Department of English Language and Literature, The University of Chicago

Creative Writing


Two programs within the umbrella of the Department of English focus on particular aspects or genres of literary endeavor.

The purpose of the Creative Writing program is to give students a rigorous background in the fundamentals of creative work by providing them with the opportunity to study with established poets and prose writers. The program is committed to interdisciplinary work while also teaching the elements of creative writing that underlie all genres. Creative Writing sponsors events , workshops , and lectures and also schedules many undergraduate and graduate classes in writing. Visiting writers each quarter provide a dynamic component to the curriculum, with authors ranging from George Saunders to Susan Howe. English faculty member John Wilkinson is currently the Director of the Program in Creative Writing and the Program in Poetry & Poetics, and several English faculty members, including Rachel Cohen, Edgar Garcia, Srikanth Reddy, Jennifer Scappettone, and Vu Tran, regularly teach both creative and critical classes.

Minor in English and Creative Writing

Undergraduate students who are not majoring in English may enter a minor program in English and Creative Writing. These students should declare their intention to enter the minor program by the end of Spring Quarter of their third year. Students choose courses in consultation with the Program Manager in Creative Writing and must submit a minor program consent form to their College Adviser in order to declare the minor. Students completing this minor must follow all relevant admission procedures described in the  Creative Writing  website. Courses in the minor may not be double counted with the student's major(s) or with other minors and may not be counted toward general education requirements. Courses in the minor must be taken for quality letter grades, and all of the requirements for the minor must be met by registering for courses bearing University of Chicago course numbers.

Requirements for the minor program:

There is no minor solely in English. The Minor in English and Creative Writing for Non-English Majors is the only minor available through the Department of English.

Poetry and Poetics

This program aims to coordinate the University's various curricular approaches to the creative and critical practice of poetics. The Program supports the History and Forms of Lyric series, an ongoing series of lectures by prominent scholars, and a graduate workshop that focuses on work in progressfrom students, faculty, and visitors. The discussions enabled by the Program are intended to help students at all levels to pursue work that crosses disciplines and discourses. The Program also supports collaboration among faculty members in the form, forexample, of team-taught courses, conferences, and lectures. The Program is overseen by an ad-hoc committee of faculty from various departments, including the Department of English.

The Program in Poetry and Poetics

Affiliated Departments

The University of Chicago in general, and the Department of English in particular, are known for the interdisciplinary and theoretically driven work of their faculty and students. Many English faculty members have joint appointment in other programs at the University, including Comparative Literature, Cinema and Media Studies, Art History, Theater and Performance Studies (TAPS), and the Divinity School, among others. Interdisciplinary work is encouraged in the Department of English--both graduate and undergraduate students take classes in a variety of University departments and programs. Students in these programs, in turn, enliven English classes with their perspectives. Listed below are links to some of the departments with which the Department of English works closely.

English Language, Literature and Creative Writing

Language and literature are important for a person in order to exchange the knowledge and ideas with the public and use the experience of generations effectively. Therefore, the subject of English Language, Literature and Creative Writing can be discussed as an important step for the A-Level learners who need to learn the English language and literature at the new stage of their academic progress. Focusing on this subject, a person learns how to use the language in order to convey the meaning in a profound manner; how to use the literature heritage of generations; and how to use the literature forms in order to express opinions and emotions in a thoughtful manner (Harris, Graham & Mason 2006, p. 295; Kaufman & Kaufman 2009, p. 24). From this point, the subject of English Language, Literature and Creative Writing provides a person with many skills necessary to communicate and discuss ideas; evaluate and analyse information; think critically and creatively; express ideas orally and in a written form; share the opinion and create the meaning (Willett, Robinson & Marsh 2008, p. 54). These skills are essential for the practice in writing, and they are important to be discussed because according to Magnifico, “Writing has become central in the workplace, in education, and to our personal lives” (Magnifico 2010, p. 167). Choosing this subject, a person can not only develop the knowledge of the English language and literature but also learn how to examine literary works, write texts, create powerful messages and meaning, use the broad vocabulary, and understand the variety of contexts in which the language exists and develops.

