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OCAD University’s Creative Writing program is a hands-on, studio-based program about writing as artistic creation.

Unlike any other creative writing program in Ontario, it enables students to hone their craft while exploring multiple art and design practices.

Collaborative by nature, our transdisciplinary and transcultural approach enriches imaginations, broadens perspectives and helps to develop each individual writer’s voice.

Our program includes the study of living literary culture and literary art practices and production, and emphasizes the practice, craft and production of spoken, written, visual and verbal texts as well as experimental language forms that exist both inside and outside established genres. We welcome ‘attitude’ translated on the page and off, through performance texts and other media.

This program combines written, performance and visual expression. You’ll participate in:

  • An online and print journal
  • Symposia, workshops
  • Showcasing and public performances
  • A book, zine and publications fair
  • Field trips to local readings, conferences and festivals
  • A digital and analog writing lab and access to sound studio
  • A reading series featuring established, emerging and student writers
  • Mentorships, as both mentees and later as mentors
  • University slam team
  • A nurturing and supportive emerging literary community
  • Mentorship by faculty

This program is for both new and emerging writers. You’ll become part of a nurturing and supportive literary community. By the end of your degree, you’ll complete a body of work aimed at publication or exhibition to launch your career.

Program Highlights

Admissions Requirements

Internships & Experiential learning

OCAD U offers so much more than co-ops because creative careers take many forms. Our career services help you build a professional community, valuable experience and skills you need for a meaningful career. Get access to:

  • Short experiential learning placements from among hundreds of organizations
  • Creative in-class projects with real-world industry partners
  • Exclusive summer internships
  • Gallery exhibitions of your work
  • Freelance creative opportunities
  • Jobs after graduation

At the End of this Program...

At the end of this four-year program, you will earn a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree.

Jobs You Can Get

Graduates of this program can work in:

  • Professional writing
  • Journalism
  • Artistic practice
  • Performance art

What You'll Do in the Program

In first year, you will take art or design studio courses based on your interest as well as:

  • Art history
  • English class of your choice
  • Introduction to History and Practice of Creative Writing
  • Research, Reading and Editing for Creative Writers
  • Writing in Community

In second year and third year, you will take art, design, social science and humanities courses based on your interest and:

  • Creative Writing: Introduction to Four Genres
  • Language and the Land
  • Nano Publishing: Independent Publications
  • Intro to Dub and Spoken Word

In third year you will have options to take classes in art and design that interest you but you’ll focus more on creative writing. Classes include:

  • Poetry and Spoken Word
  • Non-fiction
  • Short Fiction
  • Studies in Canadian Literature
  • Indigenous Literature
  • Publications: Editorial

In fourth year, all students will also have the opportunity to do an independent thesis project and showcase work at OCAD U’s Graduate Exhibition, the biggest free art and design exhibition in Toronto with over 40,000 visitors.


In all undergraduate programs you can choose to take a minor alongside your major to explore and expand your practice. Minors give you the opportunity to pursue a focused secondary field of study in addition to or sometimes instead of taking electives in your program and can help you look better for employers or in grants or grad school applications.  You don’t need to choose a minor on your application – rather once you start at OCAD U, you’ll be able to choose from over 90 electives that can build towards one of our 25 focused minors. Learn more about Minor Programs here.

Creative Writing
Degree earned
Bachelors of Fine Arts (Honours) (BFA)
Faculty of Arts & Science
4 years
Portfolio required