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COURSE OVERVIEW

  • Study the craft of writing through a multi-genre approach
  • Move progressively through a structured series of writing assignments and exercises, enhanced by a workshop environment
  • Immerse yourself in an independent creative project in your final year
  • Attend the University of Winchester Writers' Festival – an opportunity to meet authors, publishers and agents

The goal of our Creative Writing course at Winchester is simple: we want you to become the best writer you can be. To help you achieve this our department of passionate and supportive lecturers runs a practice-based programme with workshops designed to encourage you to evolve as a writer in new and individual ways.

As one of the most successful creative writing programmes of its kind in the UK, you are encouraged to see all types of writing in relation to wider literary, cultural and professional contexts. Whether you are crafting novels, poems or scripts our widely published academics help you to demonstrate a high level of technical skill, an aptitude for self-expression, and a commitment to hard work and personal development. 

Hear from our students and staff on what you can expect studying Creative Writing at Winchester.

The course seeks to move you progressively through a structured series of writing assignments and exercises, working on all genres of writing in the first year, and then allowing you to specialise in Years 2 and 3. Your work develops in a workshop environment bolstered by positive critical encouragement and direction throughout. Additional guidance is given on audience (for example, editor, agent or publisher) where appropriate.

In Year 2, the focus becomes more specific with a choice of modules that concentrate on elements of different genres such as writing for children, media writing, poetry, song and play, film and TV script.

In Year 3, the modules look increasingly at the relationships between writing and the world beyond the University, exploring publishing, producing, community audiences, writing and teaching. There is also an opportunity to work on an extended creative project in your chosen genre with one-to-one supervision from an expert in this field.

The course arms you with some fantastic transferable skills, such as confident and compelling storytelling, critical thinking and articulate expression. These abilities are valued in a variety of employment contexts including arts and entertainment as well as business and commerce.

Careers

Graduates become professional writers or follow careers in publishing, advertising, marketing, teaching or other professions that require advanced communication skills. Recent graduates have successfully set themselves up as freelance writers.

Many of our graduates choose to go on to further study, both at Masters and Doctoral level. Recent graduates have also successfully set themselves up as freelance writers, or else gone into a variety of areas of employment including public service, charitable and community work, administration, teaching, publishing, banking, law, PR, marketing, copywriting, estate agency, sales authorship, recruitment, optometry.

The University of Winchester ranks in the top 10 in the UK for graduates in employment or further study according to the Graduate Outcomes Survey 2021, HESA.

 

Pre-approved for a Masters

If you study a Bachelor Honours degree with us, you will be pre-approved to start a Masters degree at Winchester. To be eligible, you will need to apply by the end of March in the final year of your degree and meet the entry requirements of your chosen Masters degree.

ABOUT THIS COURSE

Suitable for applicants from:

UK, EU, World

Work placements

We offer the chance to conduct a work placement in Year 2.

Study abroad

Our BA (Hons) Creative Writing course provides an opportunity for you to study abroad in the United States of America (USA). For more information see our Study Abroad section.

Learning and teaching

Our aim is to shape 'confident learners' by enabling you to develop the skills needed to excel in your studies here and as well as onto further studies or the employment market.

You are taught primarily through a combination of lectures and seminars, allowing opportunities to discuss and develop your understanding of topics covered in lectures in smaller groups.

In addition to the formally scheduled contact time such as lectures and seminars etc.), you are encouraged to access academic support from staff within the course team and the wide range of services available to you within the University.

Independent learning

Over the duration of your course, you will be expected to develop independent and critical learning, progressively building confidence and expertise through independent and collaborative research, problem-solving and analysis with the support of staff. You take responsibility for your own learning and are encouraged to make use of the wide range of available learning resources available.

Overall workload

Your overall workload consists of class contact hours, independent learning and assessment activity.

While your actual contact hours may depend on the optional modules you select, the following information gives an indication of how much time you will need to allocate to different activities at each level of the course.