Thus, the reason to choose English Language, Literature and Creative Writing is based on the person’s desire to discuss the literary works at a professional level and to practice in creative writing with the focus on the future career. Furthermore, it is also possible to speak about the overall significance of the subject for developing the individual’s outlook as an important reason to choose the discussed subject. Many persons study the English language and literature without focusing on the theoretical background and without emphasising the opportunities of studying these aspects for further creative writing (Donnelly & Harper 2012, p. 89). In this context, it is important to use a chance for developing the world view and skills in presenting the personal vision in the attractive written form that is accurate and rather persuasive.

The reason to choose the subject is also connected with the knowledge acquired during the study. The subject of English Language, Literature and Creative Writing deal with the complex knowledge, and it is important to distinguish between the knowledge necessary to succeed in the study of English Language, Literature and Creative Writing and the knowledge obtained as a result of the learning process. The knowledge of the English language provides a person with a range of opportunities to express oneself, to accept and share the ideas of other people, to communicate, and to feel confident not only in the local community but also in the world community because English is the main source of communication for millions of people (Willett, Robinson & Marsh 2008, p. 90). Therefore, in order to be able to express one’s ideas and thoughts effectively, it is necessary to study the available means and forms of expression in the English language and literature. In this case, skills not only in critical thinking but also in creative writing are necessary to expand the boundaries of the person’s perception and expression. From this point, the chosen subject deals with the aspects of the English language in terms of its vocabulary and structure as well as its role for communication and for articulating the new knowledge and ideas (Brill 2004, p. 83). Furthermore, studying this subject, a person receives the great knowledge of the literature development; begins to understand how literature can enrich the life with the focus on the previous experience; focuses on literature as the way to deepen the understanding of the society; and chooses the literary forms as the means to communicate the message (Cao 2014, p. 26; Garrett-Petts 2013, p. 59). In addition, the subject is also focused on creative writing, and it is a wide area for a person in order to develop the knowledge of writing the literary work, develop imagination, and see the world from the other perspective.

From this point, the wide areas of knowledge become available for a person who focuses on studying English Language, Literature and Creative Writing. The profound knowledge of the language seems to be composed of such elements as the knowledge of the spoken word, written word, and forms to express the personal vision of the world. In this context, the study of English Language, Literature and Creative Writing is an important step to gain the knowledge of how to use the English language effectively in order to understand the cultural and historical literary heritage and convey ideas and share opinions in everyday life, in the professional life, and as an aspect of the creative writing process (Brill 2004, p. 83; Woolf 2005, p. 87). However, in order to succeed in the study of the A Level subject, it is important to gain some knowledge in such areas as written communication; composition of an argument; and understanding of literary and cultural contexts.

Furthermore, the subject of English Language, Literature and Creative Writing also develop a range of skills necessary for a person who plans to utilise the profound knowledge of the English language and literature in the everyday and professional life. While focusing on the aspect of the English language, it is possible to state that the subject develops skills in understanding and using English grammar, style, and vocabulary. Language is a complex system, and a person should have developed skills in using this system in order to participate in the academic discourse, convey ideas, and communicate effectively (Kaufman & Kaufman 2009, p. 34; Woolf 2005, p. 89). The next group of skills developed during the study of the subject skills in analytical thinking and critical writing. While reading literature, a person develops the emotional self, and while studying literature, a person develops intellectual potential. This subject helps a person to critically examine the literary works, to focus on different forms of literature, to develop the independent judgement, to analyse the theoretical aspects of the literature, and to focus on different perspectives in the analysis of the literary work (Garrett-Petts 2013, p. 101). In addition, the subject is also important to develop a person’s skills in creative writing as the practical use of principles studied with the focus on the English language and literature. Skills in experimentation with the style, form, and tone are important not only for the persons who plan to become professional writers but also for those people who understand the importance of developing skills in creative thinking.

Nevertheless, the success in studying English Language, Literature and Creative Writing also depend on the level of the basic skills’ development. These skills are associated with proficiency in reading, writing, and analysing texts. Thus, it is important for a learner to be able to work with different types of texts, organise ideas in texts, and understand the role of the language in communication. The challenging aspect of the subject is the focus on creative writing, and a learner should have the developed basic language skills in order to broaden the knowledge and proficiency regarding composing and writing (Cao 2014, p. 67). In spite of the fact that certain skills are required in order to succeed in English Language, Literature and Creative Writing, the obtained skills are extremely important for developing the person’s potential in viewing the language as the means to reflect the world phenomenon, use the generations’ experience, and present the personal visions in the form of poems, short stories, or novels.

