facebook BA (Hons) Creative Writing and English Literature – Bath Spa University

Creative Writing and English Literature

BA (Hons)

Undergraduate degree - combined honours

Key facts

Award
BA (Hons) Creative Writing and English Literature
School
College of Liberal Arts
Campus or location
Newton Park
Course length
Three years full time, or four years full time with professional placement year.
UCAS codes
Institution Code: B20
Course Code: WQ93 or SE57
Campus Code: A,BSU

Entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. Typical offers include A level grades BCC with a minimum of grade B in English or related subject. Applicants without A Level English may still be considered.

View "typical offers" for more information.

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

2018/19 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2019
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2020
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

UK and EU students full time - with 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.

International students full time

2018/19 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £13,900
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2019
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2020
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

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 yor 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 BCC accepted with a minimum of grade B 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 Distinction. Merit, Merit (DMM) 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: Dr. Paul Meyer
Email: p.meyer@bathspa.ac.uk

Change the way you see the world by exploring new ideas about English Literature

  • Study a wide range of historical periods from Early Modern drama to Postmodern poetry.
  • Exciting and challenging modules that explore the ways writers experiment with philosophical and political ideas.
  • Explore new ways of reading and thinking about English Literature.

We offer varied modules that allow you to study in greater depth writers that you already love, and discover writers that you have yet to fall in love with.

Our passionate knowledge informs an incredibly wide range of modules. Choose from the worlds of Shakespeare’s London, Romantic and Victorian visions of science, radical innovators of literary form, the new digital worlds of electronic text, the darker worlds of crime and gothic writing, and the continuing engagement of writers with questions of history and social justice.

“I chose Bath Spa University because it felt like the perfect university. Everyone is friendly, helpful, and loves what they do. It's a great atmosphere to grow academically and as a person.”

Santino Prinzi, English Literature and Creative Writing graduate

What you'll learn

Overview

You’ll study a broad and diverse range of intellectually stimulating modules. You’ll benefit from the fact that English modules reflect our tutors’ areas of research specialism.

Course structure

Each year has a core module, as well as a large selection of optional modules from which you can choose. These modules are organised around a number of key strands running through the programme – Transnational English Literature; Medical Humanities; and Digital Humanities – but you can choose to study any of the available modules and develop your own literary interests.

In your third year you can undertake independent study on a dissertation or project, focusing on an area of your own specific interest.

How will I be assessed?

Most modules use essays with other forms of coursework such as journals, portfolios and short critical pieces, projects and dissertations, or special assignments such as seminar presentations, collaborative magazines, and web-based essays. Some modules include seen and unseen exams. Second and final year grades contribute towards your final degree award.

How will I be taught?

English modules are taught via seminars, lectures, individual tutorials, and IT workshops.

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

  • Critical Reading 1
  • Critical Reading 2
  • Writing, Gender and Politics, 1500–1750
  • Scandal and Sobriety, 1750– 1890
  • Decadence to the Naughties, 1890–Now
  • Print, Book and Candle: making, selling, reading

Year two (Level 5) modules

  • Critical Reading 3: Subject and Structure
  • Critical Reading 4: Equivocal Matter
  • Shakespeare and His Contemporaries
  • Literature and Digital Culture
  • Nature, Science and Self 
  • Revolutions in Realism: Nineteenth Century Literature
  • Gender and Fiction in the Long Eighteenth Century 
  • The Victorian Spectacular: producing the Modern
  • Modern and Contemporary Poetry
  • Crime Fiction
  • Literature, Ethnicity and Belonging
  • Gothic Origins and Innovations
  • Renaissance Worlds in Poetry and Prose
  • Professional Placement Year

Year three (Level 6) modules

  • English Project
  • Texts in the City: Print Culture and Early Modern London
  • Modernist Networks
  • Literature and Digital Culture
  • Writing and the Environmental Crisis
  • Crime and Gothic Fictions
  • Literature and Psychology
  • In Search of America
  • More than Muses: Literary Women, Work and the Arts
  • Literature and Evil
  • Nation and Race in Early Modernity
  • Staging Gender
  • Modern American Drama

Opportunities

Study abroad

All English students have the opportunity to apply for an Erasmus placement which allows them to study for one or more terms in their second or third year of study. We also have links with partner institutions in the USA and Australia.

Field trips

We are keen to bring literature to life, and the course features optional modules that include field trips to London, Oxford, Krakow and Auschwitz, and Berlin, among others. Our students have also won places on summer schools in Beijing and Monterrey.

Career preparation

In your second year you’ll benefit from our innovative and institutionally recognised programme of personal development. Employability skills are built into the curriculum and you’ll also have access to our distinctive digital facilities in publishing and broadcast media.

You’ll graduate with transferable skills to engage critically and creatively with a full range of possible careers. Our English Literature graduates are very popular with employers.

Careers

Many of our graduates pursue careers in publishing or teaching. Organisations including New Scientist, Trinity College Library, DigitalBox and Cengage Learning EMEA have employed our graduates. Graduate professions include:

  • Editorial Assistant
  • Publishing Outreach Executive
  • Content Writer
  • Campaigns Officer

Some graduates choose to progress onto postgraduate study.

Competitions and awards

There are annual prizes for the best overall performance in both core modules in Years 1 and 2, and a very special prize for the best final year English Project.

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

The English Literature programme is taught at Newton Park campus, with most classes taking place in the state-of-the-art Commons building.

You'll have access to excellent facilities such as our:

Resources

We have a wide range of high-quality online resources to complement the books and journals you have access to in our library, as well as digital publishing facilities, printing presses, and industry-standard broadcast media facilities.

Fees

UK and EU students full time

2018/19 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2019
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2020
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

UK and EU students full time - with 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.

International students full time

2018/19 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £12,900
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2019
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2020
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

We are looking for students who share our passion for literature in all its forms. You should be inquisitive and willing to challenge yourself, to question shared assumptions, and want to collaborate with others in exploring the ideas and worlds that the written word opens up to us.

Typical offers

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

  • A Level - grade BCC accepted with a minimum of grade B in English or related subject.
  • BTEC - Extended Diploma grades Distinction. Merit, Merit (DMM) in a related subject accepted.
  • International Baccalaureate - a minimum score of 26 points required with grade 5 or above in English at Higher Level.
  • 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) accepted.

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.

Get ahead

We recommend that you read as much literature as possible! It’s a good idea to read books from various historical periods and literary genres – and think about the differences you notice between them. You’ll find Studying English Literature (Continuum Press, 2010) by Ashley Chantler to be a good guide.

Admissions service: +44 (0)1225 876 180
Email: admissions@bathspa.ac.uk
Course leader: Dr. Richard Stamp
Email: r.stamp@bathspa.ac.uk

Website feedback to web@bathspa.ac.uk