Year 1 (Level 4): Timetabled teaching and learning activity*

Teaching, learning and assessment: 300 hours
Independent learning: 900 hours

Year 2 (Level 5): Timetabled teaching and learning activity*

Teaching, learning and assessment: 276 hours
Independent learning: 864 hours
Placement learning: 60

Year 3 (Level 6): Timetabled teaching and learning activity*

Teaching, learning and assessment: 276 hours
Independent learning: 924 hours

*Please note these are indicative hours for the course.

Key areas of the student experience include:

  • Opportunities to have work published in the student writing magazine.
  • Students have the chance to attend the Winchester Writers Festival so they can meet authors, publishers and agents who attend

Location

Taught elements of the course take place on campus in Winchester.

Teaching hours

All class based teaching takes places between 9am – 6pm, Monday to Friday during term time. Wednesday afternoons are kept free from timetabled teaching for personal study time and for sports clubs and societies to train, meet and play matches. There may be some occasional learning opportunities (for example, an evening guest lecturer or performance) that take places outside of these hours for which you will be given forewarning.

Assessment

Our validated courses 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.

We ensure 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 can be found  by attending an Open Day or contacting our teaching staff.

Percentage of the course assessed by coursework

The assessment balance between examination and coursework depends to some extent on the optional modules you choose.

The approximate percentage of the course assessed by different assessment modes is as follows:

Year 1 (Level 4)*:

98% coursework
0% written exams
2% practical exams

Year 2 (Level 5)*:

99% coursework
0% written exams
1% practical exams

Year 3 (Level 6)*:

100% coursework
0% written exams
0% practical exams

*Please note these are indicative percentages and modes for the programme.

Feedback

We are committed to providing timely and appropriate feedback to you on your academic progress and achievement in order to enable you to reflect on your progress and plan your academic and skills development effectively. You are also encouraged to seek additional feedback from your course tutors.

Further information

For more information about our regulations for this course, please see our Academic Regulations, Policies and Procedures section.

 

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS

2023 Entry: 104-120 UCAS tariff points

Our offers are typically made using UCAS tariff points to allow you to include a range of level 3 qualifications and as a guide, the requirements for this course are equivalent to:

  • A-Levels: BCC-BBB from 3 A Levels or equivalent grade combinations (e.g. BBB is comparable to ABC in terms of tariff points)
  • BTEC/CTEC: DMM from BTEC or Cambridge Technical (CTEC) qualifications
  • International Baccalaureate: To include a minimum of 2 Higher Level certificates at grade H4
  • T Level: Merit in a T Level

In addition to the above, we accept tariff points achieved for many other qualifications, such as the Access to Higher Education Diploma, Scottish Highers, UAL Diploma/Extended Diploma and WJEC Applied Certificate/Diploma, to name a few. We also accept tariff points from smaller level 3 qualifications, up to a maximum of 32, from qualifications like the Extended Project (EP/EPQ), music or dance qualifications. To find out more about UCAS tariff points, including what your qualifications are worth, please visit UCAS.

In addition to level 3 study, the following GCSE’s are required:

  • GCSEs in Mathematics and English Language at grade 4 or C, or higher. Functional Skills at level 2 is accepted as an alternative, however Key Skills qualifications are not. If you hold another qualification, please get in touch and we will advise further.

If English is not your first language, a formal English language test will most likely be required and you will need to achieve the following:

  • IELTS Academic at 5.5 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in all four components (for year 1 entry)
  • We also accept other English language qualifications, such as IELTS Indicator, Pearson PTE Academic, Cambridge C1 Advanced and TOEFL iBT.

If you will be over the age of 21 years of age at the beginning of your undergraduate study, you will be considered as a mature student. This means our offer may be different and any work or life experiences you have will be considered together with any qualifications you hold. UCAS have further information about studying as a mature student on their website which may be of interest.

Course enquiries and applications

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

International students

If you are living outside of the UK or Europe, you can find out more about how to join this course by emailing our International Recruitment Team at International@winchester.ac.uk or calling +44 (0)1962 827023

Visit us

Explore our campus and find out more about studying at Winchester by visiting us at an Open Day.

