United States On Campus Masters in Creative Writing Programs
An on campus masters in creative writing program might be a great way to sharpen your creative tools and receive feedback to elevate your writing. Potentially smaller class sizes means you could have the chance to work alongside fellow authors. Together, you might strengthen your writing abilities through writing intensive workshops and literature based academics. This balanced process could be a great way to enhance your literary techniques to better write, review, and revise your work. Additionally, professors could provide industry insights that may prove key to your future writing endeavors. This could be the push you need to get your ideas on to the page!
On Campus Masters in Creative Writing: Curriculum
On campus creative writing masters programs may be a great way to practically apply and grow your writing techniques. But, the term “creative writing” includes many different forms. For example, students could pursue some of the following styles while earning their degree.
- Young Adult Fiction
- Children’s Fiction
- Creative Nonfiction
- Literary Translation
Program concentrations may vary by institution. No matter which style you prefer to write, program curriculum will comprise of both writing workshops and academic studies. This balance of practical application and coursework is designed to create a well rounded education to potentially push your writing to the next level.
Creative Writing Workshops
Writing workshops are an important part of most on campus creative writing programs. Students are required to submit current drafts of their writing projects for review and critique. This might be a great way to receive valuable criticism for your work. Peers and professors read each piece and could provide targeted feedback for you to improve upon in the next draft.
But, critique isn’t reserved for the classroom. Since
you’re taking your courses on campus, you could go to professors’ office hours for additional feedback. Or, you might start a writing group with your classmates. Your campus could become a one stop shop for your writing needs!
Also, workshops might be a great place to begin your professional network of other writers. Finding a literary agent, publishing job, or future career might be difficult after graduation. Your classmates could provide vital information about potential leads. Or, you might even find a writing partner after reading your classmate’s work.
In addition to the workshop experience, students may also study theory surrounding their art form while earning their on campus masters in creative writing degree. In this case, coursework could touch some of the following subjects.
- Literary Adaption
- Cross-genre Writing
- Thematic Literature Criticism
- Regional Writing Traditions
Courses may differ by university. Learning about the concepts behind different styles and best practices might be a great way to expand your writing knowledge. Not to mention you could be exposed to new authors and genres who influence your work. Depending on your chosen degree, these courses may be offered as part of the required curriculum or as an elective.
Choosing a Creative Writing Masters Degree: MFA vs. MA
Schools that have a creative writing masters program typically offer them as a master of fine arts (MFA) or a master of arts (MA). While both may be available, MFAs are generally more common. MFAs tend to focus on the practical application of writing. Students may be involved in more workshop courses in these programs. MAs differ in that they split writing intensive coursework with academics to create a holistic curriculum. In addition to your creative courses, you may also study topics typically reserved for English graduate programs. This could include classes in literary theory and scholastic critique. The MFA and MA do share a common point, though. Each of these degrees intend to help students elevate their craft to confidently pursue creative writing after graduation.
MFA Writing Programs Class Size
Both the MA and MFA in creative writing offer an intimate working environment for students to hone their craft. While class sizes vary by school, many departments accept only 4 to 6 applicants per year. This might be an ideal makeup for students constantly submitting pieces to be workshopped. Since this is a smaller setting, you could become more familiar with your classmates work and vice versa. You may find they easily pinpoint your strengths and weaknesses after a time.
Additionally, the smaller class size might help professors become more aware of each student’s body of work. As industry professionals, they could provide insightful feedback and offer lessons from their own experiences.
On Campus Residency
MFA creative writing programs typically require students to be on campus for a residency. This part of the program is designed to help writers focus more intently on their work. To do this, students are usually asked to live on campus with other students in their year. During this time, you may not have to take additional classes. Instead, you could devote your time to writing. This may be a great chance to work on your graduation piece. Typically, a creative writing masters thesis is work created by the student in their preferred style. Residencies could provide you the time necessary to complete these larger endeavors.
Residencies are typically offered in both low and high formats. Low residency programs are often shorter, frequently lasting around 10 days. These shorter stays are generally offered once a semester. This may be a great option for working professionals because it is easier to fit into their working schedule.
In comparison, high residency programs typically last 2 to 6 weeks. These writing intensives are a great way for students to dig deep into their work. As an on-campus student, you might find that a high residency program is the better choice for your studies. Since you’re already attending the university, living there for a short period of time might be an easy jump.
Potential On Campus Creative Writing MFA Length
Creative writing masters programs may run longer than other graduate programs. This is due in part to the above-mentioned curriculum, which may take a longer time to complete. Additionally, residency requirements may also extend your graduation timeline. Keeping this in mind, students could potentially earn a MFA in creative writing in 1 to 3 years. Program length may vary by institution.
