Content | Navigation |



PhD in English: Rhetoric, Writing and Culture


Please direct any questions to Dr. Verena Theile, Director of Graduate Studies. 

The NDSU Graduate School policies for Doctoral degrees can be found here

Application Deadline: To be considered for admission and a teaching assistantship, completed applications must be received at the Graduate School by February 1.  

Admissions are for fall semester only. 
M.a. and ph.D application deadlines are February 1. 
information stating otherwise is out of date. 


All admission materials must be received and processed by the Graduate School before your file is forwarded to the department for review. Incomplete files will not be reviewed, and it is your responsibility to make sure all materials have been received by the Graduate School.

An online Application is available here.  

An official transcript(s) (grade report) 

A $35 application fee  

At least 3 letters of recommendation, ideally addressing your abilities as a student and your potential for graduate work 

A writing sample that demonstrates your abilities as an academic writer, ideally an expository or analytical piece rather than poetry or fiction 

A statement of purpose that includes the following: 

  • coursework you plan to complete in the program
  • faculty members with whom you wish to study
  • scholarship you plan to pursue
  • a sense of what you hope to do once you have completed a Ph.D. degree in English
  • how your education and/or life experience have prepared you for graduate work
  • A letter stating your interest in and qualifications for a teaching assistantship, if applicable
  • Official TOEFL or IELTS scores for International applicants

Interviews in person or via video software may also be used to evaluate applicants to our graduate programs.

Mail your documents to

Mailing Address:
NDSU Graduate School
NDSU Dept. 2820
P.O. Box 6050
Fargo, ND 58108

Delivery Address (for courier deliveries):
NDSU Graduate School
201 Old Main
1340 Administration Avenue
Fargo, ND 58102

Once the department has reviewed the application and made a recommendation, the Graduate School reviews your file and admits or denies admission to a graduate program. You will be notified of the decision by letter at that time.

English Proficiency Requirements for International Applicants:
TOEFL ibT 100

Students admitted to the Ph.D. in Rhetoric, Writing and Culture are required to demonstrate foreign language competency by the time they begin to write the dissertation.  Students may meet this requirement in one of the following ways:

Demonstrate advanced reading competency in one foreign language equivalent to successful completion of a second-semester, third-year (300-level, 6th semester) college language course.

Demonstrate intermediate reading competency in two foreign languages equivalent to successful completion of two second-semester, second-year (200-level, 4th semester) college language courses.

Demonstrate intermediate reading competency in one foreign language equivalent to successful completion of a second-semester, second-year (200-level, 4th semester) college language course and, in consultation with the student's advisor and the graduate director, demonstrate competency in one special research skill (written rationale will be required at time of request).  See Graduate Handbook for additional information.

Students admitted prior to Spring 2010 may be exempted from this policy and meet existing MA language requirements.

Experiential Learning Credit can be gained by several methods.Teaching Mentorship (0-6 credits), may be taken twice.  Students work with faculty to read theory and co-teach 200, 300, or 400 level class.

  • Internship (0-6 credits), may be taken twice. Students work outside or inside academy in administrative, editing, consulting or writing roles. 
  • Life Experience (0-3 credits). Students submit a writing or teaching portfolio reflecting professional experience prior to enrolling in the program. 

Student Focused. Land Grant. Research University.

Follow NDSU
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • RSS
  • Google Maps

Site Managers: Kevin Brooks and Andrew Mara
Published by the NDSU Dept. of English

Last Updated: Thursday, September 22, 2016 1:35:41 PM
Privacy Statement