Graduate

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At NTU English we enable graduate students to develop academic skills and to produce innovative and incisive research. Current graduate students at NTU are working on an eclectic range of research areas, including Asian working-class writers, modern Irish literature, literary trauma studies, contemporary crime television, and representations of time in narrative. NTU English graduate students are also working on creative writing projects in a variety of genres, engaging with topics and issues such as precolonial Singapore, tradition, gender, class, and sexuality. The English programme at NTU offers MAs and PhDs by research.

We welcome applications on any aspect of literary studies but have special research strengths in five key areas (Modern Literature, Singapore Literature, Irish Literature, Period Studies, and Contemporary Literature and Culture). NTU English is an interdisciplinary environment where researchers are encouraged to participate in our postgraduate community. The department regularly hosts academic conferences, visiting speakers from leading universities, and research seminars from our staff and students.

NTU graduate degrees are excellent preparation for careers in academia. Recent NTU English MA graduates have gone on to further study at the University of Oxford and to positions at Eunoia Junior College, Arts House, and Verra Asia. Recent NTU English PhD graduates have gone on to academic positions at Tembusu College at The National University of Singapore, Yale-NUS, and NTU.

Gaining a graduate level degree can also be of great benefit to those who are considering a different career path. Many employers value applicants who have research and teaching experience – two things that our MA and PhD candidates acquire a great deal of.

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​“Pursuing my Master of Arts at NTU allowed me to develop both my project and my professional capabilities – both aspects were crucial in securing me a doctoral scholarship from the ​​University of Oxford. The professors of the English department are knowledgeable in their respective fields, and the small class size of the graduate courses affords for a deeper engagement of diverse topics. In other words, one can pick the brains of​ these professors in class. I enjoyed the freedom to choose my desired courses; I was able to pick courses that I felt were useful to my own work. Having one year set aside for mainly research was also particularly helpful; it allowed me to focus on my thesis. The numerous teaching opportunities available at the department not only added to professional resume but also developed critical reading skills that my work benefitted from. Moreover, the department financially supported my conference attendance. Perhaps most importantly, the English department of NTU is a tight-knit and warm community. T​he professors genuinely want the best for their students; I certainly benefited from my supervisor’s close attention to my project and advice on my career path in academia.”

Charlotte HandMA graduate, 2019.​


 

                                         
                                                                                                                                                            
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​“​Reading for a Master of Arts degree at NTU played a crucial role in my intellectual journey and prepared me for my role as an educator. The courses in the program are designed meaningfully, where the professors exposed us to a wide range of reading materials, and rigorous discussions occur during classes. The exchange and development of ideas that happened in those settings gave me a broader perspective on a wide range of topics in literature and culture. I was also heartened by the guidance I received from the faculty during the process of writing my dissertation. The questions posed and feedback given has made me both better at research and a more confident writer. Having the opportunity to teach undergraduate courses was particularly developmental as well, as I learnt how to engage students and similarly facilitate significant discussions. Many of the experiences have been directly applicable to my career as an educator, where I guide my students in improving their reading and writing skills But beyond that, the rich learning from my time in NTU has made me contemplate more though-provoking questions about the relationship between text and context and, hopefully, I am urging others to do likewise."   

Sunil SuthersonMA graduate, 2015.​
                                                                                                                                                            
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​“In the English graduate programme, I found professors who were not just knowledgeable and passionate in their fields of study, but also invested in my personal growth and wellbeing. Through the process of writing and re-writing my thesis, and assisting the faculty on tutoring undergraduate classes, I learnt the importance of academic rigour, but also clarity of voice; when a situation calls for thoughtful exposition and when it demands frugality of words for impact. Of course, I acquired some knowledge along the way as well! I believe the critical skills I picked up in my time at NTU helps me today in my work as a copywriter for an advertising agency, in the way I frame my approach to different clients' needs and bring creative ideas and insights to life for different audiences. And I believe these skills will stand me in good stead for whichever industry I choose."

Shane LimMA graduate, 2019.​
                                                        
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​"As a teenager, I always struggled with the rigidity of the formal education system, so the idea that I would someday pursue a PhD would have come as a surprise to me. It was my experience at NTU English that gave me the confidence and the training to do so. Not only did the programme challenge me intellectually through its rigorous curriculum, but it also gave me the freedom to shape my degree experience according to my interests. The cosy and friendly nature of the department also meant that I never felt hesitant about approaching my professors for help. I credit NTU English with instilling in me the intellectual rigour and independence I needed to pursue a career and academia."

Samuel Caleb Wee, MA Graduate, 2018
(PhD Candidate, University of British Columbia)
 
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​“In my undergraduate years, there was always a wide range of courses to choose from, which put me on the path to finding my research interests. Many of the professors I met and had the privilege to work with were generous with their time and thought, and unstinting in their extensive knowledge and love for books. These people, and my experiences at NTU, have helped me tremendously in finding my way to where I am today.

During my masters, the convivial classroom space was where I learnt to voice my views with confidence. The discussions were lively and illuminating every time. I also had the opportunity to present at conferences, and I remember—at the time, being new to all of this—realising how invigorating and wonderful it felt to be around people who took joy in exchanging ideas. For the better part of my academic career, the School of English has been the place where I learned and experienced so much of what I needed to become a better reader, writer, and teacher. "​

Adel Cheong, MA Graduate, 2016
(PhD Candidate, Dublin City University)
                                                       
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​“Pursuing my PhD in English at NTU was very enriching and afforded me many opportunities to not only expand and hone my subject expertise and knowledge, but also to develop skills in teaching and managing students, and developing and managing courses. The professors in the department were professional, helpful and supportive, and my supervisor was absolutely integral to my development as an academic. I was very fortunate to benefit from their experience and guidance and also to be given the chance to live in the UK and work with a supervisor in Wolfson College, Oxford University, for six months. They also actively facilitated my publishing efforts as a graduate student. All these invaluable opportunities, the people I worked with, and the skills and experience gained were crucial in helping me secure my current position as a Senior Lecturer in the Singapore University of Social Sciences. The relationships forged throughout my studies in NTU continue to support me in the work I do currently. "​

Lim Yiru, PhD Graduate, 2015
(Senior Lecturer, SUSS)



Please contact Christopher Trigg – cptrigg@ntu.edu.sg – if you have any queries about graduate research at NTU English. Please email Barrie Sherwood – bsherwood@ntu.edu.sg – for enquiries regarding MAs and PhDs in creative writing. 
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