• Status: Fully Approved
  • Start date: October 2017
  • Duration:

    4 years part-time

  • Attendance:

    2 evenings a week

    October to June.

  • Location:

    Central London

Programme overview

The BA Creative Writing is a unique and exciting programme of study that gives you the opportunity to explore a range of disciplines, from prose fiction to poetry, scriptwriting to creative non-fiction.

Under the tutelage of practising published writers, you will not only build an understanding of the craft of writing and hone your authorial technique, you will also learn the vital instinct for reading as a writer. Through practical projects and engagement with visiting professionals, you will broaden your understanding of the many aspects of the writing industry.

You will also complete an extended creative project in a specific genre in your final year.

The degree provides you with a basis of skills necessary to pursue writing as a profession. It also equips you with expertise transferable to many careers in the arts, education, and the media.

To find out more, read our programme handbook.

You will taught by successful, published authors and practitioners, including:

This programme is also available for full-time evening study over 3 years.

    How to apply

    You apply directly to Birkbeck for this course, using the online application link below. Please note that online application will open in October 2016.

    All applicants, whatever their academic background, must submit a sample of 1000 words creative writing (fiction, poetry, drama, or screenwriting).

    Need help with your application? Watch videos featuring our academic experts giving advice on applying to Birkbeck and answering some of the most frequently asked questions.

    Birkbeck offers a range of free face-to-face advice and support to help you make a successful application.

    Birkbeck can give you all of the information and help you need to complete your application form, including our online personal statement tool, which will guide you through every step of writing your personal statement.

    Application deadlines and interviews

    We recommend you apply as early as possible.

    Some applicants may be invited to interview and interviews usually take place April-June and again in September.

    Online application

    Creative Writing (BA): 4-year, part-time (Part-time)

    Why study this course at Birkbeck?

    • Arts and humanities courses at Birkbeck are ranked third best in London and 11th in the UK in the Times Higher Education 2015-16 World University Subject Rankings.
    • A unique multidisciplinary BA, in which you can study the art of writing fiction, poetry, non-fiction, drama, and screenwriting.
    • The programme offers face-to-face evening study. You will be taught by practising, published, award-winning writers with a reputation for excellence in their field.
    • You will have the unique opportunity to develop your skills as a writer while deepening your understanding of the demands and expectations of writing as a career.
    • Offers you the chance to meet and liaise with top-level professionals from the publishing and performance industries.
    • A varied and intensive programme of study in which you are mostly assessed on your creative coursework.
    • You will be taught in small, interactive workshop groups.
    • You will be eligible to submit work to the annual Birkbeck Creative Writing journal, The Mechanics' Institute Review.
    • Read an account of how our students created the most recent issue of The Mechanics' Institute Review.
    • We offer a range of world-class research resources.

    Course structure

    You must complete modules worth a total of 360 credits at Levels 4, 5 and 6. Typically, this takes the form of 90 credits per year. In addition to core and compulsory modules, you also choose option modules and complete an extended piece of writing.

    In Year 1, you take 5 core modules.

    In Year 2, you take 3 core modules and choose 1 option module.

    In Year 3, you take 3 compulsory modules, including a School of Arts Elective, and choose 1 option module.

    In Year 4, you take 3 core modules: the publishing project, an independent reading portfolio and an extended writing project. You also choose 1 option module.

    To find out more, read our programme handbook.

    Year 1 core modules

    Year 2 core modules

    Year 2 option modules

    Year 3 compulsory modules

    Year 3 option modules

    Year 4 core modules

    Year 4 option modules

    Entry requirements

    We welcome applicants without traditional entry qualifications as we base decisions on our own assessment of qualifications, knowledge and previous work experience. We may waive formal entry requirements based on judgement of academic potential.

    All applicants, whatever their academic background, must submit a sample of 1000 words of creative writing (fiction, poetry, drama, or screenwriting).

    Alternative entry routes

    Access to Higher Education Diploma with a minimum of 15 credits achieved at Merit or Distinction in the subject area, although we may waive these formal entry requirements and make our own assessment based on the creative writing sample.

    International entry requirements

    If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, the requirement for this programme is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 7.0, with not less than 6.5 in each of the sub-tests.

    If you don’t meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses, foundation programmes and language support services to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

    Visit the International section of our website to find out more about our English language entry requirements and relevant requirements by country.

    Fees (2016/7)

    Part-time home/EU students: £ 6750 pa
    Part-time overseas students: £ 9750 pa
    Birkbeck reserves the right to increase tuition fees for part-time UK and EU students up to £6935 per year from September 2017, subject to confirmation of Government regulations.

    Payment and Fees Discounts

    Flexible finance: pay your fees in monthly instalments at no extra cost. Enrol early to spread your costs and reduce your monthly payments.

    Fees discount: Birkbeck offers a generous package of fee reductions and cash bursaries for new undergraduates and Certificate of Higher Education students. Also, if you are a member of a union that is recognised by the Trades Union Congress (TUC), you may apply for a 10% discount off your tuition fees.

    Funding and Financial Support

    With a student loan, you will pay nothing upfront. Find out about loans, cash bursaries and fee reductions and check if you are eligible.

    Careers and employability

    Graduates can pursue careers in creative writing, journalism, education or media production. This degree may also be useful in becoming an author, journalist, higher education lecturer or screenwriter.

    Find out more about these professions.

    We offer a comprehensive Careers and Employability Service to help you advance your career, while our in-house, professional recruitment consultancy, Birkbeck Talent, works with London’s top employers to help you gain work experience that fits in with your evening studies.

    Find out more about the destinations of graduates in this subject.

    Birkbeck creative writing graduates include:

        Teaching and assessment

        Teaching

        Teaching is varied and interactive and takes the form of lecturer-led sessions on elements of craft, workshopping of students' creative work, class and home exercises, student readings, and individual and group work.

        Assessment

        Assessment is 100% coursework, which may include short creative projects, essays, presentations, a writer's notebook, web publishing and an extended creative work in a specific genre. The compulsory School of Arts elective may include an examination or another form of assessment.

        A creative dissertation is also a compulsory requirement of the programme in your final year.

        Our research

        Birkbeck is one of the world’s leading research-intensive institutions. Our cutting-edge scholarship informs public policy, achieves scientific advances, supports the economy, promotes culture and the arts, and makes a positive difference to society.

        Birkbeck’s research excellence was confirmed in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, which placed Birkbeck 30th in the UK for research, with 73% of our research rated world-leading or internationally excellent.

        In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), English Language and Literature at Birkbeck achieved 100% for a research environment conducive to producing research of the highest quality, while 91% of eligible staff submitted research, of which 75% was recognised as world-leading or internationally excellent.

        Read about Birkbeck research that enriches our experience and understanding of our shared history, culture and art.

        Further study opportunities

        You can go on to study our MA Creative Writing.

        Not ready to do a degree?

        We can support you to get on to the undergraduate course that’s right for you.

        If you are not ready to study an undergraduate degree, check out our Certificates of Higher Education and short courses for another way into study.

        Key Information Set