How to Apply to the M.F.A.

Creative Writing

To apply to the MFA Program in Creative Writing in Fiction or Poetry:

Effective August 2016, you may complete our graduate program application online.

Ideally, begin the online application three months before the January 1 English Department deadline. Once all of the documents have been uploaded—those that you provide (statement of purpose, writing sample, optional GTA application), your recommenders’ letters, your transcripts, and English proficiency scores (if required for international applicants)—your application will be considered complete and eligible for review. Please note that the Creative Writing program only admits for the Fall semester.

  1. Begin the online application process at Follow the directions to create your application record and pay your application fee. Once your account record has been created and confirmed, you may begin your application.
  2. Must select Degree: Select MFA for Creative Writing
  3. Must select Program: The Creative Writing program code for either Fiction or Poetry is CRWR-MFA.
  4. Read all directions. Go through the entire application—don’t skip any sections.
  5. Submit Application Materials:
    1. After creating your online application record and paying the application fee, begin submitting your supporting materials to complete your application.
    2. You may upload a variety of supporting documents directly to your application.
    3. To submit official transcripts, contact your previous institutions to request they submit official transcripts to Colorado State University (use institution code 4075).
    4. You must contact your recommenders, but the recommenders must upload their own letters of recommendation. Provide their e-addresses and the system will send them instructions.
    5. If you are an international applicant whose native language is not English, you must provide official scores from an English proficiency test. To submit these scores, contact the testing agency to request that scores be sent to Colorado State University (use institution code 4075).
    6. For documents that cannot be uploaded, such as transcripts, submit paper copies directly to the Office of Admissions at:
      Graduate Admissions
      Colorado State University – Office of Admissions
      1062 Campus Delivery
      Fort Collins, CO 80523-1062
  6. These are the required documents to complete your application:
    1. Official transcripts from each college or university you have attended
    2. Three letters of recommendation from instructors or employers
    3. A statement of purpose: introduce yourself and your goals while in graduate school (one page, single-spaced)
    4. A writing sample in the genre to which you would like to be admitted—either Poetry, 12 – 20 pages of poems; or Fiction, two short stories OR two chapters of a novel
    5. If you are a non-native speaker of English, either recent TOEFL or IELTS official scores
    6. The application for a Graduate Teaching Assistantship, should you choose to apply for one. There is a separate application required for the GTA position. The application instructions and form are online at Prepare all three parts of your GTA application as one pdf document in this order:
      1. the Background Experience form-please limit to one page;
      2. your Statement of Interest-- discuss your teaching-related training and/or experience to explain how the GTA position will enhance your graduate studies;
      3. and your writing sample- a recent example of academic, expository and/or persuasive writing that is different from your program writing sample;
        and send this pdf attachment to
  7. Check Your Application Status.
    1. You may view the status of your application at at any time to ensure your application checklist is complete or to check on updates.
    2. Once the decision has been made, you will receive an e-mail from the system, asking you to log in to view the official decision letter.


Please note that GRE scores are not required unless your cumulative undergraduate GPA is less than 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.

We only accept applications for the Fall semester.

The deadline for you to complete and upload your program application and the optional GTA application is January 1.

Questions about this application process should be directed to the Graduate Programs Assistant,

Questions regarding details about the creative writing program should be directed to either the director of creative writing or the assistant.