The Boston University Creative Writing Program offers a one year (usually including summer study) MFA degree in fiction or poetry. Required coursework is equivalent to that in a two-year program; the intensity of an accelerated timetable is uniquely challenging and rewarding for those students who undertake it. Current faculty in fiction includes Leslie Epstein, Ha Jin, and Sigrid Nunez; Jayne Anne Phillips will be teaching in the fall semester of 2015. Current faculty in poetry includes Dan Chiasson, Karl Kirchwey, and Robert Pinsky.
Students are required to complete four creative writing workshops and four graduate literature courses as well as to fulfill a world language requirement: one way this can be done is by enrolling in BU’s renowned Translation Seminar. Workshop study culminates in a thesis in fiction (ninety pages) or poetry (thirty-five pages). The Boston University Playwrights’ Theater, the distinguished literary magazine AGNI, and the visual arts and music programs in BU’s College of Fine Arts all provide MFA students the chance for collaborations across artistic disciplines.
Admitted students will receive full tuition coverage and a stipend of $12,800, in return for which most will teach a one-semester creative writing course, either at the undergraduate level at Boston University or at the high-school level at the nearby Boston Arts Academy, a pilot public school, thereby gaining valuable classroom experience. All admitted students are also offered a Global Fellowship upon completion of their degree requirements, allowing for up to three months of travel, writing, and study anywhere outside of the United States.