Admissions Policies and Fellowships and Awards; Fairleigh Dickinson University Low-Residency MFA in Creative Writing
Low-Residency MFA Creative Writing , Fairleigh Dickinson University, admission

Calaway Testimonial "The collaborative and supportive environment of the program, especially evident during the residencies, took me by surprise — an overwhelming generosity of spirit exists between faculty and students. Each student, equally in all genres, is truly encouraged to grow. —Laura Calaway
MFA student in Fiction
Laura Calaway
Laskey Testimonial Joshua Laskey "Translation is reading made visible—and reading is an active attempt to empathize: with characters, with authors, even with oneself. Translation, therefore, is the exposure to scrutiny of our capacity—even our need—to empathize; that is, to connect beyond the limitations of self and the restrictions of ego. And the low-residency MFA program at FDU is a place to connect, across time and space, with other reader-writers. —Joshua Laskey
MFA student in Translation
Slide So much of what I love about my daily life has been made possible by my Poetry and Literary Translation studies with FDU. From teaching college composition and literature to editing anthologies and other publications, from connecting with like-minded literary artists to having a better understanding of the world around me, my current life—which feels like my life—was sparked by my time with the program. —Heather Lang
MFA alum, Poetry and Literary Translation
Slide It was here — through the direction of our mentors, the keen eye of our peers, and the wisdom of these friendships — that I came to recognize the story I wanted to tell was the one I was already living. —Mariella Diaz
MFA Student
Mariella Diaz
Slide Poetry takes patience and perseverance. The amount of gratitude I feel for the program and the faculty is ungraspable! —Aminah Abutayeb
MFA Student


Students holding undergraduate degrees from an accredited four-year institution in the U.S. or abroad may apply.

Due to Covid-19 our 2021 summer residency from July 30-August 8, 2021 will be held online. Please contact us for more information at


The program admits students year-round, and once you apply, you should receive a decision within 4-6 weeks.

To be considered for the Baumeister, Ronald J. Doerfler Memorial Scholarship, Director’s Award, or the TLR Graduate Assistantships apply by April 1st for the summer residency/fall semester or by November 15th for the winter residency/spring semester.

Though students may not be eligible for awards after the above dates, they may still apply by May 31st for the summer residency/fall semester or by December 1st  for the winter residency/spring semester.


  • If you are considering financial aid, complete a FAFSA online as soon as possible. You do not have to accept any funds if you don’t attend.
  • If you are an FDU undergraduate applying for the BA/MFA in Creative Writing Program, please contact the MFA office at You don’t need to complete an application.
  • All applications require a personal statement and a writing sample. They should be uploaded when completing the online application. We do not evaluate applicants until their writing sample, personal statement, and official transcripts have been received. 

1. Have your college or university send your official undergraduate transcript directly to the graduate admissions office on the Florham Campus. They can be sent electronically or by mail. Click here for the email and mailing address. We only need the college transcript where you completed your B.A. or B.S. degree (if you transferred a lot, this will save you time and money). 

2. Complete the Online Application.

When completing the application please note:

  • Students are required to begin the program with a residency. The fall semester begins with the summer residency and the spring semester begins with the winter residency.
  •  GRE Scores are not required.
  • Indicate your genre on the application: Fiction, Poetry, Nonfiction, YA, or Translation.
  • We welcome letters of recommendation (personal, professional, or academic) but they are not required.
  • The MFA program is housed on the Florham Campus in Madison, New Jersey.
  • In making admissions decisions, the greatest weight is given to the writing sample.
Once the online application is submitted, the system will prompt you to upload any required documents.

    A. Upload a personal statement telling us why you wish to pursue an MFA and what you hope to gain from the degree.

    B. Upload a writing sample in the genre you are applying to. You may upload any other materials you wish to include, such as a resume or recommendation, in PDF or MS Word format.

For your writing sample, use the following guidelines:

  • Fiction or Young Adult and Children’s Literature: 15-25 double-spaced pages that can include short stories or part of a novel.
  • Creative Nonfiction: 15-25 double-spaced pages that may include essays or an excerpt from a memoir.
  • Poetry: 5-7 poems, totaling not more than 150 lines in all.
  • Translation: following the appropriate prose or poetry guidelines above, include a short sample of the original and a short (paragraph long) description of the project.
  • Be sure to paginate the document (top, right) and include your name on every page.

Many graduate students are eligible for State and/or Federal loans and aid.
Our Financial Aid Office (974-443-8701) can assist with this.

Apply here

Tuition and Aid

For information about tuition and fees, see the FDU website here.

Travel to and from the residencies is not included in tuition or fees.

Assistantships and Awards

There are four Graduate Assistantships offered in conjunction with work on The Literary Review—two for first-year students that carry the title of Editorial Assistant, and two for second-year students that carry the title of Assistant Editor.

The Director’s Award, Baumeister, and Ronald J. Doerfler Memorial Scholarship are all awards that are given by the Faculty Admissions Committee in recognition of students whose work shows significant promise.