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Creative Writing B.A.

Learn to use language effectively to create complex and emotionally powerful experiences in the form of stories, poetry and creative nonfiction.
Hone your craft and nurture your talent under the guidance of Syracuse University
Hone your craft and nurture your talent under the guidance of Syracuse University's celebrated faculty-writers.

About this Program

  • Participate in creative writing workshops in which you will generate your own work and in craft classes in which you will learn from the work of established writers.
  • Pair your creative writing major with another major and expand your horizons by exploring multiple areas of interest, including journalism, history, information science, biology and applied mathematics.
  • Learn from faculty-writers, graduate students enrolled in Syracuse’s renowned M.F.A. in creative writing program, and the well-established Raymond Carver Reading Series.
  • Meet with talented faculty and visiting writers for guidance as you hone your own writing skills.
  • Partake in one of literature’s highest goals: to give voice to a plurality of experiences and worldviews.
  • Learn from assigned readings that represent various cultures, classes, modes of experience and cultures.
  • Live in the Creative Writing Living Learning Community, where first-year students create friendships, network with faculty and established authors through public readings and dinners, and explore their passion for reading and writing poetry, fiction, graphic novels, creative nonfiction and any other type of writing.

Program Information

Degree Type






College or School

6 +

National Book Award finalists among creative writing program faculty and alumni.

Typical class size in creative writing program.
Exterior of Hall of languages building

College of Arts and Sciences

The College of Arts and Sciences (A&S) is Syracuse University’s first and largest college. As the home of the liberal arts, our internationally recognized programs provide the cornerstone of a Syracuse University education with 50+ majors in the natural sciences and mathematics, the humanities and the social sciences (in partnership with the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs).
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The creative writing curriculum combines a grounding in literary study with a workshop-style focus on writing. Required classes include historical and contemporary literature classes, and creative writing workshops and craft classes in at least two genres. Students have the opportunity to join the Creative Writing Living Learning Community.

  • Read closely and analyze texts across historical periods and in various genres.
  • Recognize and express the aesthetic qualities of literature and a knowledge of literary forms.
  • Recognize and produce good writing and explain what literary aspects make it good.
  • Demonstrate a knowledge of critical approaches and methods of interpretation.
  • Improve your own work through self-conscious and analytical processes.
  • Discuss peer work and other written texts in a thoughtful and constructive manner.
  • Exhibit an awareness of how these skills are necessary for employment and graduate study in a wide range of fields.

  • Introduction to Creative Writing
  • Reading Race and Ethnicity before 1900
  • Interpretation of Poetry
  • The Art of the Fairy Tale
  • Introduction to Shakespeare

Extracurricular Opportunities

Hands-on learning opportunity

Raymond Carver Reading Series

Through the Raymond Carver Reading Series, attend readings by 12 to 14 prominent writers, followed by a Q&A session with the author. Recent authors include Sarah Shun-lien Bynum, Jamaal May, Monica Youn, Brandon Taylor, Valeria Luiselli, Ilya Kaminsky and Percival Everett.

Hands-on learning opportunity

Salt Hill

Salt Hill is a nationally distributed literary journal publishing outstanding new fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction and art. For over a decade, the magazine has been edited and published by creative writing students. Students apply to intern at Salt Hill, and if chosen, gain valuable experience in running a literary magazine.

Student organizations

Student Publications

Through many student-run publications and campus organizations, hone your writing capabilities, meet peers with common interests and enjoy professional development and networking opportunities in writing and other related fields. Consider publications like the Perceptions magazine, The Daily Orange publication, Moody Magazine and The OutCrowd Magazine; and student groups like Write Out and Nu Rho Poetic Society.

magazine cover

Learn more about this program

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