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Creative Writing

This award is not eligible for Financial Aid

The Academic Certificate (AC) in Creative Writing program is designed to provide students and professional writers with access to a community of writers and creative writing activities, instruction and guidance from established authors, and ongoing support in improving their writing skills and marketing their work. As students take courses in the program, they will build a portfolio of original work that may be submitted for publication. The program offers classes, workshops, and other activities such as readings and contests, which are accessible to writers of all levels regardless of academic or professional standing. The program aims to serve a diverse community who may be underrepresented in traditional creative writing programs. Completion of the certificate does not lead to a particular degree program, but may aid students in their pursuit of a career in the writing professions and in their continued enjoyment of writing for personal growth.


Details iconImportant information you’ll need when applying for admission:
Field of Interest
Culture and Society
Academic Plan
Creative Writing (CER)
Academic Plan Code
Total Credits Required
Catalog Year
What You'll Learn

This pathway map will help you gain the expertise needed to:

  1. Analyze the aesthetic values and literary styles of diverse eras and cultures.
  2. Evaluate the technical elements and theories of literature across multiple genres.
  3. Interpret the effects of technical craft elements in published literary works.
  4. Explore the dynamic relationships among people, culture, and the physical world.
  5. Demonstrate social responsibility and ethical behavior toward the creation of original works in a culturally diverse world.
  6. Engage the creative process through problem-solving, experimentation, and inspiration to produce original works across multiple genres.
  7. Apply the peer review workshop process to explore, develop, and revise original writing.
  8. Develop one-on-one relationships with creative writing mentors.
  9. Create a portfolio of publication ready work.
Career Opportunities

Successful completion of this certificate may lead to employment in a variety of different occupations and industries. Below are examples of related occupations with associated Arizona-based annual median wages* for this program. Education requirements vary for the occupations listed below, so you may need further education or degrees in order to qualify for some of these jobs and earn the related salaries. Please visit with an academic advisor and/or program director for additional information.

English Language and Literature Teachers, Postsecondary


* Wage information sourced from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics Program. Updated May 2019.
Admission Criteria

Students who wish to enroll in the Creative Writing program must complete a formal application; contact Program Director.

Course Sequence by Term

The following is the suggested course sequence by term. Please keep in mind:

  • Students should meet with an academic advisor to develop an individual education plan that meets their academic and career goals. Use the Pathway Planner tool in your Student Center to manage your plan.
  • The course sequence is laid out by suggested term and may be affected when students enter the program at different times of the year.
  • Initial course placement is determined by current district placement measures and/or completion of 100-200 level course and/or program requirements.
  • Degree and transfer seeking students may be required to successfully complete a MCCCD First Year Experience Course (FYE) within the first two semesters at a MCCCD College. Courses include AAA/CPD150, AAA/CPD150AC, CPD104, and AAA115/CPD115. Course offerings will vary by college. See an academic, program, or faculty advisor for details.

Full-time Sequence

Full-time status is 12 credits to 18 credits per semester.

Term 1

A sequence of suggested courses that should be taken during Term 1
Course Name Requisites Notes Area Credits
CRW150 Introduction to Creative Writing Critical course Gateway course ENG210 maybe substituted for CRW150 with permission of Program Director 3
RE Restricted Electives 3

Term 2

A sequence of suggested courses that should be taken during Term 2
Course Name Requisites Notes Area Credits
Series I Series 1 Select in consultation with the program director. 3
Series I Series 1 Select in consultation with the program director. 3
CRW200 Readings for Writers 1

Term 3

A sequence of suggested courses that should be taken during Term 3
Course Name Requisites Notes Area Credits
Series II Series 2 Select in consultation with the program director. 3
CRW200 Readings for Writers 1
Series II Series 2 Select in consultation with the program director. 3

Term 4

A sequence of suggested courses that should be taken during Term 4
Course Name Requisites Notes Area Credits
CRW201 Portfolio 1
Series II Series 2 Select in consultation with the program director. 3

Series 1

Students must complete six (6) credits from Series I and nine (9) credits from Series II in consultation with a Program Director. 

Series I: Credits: 6 
Students must complete two (2) of the following courses for a total of six (6) credits. 
CRW120 Introduction to Writing Children`s Literature 3 
CRW160 Introduction to Writing Poetry 3 
CRW170 Introduction to Writing Fiction 3 
CRW172 Introduction to Comic Book Writing 3 
CRW180 Introduction to Writing Nonfiction 3 
CRW190 Introduction to Screenwriting 3 
THE118 Playwriting 3 

Series II

Series II: Credits: 9 
Students must complete three (3) of the following courses for a total of nine (9) credits. 
+ CRW202 The Writer as Witness 3 
+ CRW203 Dialogue 3 
+ CRW204 Journaling 3 
+ CRW220 Intermediate Writing Children`s Literature 3 
CRW251 Topics in Creative Writing 3 
+ CRW260 Intermediate Poetry Writing 3 
+ CRW261 Topics in Writing: Poetry 3 
+ CRW270 Intermediate Fiction Writing 3 
+ CRW271 Topics in Writing: Fiction 3 
+ CRW272 Planning and Structuring the Novel 3 
+ CRW273 Writing the Novel 3 
+ CRW274 Revising the Novel 3 
+ CRW281 Topics in Writing: Non-Fiction 3 
+ CRW290 Intermediate Screenwriting 3 
+ CRW291 Topics in Writing: Plays 3

Restricted Electives

A list of program electives for this pathway map
Course Name Requisites Notes Area Credits
CRW+++ Any Creative Writing Course not listed in Required Courses area 1–3
ENG235 Magazine Article Writing 3
ENG/THE260 Film Analysis 3
ENH+++ Any English Humanities Course 3
THF210 or
Contemporary Cinema or Contemporary Cinema HU 3
Course Area Key

Gateway Course = Generally the first major-specific course in a pathway.

Critical Course = A course that is highly predictive of future success in a pathway.


Students must earn a grade of C or better for all courses required within the program.

Course Sequence total credits may differ from the program information located on the MCCCD curriculum website due to program and system design.

This certificate is not eligible for Title IV Federal Financial Aid.

View MCCCD’s curriculum website for the Academic Certificate in Creative Writing (

At Maricopa, we strive to provide you with accurate and current information about our degree and certificate offerings. Due to the dynamic nature of the curriculum process, course and program information is subject to change. As a result, the course list associated with this degree or certificate on this site does not represent a contract, nor does it guarantee course availability. If you are interested in pursuing this degree or certificate, we encourage you to meet with an advisor to discuss the requirements at your college for the appropriate catalog year.

Other Versions

The pathway map presented above is for the current catalog year and is the intended pathway map for new students. Other versions of this pathway map from different catalog years are available below:

Catalog YearEffective Dates
2019-20205/28/2019 – 5/25/2020