Applications for 2016 will be accepted beginning November 1, 2015, with a priority submission deadline of January 10, 2016.
For general questions about the program, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Application ($70 nonrefundable fee required)
- Personal essay
- Writing Sample Portfolio ($5 SlideRoom nonrefundable fee required)
- Résumé / Curriculum vitae
- Two letters of recommendation
- College transcripts
Applicants must complete and submit the application online. (Note: Due to the volume of applications received, CCA is unable to return any materials; please do not submit any nondigital artworks or writings.)
A personal essay of 500 to 1,000 words must accompany the application. The essay should be a clear statement of your writing experience, why you want to study writing at the graduate level, your educational objectives, and any critical influences on your work.
Applicants should submit their writing sample portfolio online as a PDF document by registering for a SlideRoom account specifically for CCA applicants. Once an account is registered, instructions on how to create the online portfolio will be provided.
The portfolio should consist of a selection of writing samples (totaling no more than 25 double-spaced pages) that reflect your main areas of interest.
You may include poems, short stories, a section of a novel, text for performance (include video, if available), creative nonfiction, or writing for new genres.
You are welcome, but not required, to submit visual materials in support of your application, including book art and videos.
Please keep in mind that once your portfolio has been uploaded and submitted to the college no further changes can be made.
For technical issues with your portfolio, please email for assistance.
We do not accept cowritten material.
Résumé / Curriculum Vitae
Please outline your educational and professional background and relevant experiences and activities, including community work.
Letters of Recommendation
Two letters of recommendation are required from an academic or professional source. No personal recommendations please. We use an electronic recommendation process, ensuring we receive your recommendations in a timely fashion and that it is convenient for your recommenders.
When submitting your electronic application, you can provide the email address for your recommenders. Your recommenders will receive the recommendation form electronically and then return it electronically to CCA.
Unofficial transcripts are used for review purposes. Applicants are required to upload their unofficial transcript as a PDF document with the online application form.
Accepted and enrolled applicants will submit the official sealed transcript of their undergraduate coursework to Graduate Admission by August 1, 2015.
Applicants who have taken graduate coursework are welcome to also send transcripts in support of their graduate application.
For international applicants, all transcripts must be in English or accompanied by a certified English translation of the original.
All admitted students who were still in the process of completing a bachelor's degree at the time of applying must send the final transcript before enrolling to verify completion of the bachelor’s degree, including official notation of date of graduation, no later than August 1, 2015.
Mail your official transcript to:
California College of the Arts
Enrollment Services Office -- Graduate Admissions
1111 Eighth Street
San Francisco CA 94107-2247
Applicants may be contacted to arrange an interview with the graduate MFA Program in Writing manager or a faculty member.
Added Requirements: International Applicants
English proficiency exams must be completed prior to submitting the application. Official English proficiency exam scores (TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE) must be sent to the college directly from the testing agency.
International applications will be considered incomplete, and not reviewed until proof of English proficiency has been received.
Detailed requirements for international applicants.