Master of Fine Arts in Writing & Contemporary Media

The Art of Professional Storytelling

In AUSB’s unique Master of Fine in Writing & Contemporary Media program, students learn the craft of professional storytelling. Whether you prefer writing for the page, the stage, the screen, or the Internet, you will discover how to use the fundamental elements of narrative to craft stories for a wide range of media settings. When you complete your MFA degree, you will not only have a professional-level product in your chosen genre, but will be prepared to apply your skills to any field that requires creative communication.

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Our Low-Residency Design

Our low-residency, four-semester MFA program combines the flexibility of online learning with in-person faculty and student collaboration. Each semester begins with a 7-day residency in our picturesque Santa Barbara setting. During the residency, students work actively with faculty mentors against a beautiful Pacific backdrop as they develop ideas, receive feedback on their work, and shape creative projects that meet their professional goals. After each residency, the semester continues online as students balance intensive study in the art and craft of storytelling with practical instruction on how to improve, market and present their work. During their program, students also have the opportunity to spend one semester working with students and faculty in the MFA in Creative Writing program at Antioch’s Los Angeles campus.

Choose Your Focus

Antioch University Santa Barbara

Screenwriting and Television Writing

Want to write movies, or create the next great for Netflix or Amazon? You’ll be right at home here in our program with experienced mentors to guide you. 

Antioch University Santa Barbara


Theater is a writer’s medium. The possibilities are limitless. Comedy or drama, realistic or magical – if you can imagine it, it can be a play. 

Antioch University Santa Barbara

Writing for Emerging Media 

Storytelling is finding new forms and platforms every day. Blogs, podcasting, web series and even virtual reality stories will all be part of the literary landscape of the future. Antioch Santa Barbara’s cutting edge program embraces these new forms, including mixed and multi-media storytelling. 

“In our rapidly changing economy, professional writing versatility is critical to engage audiences across the media spectrum. AUSB’s MFA program will prepare students to become confident, effective communicators by focusing studies in an area of interest while also developing a broader range of writing skills.”

Steve Heller, Chair of Antioch University Santa Barbara and Antioch University Los Angeles MFA Programs

Antioch University Santa Barbara


Students receive individualized instruction and mentorship from professional writers throughout the program, beginning in each residency and continuing online.

Antioch University Santa Barbara

Two Southern California Campuses

AUSB students can opt to spend one semester working with students and faculty at the MFA in Creative Writing program at Antioch’s Los Angeles campus.

Antioch University Santa Barbara


AUSB’s MFA students start each semester with a 7-day residency in which they can focus solely on their creative work in Santa Barbara’s tranquil setting.

Other Writing Networks at AUSB

AUSB_OdysseyOnline_logoOdyssey Online is our student-run online platform, allowing for AUSB students to work with more contemporary and interactive digital media and gain real-world experience.


AUSB_Diana-Simon-Raab-Writers-Series_logoDiana & Simon Raab Writers Series is a workshop series that examines the work of contemporary writers and artists to inspire students and the community to learn and understand the transformative power of great storytelling.

Want to join the new storytellers?
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