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MA with Creative Thesis

A graduate student may be permitted to submit a substantial work of poetry or fiction a creative project for the M.A. thesis in English. However, students should note that because of the high standards expected for such a project and the Department's limited resources in the area of creative writing, very few students are permitted to undertake this creative alternative. Admission to the M.A. in English does not guarantee permission to pursue a Creative Writing project. Successful completion of one or more creative writing classes at this, or any other university, does not guarantee permission to do a creative project.

  1. A student proposing to do a creative project must, in the first instance, submit a substantial portfolio of previous work (published work, 5-8 short poems or 1-2 short stories or chapters of a novel or a combination of poetry and prose).

  2. It is expected that, in a proposal, a student admitted to the creative project option shall show some critical awareness of the approach he or she expects to take.

  3. If the proposal is for poetry, the student is expected to present a critical discussion of the proposed work, calling attention to such things as possible themes, verse-forms, groups of poems, experimental or traditional approaches, etc.

  4. If the proposal is for fiction the student is expected to present a critical discussion of possible approaches to characterization, theme, point of view, narrative stance, experimental or traditional approaches, etc. Of course these lists of possible approaches are not meant to be prescriptive, nor to circumscribe creativity.

  5. The finished product when presented as a thesis for examination must have an introduction, normally of eight to ten pages, showing some critical awareness of the approach taken.

  6. Although it is accepted that quantity and quality cannot be equated, the average length of a poetry project is normally about fifty pages, of a fiction project normally about two hundred pages.