Minnesota State College Southeast
A Technical & Community College

Creative Writing Certificate

An in-depth, accelerated introduction to the writing craft.


Work with published authors to hone your creative writing skills.

The online Creative Writing Certificate at MSC Southeast offers you an in-depth, accelerated introduction to the writing craft. What would have taken you years of practice and research you will learn in 3 to 4 semesters under the guidance of experienced faculty. Each course you take in the creative writing certificate will deepen your understanding of writing as a practice and a craft.

Though you will study fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and publishing, each class will expand on the various writing forms, devices, techniques, and structures that you will need to become an experienced writer. In addition to sharpening and expanding your writing, you will also read and respond critically to your peers, as well as to a variety of published work.

This certificate will challenge you not only to develop your own natural talents in the writing craft, but also to work on your less developed areas. When you complete the certificate, you will have developed a portfolio of work-shopped, edited, and polished writing.

All courses in the Creative Writing Certificate are taught 100% online.

Please note:

  • Students who are working toward the Associate of Arts in Liberal Arts and Science can complete the Creative Writing Certificate as an area of emphasis by selecting creative writing coursework to satisfy elective requirements.
  • As a stand-alone 16-credit certificate, this program is not eligible for financial aid. Please contact the MSCS Financial Aid department if you have questions.

Apply now for the Creative Writing Certificate

Major Offerings

Download the Program Plan

Outcomes & Opportunities

Program Learning Outcomes

Program graduates will be able to:

  1. Understand the elements, techniques, and theory of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry
  2. Employ the use of character, style, setting, point of view, and plot in writing
  3. Identify moments from experience or observation as potential themes for their own creative writing
  4. Understand the role of audience in creative writing and the consequent implication of aesthetic standards
  5. Apply constructive analysis to the revision of writing in order to more closely accomplish the desired effect on an audience
  6. Examine select works foundational to contemporary writers
  7. Describe the basic process for finding a venue and submitting work for publication
  8. Analyze their peers' works in terms of craft and technique

Creative Writing Job Placement: TBD

View placement information for all majors

Career Opportunities

Beyond writing for personal interest or publication, expert writers can find employment in many fields:

  • Copywriter or editorial assistant
  • Magazine or newspaper journalist
  • Marketing and public relations
  • Public library support professional
  • Social media content specialist

Transfer Credits

Expand your opportunities. Learn how your credits can transfer to other colleges and universities.

College Articulated Transfer Agreements: Specific agreements between MSC Southeast and other institutions to accept transfer credits.
Minnesota Transfer: Transfer information provided by Minnesota State colleges and universities, Minnesota private colleges, and the University of Minnesota.
Transferology: A nationwide network to assist students in determining which courses will transfer.

Highlights & Instructors

Program Highlights

  • Taught by master instructors who are also practicing and accomplished writers
  • Guided assistance and feedback in creating a body of polished writing in multiple genres
  • 100% online -- work at your own pace as you strengthen your writing skills
  • 2-year program allowing, over time, for reflective growth in your writing
  • Open to any aspiring writer seeking to acquire well-rounded instruction from published authors


Peter Beurskens and Michael Larson are members of the English faculty at MSC Southeast. Carrie Maynard-Allen teaches Sociology and English at the college. See individual biographies under Faculty Bios in the Liberal Arts & Sciences section of the website.

© 2019 Minnesota State College Southeast

RED WING CAMPUS | 308 Pioneer Road | Red Wing, MN 55066 | 651-385-6300
WINONA CAMPUS | 1250 Homer Road | Winona, MN 55987 | 507-453-2700

Minnesota State College Southeast is an affirmative action/equal opportunity educator and employer. ADA accessible. MSC Southeast is committed to a policy of nondiscrimination in employment and education opportunity. No person shall be discriminated against in the terms and conditions of employment, personnel practices, or access to and participation in, programs, services, and activities with regard to race, sex, color, creed, religion, age, national origin, disability, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, or sexual orientation. In addition, discrimination in employment base on membership or activity in a local commission as defined by law is prohibited.


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