The Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing is for students with advanced abilities in the writing of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and hybrid forms. This nationally-ranked program offers a balance of intimate and intensive writing workshops with courses in literature, form and technique, and related electives. Coursework culminates in a book-length collection of short stories/poems /essays or a novel or memoir, as well as completing a comprehensive portfolio.

Effective Spring 2018

Select one course from the following:3
Form and Technique in Modern Literature: Fiction
Form and Technique in Modern Literature: Poetry
Form and Technique in Modern Literature: Essay
Select 12 credits (4 courses) in any one genre from the following:12
Graduate Writing Workshop: Fiction
Graduate Writing Workshop: Poetry
Graduate Writing Workshop: Essay
E 699Thesis12
Additional credits in E 500- or E 600-level courses 118-20
One course outside English Department, 300-level or above 21-3
Program Total Credits:48

A minimum of 48 credits are required to complete this program.

Additional Program Requirements:

  • Students are required to submit a portfolio with writing, sample papers, and annotated bibliography at the end of their program.  

  • A minimum of 32 credits applied to an MFA degree must be earned at CSU. Of these, at least 21 must be earned after admission to the program. 

  • Graduate courses taken at CSU prior to admission to the Graduate School can be applied to an MFA degree if the grade earned is B or higher.  

  • At least 16 credits earned at CSU and applied to an MFA degree must be English courses at the 500-level or higher; of these credits, at least 12 must be in “regular” courses. English courses considered to be other than “regular” include E 607B, E 684, E 687,  E 695, E 699, and any  courses graded pass/fail.

  • Courses transferred from an MFA program must have a grade of B or higher and must have a CSU equivalent at the 500-level or higher. Credits used to fulfill requirements for previously earned degrees are not accepted.  

  • Up to three credits of coursework for an MFA degree can come from CSU programs outside the English department at the 300-level or higher. Students can take two additional courses outside the department, but these courses must be 500-level or higher. 

  • Graduate students may register for any number of internship credits, but a total of only six credits of E 607B, E 684, and E 687 (combined) will count toward graduation.  

  • A maximum of two credits of E 695 can count toward an MFA degree.   

  • With the exception of specified courses, all courses taken in the English department and applied to an MFA degree must be taken at the 500-level or above. 


This must include one course (3 credits) of a Pre-Twentieth-Century Literature class with approval of advisor. 


This requirement may be waived for students whose undergraduate degree is in another major.