When all the important skills in understanding literature and creative writing are developed, it is time to think about the career. The future career is one of the most controversial questions associated with the discussing the profits of studying such a subject as English Language, Literature and Creative Writing. On the one hand, those persons who choose to study the English language and literature along with creative writing are discussed as preparing themselves for the career of the professional writer, linguist, or philologist (Donnelly & Harper, 2012, p. 57). On the other hand, such a view is rather limited, and there are many areas where learners of the discussed subject can demonstrate their proficiency and receive the important experience. The knowledge received as a result of studying English Language, Literature and Creative Writing is important in such spheres as journalism, publishing, public relations, and marketing. Thus, having succeeded in English Language, Literature and Creative Writing, a person is able to write different types of texts and articles, to analyse and evaluate the texts written by different authors, to create attractive and effective messages and to communicate in a written form. The advantages of English Language, Literature and Creative Writing are in the fact that a leaner improves not only the theoretical knowledge in the field, but he also develops practical skills and abilities.

It is almost impossible to state that the career opportunities for the person interested in languages, literature, and writing are limited by the composition of the literary texts that later should be found on the bookshelves. The opportunities to use the profound knowledge of the English language and literature are numerous because language and literature are the fundaments of the social and cultural communication and interactions. From this point, a person can go far beyond using his or her knowledge only in the sphere of journalism, public relations, and marketing. The chosen subject helps the learner to understand the idea that it is possible to demonstrate creativity not only while writing large literary texts but also while writing different advertisements, analysing literary works, editing, and copywriting. Specialists in writing effective texts in different contexts and from various perspectives are required in different areas of the modern developed business world. According to Magnifico, “writing skills are becoming more vital than ever in the technology-rich environments that have begun to infuse all spheres of our lives” (Magnifico 2010, p. 167). As a result, the person’s ability to write creatively, interestingly, and attractively is important in the modern social world, and developed skills in these sphere can become essential for building an impressing career.

The study of English Language, Literature and Creative Writing can become a real challenge for a learner because of the variety of linguistic, literary, and cultural concepts that need to be understood and applied to practice. Therefore, this subject can be chosen by the A-Level learners who are ready not only to open the rich world of literature but also become the part of this world while writing the first short stories, poems, or short plays. The acquired knowledge is important to improve communication, enhance the personal vision and appreciation of literary works, and to practice in writing following the patterns in many literary genres. From this point, the study of English Language, Literature and Creative Writing is a significant step on the path to understanding the literature referring to many thematic perspectives and to creating the individual literary work. When the development of skills in writing is emphasised in the course, a learner becomes encouraged to create something new and unique. These skills are important for a person to develop the individual voice and tone of the creative and academic writer. The next stage is the progress in the career of an editor, marketer, or a specialist in public relations. The learners also become equipped to start as researchers, critics, or writers who have a profound knowledge of language structure, text planning and organisation, literary analysis, and creative writing. English Language, Literature and Creative Writing are chosen by persons who focus on the analytic vision of literature and on the creative approach to writing.

Reference List

Brill, F 2004, ‘Thinking outside the box: imagination and empathy beyond story writing’, Literacy , vol. 38, no. 2, pp. 83–89.

Cao, S 2014, The variation theory of comparative literature , Springer Science & Business Media, Boston.

Donnelly, D & Harper, G 2012, Key issues in creative writing , Multilingual Matters, London.

Garrett-Petts, W 2013, Writing about literature: a guide for the student critic , Broadview Press, New York.

Harris, K, Graham, S & Mason, L 2006, ‘Improving the writing, knowledge, and motivation of struggling young writers: effects of self-regulated strategy development with and without peer support’, American Educational Research Journal , vol. 43, no. 1, pp. 295–340.

Kaufman, S & Kaufman, J 2009, The psychology of creative writing , Cambridge University Press, New York.

Magnifico, A 2010, ‘Writing for whom? Cognition, motivation, and a writer’s audience’, Educational Psychologist , vol. 45, no. 3, pp. 167–184.

Willett, R, Robinson, M & Marsh, J 2008, Play, creativity and digital cultures , Routledge, London.

Woolf, J 2005, Writing about literature: essay and translation skills for university students of English and foreign literature , Psychology Press, London.

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Is english literature or language better for creative writing?

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English Literature and Creative Writing (BA)

Subject area: english language and literature.

Why study this course

English Literature at Cardiff University

Spend a semester abroad

Adventure into a new culture; open your mind to new ideas and experiences in life and learning.

Tailored to you

With primarily optional modules you have freedom to choose a personalised degree.

Industry experience

Gain skills, confidence and connections through a variety of literary and cultural internships.

Learn from the best

Benefit from research-led content; learn from world-renowned literary scholars and authors.

Our BA English Literature and Creative Writing programme allows you to study all periods of literature in English, from the Anglo-Saxon period to the twenty-first century, together with training in Creative Writing. We cover all genres, from contemporary and historical fiction to poetry, drama, film and music.

The Creative Writing element of the programme provides you with the opportunity to progress from introductory modules on reading and writing creatively to specialised work within specific forms and genres such as fiction, poetry, creative non-fiction and scriptwriting, culminating in the production of an extended collection of creative work.

Throughout the programme you will be encouraged to stretch yourself intellectually and imaginatively by exploring literature as both a practitioner and a critic. Our approach will help you develop an understanding of the creative process, as well as enhancing your knowledge of genre, literary history, and the varied and dynamic academic field which is English Literature.

You will focus on becoming a careful, attentive, and informed reader and writer, sensitive to the nuances of language and style and able to produce polished and sophisticated creative work, as well as to articulate your responses to texts in writing which is precise, stylish, and effective. 

You join a friendly and supportive environment with an international reputation for both teaching and research. Our talented Creative Writing team regularly scoop national and international awards, and collectively share experience in theatre, television and film. Our public platforms Cardiff BookTalk and Cardiff Poetry Experiment are popular and hugely engaging.

is creative writing english lit or language

Entry requirements

We accept a combination of A-levels and other qualifications, as well as equivalent international qualifications subject to entry requirements. Typical offers are as follows:

ABB-BBB. Must include Creative Writing, English Language and Literature, or English Literature.

Extended/International Project Qualification: Applicants with grade A in the EPQ/IPQ will typically receive an offer one grade lower than the standard offer. Please note that any subject specific requirements must still be met.

Our grade range covers our standard offer and contextual offer. We carefully consider the circumstances in which you've been studying (your contextual data) upon application.

Learn about eligible courses and how contextual data is applied.

International Baccalaureate

32-31 overall or 665 in 3 HL subjects. Must include grade 6 in HL English Language and Literature, English Literature, or English Literature and Performance.

Baccalaureate Wales

From September 2023, there will be a new qualification called the Advanced Skills Baccalaureate Wales (level 3). This qualification will replace the Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate (Welsh Baccalaureate). The qualification will continue to be accepted in lieu of one A-Level (at the grades listed above), excluding any specified subjects.

Chevron right Other essential requirements

You must have or be working towards: - English language or Welsh language at GCSE grade C/4 or an equivalent (such as A-levels). If you require a Student visa, you must ensure your language qualification complies with UKVI requirements. We do not accept Critical Thinking, General Studies, Citizenship Studies, or other similar equivalent subjects. We will accept a combination of BTEC subjects, A-levels, and other qualifications, subject to the course specific grade and subject requirements.

Chevron right English language requirements

Grade C or grade 4 in GCSE English Language.

IELTS (academic)

At least 6.5 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each subskill.

At least 90 overall with minimum scores of 17 for writing, 17 for listening, 18 for reading and 20 for speaking.

PTE Academic

At least 62 overall with a minimum of 59 in all communicative skills.

Trinity ISE II/III

II: at least two Distinctions and two Merits. III: at least a Pass in all components.

Other accepted qualifications

Please visit our English Language requirements page for more information on our other accepted language qualifications .

Chevron right Criminal convictions

You are not required to complete a DBS (Disclosure Barring Service) check or provide a Certificate of Good Conduct to study this course.

If you are currently subject to any licence condition or monitoring restriction that could affect your ability to successfully complete your studies, you will be required to disclose your criminal record. Conditions include, but are not limited to:

Other qualifications from inside the UK

DD-DM in a BTEC Diploma in Humanities and Social Science subjects, and grade B in A-level Creative Writing, English Language and Literature, or English Literature.

Acceptance of T Levels for this programme will be considered on a case-by-case basis by the Academic School. Consideration will be given to the T Level grade/subject and grades/subjects achieved at GCSE/Level 2.

Qualifications from outside the UK

Please see our admissions policies for more information about the application process.

Tuition fees for 2023 entry

Your tuition fees and how you pay them will depend on your fee status. Your fee status could be home, island or overseas.

Learn how we decide your fee status

Fees for home status

Students from the eu, eea and switzerland.

If you are an EU, EEA or Swiss national, your tuition fees for 2023/24 be in line with the overseas fees for international students, unless you qualify for home fee status. UKCISA have provided information about Brexit and tuition fees .

Fees for island status

Learn more about the undergraduate fees for students from the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man .

Fees for overseas status

Learn more about our tuition fees

Financial support

Financial support may be available to individuals who meet certain criteria. For more information visit our funding section. Please note that these sources of financial support are limited and therefore not everyone who meets the criteria are guaranteed to receive the support.

Additional costs


We have a range of residences to suit your needs and budget. Find out more on our accommodation pages .

Living costs

We're based in one of the UK's most affordable cities. Find out more about living costs in Cardiff .

Course structure

This is a full-time undergraduate degree that takes three years to complete. You will study modules worth a total of 360 credits split evenly over the three years.

You must pass each academic year before proceeding to the next stage of your studies.

The modules shown are an example of the typical curriculum and will be reviewed prior to the 2023/2024 academic year. The final modules will be published by September 2023.

Year one is a foundation year, designed to equip you with the skills and practice for advanced study and to give you an overview that will enable you to make informed choices from the modules available in years two and three while laying down the foundations of your engagement with Creative Writing.

You will take three core modules and three optional modules. These will provide you with a solid base for the next two years of your degree by offering the opportunity to develop your critical and creative skills through reading, analysing and producing imaginative work across a wide array of different genres.

In year two you select from a range of period-, genre- or theme-based modules in which you will build on the foundation year, reading a selection of texts in their historical and cultural contexts.

You also continue your studies of Creative Writing within a variety of forms and genres, including fiction, poetry and scriptwriting.

In your final year you will choose from a range of more specialised modules, allowing you to pursue interests developed in the previous two years. You will engage with current issues in research and scholarship, enabling you further to develop analytical and presentation skills that employers will value, as well as equipping you for postgraduate study.

You also undertake a portfolio dissertation in Creative Writing that complements your work in the English Literature modules and allows you to produce an extended piece of writing in a specialist genre. The dissertation also allows you to develop research and project management skills.

The University is committed to providing a wide range of module options where possible, but please be aware that whilst every effort is made to offer choice this may be limited in certain circumstances. This is due to the fact that some modules have limited numbers of places available, which are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, while others have minimum student numbers required before they will run, to ensure that an appropriate quality of education can be delivered; some modules require students to have already taken particular subjects, and others are core or required on the programme you are taking. Modules may also be limited due to timetable clashes, and although the University works to minimise disruption to choice, we advise you to seek advice from the relevant School on the module choices available.

Module information

Learning and assessment

You will be taught through a combination of lectures and seminars, with all modules including seminar or small-group teaching. In Creative Writing the small-group teaching takes the form of workshops based on peer review of student writing.

Teaching stresses the importance of the way texts interact with their contexts, and each module is designed to encourage you to focus on a number of specific texts and to prepare carefully a considered answer to specific topics dealt with in the module, while the workshops in Creative Writing ask you to engage with the critical creative process through evaluative discussion of peer writing.

Learning activities will vary from module to module as appropriate, but may include such activities as: interactive lectures, seminar discussions of prepared texts/topics, student individual or group presentations, small-group work within seminars, peer review in workshops, translation classes, formative writing exercises, journal entries, and film viewings.

You are expected to do the reading and other relevant preparation to enable you to participate fully in these activities. You are encouraged to explore the resources of the library as appropriate. For the workshops, peer work is previously circulated and you are expected to bring prepared comments as part of the exchange of ideas informing the sessions.

How will I be supported?

You will be assigned a personal tutor and will meet him/her for regular academic progress meetings (one per semester). There is a form to fill in before each Academic Progress meeting which is designed to help you reflect on the written feedback and the reasons for the marks you have received from the previous round of assessment. You will discuss this feedback and your reflections on it with your personal tutor.

In addition, all staff have weekly office hours during teaching weeks and you may make appointments to see your personal tutor or module leaders on a one-to-one basis about any issues. Staff may also be contacted by email.

