Creative Writing Thesis

The English Honors Creative Writing Thesis

Students may complete a creative writing thesis only if their application is approved by the Creative Writing Thesis Committee.

Qualifications for a creative writing thesis

  • The student must complete two creative writing courses, one of which is Advanced Fiction or Poetry Writing. The latter may be taken in the Fall of the senior year concurrently with work on the thesis.
  • At the end of his or her junior year, the student must submit a portfolio containing a representative sample of creative writing in the genre of the proposed thesis (approximately twenty pages of prose or ten pages of poetry)

Fall: Honors Colloquium

In the fall semester students enroll in the Honors Colloquium (ENGL 53001) and complete a series of assignments through which they begin the process of writing the thesis. Students work primarily with the instructor of the colloquium but consult with their individual thesis advisors about developing a specific research topic, research resources specific to the area of their thesis, and the writing of the thesis itself.  Students complete the following:

  • Research bibliography of primary and secondary sources
  • Sample notes from sources
  • Thesis Proposal
  • Annotated bibliography
  • Review of the critical literature and or a draft of the critical essay
  • Report on historical, philosophical, aesthetic or other related contexts
  • Report on literary contexts
  • Thesis Outline
  • Draft section of thesis
  • Oral report on the thesis project

Spring: Honors Thesis

In the spring semester students register for Honors Thesis (ENGL 52999) and work intensively with their thesis director, who assigns the final grade for the completed thesis. These are the guidelines for a research thesis:

  1. Table of Contents
  2. Abstract. 1-2 pages.
  3. Critical essay on the writing project. 10-15 pages.
  4. Creative work. Approximately forty pages of prose (e. g. a section of a novel, a selection of short stories) or twenty pages of poetry. Students may work on a larger project, in which case the thesis will include one carefully revised section of that project.
  5. Works Cited.

Deadlines for the spring semester

  • Final draft of the creative project to the advisor: Monday two weeks before final drafts per next item (April 9)
  • Final critical essay to the advisor: Monday of the second to last week of classes (April 23)
  • Abstract and title to the advisor and the department: Monday of the last week of classes (April 30)
  • Abstract reading day: study days (May 3)
  • Completed thesis submitted to advisor and department: Monday of finals week (May 7)