation of Students (CFS). For information, contact the Administrator at: PGSS (see above for address), tel: 398-3756, info [dot] pgss [at] mail [dot] mcgill [dot] ca (email). Non-Canadian students with valid work permits (such as the one available with a teaching assistantship) are eligible for full coverage under the Quebec health plan. Students are responsible for applying for this coverage through the office of the Dean of Students. International students without work permits are obliged to join the International Student Health Insurance Plan. For information and particulars, please visit International Student Services at3600 McTavish St. Suite 3215, Montreal, QC, H3A 1Y2, tel: 398-4349, or online.

Any other questions, suggestions, or enthusiastic energy should be directed to the Collective Executive of EGSA. You can reach one of the executive members by phoning EGSA at 398-6548, or through the Graduate Coordinator, Arts Building 155B, McGill University.

3.6 Dossier Service and Graduate Placement Officer

The English Department provides a confidential dossier service for its doctoral graduates. Dossiers include student transcripts, letters of reference written by members of the Department, and other information the student may consider relevant to applications for employment; they should not, however, include samples of writing, which must be sent separately by the applicant. The maximum length of any dossier (including c.v. and letters of recommendation) should not exceed 15 pages. It is the student's responsibility to ensure that dossiers are updated on a regular basis.

Requests to have dossiers sent out should be made at least two weeks in advance of the date they are due. Students must provide the Graduate Coordinator with mailing labels for each institution to which the dossier is sent. This service may not be used when a student applies for fellowships or to other graduate programs. It is to be used only for those graduate students who are seeking employment.

The Department also provides the services of a Graduate Placement Officer, a professor in the department who offers advice on the preparation of the dossier and other forms of assistance to graduating students entering the profession.

3.7 Deadlines and Fees

The office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies regularly posts deadlines for submission of nomination of examiners' forms, non-thesis application for graduation (for MA students in the Non-Thesis option), and theses. Please note under 6.2.1 of the Regulations for Graduate Studies: "All students must register (and pay fees) annually up to and including the term in which they expect to graduate. Outstanding tuition fees must be paid before graduation."

If a student does not submit by the Fall deadline, he/she must register and pay fees for the Winter term. Only if students submit by August 15 in each year are they then exempt from registration and fees for the subsequent Fall term.

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