Key information for each module will be available on our Virtual Learning Environment, Learning Central, together with appropriate additional learning resources, such as lecture notes and slides.

The University offers a range of services including the Careers Service, the Counselling Service, the Disability and Dyslexia Service, the Student Support Service, and excellent libraries and resource centres.

Written feedback is provided on both formative and summative assessment and you are encouraged to discuss your ideas with module tutors in seminars and, where appropriate, on a one-to-one basis in office hours.

Your achievement and progress are also discussed in regular progress meetings with personal tutors.

How will I be assessed?

All English Literature modules offer you the opportunity to undertake unassessed formative work appropriate to the module. Most modules are assessed by essay and/or examination, but some include other forms of assessment such as journal entries, a portfolio, or presentations.

Creative Writing modules are assessed by short portfolios of creative work that include a critical commentary. The assessment strategy is structured to lead you from formative thinking throughout the module towards the production of an informed critical/creative response.

Your final year project consists of a substantial, independently-researched and original portfolio of creative work, produced under the guidance of a member of staff, in the field of fiction, creative non-fiction, poetry, playwriting, or screenwriting. The portfolio includes a critical commentary on the work produced.

What skills will I practise and develop?

Knowledge and understanding

Intellectual skills

Professional Practical Skills

Transferable skills

Careers and placements

Career prospects.

Our graduates commonly go on to pursue careers in freelance writing, academia, teaching, publishing, arts management and administration, public relations and journalism.

Many employers welcome graduates with high-level literacy skills. Together with such skills, our students develop the kind of insights into the creative process that are valued by business, from design to sales.

Imaginative writing transfers readily into advertising and tourism as well as advertising companies. As a graduate of our School you will have a portfolio of creative writing to demonstrate to potential employers.

Our graduates find employment in HR, the book trade, professional areas such as librarianship but also local government and other areas of public life concerned with communication.

We have an established portfolio of internships with Wales-based literary/cultural magazines for which students can apply. 

You may also apply for exchanges with the range of University partners through the University’s Global Opportunities Centre.

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English Literature with Creative Writing BA

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Course overview

Students in library

Develop your creativity and sharpen your critical abilities with this course that will equip you with valuable skills as both a reader and a writer. You’ll produce creative work across various genres, such as fiction, poetry, life writing, and travel accounts. 

You'll also learn how writers of the past and the present have used words and literary forms to express their ideas and engage with their times’ social and cultural issues. 

You’ll encounter historical and modern texts in English from around the globe, which explore themes relevant to how we live today, including race and ethnicity, gender, climate change and nature, social class, disability and wellbeing. 

Learn how to shape language to convey your ideas and experience, work in groups, discuss your writing with other students, and build an individual portfolio of work that will set you on track for a creative or cultural industries career.

The School of English supports a vibrant community of researchers and creative practitioners. It is home to the Leeds Poetry Centre, and we regularly host readings and talks by well-known and emerging contemporary writers. 

The School also produces a literary magazine, Stand, and publishes the best in new creative writing.

Our alumni and former staff include founding figures of African national literatures Wole Soyinka and Ngugi wa Thiong’o, poets of great acclaim such as Geoffrey Hill and our current Professor of Poetry Simon Armitage , and JRR Tolkien, the leading fantasy writer of all time.

Specialist facilities

The world-class Brotherton Library has an array of archive, manuscript and early printed material in its Special Collections, including extensive archives of original materials from writers old and new, from the Brontë family to Tony Harrison. 

You’ll also have opportunities to learn traditional printing and typesetting techniques using our period printing presses and learn more about print and publishing history.

Brotherton Library Reading Room

Brotherton Library Laidlaw Library Edward Boyle Library

We regularly host readings and talks by well-known and emerging contemporary writers and you’ll have access to a vibrant community of researchers and creative practitioners. The highly respected literary magazine, Stand, is produced in the School, and publishes the best in new and established creative writing.

Course details

This degree combines creativity with critical thinking, developing valuable transferable research, communication, and collaboration skills. 

In your first year, you’ll study foundational modules in English Studies and Creative Writing, designed to help you make a successful transition to university study. You'll develop your skills as a critic and as a writer, explore key literary genres, and we will introduce you to literary theory and criticism. You’ll also choose optional modules within the School of English in English Language or Theatre Studies and/or take discovery modules from other departments in the University, including modules on science fiction writing and the digital world. 