Year 1 (Level 4)

Modules Credits

Prose Fiction 1A 15

This module is designed as an introduction for students exploring their creativity through developing their own fictional writing and studying exemplary works in the short form. It will enable students to improve their own creative and critical skills, and to learn how to express observations, experiences and perceptions in the form of prose fiction, whilst at the same time developing evaluative skills. It will focus on key tents of fictional writing through analysis of texts and by associated practical exercises. We will discuss such key topics as point of view, characterisation, dialogue, plot, setting and other aspects of the fiction writer’s craft in relation to students’ own work and the work of published authors. The key skills of researching, drafting, revising and editing will be stressed throughout.

Prose Fiction 1B 15

This module builds on the work of Prose Fiction 1A, broadening the students’ experience of composing their own fictional writing through the close study of more and more varied, formally and stylistically bolder exemplary works in the short form. Their creative and critical skills will be further sharpened, through analysis of texts and associated practical exercises. We will expand the sense of possibilities available to writers in such key areas of choice as point of view, characterisation, dialogue, plot, setting. The key skills of researching, drafting, revising and editing will be stressed throughout.

Scriptwriting 15

In this module students will be introduced to the conventions, forms and techniques of scriptwriting. Students will develop their narrative skills, with particular focus on how film stories are told through scenes and images and transitions suggested to the director by the writer, i.e. by indications of mise-en-scene and montage. Students will develop their skills in the communication of film script narrative though ‘pitch presentations,’ and will practise the writing of outlines and of film script on the page according to the film industry standard. The module will concentrate on fiction film (as opposed to documentary) and will utilise seminars, workshops, and screenings.

Creative Non-fiction 15

This module is designed to enable students to work with non-fictional writings, and to learn how to express experiences and perceptions within some of the key strands of this written form (e.g. the memoir, the themed personal essay, the interview-based portrait of a person or research-based portrait of a place etc.) The module is also intended to develop students’ creative and critical skills in tandem, understanding how to read and interpret writing as well as how to produce it. As such, students will be introduced to a varied range of approaches to non-fictional styles. Most work will be done in workshop groups, graduating to the production of independent pieces of non-fiction.

Poetry Now! 15

This module is designed to enable students to express their own creativity through various poetic strategies, introducing students to a varied range of poetry. Although historical forms and traditions will also be a source of reference there is to be a particular focus on twentieth- and twenty-first century developments, whilst engaging directly with some of the key issues in the production of poetry – including its oral, aural and visual performative aspects. Practical work will be done in workshop groups, graduating to the production of independent poems in different forms.

Persuasive Writing 15

This module is designed as an introduction for students into the various techniques and strategies of rhetorical writing. It will begin by looking at examples of rhetorical writing from past and present, with an intention to examine and analyse how they work and what they are trying to achieve. Students will then explore how best to develop specific pieces of writing that are intended to persuade, cajole, and seduce the reader for particular reasons and in order to achieve specific effects. The intention all the while is for their writing to be professional, polished, and always suitable to the subject matter.

Short-Form Digital Publishing 15

In this module students will look at the global digital publishing world and at social media – at the opportunities and challenges, advantages and disadvantages, which such media present to writers. We will look closely at how online platforms allow writers to publish work, establishing a presence and appealing to different audiences, in a variety of short forms – albeit via writing that must be succinct and precise, edited and refined to required spaces and word-counts. Areas of focus might include the microblogging site Twitter and more expansive blogging platforms such as WordPress, Tumblr, Wix etc. We will look also at where the websites of newspapers and magazines showcase short-form writing such as the capsule review, list, or personal testimony etc. Students will then develop a range of short pieces of their own writing, derived from the same basic idea, each one targeted at a particular platform or outlet for dissemination to a defined, particular readership of said medium.

Optional modules
  • Creativity: Process, Practice and Critical Reflection - 15 credits
  • Value Studies - 15 credits

Year 2 (Level 5)

Modules Credits

Prose Fiction 2A 15

This module is an introduction to studies which will be advanced by Prose Fiction 2B, in which students develop their own short fictional writing while studying exemplary works in the short form, which will be examined across a number of interrelated axes:

  • Time: fostering an awareness of accomplishment in the modern English short story, from the mid-19th century, through modernism, postmodernism and postcolonialism, up to the best writing today
  • Place: the breadth of places globally where work in English has been produced, and the distinctiveness of voices represented therein; as well as the diverse range of life-experience to which a writer can bring their imagination
  • Form: e.g. narrative conventions of beginning, middle and end, and how those elements might be presented (cf. Godard) ‘not necessarily in that order.’ Similarly, experiments in point of view: e.g. narrators who are reliably unreliable or purposely inarticulate, and prose style from the ‘high style’ to the fragmented and discordant.
Prose Fiction 2B 15

This module builds on Prose Fiction 2A in its focus upon students developing their own short fictional writing while studying exemplary works in the short form, which will be examined across a number of interrelated axes:

  • Time: further evidencing how the best writing of today has a clear context in and inheritance from writing of the past
  • Place: further expanding the student’s sense of where outstanding work in English has been produced globally, and what kinds of diverse life-experience can be the grist of fiction
  • Form: further developing the student’s appreciation of how fictional forms and voices can be experimented with.
Creative Non-Fiction 2 15

Building on Creative Non-Fiction, this module will show students why creative non-fiction is a major growth area in contemporary publishing, one that provides writers with lots of potential opportunities to work professionally. A range of exemplary texts will be studied, in familiar forms such as memoir, and additionally in forms such as biography and travel writing. Unconventional and innovative styles of narration will be considered, alongside more standard linear narratives. Students will delve deeper into research methods, how to use sources both private and public, as well as into the challenges and problems of such excavations. Students will then develop their own writing skills in creating and shaping relatable narratives from real-life origins, appreciating also the occasionally blurred lines between fictional and factual modes. Through practical workshops they will develop and refine a piece of creative non-fiction prior to eventual submission.

Optional modules
  • Scriptwriting for Mainstream Television - 15 credits
  • Poetry: Making it New - 15 credits
  • Gothic, Horror and Ghost Stories - 15 credits
  • Middle-Grade & Young Adult (YA) Fiction - 15 credits
  • Composing Song Lyrics - 15 credits
  • Playwriting 1 - 15 credits
  • Interactive & Experimental Fictions - 15 credits
  • Writing & the Environment - 15 credits
  • Fairy Tales, Folklore & Mythology - 15 credits
  • Professional Placement - 15 credits
  • Copywriting - 15 credits
  • Media Writing - 15 credits
  • Volunteering for Creative & Professional Writing - 15 credits
  • Value Studies - 15 credits

Year 3 (Level 6)

Modules Credits

Extended Creative Project 30

The Extended Creative Project consists of:

  • a piece of creative/professional writing of 8500 words (with word count exceptions such as those in a poetry collection to be agreed by supervising tutor)
  • a supporting rationale/contextualisation of 1500 words
  • a supporting bibliography

Study and writing is primarily student-directed, with supervision supplied by tutors teaching/researching in the area of creative writing.

Advanced Fictional Writing 15

This module builds upon Level 5 Prose Fiction 2A/AB by way of a similar focus upon students developing their own short fictional writing in prose, and by close study of exemplary longer works in the novel/novella forms. It will broaden students’ familiarity with some of the boldest stylistic choices and treatments of theme available to writers and will encourage them to experiment with and develop their own fictional voice. The perennial key craft elements of point of view, characterisation, dialogue, plot, setting etc will be highlighted; likewise the key skills of researching, drafting, revising and editing. Attention will be paid to wider debates about issues such as ethics and diversity, and we will also consider nuanced issues of genre definition. Students will additionally be encouraged to think about how writers and publishers market their work, and current professional publication practices.

