4+1 Degree Program

4+1 Degree Program: BA+MA 

The 4+1 program in English will allow talented undergraduates the opportunity to further pursue their studies in English and Creative Writing at the graduate level in a timely and cost efficient manner. It will allow qualified students the opportunity to do advanced study in British and American literatures, postcolonial and global fiction and film, as well as in creative writing.

Course Sequence and Timetable

For the 4+1 program, students will take 3 graduate 500-level courses in LIT/RHET/CW, in place of three undergraduate 300-level electives. These three 500-level courses will double-count towards their undergraduate degree and their Master's degree. If the student has been accepted into the highly selective Honors Program, and satisfactorily completes the Seminar (fall) and Honors Thesis (spring), the honors seminar can be counted for one of their graduate courses.

  • Major Checklist in 4+1 Program (Major Code 12H)

    CORE REQUIREMENTS (five courses)

    1. One course in British literature to 1660
      (ENG 227, ENG 230, ENG 240, ENG 330-339, ENG 340-349)

    2. One course in British literature 1660-1900
      (ENG 228, ENG 250, ENG 260, ENG 350-359, ENG 360-369)

    3. One course in American literature to 1920
      (ENG 270, ENG 272, ENG 370-379)

    4. One course on Shakespeare
      (ENG 245)

    5. One course in literary theory and criticism or globalization and culture
      (ENG 310 or ENG 320)


    1. One intermediate or advanced course
      (ENG/CW/RHET 200-299, 300-399, 400-490, 495, 498-499)

    2. One advanced course
      (ENG/CW/RHET 300-399, 400-490, 495, 498-499)

    3. Three graduate courses (senior year)
      (ENG 500-593) will count towards 3 UG electives for BA Degree and MA Degree

Application and Admissions Process

Students are expected to apply in their junior year by submitting their declaration of Intent to Apply to English Department Undergraduate Program Assistant. Admission will be evaluated by the faculty of the English Department Undergraduate/ Graduate Committee and processed through the English Department and Graduate School. Admission requires an excellent cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher. Application materials will be reviewed by the department and will include an unofficial transcript, two letters of recommendation, a personal statement, and a writing sample. Students applying for an MA with a Creative Writing focus must have at least one of their letters of recommendation from a CW faculty member. In addition, to transition from the BA to the MA, the student will need to complete the former degree within 4 years.

Admissions Application
Interested students are required to meet with the Undergraduate Director to determine if eligible to apply. Please contact the English Undergraduate Program Assistant, Donna Berg, dmberg@binghamton.edu, for available days/times. If approved, complete the Declaration of Intent to Apply, preferably by March 15th.  

Download: Declaration of Intent to Apply Application Form

Tuition and Financial Aid

Students admitted to the 4+1 program are formally considered undergraduates and pay undergraduate tuition rates for the first four years of the program until they graduate with the BA degree. During the fifth year in the 4+1 program, students are formally considered graduate students and pay graduate student tuition rates.

Questions? Contact dmberg@binghamton.edu 

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4+1 Program Timeline to MA Degree:

The 4+1 program allows students to complete both the BA and MA in English with just one additional year of coursework beyond the standard BA degree.

The stand alone MA program typically requires 3 semesters of coursework. Because the 4+1 program allows accepted students to take up to three graduate courses while completing the BA, the remaining graduate coursework can be completed two semesters. Once they have completed the BA degree requirements, students typically register for three 4-credit courses a semester.