The Master of Fine Arts Program in Creative Writing at The Ohio State University is designed to help graduate students develop to the fullest their talents and abilities as writers of poetry, fiction and creative nonfiction. Creative writing classes are conducted as workshops or tutorials, and there are numerous opportunities for related study both within and beyond the Department of English.
All students are fully funded for three years in a program that is well known for its sense of community and a faculty that is as committed to teaching as to their own writing. Approximately 36 graduate students are taught by tenure track, visiting, and affiliated (Film Studies) faculty, who also teach in the undergraduate program. Graduate student TAs teach introductory and intermediate special topics undergraduate creative writing courses, undergraduate literary publishing, as well as first-year and second-year writing (required courses for all OSU undergraduates). TAs teach two classes a year, one in autumn and one in spring. In addition, they have the opportunity to work as editors of OSU's prize-winning, nationally distributed literary magazine, The Journal, and to serve on the editorial staff of our two annual book prizes, one in poetry and one in prose.
Course offerings are varied and numerous. Special topics graduate workshops (in the long poem, in characterization, in literary translation, in humor writing, and so on) ensure that, in addition to "regular" workshops, opportunities abound for experimentation. Our graduate program includes coursework designed for "crossing over," such as, poetry workshops for MFA fiction writers or essayists with little experience writing poems; and "forms" classes in prosody, the novel, the memoir, novellas, for example.
Screenwriting for MFAs is offered once a year, and many students also elect to study playwriting or writing for performance as an elective. Many MFAs choose to pursue the Graduate Interdisciplinary Specialization in the Fine Arts (GISFA), which allows them to take graduate courses in other arts disciplines. Indeed, Ohio State's size and breadth offer our students the chance to explore many disciplines that enrich their study and practice of creative writing.