Optional modules
  • Playwriting 2 - 15 credits
  • Creative Vigilance: Fictions & Metafictions - 15 credits
  • Creative Non-fiction for Children - 15 credits
  • Writing Comics & Graphic Novels - 15 credits
  • Writing for Games - 15 credits
  • Creative Visions - 15 credits
  • Writing Historical Fiction - 15 credits
  • Adapting Crime Fictions - 15 credits
  • Science Fictions & Fantasies - 15 credits
  • Poetry: Writing for Publication - 15 credits
  • Script to Screen - 15 credits
  • Write Yourself Well: Creative Writing as Therapy - 15 credits
  • The Critical Path to Print Publication - 15 credits
  • Digital Authorship - 15 credits
  • Creative Teaching for Creative Writing - 15 credits
  • Business Storytelling - 15 credits
  • Writing for Radio - 15 credits

Please note the modules listed are correct at the time of publishing, for full-time students entering the programme in Year 1. Optional modules are listed where applicable. Please note the University cannot guarantee the availability of all modules listed and modules may be subject to change. For further information please refer to the terms and conditions at www.winchester.ac.uk/termsandconditions.
The University will notify applicants of any changes made to the core modules listed above.

Progression from one level of the programme to the next is subject to meeting the University’s academic regulations.

2022 Course Tuition Fees

 UK / Channel Islands /
Isle of Man / Republic of Ireland 

International

Year 1 £9,250 £14,100
Year 2 £9,250 £14,100
Year 3 £9,250 £14,100
Total £27,750 £42,300
Optional Sandwich Year* £1,385 £1,385
Total with Sandwich Year £29,135 £43,685

If you are a UK student starting your degree in September 2022, the first year will cost you £9,250**. Based on this fee level, the indicative fees for a three-year degree would be £27,750 for UK students.

Remember, you don't have to pay any of this upfront if you are able to get a tuition fee loan from the UK Government to cover the full cost of your fees each year. If finance is a worry for you, we are here to help. Take a look at the range of support we have on offer. This is a great investment you are making in your future, so make sure you know what is on offer to support you.

UK Part-Time fees are calculated on a pro rata basis of the full-time fee for a 120 credit course. The fee for a single credit is £77.08 and a 15 credit module is £1,156. Part-time students can take up to a maximum 90 credits per year, so the maximum fee in a given year will be the government permitted maximum fee of £6,935.

International part-time fees are calculated on a pro rata basis of the full-time fee for a 120 credit course. The fee for a single credit is £117.50 and a 15 credit module is £1,763.

* Please note that not all courses offer an optional sandwich year. To find out whether this course offers a sandwich year, please contact the programme leader for further information.

**The University of Winchester will charge the maximum approved tuition fee per year.

ADDITIONAL COSTS

As one of our students all of your teaching and assessments are included in your tuition fees, including, lectures/guest lectures and tutorials, seminars, laboratory sessions and specialist teaching facilities. You will also have access to a wide range of student support and IT services.

There might be additional costs you may encounter whilst studying. The following highlights the mandatory and optional costs for this course:

Optional

Field trip

In students second year of study, there may be a field trip dependending on module choices. Indicative cost is £20.

Disclosure and Barring Service

A Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) clearance check may be required if you undertake a placement, volunteering, research or other course related activity where you will have contact with children or vulnerable adults. The requirement for a DBS check will be confirmed by staff as part of the process to approve your placement, research or other activity. The indicative cost is £40.

Mandatory

Core texts

Copies of core texts are held within the library and e-books are identified where possible, however often students wish to purchase some books for their own use. It is possible for students to buy second-hand copies. Indicative cost is £160 per academic year.

Printing and Binding

The University is pleased to offer our students a printing allowance of £5 each academic year. This will print around 125 A4 (black and white) pages. If students wish to print more, printer credit can be topped up by the student. The University and Student Union are champions of sustainability and we ask all our students to consider the environmental impact before printing.

SCHOLARSHIPS, BURSARIES AND AWARDS

We have a variety of scholarship and bursaries available to support you financially with the cost of your course. To see if you’re eligible, please see our Scholarships and Awards section.

Key course details

UCAS code
W800
Duration
3 years full-time; 6 years part-time
Typical offer
104-120 points
Location
On campus, Winchester