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MFA Creative Writing | Requirements & Admissions

AU campus quadrangle in fall

Creative Writing (MFA)

Offered by the Department of Literature, College of Arts and Sciences.

Admission to the Program

Applicants must meet the minimum university requirements for graduate study. Applicants from candidates who have majored in any undergraduate field will be considered, though major in literature is desirable. Admission is based on samples of previous writing (25 pages of prose or 15 pages of poetry), academic record, and two letters of recommendation.

Degree Requirements

  • 48 credit hours of approved graduate work
  • Capstone experience: 6 credit hours of LIT-797 Master's Thesis Seminar¬†resulting in a book-length manuscript of fiction, poetry, or nonfiction approved by the creative writing faculty after an oral examination on its merits, characteristics, and relations to the works of others

Course Requirements

Writing Workshops (12 credit hours)

Complete 12 credit hours in writing workshops:

Note: Students may concentrate on one genre or work in several.

Required (6 credit hours)

Literature (12 credit hours)

  • 12 credit hours in literature courses selected from among the regular graduate level literature offerings of the department

Thesis (6 credit hours)

Tracks (12 credit hours)

Complete one of the following tracks:

Professional

Complete 12 credit hours from one of the following:

Studio

Complete 12 credit hours from the following:

  • Additional writing workshops, offered at American University
  • Additional courses in literature, cinema studies, or performing arts
  • With advisor approval, courses in foreign languages, journalism, or any other discipline germane to the individual student's interests and consistent with program objectives

Teaching

Teaching of Composition Sequence
Electives

Complete 6 credit hours from the following:

  • Additional writing workshops, offered at American University
  • Additional courses in literature, cinema studies, or performing arts
  • With advisor approval, courses in foreign languages, journalism, or any other discipline germane to the individual student's interests and consistent with program objectives

Program Blog

Students and faculty of the Rome summer MFA program.

Learn more about the Creative Writing Program with our blog.

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Program Video

Creative Writing Program Video

Faculty, program alumni, and current students say what sets this program apart.

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