May 29, 2024  
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog

Creative Writing Major, MFA

The MFA degree with a major in Creative Writing promotes a combination studio/academic course of study allowing degree candidates to hone their skills as writers and grow as artists through rigorous application of craft. Students receive critical feedback on poetry, fiction and creative nonfiction in writing workshops, scrutinize aspects of genre in special topics classes and investigate larger theoretical and historical contexts for creative work in Literature and Rhetoric, Writing, and Linguistics classes.

The program culminates in a creative thesis comprised of a book length manuscript of original creative work. While the MFA is an ideal stepping stone for those students who plan to teach creative writing at any level and those who wish to pursue a PhD degree with a major in English, concentration in Creative Writing, the faculty of the Creative Writing Program at the UT believes that study and practice of literary arts is intrinsically valuable and our program is designed first and foremost for those students who wish to dedicate their lives to writing well.

Option Available

Creative Thesis

Campus Code

Knoxville Campus

Admissions Standards/Procedures

  • A prospective student may contact the Graduate Admissions Office for application procedures or may review them on the Office of Graduate Admissions website. For additional information, please visit the Graduate Studies in English pages through the Department of English website.
  • The Department of English does not accept students in non-degree or provisional status. A student who wishes to enter the department must apply in degree-seeking status for his/her application to receive consideration for admission to any graduate program in English.

Credit Hours Required

Minimum 30 graduate credit hours

Required Courses

Non-Course Requirements

  • Foreign Language Requirement
    • MFA candidates must demonstrate proficiency in one foreign language. This requirement can be fulfilled in one of the following ways:
      • Completion of a second year of language at college level with a grade of C or better,
      • Completion of French 302 or German 332 with a grade of B or better, or
      • By passing a foreign language examination as administered at the University of Tennessee.
  • Final Examination
    • MFA candidates must pass an oral examination, which consists of a public reading from the candidate’s creative thesis, followed by a question-and-answer session open to both the public and the professorial committee.