Admissions are made for the fall quarter of each year. The Programs in Writing does not admit applicants for the winter or spring quarters. Students are admitted to either the fiction or poetry program. Admission is highly competitive. Approximately twelve students are admitted into the Programs in Writing each year: up to six in fiction and up to six in poetry. The Admissions Committees places particular weight on the quality of the writing, looking not only for evidence of talent but for indications of a permanent and firm commitment to the craft of writing. The Programs in Writing takes pride in an impressive achievement of publication by its graduates.

Admission Requirements

A bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA is a University prerequisite for admission, which may be waived in exceptional cases.  The application for admission should specify interest in either fiction or poetry and must include three letters of recommendation, unofficial transcripts of all academic work, an autobiographical statement, and samples of writing.  Graduate Record Examination (GRE) test scores are not required for admission into the Programs in Writing. Please do not enter GRE scores on the application.

All prospective international applicants 
should be aware of additional University-wide admissions requirements. Applicants whose primary language is not English are required to demonstrate proficiency in English for admission consideration. All graduate students, except those who have earned an undergraduate degree from an institution at which English was the sole language of instruction according to the World Higher Education Database, are required to demonstrate oral English proficiency before they are appointed to the Teaching Assistant title. The aforementioned exception will apply only when the undergraduate degree has been earned within five years prior to admission to a graduate program at UCI. For more information, please visit Graduate Division's website.

Admissions Timeline

All offers of admission will be made by March 25.  These candidates must accept or decline their offer and financial support package no later than April 15.
Candidates who have been placed on a wait list will also be notified by April 1, and offered admission and support as places become available.
Applicants who have not been notified of admission or placement on the wait list by April 2, should assume they will not be offered admission. Because of the high number of applications and limited staff, it is not possible to send out denial notifications until late spring. Applicants who wish to confirm their application status sooner, may contact the Programs in Writing after April 16.


The contact information of students currently enrolled in the Programs in Writing will be made available to all successful applicants.  Talking with current MFA students is the best way to research the Programs in Writing.