How to apply for graduate admission in the Department of Languages, Linguistics, and Comparative Literature

Admissions requirements:

A student seeking admission into any graduate program in the Department of Languages, Linguistics, and Comparative Literature must have a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution, ideally in the proposed field. Applicants must have a minimum 3.0 grade point average (GPA) for the last 60 undergraduate hours completed. In addition, students must have two letters of recommendation; a two- to three-page typed, double-spaced autobiographical statement (written in English) indicating the nature of their preparation for graduate work and the reasons for seeking the M.A. in the proposed field; and a writing sample (ideally, a research paper) in the language of the proposed field. Prospective applicants for graduate work in Languages, Linguistics, and Comparative Literature are encouraged to schedule an interview (by phone for out-of-town/state candidates) with the department's director of graduate studies, Dr. Nancy Poulson ( / 561.297.3845). Applicants who fail to meet the GPA requirements, and/or who lack a strong background in proposed field, may be admitted on a conditional basis.

Application Procedures for Graduate Studies in Languages, Linguistics and Comparative Literature

In order to be admitted to the Graduate program in French, Linguistics, Spanish or Comparative Literature, you must file two applications. The first application must be delivered to the Office of Graduate Admissions and Studies; the second to the Department of Languages, Linguistics, and Comparative Literature. Here are step-by-step procedures to follow:

  1. First application dossier (for the Office of Graduate Admissions and Studies)
    1. Visit the website of the Office of Graduate Admissions and Studies at Florida Atlantic University, to download application forms and learn more details about graduate studies at their website. Candidates are particularly encouraged to read FAU’s “Quick Reference Guide for Graduate Admissions” before beginning the application procedure.

    2. Fill out and submit the application to:

      Office of Graduate Admissions and Studies
      SU 80, Room 101 (Student Support Services Building, Boca campus)
      777 Glades Road / Florida Atlantic University
      Boca Raton, FL 33431

      (Phone: 561-297-3624; Fax 561-297-1212)

    3. This application must be accompanied by official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate work completed at previous institutions of higher learning. If you have studied at a non-U.S. institution, you must provide an official evaluation/translation of the relevant transcript(s).

  2. Second application dossier (for the Department of Languages, Linguistics, and Comparative Literature)

    All candidates must establish an application file directly with the Department of Languages, Linguistics, and Comparative Literature. The file must contain the following items, and must be delivered directly to the department:

    Department of Languages, Linguistics, and Comparative Literature
    Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters
    777 Glades Road, CU-97, Room 232
    Boca Raton, FL 33431-0991

    Tel: (561) 297-3860 / Fax: (561) 297-2657

    Documents that must be submitted to the department:

    There are a limited number of Graduate Teaching Assistantships available for full–time students. These awards provide an annual stipend and tuition remission, in exchange for teaching or assisting in the Department of Languages and Linguistics. If you are interested in applying for this financial support, please be sure to indicate this on your application and in your statement of purpose.

    1. Two letters of recommendation, preferably from university professors who can attest to your academic ability and potential for graduate study.
    2. A “statement of purpose,” which is a brief essay (220–440 words) that outlines your interest and goals in pursuing graduate study. This should be written in English, since it will be read by the entire graduate committee.
    3. A “writing sample,” preferably a scholarly paper written during your undergraduate career.
    4. A copy of your official graduate application and copies of any relevant transcripts. If your transcripts are in a language other than English, please include copies of the original (untranslated, original-language) versions; these give us valuable information.
    5. Please be sure to include contact information (phone number and email) so that the Director of Graduate Studies can reach you in a timely manner.
  3. The Department of Languages, Linguistics, and Comparative Literature accepts students for Fall, Summer, and Spring enrollments. It is recommended  that students interested in full time study and teaching assistantships apply as early as possible during the term prior to their intended start date. The teaching assistantships are competitive, and a student stands a better chance of receiving one when applying early.

  4. It is recommended that International Students begin this process as early as possible. In most cases, international students must obtain a student visa, which requires additional paperwork. More information for international students is available at

Students wishing to pursue the Master of Arts in Linguistics must satisfy all university graduate admission requirements. Applications, and information on University graduate admission requirements, are available through Graduate Admissions.