Online Project Period Core Requirements


After the residency experience, MFA in Creative Writing students continue in a semester-long online translation conference in which they actively participate on a weekly basis. The conference involves discussion of the writing issues that arise through the practice of translation, including theories of translation and any learning applicable to the process of writing in general. It is not necessary to know a foreign language in order to take the seminar or the conference.


The MFA field study involves the student in an experiential learning activity that enhances awareness of different possibilities in a writing life, such as publishing, teaching, working in media, designing websites, learning letterpress printing, making books, or participating in a variety of supervised internships in which writing is a component. Students design and complete this non-classroom learning experience sometime during their first two semesters in the program. The project should take 4 to 12 months to complete and may extend from one term to another. The field study is not necessarily supervised or evaluated by the faculty mentor; instead, it is completed under the supervision of and evaluated by a qualified individual closely associated with the placement.


During the second project period, each student writes a short critical paper in preparation for writing the longer paper (25-40 pages) during the third term. This paper is based on library or online research or is an in-depth critical reaction to a topic agreed upon by the student and the mentor. The paper typically examines a topic of literary or cultural theory, or a craft issue in a genre. It may also be a literary or historical study or a biographical study.


During the fourth project period, each student prepares a final manuscript of work to submit during the fifth residency. Poetry manuscripts must be a minimum of 40 pages in length; fiction and creative nonfiction manuscripts must be a minimum of 100 pages.

Students completing a Dual Concentration submit a manuscript reflecting work done in both genres. Dual Concentration manuscript requirements are:

  • Prose in a combination of fiction and creative nonfiction: 150 pages, 60 percent in the primary genre and 40 percent in the secondary genre
  • Prose combined with poetry: 100 pages of prose, not less than 25 pages of poetry
  • Poetry combined with fiction or creative nonfiction: 50 pages of poetry and not less than 50 pages of prose

Requirements for mixed and dual concentration final manuscripts are found in the AULA catalog.


The cumulative annotated bibliography is composed in MLA format and submitted with the final manuscript. The cumulative annotated bibliography represents a complete record of what the student has read and studied during the MFA program.