Earning an online MFA in Creative Writing is a great way to get the education that you want without having to permanently relocate. With an online degree, you'll be doing your work via an Internet connection and communicating with your teachers and other students through chat programs, message boards and e-mail. Your course materials may be entirely online, or you may be required to purchase physical materials to use at home.
Why Get an MFA?
Earning an MFA in Creative Writing is a dedication to improving your writing and preparing yourself to make a professional step into a new field. MFA programs are designed to help you further define your voice and become the best writer that you can be. Many people join MFA programs after completing a Bachelor's degree in English or Creative Writing. Others start their MFA journey because they love writing and have been working on it independently while working in another field.
Several years ago, getting an MFA was a gateway teaching at the collegiate level. While this isn't necessarily the case anymore, because of the large number of MFAs out there, getting an MFA can put you on track to earn a Ph.D which can allow you to teach at a university.
Why Should You Consider an Online MFA in Creative Writing Program?
Graduate school is a big commitment, and online graduate school is no different. If you decide that you want to enroll in an MFA program, you may not have the means to relocate yourself or your family to participate at a university.
An online MFA program offers the best of both worlds. You can learn from home and you can get the education that you want. You can have just as much interaction with your fellow students as you would in a traditional school environment, through e-mails, forums and chat programs.
Before you make the commitment, you should know that if you plan to teach or if you plan to apply to a Ph.D program, you may have some trouble with your online degree. In today's academic climate, online degrees still aren't seen as equal with their regular counterparts. If you want to use the MFA experience to improve your writing skills, you shouldn't have a problem with an online program.
Online MFA Programs
As of early 2009, there are very few schools that offer creative writing MFA programs. One that does stand out though is through The University of Texas at El Paso, which has a unique bilingual MFA program. In this program, students are prepared to publish in both the United States and Latin America. The program was a result of restrictions of student visas after 9/11. UTEP wanted to meet the needs of students from Latin America and the United States who were not able to come study on campus.
Low Residency Programs
Low residency programs are another option for completing an MFA without having to relocate. Low residency programs allow you to learn from a distance, but you'll need to attend a few 10-day residency programs throughout the course of your schooling.
The following schools offer low residency programs for Creative Writing MFAs:
- Antioch University
- University of British Columbia
- Converse College
- Chatham University
- Goddard College
- Lesley University
- Naropa University
- Pacific University
- University of Southern Maine
- Pacific Lutheran University
- Seattle Pacific University
- University of Alaska Anchorage
- University of California, Riverside
- University of Nebraska
- University of New Orleans