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Jan. 9th, 2009

Hello, does anyone know or have a SOP example I could look at? I have been writing (and re-writing) my SOP dozens of  times and am drawing a blank as to what I should write about. I have several stores and reasons as to why I would like to teach literature but am unsure if they are cohesive. Anyone have any suggestions or examples?



( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 9th, 2009 05:44 am (UTC)
This might be a better question for review_my_sop, applyingtograd, or the wgi_lounge_09 communities (I see that you're already a part of it). tiny hint that I hope isn't too patronizing...check out the communities and get a gauge for the "feel" of them before posting. Some will take more kindly to this question than others.

Correct me if my impression is wrong...are you looking at MFA rather than Ph.D/MA programs? From your journal, it seems that you are looking to write fiction? Most (if not all) of the scholars in this community are in literature or comp lit programs...in any case, while we might harbor dreams (some more realistic than others--at least one of is writing a novel!) on fiction writing, most of are actually *studying* literature, not creating it.

Also...you'll get different responses from different people, but it may be wiser to post your current draft and solicit feedback, rather than ask others to share their SoP's. *grins* I realize all too well that there is a risk with breaching privacy, but in this situation, it may be wiser for you to assume the risk? Anyway, I suspect that you'll gain more meaningful feedback this way.

Edited at 2009-01-09 05:48 am (UTC)
Jan. 9th, 2009 06:00 am (UTC)
God, I have such an enormous amount of interests that I would hate to narrow them! I am actually applying to several MA Secondary Education: English programs. I don't have the wherewithal to do a PhD in English Lit, nor do I have the research interest. I temporarily was interested in doing a PhD in children's literature but did not find a program that I felt suited me aside from Roehampton University in London.

I do have interests in writing for publication (I have several published works) but am looking to expand and broaden my horizons. I suppose you are correct that I should post my SOP but I am slightly embarassed over it as I am certain that it does not reflect my capabilities. Kill me for I am incredibly vain!
Jan. 9th, 2009 06:07 am (UTC)
I'm slightly confused: are you applying for secondary education programs with an English focus? or English MA's as well as secondary education MA's?

UPitt's English program has several professors who work in children's lit. They accept Ph.D as well as MA students, though the deadline has passed for the Ph.D

As for writing for publication. There might be a few MFA'ers or ex-MFA'ers lurking, but I think most of us are looking to publish in academic journals that ever outside of the ivy tower will ever read, so we probably can't help you there.

Edited at 2009-01-09 06:11 am (UTC)
Jan. 9th, 2009 07:00 am (UTC)
I am only applying to secondary ed with an English focus programs. I am currently an English major in my senior year, so I am trying to narrow down my interests into a professional degree. I have no use or time for an English Lit PhD as I have been steered away from that route by an overwhelming amount of professors. These same professors have told me that an MFA is useless (while I disagree), so I really have no interest in going down that route either.
Jan. 9th, 2009 07:26 am (UTC)
Well, we're the people who DO "have use [and] time" for an English Lit Ph.D or MA.

Most of the people in this community (and virtually everyone in wgi_lounge) were either given different advice from their professors (though we've already heard the warnings), or decided to ignore them. This community originally started from last year's English graduate (Ph.D, MA) applicants....WGI_lounge is this year's applicants. I don't think any of us are applying for secondary ed programs. And as I've stated elsewhere, English graduate school--especially the Ph.D--is a highly academic field, and we're expected to present ourselves as such in our statements. Hence, the statements focus almost entirely on our research proposals, and the academic background that prepared us for it. I've never written an SoP for secondary ed. but I suspect that the focus is sharply different.
Jan. 9th, 2009 05:44 am (UTC)
Why don't you have a look at review_my_sop? There are a number of people who have posted SOPs in past years; they might have some examples you may find inspiring. Or, you could even post your own SOP in that community for feedback. Hope that helps!
Jan. 9th, 2009 06:00 am (UTC)
Thanks for the advice, I will take a look!
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )