facebook BA (Hons) Creative Arts Practice and Creative Writing – Bath Spa University

Creative Arts Practice and Creative Writing

.

Undergraduate degree - Creative Arts programme combination

Key facts

Award
BA (Hons) Creative Arts Practice and Creative Writing
School/s
Bath School of Art, School of Creative Industries
Campus or location
Newton Park, Sion Hill and Locksbrook
Course length
Three years full-time.
UCAS codes
Institution Code: B20
Course Code: WW20 or WW21
Campus Code: A,BSU

Entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. 

View 'typical offers' for more information.

Experience a broad range of disciplines on this contemporary and creative Art degree.

  • Explore and innovate across disciplines. Study and practise two subject areas, with the option to specialise if you choose.
  • Take an entrepreneurial approach. Translate your practice into industry through opportunities to exhibit, perform and publish.
  • Learn from practising professionals. Your tutors are also visual artists, sculptors, designers, writers, sound artists and performers.

Do you want to be an artist, designer, performer, writer or teacher – or create your own path by combining more than one artistic profession?

On this contemporary creative arts course, you'll gain a practical grounding in a range of disciplines including sculpture, ceramics, drawing, painting, textiles, live art and graphic arts, before specialising in one or two disciplines of your choice. You can choose from a wealth of optional first year practical modules that will introduce you to printmaking, photography, performance, sound, video and word – to build your own unique course of study.

You’ll benefit from support and encouragement from dedicated staff who are practitioners in their specialist fields. You’ll also have access to our superb facilities and excellent technical staff.

What you'll learn

Overview

This contemporary creative arts degree is based on the fundamental principles of professional, practical studio practice supported by theory, interdisciplinarity, and entrepreneurship.

We assume that you're primarily a practitioner, driven by the desire to create in a variety of media. The majority of your time will be taken up with creating in a studio or workshop; however contextual, critical and reflective thinking will be required and encouraged – practitioners don't create work in a cultural vacuum.

The course encourages and supports cross-fertilisation of ideas and collaborative practice across subject areas. The multidisciplinary nature of the course places you in a unique position to combine practice and theory from both areas of study in radical and innovative ways.

Throughout the programme you'll also engage in public exhibitions, publishing or performances. Alongside these professional opportunities, in your final year, you'll be encouraged to develop opportunities relating to your future career.

The Professional Practice modules in years two and three aim to help you develop the practical, professional skills you’ll need to flourish in the industry, including social networking, photographing your work, creating digital portfolios, applying for competitions, marketing, creating a web presence, setting up a business, working on commissions, pricing your work, approaching galleries, exhibiting and fundraising.

The course’s inherent multidisciplinarity and the experiences you will encounter working with a variety of materials and contexts, will broaden your skill-set and enhance your employability, enabling you to work confidently across a range of scenarios.

Course structure

Year one
We’ll encourage you to experiment in a number of disciplines, gaining extensive knowledge and fundamental skills. You’ll also study context and theory, supported by lectures and seminars that will develop your understanding of current and historical debates in art and design practice.

You’ll choose modules from two of the following four core subject areas:

  • 2D (Painting and Drawing)
  • 3D (Ceramics and Sculpture)
  • Graphic arts
  • Mixed Media Textiles
  • Live Art.

Optional modules include Photography, Moving Image, Printmaking and Ceramics. Alongside these subjects you’ll attend contextual studies lectures that will introduce you to the history of creativity and culture.

Year two
You’ll have the opportunity to specialise in one discipline, or continue with two areas of study. Contextual studies lectures continue and will examine current thinking and debates around aesthetic theory. During the second part of the year you’ll begin a programme of professional practice, with opportunities to publicly exhibit your work.

Year three
In your final year you’ll continue to develop your practice to produce a body of work for public exhibition at the school degree show. You'll also complete a dissertation on a subject of your choosing. Professional development opportunities will encourage you to expand your skills in areas such as web design, marketing and project management. By gaining the necessary expertise, you’ll maximise your potential as a creative practitioner after graduation.

How will I be assessed?

You’ll be assessed entirely by coursework such as portfolios, exhibitions, written papers and live presentations. There are no written exams.

How will I be taught?

You'll be taught by practising artists, sculptors, designers, writers and performers who have excellent research profiles in exhibition, publication, recording and performance.

You’ll learn through through practical workshop sessions, individual supervision, seminars and lectures. You’ll also have access to an extensive weekly programme of visiting lectures from practising artists, curators, critics and gallerists.

Course modules

This course offers or includes the following modules. The modules you take will depend on your pathway or course combination (if applicable) as well as any optional or open modules chosen. Please check the programme document (below the main image on this page) for more information.

Modules for the integrated Foundation year option are listed on the Integrated Foundation Year for Art and Design page.

Year one (Level 4) modules

  • Introduction to 2D
  • Introduction to 3D
  • Introduction to Graphic Arts
  • Introduction to Mixed Media Textiles
  • Creativity and Culture
  • 2D Practice
  • 3D Practice
  • Graphic Arts Practice
  • Mixed Media Textiles Practice
  • Etching
  • Silkscreen printing
  • Introduction to Sound, Image and Performance 
  • Introduction to Drawing - Practice and Theory
  • Introduction to Photography
  • Introduction to Ceramics - Form and Surface

Year two (Level 5) modules

  • 2D – Practice and Context
  • 3D – Practice and Context
  • Graphic Arts – Practice and Context
  • Mixed Media Textiles – Practice and Context
  • Specialised Studio Practice and Context
  • Aesthetics and Creative Arts
  • 2D - Practice, context and theory
  • 3D - Practice, context and theory
  • Graphic Arts - Practice, context and theory
  • Mixed Media Textiles - Practice, context and theory
  • Specialised Studio – Practice, context and theory
  • Professional Practice – Group Exhibition
  • Publication or Performance
  • Professional Placement Year

Year three (Level 6) modules

  • 2D Individual Studio Practice
  • 3D Individual Studio Practice
  • Graphic Arts Individual Studio Practice
  • Mixed Media Textiles Individual Studio Practice
  • Specialised Individual Studio Practice
  • Visual and Material Culture: Final Study
  • 2D Individual Studio Practice: Final Exhibition
  • 3D Individual Studio Practice: Final Exhibition
  • Graphic Arts Individual Studio Practice: Final Exhibition
  • Mixed Media Textiles Individual Studio Practice: Final Exhibition
  • Specialised Individual Studio Practice: Final Exhibition
  • Professional Practice: independent project

Opportunities

Study abroad

You’ll have the opportunity to study in a wide range of locations around the world. Our students have completed Erasmus+ and exchange programmes in a variety of countries including Norway, Germany, Japan, Australia and the USA.

Field trips

You'll have the opportunity to undertake group study visits to London and major exhibitions in cities across the country. In recent years, overseas study trip destinations have included Venice, Berlin, Paris and Barcelona. where students have visited international artists and designers' studios.

You can also apply to study abroad as part of the Erasmus+ scheme. Previous students have studied in Japan, China, Australia, the USA, Taiwan, Switzerland and Germany. Please note that study visits and overseas study may incur extra costs on top of your course fees.

Work placements, industry links and internships

There are opportunities for you to undertake work placements as part of the professional practice programme, and you can also take the Professional Placement Year between your second and final years of study.

The optional Professional Practice modules in your second and final years give you the opportunity to exhibit / perform / publish at a host of sites, both in and outside of the University. Our students have done so at Burdall’s Yard, the University Theatre, Walcot Chapel, 44AD Gallery, Royal United Hospital, Sion Hill Gallery, Michael Tippet Centre, American Museum, Bath Artists’ Studios, Holburne Museum, Centerspace Bristol and Bargehouse London.

Careers

You’ll graduate with a broad portfolio of expertise to accompany specialist knowledge in your particular field(s).

The majority of our graduates will progress to art-related employment or self-employment, whether as a studio-based artist, public artist or in the realm of arts management or arts administration.

The course also attracts many students wishing to pursue a career in art education.

Competitions and awards

We’ll encourage you to participate in competitions such as the Porthleven Prize and the Gane Trust Travel Grant among many others.

Professional placement year

Overview

This optional placement year provides you with the opportunity to identify, apply for, and secure professional experience, normally comprising one to three placements over a minimum of nine months. Successful completion of this module will demonstrate your ability to secure and sustain graduate-level employment.

By completing the module, you'll be entitled to the addition of 'with Professional Placement Year' to your degree title.

Preparation

Before your Professional Placement Year, you'll work to secure your placement, constructing a development plan with your module leader and your placement coordinator from our Careers and Employability team.

How will I be assessed?

On your return to University for your final year, you'll submit your Placement Portfolio, detailing your development on your placement.

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

Our Art and Design courses are based at our Locksbrook Road (2019) and Sion Hill campuses.

You’ll benefit from access to:

Resources

You’ll have access to an excellent range of studios and workshops in painting, sculpture, textiles, photography and printmaking.

Your new campus

Our new Locksbrook Campus is truly a unique and inspirational space, providing a state-of-the-art learning environment for you to flourish. Located next to the River Avon in Bath city centre, the open-plan building has technical workshops surrounded by open, flexible studio spaces, as well as large, open social areas.

Fees

UK and EU students full time

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

2021/22 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2021
Year 2 Published Jan 2022
Year 3 Published Jan 2023

2022/23 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2022
Year 2 Published Jan 2023
Year 3 Published Jan 2024

International students full time

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £14,500
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

2021/22 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2021
Year 2 Published Jan 2022
Year 3 Published Jan 2023

2022/23 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2022
Year 2 Published Jan 2023
Year 3 Published Jan 2024

All students full time - with professional placement year

During the placement year, the fee is reduced to 20% of the full time fee. Otherwise, fees are the same as for full time study. This applies to UK, EU and International students.

Study visit fees

Additonal full time study visit fees for this course for 2019-20 entry will be £50, payable during each of the three years of study. Part time students will pay 50% of the study visit fee during each year of part time study.

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

We’re looking for individuals who are curious, reflective and interested in their subject areas. You should be able to take risks and have an open mind.

We value the ability to think critically and reflectively just as much as we value the ability to create and make.

Typical offers

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. The main ones are listed below:

  • A Level - grades CCC required with a Grade C in Art, or other art/design related subject. Applicants will be invited to interview and will be required to bring high quality portfolio
  • BTEC - Overall Merit, Merit, Merit (MMM) required. Applicants will be invited to interview and will be required to bring high quality portfolio
  • International Baccalaureate - a minimum score of 26 with HL Art subject at grade 6 or above preferred
  • Access to HE courses - typical offers for applicants with Access to HE will be the Access to HE Diploma or Access to HE Certificate (60 credits, 45 of which must be Level 3, including 30 at merit or higher). Any selection procedure/further requirements will also apply
  • Diploma in Foundation Studies (Art and Design) - we recommend that applicants undertake a pre-degree foundation diploma in Art and Design in combination with the above qualifications. A Merit Grade is preferred.

English Language Requirements for International and EU Applicants
IELTS 6.0 - for visa nationals, with a minimum score of IELTS 5.5 in each element.

How do I apply?

Ready to apply? Click the 'apply now' button in the centre of this page.

Need more guidance? Head to our how to apply webpages.

Portfolio and interviews

Applicants will be invited to interview at our Sion Hill or Locksbrook Road campuses and will be required to bring a high-quality portfolio in support of their application. More details will be supplied to applicants who meet the entry criteria for the course.

Admissions service: +44 (0)1225 876 180
Email: admissions@bathspa.ac.uk
Course leader: Martin Thomas
Email: m.thomas2@bathspa.ac.uk

Three year course
With placement year
Locksbrook Campus image credits: Chris Wakefield, Crescent Photography

Top UK writing course, taught by award-winning practitioners.

  • More specialist strands than any other course in the UK.
  • Focus on graduate employability, building industry connections.
  • Large and diverse student body – close to 500 students from across the world.

This course is challenging, exciting, and versatile. Here, you can expect a professional level of tuition – and we expect a professional level of commitment and achievement from you in return.

Employability is central to the writing programme. Both individually and in groups, you'll prepare for the writing/creative industry career of your choice.

Find out more about our Creative Writing department.

“Bath Spa gave me the opportunity to stretch myself academically and creatively. It was so encouraging to have my creative writing taken seriously by highly respected tutors.”

