Michigan State University
Michigan State University
Department of English
Program Requirements
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The creative writing concentration at MSU offers students a program that blends foundational work in literary studies, exploration of creative writing in multiple genres, and a focused capstone experience.  Students graduate with a B.A. in English, but their diplomas note their dedicated commitment to creative writing.  Beginning with the same foundation as other English majors, students also work at the introductory and advanced level in at least two different genres of creative writing.  Many then choose to write a senior thesis in a single genre, creating in the last year of study a collection of poems or stories, a novel, or a finished screenplay; students might also pursue internships in writing and editing.  Our program provides many co-curricular events and opportunities, including a reading series, writing workshops, brown bag lunch conversations with faculty and visiting writers.  The Michigan State University English Department is also home to Red Cedar Review, one of the oldest student-managed literary journals in the United States.


•ENG 210

•ENG 280

•ENG 320D


•Choose one diversity literature course: ENG 350-356, 360, 405, 431A, B, C; 448-450, 460, 466, 482

•Choose one pre-1800 course: ENG 318, 324, 368, 441, 454, 455, 457

•Choose one post-1800 course: ENG 340, 360, 362, 443, 445, 450, 452, 458, 460, 474

•Choose one genre-based course, an introductory Creative Writing workshop: ENG 223, 228, 229, FLM 334

•Choose a capstone option: Eng 484A, B, C, or D; 489H or 499; 493; 400 + approved course

University Tier II Writing is fulfilled by one of the 360s listed above, or via advanced CW coursework


Creative Writing Concentration

The creative writing concentration is available to students who are enrolled in the Bachelor of Arts in English except those students seeking teacher certification. Students interested in the concentration should consult with their advisor. Students who elect this concentration must complete the following courses, all of which will count toward the 36 to 40 credits in the Bachelor of Arts in English degree. The concentration will be noted on the student's transcript.

Foundational Courses:

  • ENG 320D - Methodologies of Literary History:  History and Theory of Creative Writing                                                                                                                               *part of Core Requirements, as referenced above
  • ENG 200 - Creative Writing Community

Two Introductory Creative Writing Courses:

  • ENG 223 - Introduction to Creative Non-Fiction Writing
  • ENG 226 - Introduction to Creative Writing
  • ENG 227 - Introduction to Playwriting
  • ENG 228 - Introduction to Fiction Writing
  • ENG 229  -Introduction to Poetry Writing
  • FLM 334 - Introduction to Screenwriting (W)
    *One of these courses is used to satisfy the Distribution - Genre requirement, as referenced above

Two of the following advanced courses:

  • ENG 423 Advanced Creative Non-Fiction Writing
  • ENG 428 Advanced Fiction Writing
  • ENG 429 Advanced Poetry Writing
  • FLM 434 Advanced Screenwriting (W)

One creative writing elective, typically an additional introductory creative writing workshop or complementary, literature-based or technical writing course (see Academic Programs Catalog for options)

One creative writing focused capstone course from among the following:

  • ENG 489H Senior Honors Independent Project
  • ENG 493 English Internship
  • ENG 499 Senior Thesis Research (W)
  • English 400 in conjunction with any one course from English 423, 428, or 429 may be used to satisfy this requirement                                                               *This capstone satisfies the Distribution - Capstone requirement, as referenced above.