MA Creative and Critical Writing

MA Creative and Critical Writing at Winchester offers students the opportunity to improve their creative writing in a dynamic, constructive environment. The programme is supported by teaching staff who are all professional writers.

MA Creative and Critical Writing at University of Winchester


Entry requirements

Normally a first or higher second-class Honours degree in a related subject or professional experience in the area of study. Applicants are required to submit a sample of their creative writing.

If English is not your first language:

IELTS 6.5 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in writing

Degree duration

Full-time: 1 year
Part-time: 2 years

Start date: September

Teaching takes place: Evenings

Location: Taught elements of the course take place on the King Alfred Campus or at West Downs, Winchester.

Fact: Through the Publishing Project there is an opportunity to meet agents, publishers and authors.
Fact: Students have the opportunity to develop their creative work, give and receive feedback in weekly workshops, and work with lecturers who are all practitioners.

Work Experience: Students have the opportunity to volunteer at the Winchester Literary Festival on campus, working with a range of writers, publishers and agents and industry professionals.

Course Tuition Fees and Additional Costs

UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man

September 2017  Entry Full-time | £6,100
September 2017  Entry Part-time | £3,050 p/a

Total Cost | £6,100

International Students 

September 2017  Entry Full-time | £12,200
September 2017  Entry Part-time | £6,100 p/a

Total Cost | £12,200

Additional Costs 

To find out what general costs are included or excluded in the course fees, such as textbooks and travel expenses, please click here

Terms and Conditions

For more information about the University of Winchester's terms and conditions click here

Students mostly study twentieth century and contemporary literature, allowing them to explore different styles and genres while gaining a critical foundation for their own writing. Furthermore, students learn about the publishing world, aiming to understand where their work fits in the constantly changing publishing market. Students have opportunities to meet agents, editors and published writers.

The structure of the programme enables students to focus on one or more genres (for example, fiction, creative non-fiction, scriptwriting or poetry) during the year. Throughout the programme, students write and workshop their own work while reading a range of twentieth century and/or contemporary texts.

Students begin in the first semester with a module that focuses on contemporary fiction alongside a module that explores the term research and what this means for a writer - this forms a creative and critical foundation for their writing for the rest of the programme. In the second semester students choose from optional modules as well as exploring the literary market through the Publishing Project which provides readings and workshops with writers, agents and editors.

Students also undertake the Independent Study Preparation module which is designed to prepare the students for the rigour of a Creative Writing dissertation, which can be up to 30,000 words in length (for example the first part of a novel, a set of short stories, a portfolio of poetry or a script). The Dissertation (Independent Study) constitutes nearly 50 per cent of the MA and offers the chance to work on and develop a substantial piece of writing. A supervisor is appointed to the project.

Core modules:

  • Contemporary Fiction
  • The Writer as Researcher
  • Publishing Project
  • Independent Study Preparation
  • Independent Study

Optional modules:

  • Contemporary Non-Fiction
  • Contemporary Scriptwriting for TV and Film
  • Contemporary Metafiction
  • Contemporary Historical Fiction
  • Creativity Writing and Teaching
  • Writing for Display
  • Advanced Contemporary Poetry
  • Diploma of Postgraduate Studies - Summative Paper

The academic staff are professional novelists, scriptwriters, poets and writers of creative non-fiction, as well as cultural critics and playwrights. They are supported by guest writers, editors and literary agents. This course has long enjoyed a vibrant programme of visiting speakers.

Programme Leader

Each module typically comes with a creative writing assignment, or an assignment plus rationale (reflective piece) of approximately 4,000 words in total.

Students undertake a Dissertation between 20,000-30,000 words as part of their independent study with full tutorial support.

At the University of Winchester validated programmes may adopt a range of means of assessing your learning. An indicative, and not necessarily comprehensive, list of assessment types you might encounter includes essays, portfolios, supervised independent work, presentations, written exams, or practical performances. The University is committed to ensuring that all students have an equal opportunity to achieve module learning outcomes. As such, where appropriate and necessary, students with recognised disabilities may have alternative assignments set that continue to test how successfully they have met the module's learning outcomes. Further details on assessment types used in the programme you are interested in can be found on the course page, by attending an Open Day/Evening, or contacting our teaching staff.

Graduates are increasingly obtaining publishing contracts, while some go into other occupations which may include publishing, teaching, media, the arts and business.

Course Enquiries and Applications

Telephone: +44 (0) 1962 827234
Send us a message

International students seeking additional information about this programme can email or call +44 (0) 1962 827023.

Applications need to be submitted before the 31 May 2017. Late applications can be accepted throughout the remainder of the application year, for more information click here.

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