Recent Creative Writing graduate

What you'll learn

Overview

Our comprehensive programme includes prose, poetry, scriptwriting for the stage and screen, feature journalism, writing for new media, life writing: in fact, whatever you want to write, you’ll find an opportunity at Bath Spa University. We also work with drama and film students to produce films and podcasts, and encourage you to get involved in a wide range of writing-related areas such as readings, performances and magazines.

Course structure

Year one
Writer’s Workshop One (general workshop), Poetry, Fiction, Scriptwriting.

Year two
Specialist core modules (choose one of five) plus a wide range of specialist modules from journalism and new media, writing for young people, traditional “page” poetry, performance poetry, to genre fiction, short stories, nonfiction and more!

Year three
Creative Enterprise module, dissertation-equivalent modules in poetry, novel writing, nonfiction, and writing for young people. Independent project module, collaborative film module.

How will I be assessed?

Assessment is based on 100% coursework (no exams). Most modules will require you to submit a portfolio of creative writing along with a reflective essay in which you describe what you have learned in class, what you have learned from the set texts and working on your own writing.

How will I be taught?

Creative Writing at Bath Spa University is taught through a mixture of workshops, lectures, presentations and tutorials. Workshops offer you the opportunity to read and discuss each other's work in a supportive, informal and informative atmosphere. Lectures are used to introduce techniques and themes in detail. Tutorials provide you with the opportunity to discuss your work with your tutor on a one-to-one basis. Advanced students may also get the chance to work with industry mentors on project work.

We believe that for you to achieve your maximum potential you have to take yourself and your writing seriously, and that the best way to do this is to develop a professional approach. Therefore, wherever appropriate, our modules run to industry standards and adopt industry practices.

Course modules

This course offers or includes the following modules. The modules you take will depend on your pathway or course combination (if applicable) as well as any optional or open modules chosen. Please check the programme document (below the main image on this page) for more information.

Year one (Level 4) modules

  • The Writer’s Workshop 1
  • Explorations in Prose Fiction
  • Songwriting
  • The Writer’s Workshop 2
  • Reading to Write Poetry
  • Introduction to Scriptwriting

Year two (Level 5) modules

  • Short Stories
  • Form and Listening in Poetry
  • Genre Fiction
  • Lifewriting
  • Writing for Performance 1
  • Sudden Prose
  • Scripting for Screen
  • Professional Portfolio
  • Writing for Performance 2
  • Performance Poetry and Spoken Word
  • Writing For Young
  • Reading as Writers
  • Creative Writing and Digital Media
  • The Independent Magazine
  • Professional Placement Year

Year three (Level 6) modules

  • Extended Prose Fiction 1
  • Poetry as Synthesis 1
  • Advanced Script Project 1
  • Advanced Nonfiction Project 1
  • Planning and Writing a Novel For Young People 1
  • Creative Enterprise Project 1
  • Teaching Writing
  • Strategy Camp
  • Extended Prose Fiction 2
  • Poetry as Synthesis
  • Advanced Script Project 2
  • Advanced Nonfiction Project 2
  • Planning and Writing a Novel For Young People 2
  • Creative Enterprise Project 2
  • Interactive Storytelling
  • Teaching Practice
  • Professional Engagement
  • Publishing Industry Project
  • Children’s Publishing
  • Writing and Directing for Performance 1
  • Writing and Directing for Performance 2

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

The Creative Writing course is taught at our stunning Newton Park campus.

You'll have access to a range of excellent facilities, including:

Resources

As a Creative Writing student, you'll be able to benefit from:

  • Cameras, audio recording equipment available for students to borrow absolutely free.
  • Full production and post-production facilities, soundstage, screening rooms.
  • Technical staff to help students use hardware and software according to industry standards.

Opportunities

Study abroad

Erasmus and exchange opportunities to some of the world’s leading colleges and universities – for instance Queensland University of Technology, Australia, Stockholm University, Sweden, and Bennington College, USA.

Work placements, industry links and internships

Creative Writing has no work experience or placements embedded within the course, but students often find subject-related placements – for instance, with the Bath Literature Festival, or with production companies such as the BBC. The course team will help you on an individual basis as opportunities present themselves.

