Folklore Studies Concentration

Catalog Year: 2020-2021

Green Leaf

The MA in interdisciplinary studies is for students who seek a master's degree that integrates knowledge from several disciplines. It addresses the rapidly evolving demand for unique graduate study by promoting advanced scholarship that transcends traditional disciplinary boundaries. Students can pursue one of the following structured interdisciplinary concentrations and also have the opportunity to design an individualized concentration to meet the special needs of their careers.

The MAIS in Interdisciplinary Studies with a concentration in Energy and Sustainability is a Green Leaf program

The University Catalog is the authoritative source for information on program requirements and courses. The Schedule of Classes is the authoritative source for information on classes scheduled for this semester. See the Schedule for the most up-to-date information and see Patriot web to register for classes. Requirements may be different for earlier catalog years. See the University Catalog archives.

Degree Requirements

Total credits: 36

This is a Green Leaf program.

The Green Leaf status for this program applies only to the concentration in Energy and Sustainability.

Students should be aware of the specific policies associated with this program, located on the Admissions & Policies tab.

Students pursuing this degree must successfully complete 36 credits of graduate coursework in a concentration. Students must submit a curriculum worksheet that has been approved by their concentration head and the director. All students complete their work in the program with a project or thesis.

Concentration in Folklore Studies (FLKS)

This concentration explores the processes of tradition that move through multiple expressive forms, such as folktales, folk beliefs, folk medicine, folk art, folksong, and literature. A discipline based on ethnographic fieldwork, folklore offers students a chance to work in communities and collect living traditional materials that are critical to human identity and values. Interdisciplinary by nature, folklore thrives on local particularities and compelling global connections. Internships in the many Washington, D.C., metropolitan area folklore organizations are central to students’ experiences. This course of study prepares students for careers in cultural agencies, governmental organizations, teaching institutions, and advanced study in the humanities.

Students pursuing this concentration must complete at least 6 credits of courses from outside the English Department.

Required Course of Proseminar

MAIS 796 MAIS ProSeminar 1
Total Credits 1

Core Courses

Special Topics in Folklore  
Select 9 credits from the following: 1 9
Topics in Folk Narrative  
Topics in Folklore Studies  
Advanced Topics in Folklore Studies  
Directed Reading and Research (take 3 credits)  
Pathways in Folklore Scholarship  
ENGH 681 Advanced Topics in Folklore Studies 2 3
Internship in Folklore  
Three credits of 3
Internship in Folklore  
Research Methodology Course  
Select 3 credits from the following: 3
Research in English Studies  
Topics in Folklore Studies 3  
Interdisciplinary Research Methods  
The Study and Writing of History  
Qualitative Research Methods  
Total Credits 18


Students choose an area of specialization which must be approved by a faculty advisor. Specialization topics include public folklore (museums, archives, arts and humanities councils, and nonprofit organizations); folklore (ethnicity and immigration); folklore and literature; folklore and the teaching of writing and literature; folklore and history; and folklore and conflict resolution. Students can also opt for open specialization, with courses chosen in consultation with advisor. Possibilities include folklore and editing, applied storytelling, folklore and mythology, folklore and art history, folklore and gender studies, and folklore and communication.


Electives require the prior written approval of a faculty advisor. Students who elect to do a 1 credit project take 6 elective credits. Students who do a 4 credit thesis take 3 elective credits.

Select one to two electives 3-6
Total Credits 3-6


MAIS 797 Interdisciplinary Studies Proposal 1
Total Credits 1

Project or Thesis

Select one from the following: 1-4
Interdisciplinary Studies Project (take 1 credit)  
Interdisciplinary Studies Thesis (take 4 credits)  
Total Credits 1-4

Philosophy, MA and Interdisciplinary Studies, MAIS Dual Degree

Students interested in pursuing a dual master's program linking philosophy and another discipline should discuss their interest with the graduate program directors of both programs and review the university policies regarding Individualized Dual Master's Degree Programs. Students approved to pursue dual master's study linking the MA philosophy degree and the Interdisciplinary Studies, MAIS with a concentration in women and gender studies will complete WMST 630 Feminist Theories across the Disciplines/PHIL 658 Feminist Theory and 3 additional credits of WMST courses approved by the Department of Philosophy to apply to the philosophy degree as elective credit. Six credits of approved PHIL credits will apply to the MAIS degree as elective credit. Application to the second master's program should be pursued with consultation of the directors of both programs. Admission to the second master's program will require that the student has met the minimum prerequisites for admission to the second program. If a student lacks the minimum prerequisites and seeks to be admitted to a second master's program, the director of the second program may identify ways in which the prerequisite can be completed prior to admission.