Admission  |  Required Coursework  |  MFA Faculty  |  Visiting Writers Series  |  RipRap  |  FAQs

Are there awards or scholarships available?
The English Department has a number of awards and scholarships that reward excellence in creative and critical writing. The deadline each year is in early April. Consult the Financial Aid and Scholarships site for more information.

Does the English Department offer teaching opportunities to MFA students?
Yes! The following is a current listing:

Creative Writing TA (Teaching Associate) Positions: All second-year MFA students are eligible to apply to teach a lower-division creative writing class, English 205 for fiction writers and English 206 for poets. Due to budgetary constraints, there are only two positions awarded in each section of the MFA department so the application process is competitive. Students may apply during the spring semester of their first year.

Composition TMAC (Teaching Masters of Arts)/English TA Positions: All MFA students are eligible to apply to teach lower-division English courses, English 100 (Composition) and English 180 (Appreciation of Literature). Students normally apply at the end of their first year of study. MFA students will be competing with MA students for these positions. Students can learn about these positions from announcements on the English Department list-serve.

GA (Graduate Assistant) Positions: Students may also apply for Graduate Assistant positions in the Department of Comparative Literature and other departments around the university. You can find listings on the English Department website or in the English Department office on the 4th floor of the McIntosh Building in the spring semester of the student’s first year. Students should consult the English and graduate list-serves for further information.

The University Writing Center: The University Writing Center looks for tutors for the upcoming academic year. The deadline for applications is the first day of summer session. Applications are available online as well as in hard copy. For more information, visit the University Writing Center’s website.

Can students other than English majors apply to the MFA program?
When an undergraduate degree has been completed having different requirements from those of CSULB or in some field other than English, additional preparation may be required before the student can be considered for classified status in the degree program. At the end of the first academic year, students must obtain satisfactory evaluation of their course work and creative work by the Creative Writing faculty.

How can I get involved in creative writing on campus?

The English Students Association sponsors readings and workshops on campus. To get involved, contact englishgradcsulb@gmail.com or visit their Facebook page

Where I can get advice about publishing?
Consult our industry sources, such as Poets & Writers, AWP Writer’s Chronicle and NewPages

Is there a literary magazine on campus?
Our literary magazine, RipRap, is designed and produced annually by students in the MFA program as well as undergraduates. Since its inception in 1951 as Hornspoon, the journal was renamed Gambit and finally in 1979, RipRap. The journal highlights work by CSULB writers as well as writers from across the country; it also publishes interviews of prominent writers featured in the English Department’s Visiting Writers Series. RipRap publishes poetry, short stories, creative non-fiction, photography, illustrations, and comics. For more information, visit RipRap’s website.

When will I first meet everyone?
You will first meet the Creative Writing faculty and your fellow writers at our MFA Welcome gathering, usually held at a faculty residence around the beginning of the academic year. At this time, you will be presented essential information and have the opportunity to ask questions of faculty and other students.

Who should I know in the English Department?
Dr. Eileen Klink | English Department Chairperson
Lisa Behrendt | Office Manager
Cris Hernandez | Graduate Programs Administrative Coordinator

Where is the Thesis and Dissertation Office?
University Library 2nd floor, 202C
Hours: M/W 9am-5pm, T/TH 10am-6pm, F 9am-5pm