Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, Editing, and Publishing

The Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, Publishing, and Editing is designed

  • to assist students in their development as writers of fiction, poetry, and/or creative nonfiction;
  • to provide practical, hands-on experience in the field of editing and publishing;
  • to deepen a student’s critical engagement with language and literature, and
  • to prepare those students for careers as published authors, as well as teachers of creative writing in community colleges and universities.

Students seeking admission to the MFA program in English must supply the following materials directly to the Office of Graduate Admissions:

  1. Graduate Application
  2. Application fee
  3. Official transcripts of all college-level work, including one that shows conferral of the undergraduate degree (Note: The student must have completed at least twelve hours of upper-division English courses with a 3.0 GPA or better; students with credentials from foreign universities must have their transcripts reviewed by a transcript evaluation service.)
  4. Official scores for the GRE General Test (Note: The subject test in English is not required.)
  5. Three letters of recommendation that discuss the applicant’s potential for success in an English graduate program
  6. A creative writing sample of either 20 pages of prose or a collection of 8 - 10 poems. (Note: Applicants may submit a critical writing sample to supplement but not substitute for a creative work.)
  7. International applicants ONLY: Official TOEFL scores

The English MFA Program welcomes qualified international applicants; however, an individual who does not hold American citizenship must be accepted in regular admission status, without qualifications.

A holistic review of each applicant's file will be completed, and admission will be granted on a competitive basis.

To earn the MFA in English, students must complete a minimum of forty-eight hours of graduate credit with a focus in either Fiction or Poetry, as indicated below.

  • All MFA students must take at least one course from each of five blocks; included among the total classes must be at least one course each in British and American literature.
  • All MFA students are required to take ENGL 5330 at the first opportunity.
  • Before beginning work on a thesis, sitting for comprehensive examinations, undertaking a directed study, taking an undergraduate course for graduate credit, or transferring in graduate credits from another institution, the student must have completed at least twelve hours of graduate English coursework, including ENGL 5330, in good standing.
  • All MFA students complete a two-semester thesis sequence (ENGL 6098 and ENGL 6099).
  • All MFA students must pass the English graduate program’s written comprehensive examination (offered in October, February, and June of each year) and an oral defense of the thesis. Students must be enrolled in the University for the terms in which they sit for the written comprehensive and oral examinations.
  • A student may take ENGL 5339 twice, with approval of the Department Chair. A student may take one 4000-level English course for graduate credit, with approval of the Department Chair and the Dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences. See the Graduate English Handbook for guidelines and restrictions.

English Course Blocks

  • Block 1: English Language, Early and Middle English Literature
  • Block 2: Theory, Pedagogy, and Writing Disciplines
  • Block 3: Early Literature
  • Block 4: 19th-Century British and American Literature
  • Block 5: 20th- and 21st-Century Literature in English

The MFA student must take at least one course in each of these blocks. The student need not take the block courses in sequence.

With the approval of the Department Chair, a student may substitute up to six hours of the following special and variable topics courses for block requirements:

Courses
ENGL 5369The Novel3
ENGL 5370Multicultural Literature3
ENGL 5374Women's Literature3
ENGL 5388Major Figures in Amer Poetry3
ENGL 5391Major Figures in Brit Poetry3
ENGL 6330Special Topics in English3

The block requirement for which such a course may be substituted will be announced explicitly in the online course listings before registration and in the instructor's syllabus.

Students enrolled in the MFA in Creative Writing, Editing, and Publishing may choose a focus in either Fiction or Poetry.

Plan 1 – Focus in Fiction

Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, Editing, and Publishing Focus in Fiction
Specified Courses
ENGL 5330Graduate Research: Methods and Theories3
ENGL 5331Creative Writing: Fiction (Students will take 12 hours of workshop)3
ENGL 5333Practicum:Editing & Publishing (Students take 6 hours of practicum) *3
ENGL 5336Narrative Theory3
or ENGL 5337 Poetic Theory and Prosody
ENGL 5368Literary Criticism And Theory3
Block 1
Select one of the following:3
Early & Middle English Lit
English Linguistics
Hist Dvlpt Of English Language
Block 23
Select one of the following:
Workshop In Teaching Writing
Practicm In Teaching Coll Comp
Rhetoric & Composition Theory
Technical & Prof. Writing
Block 3
Select one of the following:3
Early American Literature
Restoration-18Th Cent Brit Lit
The Classical Tradition
Renaissance-17th Cent Brit Lit
Block 4
Select one of the following:3
Romantic Literature
Victorian Literature
American Literature, 1800-1860
American Literature, 1860-1920
Block 5
Select one of the following:3
Modern World Literature
Eng Lit, 1900 to the Present
American Lit, 1920-the Present
Thesis
ENGL 6098Thesis I3
ENGL 6099Thesis II3
Total Hours48

Plan 2 – Focus in Poetry

Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, Editing, and Publishing Focus in Poetry
Specified Courses
ENGL 5330Graduate Research: Methods and Theories3
ENGL 5331Creative Writing: Fiction3
or ENGL 5334 Creative Writing: Nonfiction
ENGL 5332Creative Writing: Poetry (Students take 9 hours of workshop)3
ENGL 5333Practicum:Editing & Publishing (Students take 6 hours of practicum) *3
ENGL 5336Narrative Theory3
or ENGL 5337 Poetic Theory and Prosody
ENGL 5368Literary Criticism And Theory3
Block 1
Select one of the following:3
Early & Middle English Lit
English Linguistics
Hist Dvlpt Of English Language
Block 2
Select one of the following:3
Workshop In Teaching Writing
Practicm In Teaching Coll Comp
Rhetoric & Composition Theory
Technical & Prof. Writing
Block 3
Select one of the following:3
Early American Literature
Restoration-18Th Cent Brit Lit
The Classical Tradition
Renaissance-17th Cent Brit Lit
Block 4
Select one of the following:3
Romantic Literature
Victorian Literature
American Literature, 1800-1860
American Literature, 1860-1920
Block 5
Select one of the following:3
Modern World Literature
Eng Lit, 1900 to the Present
American Lit, 1920-the Present
Thesis
ENGL 6098Thesis I3
ENGL 6099Thesis II3
Total Hours48
*

 Teaching Assistants may substitute ENGL 5367 for three hours of ENGL 5333.