After almost 200 creative writing teachers and program directors criticized Poets & Writers for its ranking of MFA and PHD programs, Poets & Writers has responded to the criticism.
Do you think MFA programs should be rated? In the original letter, professors from some of the higher ranked universities complained: “Instead of asking such students and alumni about quality of instruction, or anything else about actual program content, P&W’s rankings are heavily skewed toward viewing a program’s financial aid offer as the final arbiter of that program’s overall quality.”
Poets & Letters defended its choices. Here is more from the publication’s rebuttal: “Why didn’t we survey MFA faculty and students about the quality of MFA programs? To continue the analogy Leslie Epstein used to describe our approach in the press release, that would be like asking diners who only frequent their favorite restaurant to assess the quality of all restaurants.”