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Hollins University
Graduate Programs

(General Information)
Hollins University
Graduate Center
P.O. Box 9603
Roanoke, VA 24020-1603
(540) 362-6575
Fax (540) 362-6288

Program Director
Todd Ristau
(540) 362-6386

M.F.A. in Playwriting


The MFA in Playwriting is a summer program offered during a yearly six-week session running from mid-June through the end of July. The degree can be completed in four to five summer sessions with students enrolling in three courses each summer.

Requirements for the Degree

  • Sixty credits are required.
  • The degree can be completed in four or five summers, during which time the candidates take courses in the following focus areas:
    • Critical Analysis (16 credits total)
    • Creative Writing Workshops (16 credits total)
    • Advanced Writing Workshops (8 credits total)
    • Playwright’s Laboratory (12 credits total)
    • Thesis (8 credits total)
  • A final, comprehensive exam is required.
  • A language exam is not required.
  • Students are expected to consistently generate substantial new work during their participation in the program.

Fees and Financial Aid

Tuition for the 2013 summer term is $745 per credit hour or $8,940 for the normal load of three (3) four-credit courses. Student loans are available. To apply, applicants should indicate their financial need on the application for admission. There is also a $40 nonrefundable processing fee.

New students must pay a nonrefundable deposit of $400 within two weeks of their acceptance. Returning students must pay a nonrefundable deposit of $200 by May 15. All deposits will be credited toward summer tuition charges.


Housing during the 2013 summer term is available in student apartments (private bedroom with shared living room, kitchen and bath) and dormitory rooms (communal kitchen and one bath per hall). The cost is $1,015 for the six-week term. Housing is assigned on a first-come, first-served basis.

To apply:

Candidates must have a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university. They must give evidence, by undergraduate record, submission of manuscripts, and letters of recommendation, of their capacity to undertake the program. The application form, transcripts, letters of recommendation, other materials and $40 nonrefundable processing fee should be sent to:

Graduate Program in Playwriting
Hollins University Graduate Center
P. O. Box 9603
Roanoke, VA 24020-1603
Phone: (540) 362-6575
Fax: (540) 362-6288

For program questions, contact the director, Todd Ristau, at (540) 362-6386 or