Master of Fine Arts Admission Requirements

Savage Library

Checklist for Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing Admission

NOW ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FOR SUMMER 2015

Complete all sections of the online application.

Forward the following to Western's Extended Studies Graduate Office, Taylor 303, 600 N. Adams Street, Gunnison, CO 81231, or email to Extended Studies (ExtendedStudies@western.edu):

  • an official transcript of the bachelor's degree, demonstrating   evidence of literary and/or film studies of at least four (4) undergraduate or graduate courses. The baccalaureate-granting institution must send the transcript directly to the Western State Colorado University Extended Studies Graduate Office.
  • an 800- to 1,000-word personal statement describing writing experience and commitment to writing. This statement should include the applicant's own assessment justifying candidacy to Western's M.F.A. in Creative Writing for the chosen concentration.
  • a 20- to 30-page writing sample in the appropriate genre, double spaced and numbered, or properly formatted for the appropriate genre. The Fiction concentration sample should cap at 25 pages and ideally be from a single work. The Poetry concentration sample should include 20 pages of poetry and 10 pages of poetic analysis in prose. The Screenwriting concentration sample should include a complete scene or short.
  • at least two letters of professional recommendation from those capable of assessing the applicant's preparation to succeed in a low-residency M.F.A. program. All letters must be submitted on letterhead, must be originals, less than a year old and signed by the person giving the recommendation.
  • For Poetry Concentration only: Poetry applicants must have sufficient preparation in a foreign language (ancient or modern) to work on translation with aid of a dictionary and other supporting texts during second year of studies.

Non-Matriculated Enrollment

Are you interested in Western’s Graduate Programs in Creative Writing, but not yet ready to matriculate full-time? Want to learn more about Genre Fiction, Poetry with a Focus on Versecraft, or Screenwriting for TV and Film? We have an option for you.

Western allows anyone holding a baccalaureate degree to complete up to nine credit hours of 600-level graduate coursework before matriculating into the program. Non-matriculated registration for graduate level courses does not constitute or imply admission in the graduate program, as the candidate must meet the full program admission requirements – but it does give students the opportunity to sample the program before applying for admission into a degree program and fully committing.

Costs per credit/hour are the same as for matriculated students.

To apply to be a non-matriculated student, please forward the following to Western’s Extended Studies Graduate Office, Taylor 303, 600 N. Adams Street, Gunnison, CO 81231, or email to Extended Studies (ExtendedStudies@western.edu):

  • Application. Download here.
  • One-page cover letter explaining your desire to take classes in one of the MFA’s three tracks (Genre Fiction, Poetry, Screenwriting)
  • 10-15-page writing sample in the appropriate genre, double spaced and numbered, or properly formatted for the appropriate genre. The Fiction concentration sample should cap at 15 pages and ideally be from a single work. The Poetry concentration sample should include 10 pages of poetry and 5-10 pages of poetic analysis in prose. The Screenwriting concentration sample should include a complete scene or short.
  • Unofficial transcript documenting successfully completion of baccalaureate degree.

Non-matriculated credits (graded B- or higher) may be applied to a graduate degree at Western upon admission and approval by the appropriate Concentration Director and the Director of the Graduate Programs in Creative Writing.

Admission to non-matriculated status is subject to approval by the Director of each concentration. Admission to non-matriculated status does not constitute or imply full admission to the graduate program.