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The University of Southampton
EnglishPart of HumanitiesPostgraduate study

W800 MA Creative Writing (1 year)

The Creative Writing MA course at Southampton challenges you to cross boundaries. While offering expertise in five areas of contemporary writing – fiction, scriptwriting, creative non-fiction, writing for young people and poetry – we also encourage students to tap into the university’s rich resources in theatre, music, art, and the sciences.

Creative Writing modules are taught by practicing writers, and focus on your own creative writing while engaging in close study of contemporary work. Faculty and fellow students at Southampton come from all over the world – including India, Columbia, Pakistan, Iceland, the USA, Nigeria, and of course the UK – bringing a wide range of experiences and writing traditions, and giving our programmes an international focus. Students take part in a lively programme of literary events, including our own “Writers in Conversation” held at Nuffield Theatre, on a campus that includes a professional art gallery, a concert hall, and a world-renowned theatre. Our programme offers to opportunity to specialise in a particular area, and to work in a friendly academic environment.

All MA Creative Writing students attend the Creative Skills workshop, a weekly forum focused solely on your own writing. You will then also choose from five specialist fields of creative writing, as well as having the option of taking a module from other Humanities courses including MA English and MA Film.

View the programme specification for this course for 2018/19 entrants

View the programme specification for this course for 2019/20 entrants

To Apply

To apply for a postgraduate course please visit the How to Apply page or click on the apply button below.

Application process and required supporting documents

  • University online application including a personal statement
  • Transcript
  • 2 references
  • Sample of written work - approximately 2,500 words
  • English language (if relevant)

If you have a question or would like further information, contact our admissions team:
Tel: +44 (0)23 8059 8062
Email: pgafh@southampton.ac.uk

Programme Structure

This programme is divided into 180 credits. 105 credits are obtained from taught modules with the remaining 75 credits relating to the dissertation.

Key Facts

Duration: 1 year (full-time); 2 years (part-time)

Start date: September

Closing date: 1st September (an application decision cannot be guaranteed in time unless a complete application is received by this date - students requiring a visa to study should also allow extra time for visa processes)

Dissertation Length: 20,000

International students

The Southampton pre-Masters can be taken if you have qualifications or grades that do not meet University of Southampton direct entry criteria but meet the minimum entry criteria for the pre-Masters further details). You will be guaranteed a place on your chosen masters degree programme subject to successfully completing the pre-Masters. Visit our pre-Masters Programme to find out more about these degree programmes.

Photo of Tig Wallace
I’ve been working for Penguin Books since May 2013, as Editorial Assistant for Puffin Fiction. I’m thrilled to be in a job that directly uses the skills I learnt on my degree, from editing and writing to time management and juggling lots of things at once.
Tig WallaceBA English, MA Creative Writing

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Typical entry requirements

Degree

First- or upper second-class honours degree or an equivalent standard in other qualifications approved by the University in English literature or a cognate discipline

English Language

IELTS 7.0 overall, with minimum of 7.0 in writing, 6.5 in reading, listening and speaking, or an equivalent standard in other qualifications approved by the University

Selection process

Intake: 25

Average applications per place: 3

Academic entry requirements: First or upper second class honours degree, or an equivalent standard in other qualifications approved by the University in English literature or a cognate discipline.

English language entry requirements:   IELTS 7.0 overall, with minimum of 7.0 in writing, 6.5 in reading, listening & speaking, or an equivalent standard in other qualifications approved by the University.

Selection process: Online application

Interview may be required on a case by case basis to assess suitability of course

This page contains specific entry requirements for this course. Find out about equivalent entry requirements and qualifications for your country.

Typical course content

The programme is designed to equip you with a range of practical and intellectual skills to enable you to be a better creative writer. Our programme is suitable for students who wish to develop their skills as a creative writer either for their own satisfaction or in order to pursue a career that involves writing, and also for those who wish to progress to doctorate-level creative writing. It is based around a core workshop and places special emphasis on learning from international writing and the new literatures in English, and on new developments in writing in the areas of performance and poetics.

Year 1

Semester One
Core [?]
A core module is a module which must be taken and passed.
ENGL6136Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
60
ENGL6137Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
60
Optional
ENGL6116Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
15
ENGL6117Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
15
ENGL6126Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
15
ENGL6128Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
15
ENGL6130Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
30
ENGL6131Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
30
ENGL6134Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
30
ENGL6138Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
30
HUMA6017Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
15
ENGL6132Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
30
Semester Two
Core [?]
A core module is a module which must be taken and passed.
ENGL6136Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
60
ENGL6137Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
60
Optional
ENGL6115Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
15
ENGL6127Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
15
ENGL6129Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
15
HUMA6015Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
15
ENGL6141Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
15
ENGL6113Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
15
ENGL6133Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
15
ENGL6139Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
30
FILM6044Credit[?]
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
15

Year 2

Please note: This specification provides a concise summary of the main features of the programme and the learning outcomes that a typical student might reasonably be expected to achieve and demonstrate if s/he takes full advantage of the learning opportunities that are provided. More detailed information can be found in the programme handbook (or other appropriate guide or website).

