Rice University

Department of English

Application Process

Monday, January 9, 2017, is the deadline to have a complete application to be considered for admission in the Fall 2017 semester. Late or incomplete applications will not be reviewed.  Many recommendation letters and GRE/TOEFL scores arrive after our deadline; this results in incomplete applications. It is the applicant's obligation to check with our office to ensure all materials have been received and that the application file is complete. 

The English Graduate Program is a Ph.D. program only and does not consider applicants pursuing a terminal Master’s degree.


A complete application file consists of:

APPLICATION – Please apply online. There is a $85 non-refundable application fee (payable online, or with a check or money order, US currency only).

CURRICULUM VITAE – Your C.V. is expected to include a comprehensive listing of your professional history including every term of employment, academic credential, publication, contribution or significant achievement. Please also make sure to include your contact information.

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE – Your application must include a Statement of Purpose indicating your objectives in undertaking graduate study, your designs in achieving your English Ph.D., and your strengths and weaknesses in your chosen field. Briefly describe any research projects or any independent research in which you have actively participated and indicate how this has influenced your career choice and desire to pursue graduate studies. If you have particular reasons for applying to Rice (e.g. you would like to work with a specific faculty member), please indicate these.  Statements of purpose are typically 1-2 pages.

UNOFFICIAL TRANSCRIPTS – transcripts from all colleges and universities attended should be uploaded to the online application. If a different name appears on a transcript or test report, please indicate a cross-reference if you are applying in your maiden name or another name. Official copies of all transcripts will be requested upon admission to our program.

RECOMMENDATION LETTERS – requested from three persons who know your personal and scholastic qualities (preferably professors in your major field). Letters of recommendation should be uploaded through the online application system. Applicants will list their three recommenders by name, along with their email addresses, and these people will automatically receive an email with instructions on how to upload letters. We advise applicants to make sure their professors or recommenders know to expect this email and give them at least two weeks' notice to write the letter.

GRE/TOEFL Official GRE/TOEFL scores should be sent by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) to the address listed below. The subject test is not required, only the general portion of the GRE. When taking the GRE and TOFEL, please indicate School Code: 6609 and Department Code: 2504. Photocopies are not acceptable. Be sure to also enter your test scores in the online application. It is important to note that requesting your scores be sent electronically by ETS to a school does result in immediate action; it typically takes ETS at least 5-7 business days to electronically transfer a batch of scores.

WRITING SAMPLE – Upload a sample of your academic writing consisting of 15-25 pages, preferably on a literary topic.  


We recommend that you contact our office at least one week prior to January 9th to check on the status of your application. Contact the English Department at 713-348-4840 (Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm CT).


Any material sent by mail should go to the following address:

Graduate Applications
Department of English, MS-30
Rice University
6100 Main Street
Houston, TX 77005-1892