Program Requirements

In addition to the general academic regulations for graduate students set out in this section, the minimum requirements for the M.F.A. are 30 credits as outlined below. In the Interdisciplinary Studies specialization, there are two discipline areas: a primary area in a creative discipline (Creative Writing, Visual Arts, or Performance/Theatre) and a secondary area which may be in a creative discipline or another area of study outside the Department of Creative Studies.

M.F.A. Specialization in Creative Writing

Students selecting the Specialization in Creative Writing must complete the following 30 credits:

  • CCS 506 (3) M.F.A. Graduate Colloquium I;
  • CCS 507 (3) M.F.A. Graduate Colloquium II (including the presentation in this course in their second year);
  • CRWR 580 (3/6) d Graduate Workshop in Creative Writing (taken twice for 3 credits for a total of 6 credits);
  • one additional 3-credit course which may be selected from other graduate programming in the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies; or, at the discretion of the supervisor and supervisory committee, selected from other graduate-level courses outside of the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies. With the approval of the supervisor and supervisory committee, students may successfully complete an upper-level undergraduate course to satisfy this requirement; and
  • CCS 599 (15) M.F.A. Thesis comprising of a substantial creative writing work and a support paper or introductory essay: a full-length work of publishable quality (book-length poetry, fiction or non-fiction manuscript, full-length stage play, or screenplay) with an accompanying support paper or introductory essay (minimum 2,500 words) and an oral defense of both the creative writing work and the support paper or introductory essay. The oral defense will normally be held within six weeks of the creative writing thesis submission.

M.F.A. Specialization in Visual Arts

Students selecting the Specialization in Visual Arts must complete the following 30 credits:

  • CCS 506 (3) M.F.A. Graduate Colloquium I;
  • CCS 507 (3) M.F.A. Graduate Colloquium II (including the presentation in this course in their second year);
  • VISA 582 (3) Graduate Studio in Visual Arts I;
  • VISA 583 (3) Graduate Studio in Visual Arts II;
  • one additional 3-credit course which may be selected from other graduate programming in the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies; or, at the discretion of the supervisor and supervisory committee, selected from other graduate-level courses outside of the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies. With the approval of the supervisor and supervisory committee, students may successfully complete an upper-level undergraduate course to satisfy this requirement; and
  • CCS 599 (15) M.F.A. Thesis comprising of a substantial artistic body of work and a support paper: an exhibition of a body of work that appears in a venue suitable for an art exhibition for a minimum of two weeks and that is documented, as well as a support paper of 8,000 to 10,000 words and an oral defense of both the body of work and the support paper. The oral defense will normally be held within six weeks of the support paper submission.

M.F.A. Specialization in Interdisciplinary Studies

Students selecting the Specialization in Interdisciplinary Studies must complete the following 30 credits:

  • CCS 506 (3) M.F.A. Graduate Colloquium I;
  • CCS 507 (3) M.F.A. Graduate Colloquium II (including the presentation in this course in their second year);
  • 6 credits of creative practice courses in the student’s primary creative discipline (this might include CRWR 580, VISA 582, VISA 583, or graduate THTR classes);
  • one additional 3-credit course in a field relevant to the secondary discipline (which may be a creative discipline or a discipline from an academic area other than Creative Writing, Visual Arts, or Theatre) which may be selected from other graduate programming in the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies; or, at the discretion of the supervisor and supervisory committee, selected from other graduate-level courses outside of the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies. With the approval of the supervisor and supervisory committee, students may successfully complete an upper-level undergraduate course to satisfy this requirement; and
  • CCS 599 (15) M.F.A. Thesis comprising of the production of a substantial artistic body of work in a primary area of study and a research paper in a secondary area of study (or occasionally a creative work in a different field from the primary area). The length of the paper is determined by the committee, but generally the research paper accompanying the creative component of the thesis must be a substantial, scholarly work between 8,000 to 10,000 words. The artistic body of work and the research paper should have substantial linkages in theoretical or topical context. An oral defense of both the body of work and the research paper is required. The oral defense will normally be held within six weeks of the research paper submission.

The requirements around what constitutes a creative thesis (the production of a significant body of original artistic work) within each discipline are predetermined as follows.

Note: alternate thesis structure and content, such as the completion of two creative works, may be considered if planned ahead, especially in cases where a student’s work is interdisciplinary in nature.

The following are the thesis descriptions of the primary areas of study for students in the Specialization in Interdisciplinary Studies:

Primary Discipline in Creative Writing

Requires a full-length work of publishable quality (book-length poetry, fiction or non-fiction manuscript, full-length stage play, or screenplay).

Primary Discipline in Visual Arts

Requires an exhibition of a body of work that appears in a venue suitable for an art exhibition for a minimum of two weeks and that is documented.

Primary Discipline in Performance

Requires a publicized event equivalent in scope and profile to a full-length evening performance, with documentation of the creation and development of the work. The performance must be shown in public a minimum of three times over a period of two weeks.

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