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Jennifer Piurek
University Communications

Last modified: Wednesday, October 28, 2009

IU Creative Writing program ranks among top in nation

Oct. 28, 2009

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University's Creative Writing Program in the Department of English is now ranked among the top in the nation, according to the November/December issue of Poets and Writers Magazine.

Samrat Upadhyay

Chris Meyer

Samrat Upadhyay directs IU's Creative Writing Program. The program's master's program was recently honored with a top ranking from "Poets and Writers Magazine."

Print-Quality Photo

The magazine has ranked the program's Master of Fine Arts program No. 12 in the nation. According to Poets and Writers Magazine, there are more than 140 full-residency FMA programs in the U.S., so being listed among the top 50 in any of the ranked categories is considered "exceptional."

Poets and Writers Magazine is one of two primary professional journals for writers. IU beat out such illustrious programs as Johns Hopkins University, Columbia University and the University of Notre Dame for the ranking.

"We are very pleased with this news," said Samrat Upadhyay, director of IU's Creative Writing Program. "We've always known that our program provides a rigorous, supportive environment for writers to develop their craft and to grow as thinkers and teachers. Our graduates go on to publish well and do wonderful work all over the country. This honor confirms our dedication to our students and to the art of writing, and validates the wonderful community we have here."

Each school was ranked based on the number of votes received in a poll conducted on two of the largest Web sites for MFA applicants, the Suburban Ecstasies and the MFA blog. Between October 2008 and April 2009, more than 500 current and prospective MFA applicants were asked to list the programs they applied (or planned to apply to) and the programs they thought were the best in the nation.

Programs were not ranked based on subjective categories such as location, faculty or alumni success.

Each MFA program that was analyzed was also ranked by genre, including poetry, fiction, nonfiction, total funding, annual funding, selectivity and post-graduate placement.

"We can all be proud of this wonderful program and the talented writers, teachers and students in it," said Jonathan Elmer, chair of the IU Department of English.

For more information about IU's Creative Writing Program, see See the complete list of rankings from Poets & Writers Magazine.