English
College of Humanities and Social Sciences

Concentrations

MFA in Creative Writing

The master of fine arts in creative writing has three concentrations: poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. Students should apply to only one concentration, although a student turned down by one concentration may subsequently apply to another or to that same concentration in a subsequent year.

Students interested in taking individual courses or in applying in the future to the MFA program are welcome to apply to take classes as non degree students; such enrollments are allowed only with the instructor's permission. Students already admitted as non degree students who are interested in taking a specific creative writing course should submit a brief letter of introduction and a writing sample to the professor at least one week before the start of classes. Students who are not already admitted as non degree students first need to apply for non degree status. Students who have been denied admission to the MFA program may not take courses as non degree students.

For policies governing all master's degrees, see the Academic Policies section of the catalog.

Application Requirements

Applicants to all graduate programs at George Mason University must meet the admission standards and application requirements for graduate study as specified in the Admissions section of this catalog. For information specific to the MFA in creative writing, see Application Requirements and Deadlines on the departmental web site.

Reduction of Credit

With the approval of the MFA faculty, the program director, and the dean, the number of credits required for an MFA may be reduced by a maximum of 23 credits on the basis of graduate course work before admission.

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 (Catalog Year 2016-2017)

Two to four courses (6 to 12 credits) in literature

Students should choose courses in consultation with an advisor. ENGH 798 may not be used to fulfill this requirement.

One Concentration (12 to 15 credits)

▲Concentration in Fiction (FIC)

Students in this concentration complete 12 credits.

One course (3 credits) in the form

ENGH 566 - Forms of Fiction Credits: 3

Writing workshops (9 credits)

ENGH 618 - Fiction Writing Workshop Credits: 1-6

ENGH 751 - Advanced Workshop in Fiction Writing Credits: 1-6

▲Concentration in Nonfiction Writing (NFW)

Students in this concentration complete 15 credits.

One required course (3 credits)

Students should enroll the first semester it is offered after they enter the program.

ENGH 506 - Research for Narrative Writing Credits: 3

One course (3 credits) in the form

ENGH 565 - Forms of Nonfiction Credits: 3

Writing workshops (9 credits)

ENGH 616 - Nonfiction Writing Workshop Credits: 1-6

ENGH 752 - Advanced Workshop in Nonfiction Writing Credits: 1-6

▲Concentration in Poetry (POE)

Students in this concentration complete 15 credits.

One course (3 credits) in the form

ENGH 564 - Form of Poetry Credits: 3

Writing workshops (9 credits)

ENGH 617 - Poetry Writing Workshop Credits: 1-6

ENGH 750 - Advanced Workshop in Poetry Writing Credits: 3

At least one course (3 credits) in another genre (fiction or nonfiction)

This requirement may be filled by a section of ENGH 608 in another genre.

Elective courses (up to 15 credits)

Electives should be chosen in consultation with the writing program faculty. The number of electives will vary according to the number of literature courses and workshops that students take.

Craft Seminars (6 to 12 credits)

This course can be repeated for credit.

ENGH 608 - Craft Seminars Credits: 3

Workshop (1 credit)

ENGH 699 - Workshop in English Credits: 1-3

Exam or Project

Exam

Students in poetry must pass a written MFA exam based on the authors they have chosen. The authors are selected in collaboration with the writing faculty any time after completing 12 credits of course work and before completing 32 credits. The exam must be completed at least one semester before the student registers for the final 3 credits of thesis.

Students in fiction and nonfiction writing must pass an MFA exam or complete an MFA project. Students who elect to take the MFA exam select, after the completion of 18 credits and with the approval of their faculty advisors, a list of authors and an area of emphasis (for example, the European novel).

Project

Students in fiction and nonfiction writing must pass an MFA exam or complete an MFA project. Students who elect to complete an MFA project (such as editing an anthology) must carry out the project under the direction of a faculty member and may register for ENGH 798 to fulfill this requirement. The project must be completed at least one semester before the student registers for the final 3 credits of thesis.

ENGH 798 - Directed Reading and Research Credits: 1-6

Thesis (6 credits)

ENGH 798 may not be used as thesis preparation. Students who want to register for thesis credits in the summer need the permission of the thesis committee.

Students should be aware of the university policies governing theses. They must follow the thesis enrollment policy and once enrolled in ENGH 799, maintain continuous enrollment. These policies are specified in the Academic Policies section of the catalog.

ENGH 799 - Thesis Credits: 1-6

Total: 48 credits

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