The primary objective of the Program in Creative Writing is to give students who have the talent and the ambition for a writing career the opportunity to develop that talent significantly and to make it the centre of a program of university study. Two major assumptions inform this program: first, that the capabilities of talent can be increased through training: and second, that the necessary curriculum for aspiring writers consists of the study of the language and the writing idioms of past and contemporary writers.
The program therefore aims in its earlier years to acquaint students with the various ways of writing that the writers of our time have made possible. Students begin to write in an expanding environment of literary and linguistic knowledge. In the later years the program aims to expose students to the history of formal experimentation and growth in particular genres, and to encourage specialization in two genres. The Program emphasizes literary writing rather than formula writing.
A third objective of the program is to take into account the unpredictability and variety of the interests of writing students. This program permits students to follow idiosyncratic combinations of courses, provided that they can demonstrate to the program coordinator the relevance of these courses to their writing ambitions and receive from the program coordinator necessary permission to enrol in such courses to count towards their degree.