Literary Arts


Graduate students in Brown's Literary Arts MFA program may choose to focus in one of three tracks – Fiction, Poetry, or Digital/Cross Disciplinary Writing.

The Graduate School has notified candidates regarding admission decisions for Fall 2024 in all three tracks: Cross-Disciplinary, Fiction and Poetry.

The two-year program is structured to allow graduate student writers maximum possible time for creative and intellectual exploration. Students attend two courses each semester: the writing workshop and an elective in the first three semesters (with an additional half-course in pedagogy in semesters two and three); and in the final semester an independent study for completing the thesis as well as an elective.


Elective courses may be selected from among the full offerings of the Brown University curriculum. In years past, students have taken courses in literature, history, philosophy, theater and performance studies, modern culture and media, religious studies, and foreign languages. Studio fine arts courses and translation workshops are often appropriate choices – as are workshops offered on special topics or in other genres. 


The thesis may be a substantial work of fiction or poetry, or a substantial digital or cross-disciplinary project. It is intended to represent the student’s achievement during the two years in residency at Brown.

Application deadline

Applications may be submitted from 30 September to 11:59 pm ET on 15 December 2023. If seeking a fee waiver, the deadline is 1 December.

Learn More About the Program

Fiction, Poetry, Digital and Cross-Disciplinary, Playwriting, and Screenwriting and Non-fiction
We have designed this handbook not only to introduce you to our policies and procedures, but also to prepare you for making the decisions that will shape your two years at Brown.

Learn About Applying

Admission is highly selective, and is based primarily on the quality of the applicant’s literary writing.