For instance, in 2012, one student was able to secure a film production assistant’s position working on the Bourne Ultimatum starring Matt Damon on location in Southeast Asia. The course team was able to help him gain credit for this work through the Creative Enterprise and Independent Project modules. In 2014, another student was able to secure a paid placement at the Cherry Lane Theatre in New York. His third year of study was tailored so that he could take advantage of that opportunity and graduate with the rest of his class. Yet another student secured a placement at the Old Vic Theatre where she also researched a project for her second-year independent project module.

Careers

Current graduate careers include:

  • Novelist
  • Children’s Author
  • Playwright
  • Poet
  • Digital Marketing Executive
  • Advertising Copywriter
  • Bookstore Owner
  • University Lecturer
  • Editor (Random House)

Creative Writing prizes

Creative Writing awards almost twenty separate prizes to students each year – for the best short story, best poetry, best group project, best script, along with externally sponsored awards such as the Picador Prize for Fiction – given annually to the most promising work of fiction by an undergraduate – and the Les Arnold Prize for top student in the second year, honouring the memory of poet Les Arnold, who started the writing programme in 1992.

Projects

Students are given numerous opportunities to focus on project work – from the first year core module (Writers Workshop One) to the second year core module and into several project modules in the third year.

Professional placement year

Overview

This optional placement year provides you with the opportunity to identify, apply for, and secure professional experience, normally comprising one to three placements over a minimum of nine months. Successful completion of this module will demonstrate your ability to secure and sustain graduate-level employment.

By completing the module, you'll be entitled to the addition of 'with Professional Placement Year' to your degree title.

Preparation

Before your Professional Placement Year, you'll work to secure your placement, constructing a development plan with your module leader and your placement coordinator from our Careers and Employability team.

How will I be assessed?

On your return to University for your final year, you'll submit your Placement Portfolio, detailing your development on your placement.

Fees

UK and EU students full time

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

2021/22 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2021
Year 2 Published Jan 2022
Year 3 Published Jan 2023

2022/23 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2022
Year 2 Published Jan 2023
Year 3 Published Jan 2024

International students full time

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £14,500
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

2021/22 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2021
Year 2 Published Jan 2022
Year 3 Published Jan 2023

2022/23 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2022
Year 2 Published Jan 2023
Year 3 Published Jan 2024

All students full time - with professional placement year

During the placement year, the fee is reduced to 20% of the full time fee. Otherwise, fees are the same as for full time study. This applies to UK, EU and International students.

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

Most of our applicants will have an A or a B in English Language and/or English Literature at A Level. That said, we do judge each application on its own merit and many of our most successful graduates have not fit neatly into standard criteria. Please write directly to the course leader or the admissions team to discuss your individual circumstances.

We also welcome applications from students who demonstrate real commitment to their writing. This commitment may be expressed in publications, awards, and/or engagement with the Apprentice of Fine Arts in Creative Writing.

Typical offers

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. The main ones are listed below:

  • A Level - grades CCC accepted with a minimum of grade C in English or related subject. Applicants without A Level English will be considered but will be required to submit a piece of your own creative writing as part of the selection process
  • BTEC- extended Diploma grades Merit, Merit, Merit (MMM) accepted from applicants who demonstrate a strong interest in creative writing. You may be invited to submit a piece of your own creative writing as part of the selection process
  • International Baccalaureate - a minimum score of 26 points required with grade 5 or above in English at Higher Level are required from applicants who demonstrate a strong interest in creative writing. You may be invited to submit a piece of your own creative writing as part of the selection process
  • Access to HE courses - typical offers for applicants with Access to HE will be the Access to HE Diploma or Access to HE Certificate (60 credits, 45 of which must be Level 3, including 30 at merit or higher). You may be invited to submit a piece of your own creative writing as part of the selection process.

English Language Requirements for International and EU Applicants
IELTS 6.0 - for visa nationals, with a minimum score of IELTS 5.5 in each element.

How do I apply?

Ready to apply? Click the 'apply now' button in the centre of this page. Need more guidance? Head to our how to apply pages.

Admissions service: +44 (0)1225 876 180
Email: admissions@bathspa.ac.uk
Course leader: Gavin James Bower
Email: g.bower@bathspa.ac.uk

Three year course
With placement year

Website feedback to web@bathspa.ac.uk