A portfolio is a sample of your own writing. You must keep copies of your portfolio for yourself, in case of loss. Your portfolio may be one long piece, a number of shorter pieces, or an excerpt from a longer work. It may include work that you've already submitted for credit in other courses, because portfolio work cannot receive credit in the course for which you're applying. Choose your best pieces, because quality counts.

Submit your portfolio as an email attachment and send it to the instructor of the course you want to take.

Portfolio Checklist

A portfolio checklist is a simple form, available for download here:

Creative Writing Portfolios: Submission Checklist (PDF)

The checklist ensures that you include your name, student number, contact information, and the name of the course you want to take. It also provides space to list additional experience (e.g., courses, workshops, or publications). Listing that additional experience is especially important if you're requesting a prerequisite waiver.

If you wish, you may skip the checklist and just type out the information in an email. But be sure to include everything.

Portfolio Submission Guidelines

If submitting by email, send the portfolio as a doc, docx, or pdf. Poetry should be single-spaced, but prose must be double-spaced. If submitting by email, all parts of the portfolio should be in one doc, docx, or pdf (i.e., don’t send five poems in five separate documents). Attach that one file to your email and send the email directly to the instructor.

If the UW is open, and you want to submit in person, type your portfolio on plain, letter-sized (8.5" x 11"), white paper, with your name on every page. Poetry may be single-spaced, but prose must be double-spaced. If submitting on paper, make sure your contact info is correct and clearly legible. Pages should be stapled with a completed portfolio checklist on top. No binders or covers, please. If the University is open, hand in the paper portfolio and checklist at the English Department office in 2A48 and request that it be date stamped. It's very important to list which course you want on the checklist, because the portfolio will be sent only to the instructor for that course. Submit a separate portfolio with a separate checklist for each course.

Individual Course Requirements for Portfolios

ENGL-3101.6 Creative Writing Comprehensive: Ten pages, including at least four pages of prose and two pages of poetry.

ENGL-3102.1 Creative Writing Field Research: five pages in any genre

ENGL-3113.3 Writing Short Fiction: five pages of fiction

ENGL-3114.3 Writing Poems: five pages of poetry

ENGL-3116.3 Topics in Creative Writing: consult the current course description or the instructor


To ensure that instructors can read the portfolios before registration begins, we suggest submitting them in May. But instructors will consider portfolios at any time before the course begins, if space is still available or becomes available. Always read the current course description, and if no deadline is listed, consult the instructor.


This page updated August 2020.