Admission to the course is based on talent, potential and commitment. This is assessed through your application form, a sample of your written work (c. 2000 words of prose, or equivalent in script or poetry), and usually an interview, either in person or over the telephone.
We believe that the study of writing has an inherent personal and cultural value – but we also support those who wish to pursue a professional career as a writer, by preparing our students for the literary marketplace. The School of English is very active in research, with excellent 2008 RAE results. MPhil and PhD opportunities may be available.
The course is modular in structure. Full-time students would study two modules in each of the two semesters, and receive individual tuition for their Final Project in the second (final) semester. Part-time students study one module each semester (but likewise receive tuition for the Final Project in their final semester). Students hand in their Final Project the following September, allowing plenty of writing-up time. Each of our modules includes a reflective component in which students are encouraged to articulate and explore their processes and techniques. Our usual teaching day – upon which we concentrate our seminars – is a Wednesday.
There are two compulsory elements of the MA course: Reading into Writing and the Final Project. In addition, students must take any three out of five genre modules, choosing from Fiction, Creative Non-fiction, Screenwriting, Scripting and Staging, and 21st-Century Poetry. Students must have undertaken one genre module before taking Reading into Writing. The Final Project involves an extended piece of work in the student’s choice of genre, together with the usual reflective commentary and an account of at least two ways in which they have developed their writing life beyond the university course.
Assessment for each module is by portfolio, the full contents of which will vary according to the area of study, but each of which will centre upon creative writing and reflective practice.
This school offers programs in: