Graduate degree: M.F.A. in English

The Creative Writing Program (Iowa Writers' Workshop) is a world-renowned graduate program for fiction writers and poets. Founded in 1936, it was the first creative writing program in the United States to offer a degree, and it became a model for many contemporary writing programs. In addition to its Master of Fine Arts program, it also offers writing courses for undergraduates.

The Iowa Writers' Workshop has been home to thousands of remarkable writers, including Flannery O'Connor, Raymond Carver, Rita Dove, John Irving, James Alan McPherson, Philip Levine, Jane Smiley, Michael Cunningham, Sandra Cisneros, Denis Johnson, Jorie Graham, Ann Patchett, Lan Samantha Chang, D.A. Powell, Nathan Englander, Yiyun Li, Eleanor Catton, Angela Flournoy, Garth Greenwell, Yaa Gyasi, and Jamel Brinkley. The program's faculty and alumni include winners of virtually every major literary award, including seventeen winners of the Pulitzer Prize, six recent U.S. Poets Laureate, and numerous winners of the National Book Award, MacArthur Foundation Fellowships, and other major honors. In 2003, the Iowa Writers' Workshop received a National Humanities Medal from the National Endowment for the Humanities—the first awarded to a university and only the second given to an institution rather than an individual.

Creative writing students in class sitting around a table discussing writing works.

The Creative Writing Program offers courses for students from other programs of study; summer courses are open to undergraduate and graduate students.

To learn more about the Creative Writing Program's history and faculty, visit the Iowa Writers' Workshop website.

Graduate Program of Study


Creative Writing—Writers' Workshop Courses

The Creative Writing Program offers courses for undergraduates as well as graduate students. Enrollment in some graduate-level courses requires admission to the M.F.A. program. See "Courses" in the Department of English section of the Catalog for course descriptions and prerequisites to enrollment.

CW:1800Creative Writing Studio Workshop3
CW:2100Creative Writing3
CW:2870Fiction Writing3
CW:2875Poetry Writing3
CW:3002Writing and Reading Young Adult Fiction0,3
CW:3003Writing and Reading Science Fiction3
CW:3004Writing and Reading Fantasy Fiction3
CW:3005Professional and Creative Business Communication3
CW:3107Creative Writing for the Health Professions3
CW:3215Creative Writing and Popular Culture3
CW:3218Creative Writing for New Media3
CW:3870Advanced Fiction Writing3
CW:3875Advanced Poetry Writing3
CW:4745The Sentence: Strategies for Writing3
CW:4751Creative Writing for the Musician3
CW:4760The Art of Revision: Rewriting Prose for Clarity and Impact3
CW:4870Undergraduate Writers' Workshop: Fictionarr.
CW:4875Undergraduate Writers' Workshop: Poetryarr.
CW:4894Undergraduate Project in Creative Writingarr.
CW:4897Novel Writing3
CW:7810Form of Fiction3
CW:7820Form of Poetry3
CW:7830Seminar: Problems in Modern Fictionarr.
CW:7840Seminar: Problems in Modern Poetryarr.
CW:7870Fiction Workshoparr.
CW:7875Poetry Workshoparr.
CW:7890Graduate Project in Creative Writingarr.
CW:7895M.F.A. Thesisarr.