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Creative Writing Sub-Concentration

Students interested in creative writing should begin with English 223-Creative Writing. English 223 provides an introduction to the reading and writing of poetry and prose and to the workshop method of critiquing student writing.

Students who complete English 223 with a successful portfolio, are encouraged to apply for admittance to the intermediate-level creative writing course in either fiction (English 323) or Poetry (English 324).

At the advanced level students will apply for admittance to either the advanced fiction workshop (English 423) or the advanced poetry workshop (English 424).

English majors who wish to specialize in the writing of poetry or prose fiction may, in the winter term of their junior year, apply to the Creative Writing Subconcentration, which is an optional path to a Bachelor of Arts degree in English. Students in the program take the creative writing workshops described above in sequence, and, in their last term, compile a major manuscript of poetry or prose fiction while working closely with the creative-writing faculty in a tutorial reserved for subconcentrators (English 428); this program is small and selective. Students not enrolled in the subconcentration may still pursue their interest in creative writing by applying to the appropriate upper-level workshops.


Admission to the Creative Writing Subconcentration will occur during winter term and is limited to juniors who have taken or are enrolled in English 323/324 (or 423/424).

The application process will involve the submission of the application and a writing sample. Acceptance will be based on an evaluation of the writing sample by a committee of three readers.

Applications for the Creative Writing Sub-concentration program are accepted every February. Please see the application form for exact dates and instructions.


Students planning to complete the Creative Writing Sub-concentration must satisfactorily complete a total of 36 upper-level English credits, which includes both the requirements for the regular English program and additional Creative Writing Subconcentration requirements.

You will have a total of 36 credits plus 2 prerequisites of English 223 and English 298. Although students will receive university credit for the additional writing courses (such as repeated enrollment in 323, 324, 423, or 424),only one of these courses will count toward the 30 regular major credits. The additional writing course credits will not count toward the English major, and only six additional credits will count toward the Creative Writing Subconcentration.


The number of elective courses you may choose to take will depend on your selection of courses that meet the regular program requirements and the number of credits for each class.. The following is a sample course plan; please see an English major advisor for help in developing your program.

English 298 and English 223 (required for upper-level creative writing classes)
Major requirements:
Pre-1600 English 350 4 credits
Pre-1830 English 351 4 credits
Pre-1830 English 367 4 credits
American Lit. English 472 3 credits
New Traditions English 382 3 credits
Poetry English 340 3 credits
21 credits total
English 319 3 credits
English 315 3 credits
English 323/324 3 credits
30 credits total
Creative Writing Subconcentration Requirements:
English 323/324 **
English 423/424 3 credits
English 428 3 credits
  36 credits total

*Note: The courses listed are examples only. Other courses fulfill these requirements as well. At the beginning of every semester, the department publishes a list of courses fulfilling major requirements to help you in selecting courses.

**Note: Because all English majors may count one writing course toward the 30 major credits, English 323/324 is listed twice to show that the credits can be counted toward the regular major credits as it is also a requirement for the Creative Writing Subconcentration.


Students who have maintained at least a 3.5 major GPA may apply for honors in Creative Writing after they have been accepted into the subconcentration.

Honors will be awarded, as warranted, based on the student maintaining a 3.5 major GPA, earning a grade of A- or better on the thesis, and also maintaining a 3.4 cumulative GPA. The College of LSA will not award honors degrees if the student does not have the minimum cumulative GPA.

Contact Us:

Laurence Goldstein
Director, Creative Writing Program
lgoldste@umich.edu / (734) 647-7693


English Undergraduate Studies Office
3187 Angell Hall
(734) 764-6330

Dept. of English Language and Literature

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Phone: (734) 764-6330 Fax: (734) 763-3128