Graduate Admissions

Creative Writing - Nonfiction MFA

    PLEASE NOTE: These are samples only. Course offerings are subject to change and not all courses are offered each term or each year. Be sure to check the online course catalog and the current class schedule for details about pre-requisites, terms offered, class fees, etc.).

Nonfiction Workshops
These are studio-like courses, devoted to the production of student work. Taught by the core faculty in nonfiction, these repeatable workshops may have different foci, depending upon the instructors.  Students will be expected to complement the writing and critiquing of their work with readings from classic and contemporary examples of the form. 
4 courses, 12 credits

Thesis Development Workshop 
This course will serve to encourage students to develop, focus and move on to completing work on their theses, depending upon what stage of their work they are in at the time they take the class.
1 course, 3 credits 

Form and Theory of Nonfiction
Examples: Short Forms: The Short Essay and The Prose Poem; Writing Hybrid Nonfiction; The Poetic Memoir; Aphorism and The Declarative Impulse in Nonfiction Writing; Forms of the Essay.  This class is to a large extent a craft class in which students focus more intensely on specific issues and practices of their genre; but it also has the difference of incorporating a theoretical component as well, asking students to not only engage and think about craft and form, but to read and theorize it.
2 courses/6 credits

History of the Essay 
Seneca to Montaigne to Alice Meynell to Simone Weil etc . . . a linear, disjunctive, or creative tour into the heart of the essay. The essay is, in many ways, the genre central to the study of literary nonfiction in the United States today. It is the form most taught in nonfiction workshops. This class will introduce students to some of the crucial voices in the history of the form.
1 course, 3 credits

Topics in Nonfiction 
In these classes, Nonfiction faculty will have the opportunity to expose students to a broad array of canonical and contemporary writers in a variety of nonfiction genres.  This may be single, paired, or movement author classes (OULIPO’s work, or The Surrealist Essay), or classes that focus on a specific theme in nonfiction studies, or are devoted exclusively to exploring the critical necessity of aspects of nonfiction such as The Devotional Memoir (Julian of Norwich and Margery Kempe, etc) or The Journal and Letter as Cognate Forms of the Essay, as well as Autobiography and Memoir, Travel Literature, Traditional Biography and the “New” Biography, etc.
2 courses, 6 credits

Electives
Current Listings in Graduate Literature, which are mostly in poetry and new classes generated by the English faculty, which will be open in subject matter, giving graduate students a chance to sample more broadly based graduate curriculum in English studies.
4 Courses, 12 credits (at least 6 in Literature)

Thesis Hours 
Thesis credits, under individual direction by faculty, towards completion of the thesis.
9 credits