The Creative Writing BA Program | Academic Requirements | Student Learning Outcomes | Courses | Faculty

The Creative Writing BA Program: Academic Requirements

In addition to meeting general degree requirements, creative writing majors must complete a minimum of nine courses and an 8-credit senior project (45–47 credits total) as follows. The foundation courses and the two genre courses must be completed with a grade of B or higher:

  • CWR 1000/Poetic Techniques: 4 credits*
  • CWR 1100/Narrative Techniques: 4 credits*
  • Two courses in the student’s chosen genre (poetry or fiction): 8 credits*
    CWR 2400/Poetry Writing I and CWR 3400/Poetry Writing II
    CWR 2500/Fiction Writing I and either CWR 3200/The Art of the Novella or CWR 3500/Fiction Writing II
    *Must be completed with a grade of B or higher.
  • Two literature courses, chosen from the following: 7–8 credits
    LIT 2361/U.S. Short Story (3 credits)
    LIT 2560/Survey of U.S. Literature I (4 credits)
    LIT 2570/Survey of U.S. Literature II (4 credits)
    LIT 3581/Realism and Naturalism (4 credits)
    LIT 3620/U.S. Poetry (4 credits)
    LIT 3755/Poetry and the Avant-Garde (4 credits)
  • Two upper-level creative writing electives: 8 credits
  • Arts-related course(s): 3–4 credits
  • CWR 4000/Special Topics in Creative Writing: 3 credits
  • SPJ 4990/Senior Project I: 4 credits
  • SPJ 4991/Senior Project II: 4 credits

Note: A semester of study abroad is strongly recommended.

Examples of Arts-Related Courses
Courses in the following list are subject to change, and new courses may be added. Students should consult with their faculty advisor when choosing arts-related courses.

Conservatory of Music:
MTH 4130/History of Recorded Music II: Bebop to Hip-Hop
    (formerly SOA 4610)
MTH 4212/Opera History II (formerly SOA 4595)

Conservatory of Theatre Arts:
ACT 3044/Creative Expression (formerly SOA 3760)
TDT 3008/Costume Design Seen Through Film (formerly SOA 3775)

School of Art+Design:
SCP 3006/Introduction to Video Art (formerly SOA 3000)
SCP 3155/Performance Art (formerly SOA 3155)
SCP 3630/Sound/Interactive Media I (formerly SOA 3210)
SCP 3640/Sound/Interactive Media II (formerly SOA 3220)
VIS 3000/Art in the Age of Electronic Media (formerly SOA 3001)
VIS 3500/The Arts for Social Change (formerly SOA 3237)

School of Film and Media Studies:
SOA 3770/Anatomy of an Indie (discontinued Fall 2014)

School of Humanities:
ARH 3190/History of Photography

School of Liberal Studies & Continuing Education:
ARH 3115/Contemporary Art (formerly AAR 3120)
ARH 3455/Impressionism (formerly AAR 3400)
ARH 3520/Art of the ’80s, ’90s and 21st Century
    (formerly AAR 3520)
Course # pending/Musicals: Stage, Screen, and Beyond
    (formerly ADR/FTF 3255)
CMS 3130/American Film, Reflections of a Century I: 1900–1949
    (formerly CSS/FTF 3075)
CMS 3170/American Film, Reflections of a Century II: 1950–1999
    (formerly CSS/FTF 3175)

Sequence of Study
All creative writing majors follow a sequence of courses, whether their chosen genre is poetry or fiction:

  1. To encourage an awareness of and sensitivity to the various aspects of the craft of creative writing, students are required to take the introductory courses, CWR 1000 and 1100, in their first year of study.
  2. In the second year, poetry students move on to CWR 2400/Poetry Writing I, then to CWR 3400/Poetry Writing II, while fiction writing students take CWR 2500/Fiction Writing I, followed by either CWR 3200/The Art of the Novella or CWR 3500/Fiction Writing II.
  3. After completing this course sequence, students have the opportunity to study for one semester with a writer-in-residence. In addition, advanced tutorials are available on a regular basis, emphasizing continuous, close work on revision and editing skills. In the most advanced classes, students begin to explore the fiction and poetry market. A component of advanced study may also include experience in editorial and copyediting techniques as preparation for work in the publishing industries.
  4. Students take CWR 4000/Special Topics in Creative Writing in the fall of their senior year, in tandem with the first semester of their senior project.

Updates to the 2013–15 College Catalog:

Effective Fall 2015:

  • CWR 1050/Foundations in Poetry and Fiction replaced by CWR 1000 and 1100 (4-credit increase in requirements for the major).
  • CWR 4000 is taken in the fall semester of the senior year (formerly taken in the spring semester).

Effective Fall 2014:

  • The senior project (formerly CWR 4990, two semesters, 8 credits total) is now SPJ 4990/Senior Project I and SPJ 4991/Senior Project II, 4 credits each.

Updated april 9, 2015

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Please direct updates for this page to the managing editor in the Office of the Provost and Academic Affairs. For curricular revisions, please refer to the Faculty Handbook.

For current majors:
Graduation Plans

In consultation with your faculty advisor, the eight-semester plans, maintained by the Office of the Registrar, can be used as a guide to assist you in your academic planning and progress toward graduation.