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The Eric Carle Museum
of Picture Book Art
  • 125 West Bay Road
  • Amherst, MA 01002
  • Tues. – Fri. 10am – 4pm
  • Saturday 10am – 5pm
  • Sunday 12pm – 5pm

Visit the carle


Simmons College

Simmons College at The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art

For nearly 40 years, The Center for the Study of Children's Literature at Simmons College has shared its passionate commitment to literature for young people through scholarly engaement. Since 2008, The Carle has been proud to partner with Simmons to offer its graduate courses in the creation, culture, and criticism of children's literature—from picturebooks and early readers to works for young adults. Classes meet regularly in The Carle's Reading Library and students are encouraged to take advantage of the Museum’s many resources. Simmons offers four graduate programs in children's literature, each encouraging a rigorous study of children's books with an emphasis on historical and critical analysis. Non-degree students are welcome to apply for specific classes.


Degree Programs

MFA in Writing for Children

A 32-credit MFA program taught at The Carle

This program consists of four academic courses and four writing courses, including a two-course sequence in which a student develops a manuscript from conception to submission.

MA in Children's Literature

A 36-credit MA program taught at The Carle

This program consists of four electives and the following five required courses: Criticism of Literature for Children, The Picture Book, Contemporary Realistic Fiction, Fantasy and Science Fiction, and a historical literature course.

MFA/MA in Children's Literature

Students who wish to pursue both degrees may combine both masters' programs in a 56-credit course of study that includes core requirements for both programs.

M.A. in Children's Literature/M.S. in Library Science

This dual degree is offered in collaboration with Simmons's Graduate School of Library Science program at Mount Holyoke.

Course Offerings

Courses are open to non-degree students, and are offered nights and weekends on site at The Carle. For registration information, please contact

CHL 401-18: Criticism of Literature for Children (4 credits)

Mondays, January 23 – May 8, 2017 (4:00 – 6:50 pm)

Develops the individual critical voices of students and acquaints them with the literary canon and a variety of literacy perspectives through exposure to many influential schools of literacy criticism. Applies critical skills in the examination of a range of novels (realism and fantasy), short stories, biographies, nonfiction, and translated works published for children.


CHL 421-18 Children's Book Publishing (4 credits)

Fridays, February 3, March 3, March 31, April 28, 2017 (4:00 – 7:00 pm)
Saturdays, February 4, March 4, April 1, April 29, 2017 (10:00 am – 2:00 pm)
Sundays, February 5, March 5,  April 2, April 30, 2017 (9:00 am – 12:00 pm)

Surveys the history of children’s book publishing in the U.S. and then focuses on the various stages of the contemporary children’s book publishing process editing, art direction and design, and marketing. Practitioners from each of these areas will share their expertise and involvement in the evolution of a books creation. The final assignment requires that each student develop a publishing project and show how such a book would be published.

 A full description of courses is available online in the Simmons Graduate Course Catalog.

Classes may be subject to cancellation depending on enrollment.

Listen to what students and graduates say about the program!

More Information

To learn more about these programs, visit the Simmons website, email, or register for an Information Session at The Carle.  For tuition information click here.

Information Sessions

Thursday, May 11, 12:00 – 1:00 pm
Sunday, June 4, 12:00 - 1:00pm
Thursday, July 6, 3:00 – 4:00 pm
Tuesday, August 1, 3:00 – 4:00 pm

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