Frequently Asked Questions

How many applications do you receive, and how many are admitted?

In February 2016, we received about 700 applicants.  We admitted ten in fiction and eight in poetry.

Do I need to have a bachelor’s degree in English or Creative Writing?

No.  As long as you have a bachelor’s degree by the time you register at BU, you are eligible to apply.  In the past, we have accepted students with bachelor’s degrees in chemistry, music, and philosophy.

Do you require the GRE?

No. If you’ve already taken the test, you’re welcome to send your scores. Our GRE code is 3087.

Where do I send my application materials?

Please complete the online application for all materials. Do not mail anything to the Creative Writing office.

Do you require official transcripts?

No, unofficial transcripts are fine for the application.  If you are accepted, we will ask you to send official transcripts.

Do you schedule department tours or on-campus interviews?

Because of our high volume of applications, we do not require interviews. Boston University schedules official campus tours here: http://www.bu.edu/admissions/visit-us/#campustour. If you have questions about the program that aren’t addressed on the website, you are welcome to send them to crwr@bu.edu.

The Graduate School lists an earlier deadline than yours; which is right?

The Graduate School Admissions website lists general deadlines and departmental deadlines.  Please adhere to the Creative Writing deadline (February 1) which can be viewed on our website and on the departmental deadlines link through the Graduate School Admissions website: http://www.bu.edu/cas/prospective-students/graduate-admissions/apply/application-requirements-and-deadlines/

Do I need to submit a separate application for financial aid?

No. All students will be considered for aid. For more information about our department’s financial aid, please visit http://www.bu.edu/creativewriting/about/letter/financial-aid/.

Do I apply for a Global Fellowship now, or after I’m admitted?

Our Global Fellowship application process occurs midyear, usually in February, for MFA students who have already matriculated. For more information about the global fellowships, please visit http://blogs.bu.edu/world/.

Must I choose one, fiction or poetry, when I apply? Can’t I apply in both?

We ask that you choose one genre when you apply. If admitted, you’ll take four (two in fall, two in spring) writing workshops in your concentration, with your cohort of eight to ten fiction or poetry students. You and your small group go through the intense workshop experience together and become quite close. There simply isn’t time to take all the fiction AND all the poetry workshops. However, the professors often allow fiction students to take one poetry workshop (and vice versa), with that instructor’s consent, to fulfill one of their literature requirements.

What should I include in my writing sample, and how should it be formatted?

You should include forty pages of what you consider your best writing. For fiction applicants, we strongly recommend sending two or three stories so we can see your range. Please include page numbers, use clear, 12-point font, and double-space your prose.

What should I include in the personal statement?

We’d like to know more about you: why you write and/or why you’re choosing to pursue an MFA in creative writing, what you hope to do at BU (and beyond), and why the BU creative writing program is the place for you.

Please double-space this document as well.

For any and all other questions, please contact our administrator or visit the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences’ FAQ page or Admissions website:

Graduate Admissions FAQ

Prospective Graduate Students

Graduate Students General Information

The MFA at BU

About the Program

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The Global Fellowships

Our MFA students have the opportunity to live, write, and travel anywhere in the world

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The Translation Seminar

Read about BU's renowned Translation Seminar

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