Apr 15, 2024  
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog [Current Academic Year] 
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog [Current Academic Year] This is not the most recent catalog version; be sure you are viewing the appropriate catalog year.

Children’s Literature [M.A.]

Location(s): Online

The Master of Arts in Children’s Literature (CHL), a fully online program, is designed to provide master’s level competency in all major areas of children’s literature, including folklore, mythology, literary theory, illustrated texts, and multicultural children’s literature.

The degree is appropriate for candidates who anticipate teaching in the elementary, middle, or junior high school levels, as well as special education teachers, reading specialists, librarians, authors, and editors of children’s books. It also prepares college teachers of children’s literature and those who anticipate undertaking doctoral studies. Students can choose to take CHL courses for all 30 credits or can include electives from such programs as creative writing, literature, technical and professional writing, English education, theatre and drama for the young, women’s studies, or reading.

Online Education Eligibility

  • The U.S. Federal Government limits the number of online courses international students may enroll in while living in the United States. For this reason, we cannot admit students on F1 or J1 VISAs to fully online programs. Please check with International Admissions to confirm eligibility before applying.
  • All applicants, please review Online Education for Out-of-State Students to confirm your eligibility to enroll in an online program based in Michigan.

Program Admission

Admit Terms and Deadlines

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis; students may start the program in the Summer, Fall, or Winter. See Application Deadlines.

Minimum Graduate School Requirements

For full admission, applicants must have 1) Earned a four-year baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or an equivalent degree from a non-U.S. institution, 2) a minimum cumulative undergraduate grade point average of 2.7 on a 4.0 scale, or 3.0 in the last half of the undergraduate program. Conditional admission may be available to applicants not meeting minimum admission requirements.

Program Requirements

Applicants must also meet the following program requirements. Requirements may be more stringent than the minimum graduate school requirements.

  • A personal statement (we recommend that these statements be 1 to 2 pages in length)
  • An academic writing sample (preferably something related to children’s literature)
  • Two letters of recommendation


Your application will be submitted using GradCAS, a Centralized Application Service (CAS) hosted by Liaison. After reviewing the admission requirements, please review the application instructions  and select the appropriate application.

Domestic Applicants Within the application, follow the instructions to submit an official transcript from all previously attended institutions.

International Applicants Before applying, applicants must review the international application/process deadlines at emich.edu/international as they may differ from general program requirements.

For additional information regarding the application process, please see Graduate Admissions or International Admissions.

Department Information

English Language & Literature 612 Pray-Harrold, 734.487.4220

Joseph Csicsila, PhD, Department Head

Eric Acton, PhD, Graduate Coordinator

Advisor Information

Annette Wannamaker, PhD, Program Coordinator, 603E Pray-Harrold, 734.487.0148

Degree Requirements: 30 hours

Students must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours from the following

Capstone Requirement and Electives: 9 hours

Students must satisfy one of the following requirements. 

Children’s Literature Exam and Electives: 9 hours

The candidate must complete a written M.A. examination in Children’s Literature. The written examination is taken during the semester before graduation and draws from a candidate’s coursework, covering a broad spectrum of periods, genres, and critical theories. 

In addition, students must complete a minimum of nine credit hours from the following.

Children’s Literature Creative Project and Electives: 9 hours

In partial fulfillment of the Master’s of Arts in Children’s Literature requirements, the student proposes a Master’s Creative Project, which serves as the culminating project of the program. If the student completes a Master’s Creative Project, the student does not complete a Master’s thesis or take the M.A. exam. The Master’s Creative Project is developed in close consultation with a project director and approved by the program and graduate coordinators.

In addition, students must complete a minimum of nine credit hours from the following.

Children’s Literature Thesis and Electives: 9 hours

In addition to the required coursework, the candidate must submit a thesis to complete the degree. The candidate writes their thesis during their final year in the program. The final thesis must be submitted and approved by the Graduate School. 

Critical Graduation Information

Each graduate student is responsible for fulfilling the requirements or equivalents of the Eastern Michigan University catalog in force at the time of their initial registration or a subsequent catalog, including the one in effect at the time of their graduation.

Master’s degree requirements must be completed within six (6) years of first enrollment in the master’s degree program.

In the event a student does not complete the master’s degree requirements within six years of the date of their original registration, the student may be required to have their credits re-evaluated by the academic department(s) of their degree in keeping with catalog requirements in force during the year of their graduation.

The following are minimum requirements for all master’s degrees awarded by Eastern Michigan University. Some programs require more than the minimum in one or more areas below.

  • A master’s degree must require a minimum of 30 credit hours.
  • No more than six credits of independent study courses and no more than 12 credit hours of special topics and independent study courses combined may be applied to a graduate degree.  
  • Residency Requirement:
    • For students admitted to master’s degree programs of 36 or fewer required hours, at least 24 new graduate hours beginning the semester of acceptance and enrollment into the degree program must be earned at EMU. The remaining program requirement hours may be met through transfer or prior degree credit (EMU or elsewhere). 
    • For students admitted to master’s degree programs of 37 or more required hours, at least 30 new graduate hours beginning the semester of acceptance and enrollment into the degree program must be earned at EMU. Minimum degree hours must still be met for graduation. The remaining program requirement hours may be met through transfer or prior degree credit (EMU or elsewhere).
    • Residency and enrollment in multiple programs: Students enrolled in multiple master’s/specialist degree programs must have 24 unique credit hours in each degree program.
  • Only credits from one completed graduate certificate may be applied to a master’s or specialist degree in a relevant field of study, as determined by the Graduate School and with the approval of the degree-granting academic department, and be included in the residency hours above.
  • Students must maintain a 3.0 cumulative GPA in all graduate-level courses taken at EMU and in their program of study to remain in good academic standing and be eligible for graduation. Students do not need to be registered for classes during the semester of graduation.
  • The Graduate School does not permit the use of undergraduate courses (499 and below) to meet degree requirements on graduate programs of study.
  • Some master’s programs require a thesis; others require a special project or internship; others require students to pass a final exam. See the Graduate School website for Thesis and Dissertation Manuals, all forms, and information about research and human subject approval. Every completed thesis or dissertation must be submitted to Digital Commons. Any form of graduate student work submitted to Digital Commons must first be approved by a faculty advisor and the Graduate School.