Tuition fees

List of tuition fees for this course and it's variations
Course TitleAwardYear of entryMode of studyUK/EUInternational
Creative WritingMA 2019Full-time£9,250£18,104
Creative WritingMA 2019Part-time£4,625£9,052
View the full list of course feesExplore funding opportunities

Costs associated with this course

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In addition to this, students registered for this programme typically also have to pay for:

List of additional costs for this course
TypeDescriptionCost
Printing and copyingWhere possible, coursework such as essays, projects and dissertations is likely to be submitted on line. However, there are some items where it is not possible to submit on line and students will be asked to provide a printed copy. The University printing costs are currently: A4 - 5p per side (black and white) or 25p per side (colour) A3 - 10p per side (black and white) or 50p per side (colour). Please note: Paper sizes not recognised by the printing devices will prompt you to select the size and then charge a minimum of 50p per black and white copy and a maximum of £1 per colour copy. You can pay for your printing by using the money loaders or by using print copy payment service by going to www.printcopypayments.soton.ac.uk Please remember that we are unable to refund any credit that has not been used by the end of your course, so please consider this when topping up your printing/copy account. You will be given a printing allowance of £1 per 7.5 ECTS FREN towards the costs of printing lecture handouts and/or practical scripts. The University Print Centre also offers a printing and copying service as well as a dissertation/binding service. Current printing and copying costs can be found here: https://www.southampton.ac.uk/printcentre/copyrooms/service.page They also provide a large format printing service, e.g. Academic posters. Details of current costs can be found here: https://www.southampton.ac.uk/printcentre/exhibition/academicposters.page £0.05-1.00

There will also be further costs for the following, not purchasable from the University:

TypeDescription
StationeryYou will be expected to provide your own day-to-day stationery items, e.g. pens, pencils, notebooks, etc. Any specialist stationery items will be specified under the Additional Costs tab of the relevant module profile.
BooksWhere a module specifies core texts these should generally be available on the reserve list in the library. However due to demand, students may prefer to buy their own copies. These can be purchased from any source. Some modules suggest reading texts as optional background reading. The library may hold copies of such texts, or alternatively you may wish to purchase your own copies. Although not essential reading, you may benefit from the additional reading materials for the module.
EquipmentLaboratory equipment and materials: All laboratory equipment and materials are provided.
EquipmentIT: Computer discs or USB drives Students are expected to provide their own portable data storage device.
EquipmentIT: Software licenses All software is provided.
EquipmentIT: Hardware It is advisable that students provide their own laptop or personal computer, although shared facilities are available across the University campus.

In some cases you'll be able to choose modules (which may have different costs associated with that module) which will change the overall cost of a programme to you. Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at www.calendar.soton.ac.uk.

Our aim is to provide you with a supportive academic context in which to learn, grow and develop your writing skills. Our programme offers the chance to specialize in what interests you, to work in a friendly academic environment with other student writers, and to benefit from expert tuition and a dynamic schedule of visiting speakers which includes established writers, editors, publishers and agents. You will also choose from a variety of stimulating MA modules offered by the School of Humanities which will help you to think critically and in depth about what you do.

What will you learn?

You may be surprised by what you find out about yourself during this course. Experience has shown that students often come to us thinking they want to write prose and end up writing poetry, or vice versa, or discover a gift for scriptwriting or children's literature they never thought they had. This course will certainly challenge your preconceptions about yourself, so you should come prepared with an open mind. We don't promise to get you published outside of our own end-of-year anthology, but we do anticipate that by the end of the course you will have learned enough to make informed decisions about the directions your writing career might take next. 

Teaching is conducted in small groups with one or more writing tutors guiding students through the implications and potentials of their own writing paths.

As well as the taught aspects of the course, you will have the opportunity to hear and meet invited writers and poets, publish your own anthology, organise your own reading series to promote your work, and initiate new projects and performances. You will be encouraged to use your creative initiative to the maximum and push literary and disciplinary boundaries as actively as possible both inside and outside the University.

Assessment

You will be assessed by traditional means, such as essays, but, depending on the modules you choose, you will also be asked to work in groups and teams to make presentations. You will also manage a large independent research project: the masters dissertation. The 20,000 word dissertation is a core element in establishing the acquisition of appropriate skills and the application of research techniques. Your supervisors will be available to provide regular and supportive advice, guidance and feedback on your progress.

Professional development

A masters degree will enable you to further develop the key skills employers seek such as: time management; problem solving; team work; deadline and project management; cultural awareness; working independently; using your initiative; relationship-building; critical thinking and research analysis. Above all, you will learn to communicate your ideas and enthusiasm to a wide range of audiences.

Study locations

Avenue campus

Avenue campus

Only a few minutes walk from Highfield Campus, Avenue provides a purpo...Find out more

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