During your second year you will continue working with our creative writing experts to develop and diversify your creative portfolio in the following year. You’ll choose from a range of modules exploring how literature has evolved in the context of different periods and locations. 

You’ll also choose from a wide range of options, including American or African literature, medical humanities, crime fiction, and specialist creative writing options. 

In your third year, alongside a choice of modules, you’ll start work on your final year project. Based on a topic of your design, this creative project will showcase your development as a critical thinker and researcher and demonstrate your ability to manage a large project and communicate effectively. 

Course structure

The list shown below represents typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our terms and conditions .

Year 1 compulsory modules

Year 1 optional modules (selection of typical options shown below), year 2 compulsory modules, year 2 optional modules (selection of typical options shown below), year 3 compulsory modules, year 3 optional modules (selection of typical options shown below), discovery modules.

Throughout your degree you will benefit from a range of opportunities to expand your intellectual horizons outside or within your subject area.

This course gives you the opportunity to choose from a range of discovery modules. They’re a great way to tailor your study around your interests or career aspirations and help you stand out from the crowd when you graduate. Find out more about discovery modules on our Broadening webpages .

Learning and teaching

We use various teaching and learning methods to help you benefit from our tutors' expertise. Group seminars are at the heart of this degree.

You'll also encounter:

Independent study is a vital element of this course since it enables you to develop your research and critical skills and form your ideas. Our expert academics will teach you on this course, from lecturers to professors. You’ll have access to the unique and internationally important holdings of the Brotherton Library’s Special Collections, to take inspiration from and see first-hand how some of the top writers of this and previous ages went about crafting their writing.

You may also experience teaching led by published writers or professionals from the cultural industries, as well as trained postgraduate researchers, connecting you to some of the brightest minds on campus. 

On this course you’ll be taught by our expert academics, from lecturers through to professors. You may also be taught by industry professionals with years of experience, as well as trained postgraduate researchers, connecting you to some of the brightest minds on campus.

In your Creative Writing modules, you’ll produce a creative portfolio in various genres, such as life writing, fiction, poetry, plays, screenplays, short fiction, and travel accounts. 

Your final year project comprises a long independent creative piece and a critical reflection. English modules are assessed using various methods, including exams, essays and shorter written assignments. 

Some modules may extend to online exercises such as wikis or podcasts, library exercises or oral presentations. 

Entry requirements

A-level: AAA including English (Language, Literature or Language and Literature).

Where an applicant is taking the EPQ in a relevant subject this might be considered alongside other Level 3 qualifications and may attract an alternative offer in addition to the standard offer. If you are taking A Levels, this would be AAB at A Level including A in English and grade A in the EPQ.

Alternative qualification

Access to he diploma.

Pass diploma with 60 credits overall, including at least 45 credits at level 3, of which 30 credits must be at Distinction and 15 credits at Merit or higher. The Access course must follow a Humanities pathway and/or include English modules. An interview and a piece of written work may be required.

We will consider the level 3 QCF BTEC at Subsidiary Diploma level and above in combination with other qualifications. Please contact the Admissions Office for more information.

Cambridge Pre-U

D3, D3, M2 including D3 in English.

International Baccalaureate

35 points overall with 17 at Higher Level including 6 in English at Higher Level.

Irish Leaving Certificate (higher Level)

Irish Highers (Leaving Certificate): H2, H2, H2, H2, H2, H2 including H2 in English.

Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers

AA in Advanced Highers including English and AABBB in Highers or A in Advanced Highers English and AAABB in Highers.

Welsh Baccalaureate

The Welsh Baccalaureate is not typically included in the academic conditions of an offer made to you for this course. If you choose to undertake the Welsh Baccalaureate we would strongly encourage you to draw upon these experiences within your personal statement, as your qualification will then be taken into account both when your application is initially considered by the selection panel and again when reviewed by the admissions tutor at the time your A-level results are passed to us.

Other Qualifications

European Baccalaureate: 85% with 8.5 in English.

Read more about UK and Republic of Ireland accepted qualifications or contact the School’s Undergraduate Admissions Team.

Alternative entry

We’re committed to identifying the best possible applicants, regardless of personal circumstances or background.

