Course options

There are other course options available which may have a different vacancy status or entry requirements – view the full list of options

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Course summary

Have you always wanted to be a writer? Have you got a story to tell but you don't know how to unlock it? Do you want to know more about the craft of writing? Do you want to learn how to read both as a critic and as a writer? If so, Birkbeck’s BA Creative Writing and English is the ideal degree for you. In the heart of literary London, in a building that was once home to Virginia Woolf and the Bloomsbury Group, you will study with leading academics and celebrated published authors across the fields of fiction, poetry and drama, including playwright David Eldridge (Beginning), screenwriter Daragh Carville (The Bay) and writer and critic Katherine Angel (Tomorrow Sex Will Be Good Again). You will also develop your knowledge and understanding of a wide range of literary writing in English, from earliest times to the present day. This creative writing and English degree culminates in the opportunity to develop both extended creative and critical pieces under the guidance of award-winning writers. If you opt for the Foundation Year route, this will fully prepare you for undergraduate study. It is ideal if you are returning to study after a gap, or if you have not previously studied the relevant subjects, or if you didn't achieve the grades you need for a place on your chosen undergraduate degree. Highlights

  • Birkbeck was ranked 2nd in the UK for its English Language and Literature research in the 2021 Research Excellence Framework.
  • Birkbeck is located in the heart of literary London - in Bloomsbury, WC1 - and writers and academics maintain strong links with publishers and broadcasters. You could be studying in a building that was once home to Virginia Woolf and frequented by members of the Bloomsbury Group - now home to our School of Arts - and be taught by leading novelists, dramatists and artists. The building houses our own creative hub which includes the Peltz Gallery, the Gordon Square Cinema and a theatre and performance space.
  • You will be eligible to submit work to the annual Birkbeck creative writing journal, The Mechanics’ Institute Review.
Careers and employability Graduates can pursue career paths in creative writing, journalism, education or media production. Possible professions include:
  • author
  • journalist
  • higher education lecturer
  • screenwriter.
We offer a comprehensive Careers Service - Birkbeck Futures - your career partner during your time at Birkbeck and beyond. At every stage of your career journey, we empower you to take ownership of your future, helping you to make the connection between your experience, education and future ambitions.

Modules

For information about course structure and the modules you will be studying, please visit Birkbeck’s online prospectus.

Assessment method

Creative writing modules are assessed by 100% coursework. This includes short creative projects, essays, presentations, a writer’s notebook, web publishing, and an extended creative work in a specific genre. An extended writing project forms part of the programme in the final year. English literature modules are assessed by essays, examinations and a range of other exercises, including a project in your final year.


How to apply

Application codes

Please select a course option – you will then see the application code you need to use to apply for the course.

Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Year 1

International applicants

If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests. We also accept other English language tests.

Entry requirements

Qualification 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). FOUNDATION YEAR DEGREES Our 'with Foundation Year' route is designed to give you extra support as it provides you with an additional year (full-time) or two years (part-time) of supported study. This is an ideal route if you are returning to study after a gap, or if you have not previously studied this subject, or if you did not achieve the grades you need for a place on this degree. Once you successfully complete your Foundation Year studies, you will automatically advance onto the main degree.

Additional entry requirements

Other

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


Unistats information

Operated by the Office for Students
69%
Student satisfaction
85%
Employment after 15 months (Most common jobs)
85%
Go onto work and study

The student satisfaction data is from students surveyed during the Covid-19 pandemic. The number of student respondents and response rates can be important in interpreting the data – it is important to note your experience may be different from theirs. This data will be based on the subject area rather than the specific course. Read more about this data on the Discover Uni website.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

England £9250 Year 1
Northern Ireland £9250 Year 1
Scotland £9250 Year 1
Wales £9250 Year 1
International £16020 Year 1

Additional fee information

Students are charged a tuition fee in each year of their programme. Tuition fees for students continuing on their programme in following years may be subject to annual inflationary increases.
Creative Writing and English at Birkbeck, University of London - UCAS