facebook BA (Hons) Creative Writing and Media Communications – Bath Spa University

Creative Writing and Media Communications

BA (Hons)

Undergraduate degree - combined honours

Key facts

Award
BA (Hons) Creative Writing and Media Communications
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: WP99 or SE62
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 CCC with a minimum of grade C 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

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
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

2021/22 Entry

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

International students full time

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £14,300
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

2021/22 Entry

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

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: Dr. Paul Meyer
Email: p.meyer@bathspa.ac.uk

Challenge the global media landscape with this practical and research-led Media degree.

  • Build up a diverse portfolio that demonstrates your knowledge of the changing media landscape.
  • Learn the current theoretical debates and contemporary media practices across TV, music, social media and more.
  • Develop practical and strategic skills, to better understand audiences and how to communicate new ideas with them.

Ever wondered why the media tells stories and represents people the way that it does? Or how the film, TV, music and game industries transform wider society and culture? Or how social media shapes how we perceive, consume and participate in everyday life?

BA Media Communications develops the research skills you need to make sense of these questions, and looks across contemporary media industries – their audiences, interactive platforms and representations – at a local, national and global level.

We want you to develop the collaborative and digital skills you’ll need to participate in and across media platforms. You’ll benefit from a creative blend of practical and research-led approaches, to better equip you with the skills you’ll need to understand audiences and how to communicate new ideas with them.

“An engaging and dynamic course that has equipped me with both the analytical and practice-based skills necessary to work within the ever-changing media environment.”

Media Communications Graduate, 2014

What you'll learn

Overview

You’ll examine and research media in a global context, exploring how new digital technologies shape how we perceive, consume, and participate in everyday media.

You’ll map how cultures of production shape media audiences, and explore questions of global citizenship.

We expose you to a range of creative and professional practices, including skills in media research, social enterprise and media making.

Across the three years, you’ll build up a diverse portfolio of research insights and reflective media artefacts that demonstrate your knowledge of the changing media landscape, before working towards a final-year creative dissertation project that communicates original media research to an industry audience. This is your chance to directly test out and share your research ideas with the South West’s media and creative industries.

Course structure

Year one
Modules equip you with the essential critical toolkit for understanding and analysing the contemporary media and conducting media research. You’ll examine media technologies, popular cultures, media ownership, media representations and media branding, and use social tools to gain practical media-making skills. You’ll be introduced to some of the key methods in media research through a series of case studies including gender in the media, television audiences, journalism, media preservation and music cultures.

Year two
You’ll question global media cultures, examining – for example – how the media transcends the borders of platforms, audiences, cultures, industries and countries. Alongside this, you’ll study the impacts of a global media culture on everything from production to consumption. You’ll have the opportunity to develop your skills in media-making, while further examining these themes in relation to more specific areas, such as stardom and celebrity, journalism and citizenship, music and digital cultures.

Year three
We'll encourage you to specialise in an area that interests you, and to develop independent research and/or practice. This manifests in the form of a dissertation, with specialist modules available in gender and film, media technology, fandom, music journalism, computer and video games. We’ll explore the central role that these play in our leisure time, community media, and how disasters and terrorism are reported.

How will I be assessed?

Media Communications is a theoretical course with a practical component. Assessments therefore range from essays, professional writing, presentations, reviews and feature writing, to cross-media presentations, object history work and industry reports and investigations. You’ll also learn through the creation of journals, research logs and portfolios, blog posts and collaborative projects.

How will I be taught?

Our teaching is driven by the research specialisms and expertise of staff, who are all world-leading scholars in their respective fields within Media Communications. Teaching may also come from the University’s specialist technical demonstrators.

Lectures set out broad themes and issues, while seminars stimulate discussion and encourage student debate. Individual tutorials provide an opportunity to discuss your work with tutors on a one-to-one basis.

You’ll also learn via workshops devoted to particular skills such as media research, and in project labs, you’ll work with staff and fellow students to develop a media project.

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

  • Media Today I
  • Media Today II
  • Introduction to Television
  • Popular Media Culture
  • Digital Practice
  • Create Lab

Year two (Level 5) modules

  • Global Media
  • Promotional Media
  • Digital Culture
  • Music, Media and Markets
  • Television, Representation and Gender
  • Stardom and Celebrity
  • Participatory Media
  • Professional Placement Year

Year three (Level 6) modules

  • Dissertation I
  • Dissertation II
  • Digital Innovation and Enterprise
  • Videogames
  • Feminist Film Criticism
  • Popular Music Journalism

Opportunities

Work placements, industry links and internships

At various points throughout the course, you’ll have the opportunity to engage in media production projects and to undertake work-volunteering and work placement opportunities.

Careers

Media Communications at Bath Spa is ideal for aspiring:

  • Media researchers and creative strategists
  • Advertisers and digital media marketers
  • Social media and branding creatives
  • Academics and media policy-makers of the future.

The Media Communications team is made up of world-leading researchers and creatives who are all engaged in international media industry collaborations.

You’ll benefit from these industry collaborations, feeding into live media industry projects, as well as having unique access to the Centre for Media Research’s in-house International Journal of Creative Media Research and its range of public research workshops and activities across Bath and Bristol.

Our graduates have gone into marketing, social media and advertising, project management, PR, education, and more, have been employed by companies including Komedia, Conversation Creation, Apollo Strategic Communications and John Lewis.

Competitions and awards

Each year we award The Media Communications Prize for Excellence in Research to one of our students.

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

Resources

Media Communications students can hire out equipment using SISO, Bath Spa University’s free equipment loan service. We provide a huge variety of equipment, from industry standard television studios, to state-of-the-art editing software and Mac Labs, equal to anything found at cutting-edge commercial organisations and broadcast companies.

Fees

UK and EU students full time

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
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

2021/22 Entry

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

International students full time

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £14,300
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

2021/22 Entry

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

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

We’re looking for enthusiastic and motivated students who want to become the researchers, content creators and policy-makers of the future. We value creative thinking, originality and a good knowledge of contemporary media, so the abilities to think critically and identify new opportunities are important traits we look for in candidates.

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 preferred.
  • BTEC – Extended Diploma grades Merit, Merit, Merit (MMM) accepted
  • International Baccalaureate – A minimum score of 26 points required
  • 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).

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 contact: Suman Ghosh
Email: s.ghosh@bathspa.ac.uk

Website feedback to web@bathspa.ac.uk