On Campus Creative Writing Masters Admissions
Typically, masters program admissions emphasize your undergraduate GPA and GRE scores. However unlike other concentrations, creative writing masters programs balance your past academic performance with your creative abilities. As part of the application process, schools may request students to submit samples of their previous work. This could include manuscripts, short stories, poems, or plays. Schools require these examples to see if students are a good fit for their program. For example, a children’s lit author might be less suited for a creative nonfiction concentration!
Find an On Campus Masters in Creative Writing Program
With this information, you’re ready to grab your books and pursue a masters in creative writing on campus! To continue your search, browse the list of potential schools on this page. For more information about a degree, click its associated link. While there, select “request info” to receive more information about admissions deadlines, curriculum, and residencies from your intended university. Good luck finding a perfect creative writing MFA school.
- Pittsburgh, PAPittsburgh, PA
The MFA in Creative Writing is a broad program of study (39 credit hours) with five separate tracks.
- Fort Lauderdale, FLFort Lauderdale, FL
Nova Southeastern University
Composition, Rhetoric, and Digital Media (M.A.)
Seeking a job in teaching, writing, publishing or digital media? NSU’s master’s degree in Composition, Rhetoric, and Digital Media can kick start your career with its multi-faceted curriculum that will prepare you for success in both the classroom and th...
- Tampa, FLTampa, FL
University of Tampa
The University of Tampa low-residency Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing Program is designed to help poets, fiction writersand creative nonfiction writers advance their command of craft through exposure to literature from a writerly perspective...
- Huntsville, TXHuntsville, TX
Sam Houston State University
Gain practical experience and intensive instruction...
- Madison, NJMadison, NJ
Fairleigh Dickinson University
FDU’s low-residency MFA program in Creative Writing is ideal for students who want a more flexible academic schedule.
- Riverside, CARiverside, CA
La Sierra University
La Sierra offers the only Seventh-day Adventist graduate religion and ministerial training program in the western United States, drawing students from around the world to study on our campus...
- Twin Cities, MNTwin Cities, MN
University of Minnesota
A three-year MFA program with the third year devoted to the completion of a publishable manuscript. Cross-genre experimentation encouraged. Courses in...
- Milledgeville, GAMilledgeville, GA
Georgia College And State University
Most students complete the MFA degree in 3 years (a few in 2 years), taking both workshop and seminar courses and completing a creative thesis in one...
- Portland, ORPortland, OR
Portland State University
Portland State University's MFA in Creative Writing is a residency program offering concentrations in Fiction, Nonfiction, and Poetry.
- Bowling Green, OHBowling Green, OH
Bowling Green State University
The MFA Creative Writing Program at Bowling Green State University is a 40 hour, two-year program with a concentration in fictio...
- Houston, TXHouston, TX
University of Houston
The Creative Writing Program in the Department of English is one of the few in the nation offering students a choice among three advanced degrees in poetry and fiction. The MA and PhD degrees are in literature and creative writing, preparing students fo...
- Bloomington, INBloomington, IN
The Creative Writing Program at Indiana University in Bloomington offers a Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.) degree in fiction and...
- Garden City, NYGarden City, NY
An intimate program, Adelphi’s Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing offers unique hands-on experiences to meet with writers, agents, editors and arts administrators to learn firsthand about the professional life of a writer.
- Wilkes-Barre, PAWilkes-Barre, PA
The Master of Arts in Creative Writing is a 30-credit, low-residency program with tracks in fiction, poetry, screenwriting, playwriting and creative n...
- Incline Village, NVIncline Village, NV
Sierra Nevada College
Our program was built entirely by writers, to guide authors organically through the exploration of their craft and thorough preparation for a sustainable life of creation and publication...
- Raleigh, NCRaleigh, NC
North Carolina State University
The Department of English offers a two-year studio/academic program in fiction or poetry leading to the MFA degree.
- New York City, NYNew York City, NY
New School, The
In this unique graduate program, students are guided in workshops and seminars by a faculty of distinguished writers in the literary capital of the United States. ...
- Tucson, AZTucson, AZ
University of Arizona
The University of Arizona's Creative Writing Program offers a 36 unit M.F.A. degree.
- Salt Lake City, UTSalt Lake City, UT
University of Utah
- Annandale On Hudson, NYAnnandale On Hudson, NY
Founded in 1981, the Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts offers an interdisciplinary program leading to the master of fine...
- Murray, KYMurray, KY
Murray State University
The low-residency MFA at Murray State allows student writers to work on their craft where they live while work-shopping their writing online or by tra...
- Washington, DCWashington, DC
Johns Hopkins University
Through intensive writing, thoughtful revision, and careful reading, students in Johns Hopkins University’s Master of Arts in...
- Camden, NJCamden, NJ
Rutgers University of New Jersey
A unique multigenre approach geared not only to help writing, but to prepare teachers on the college level.
- College Park, MDCollege Park, MD
University of Maryland - College Park
This is a two year, 36-credit hour program (3 credits per course) that balances course requirements between writing workshops and seminars in craft, t...