Access to Leeds is an alternative admissions scheme which accepts applications from individuals who might be from low income households, in the first generation of their immediate family to apply to higher education, or have had their studies disrupted.

Find out more about Access to Leeds and alternative admissions .

Typical Access to Leeds offer: ABB including A in English (Literature or Language and Literature) at A Level and pass Access to Leeds.

Arts and Humanities with Foundation Year

If you would like to study arts, humanities, and cultures at university, but don't currently meet the typical entry requirements for direct entry to a degree, you might be eligible to apply for the Arts and Humanities with Foundation Year course .


We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications. Contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office for more information.

International Foundation Year

International students who do not meet the academic requirements for undergraduate study may be able to study the University of Leeds International Foundation Year. This gives you the opportunity to study on campus, be taught by University of Leeds academics and progress onto a wide range of Leeds undergraduate courses. Find out more about International Foundation Year programmes.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications .

Improve your English If you're an international student and you don't meet the English language requirements for this programme, you may be able to study our undergraduate pre-sessional English course , to help improve your English language level.

UK: £9,250 (per year)

International: £22,250 (per year)

Tuition fees for UK undergraduate students starting in 2022/23 For UK full-time undergraduate students starting in 2022/23 the fee will be £9,250. The fee may increase in future years of your course in line with inflation and as permitted by law. Fees for UK undergraduate students are decided by the government and may vary if policy changes.

Tuition fees for UK undergraduate students starting in 2023/24 Tuition fees for UK full-time undergraduate students for 2023/24 have been agreed by the UK Government and will remain at the current fee level of £9,250. The fee may increase in future years of your course in line with inflation and as permitted by law. Fees for UK undergraduate students are decided by the government and may vary if policy changes.

Tuition fees for international undergraduate students starting in 2023/24 Tuition fees for international students for 2023/24 should be available on individual course pages from September 2022.

Tuition fees for a study abroad or work placement year If you take a study abroad or work placement year, you’ll pay a reduced tuition fee during this period. For more information, see Study abroad and work placement tuition fees and loans .

Read more about paying fees and charges .

There may be additional costs related to your course or programme of study, or related to being a student at the University of Leeds. Read more about additional costs .

Scholarships and financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There is help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more in our  Undergraduate funding overview .

Apply to this course through UCAS. Check the deadline for applications on the UCAS website .

Read our guidance about applying.

International students apply through UCAS in the same way as UK students. Our network of international representatives can help you with your application. If you’re unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students . We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

Admissions policy

University of Leeds Taught Admissions Policy 2023

This course is taught by

School of English

School of English Undergraduate Admissions

Email: [email protected] Telephone:

Career opportunities

A degree in English with Creative Writing equips you with a range of valuable skills and attributes. Your skills and experience as a flexible and imaginative writer will open up a range of pathways within the creative industries. 

Our graduates have gone on to find success in areas such as the creative industries, marketing, education, journalism, law, publishing, media, business charity work, civil service, management consultancy and leadership. 

Many have also progressed to postgraduate study. 

On this course, you’ll develop your abilities as an excellent communicator who can present well-reasoned arguments and conclusions. 

Learning in groups with others and reading about human problems and social situations will develop your interpersonal skills and understanding of ethical and cultural complexities. 

You’ll have strong creative and verbal skills, and be able to conduct research, interpret complex information, think critically and express yourself clearly. Employers are always looking out for people with these critical skills.

Careers support

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website .

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website .

Study abroad and work placements

Study abroad.

On this course you have the opportunity to apply to spend time abroad, usually as an extra academic year. We have over 300 University partners worldwide and popular destinations for our students include Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Africa and Latin America. 

Find out more at the Study Abroad website .

Work placements

Practical work experience can help you decide on your career and improve your employability. On this course you have the option to apply to take a placement year module with organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors in the UK, or overseas.

Find out more about work experience on the Careers website .

Related courses

English and comparative literature ba, english and film studies ba, english language and literature ba, english literature ba, english literature and theatre studies ba, rankings and awards, qs world university rankings 2022.

32nd in the world for English Language and Literature

Complete University Guide 2023

9th in the UK for English

Related content

Course terms and conditions.

Find further information in the course terms and conditions



An open journal on a wooden table

Explore Your Creativity

The Concentration in Creative Writing begins with a four-genre introduction to creative writing and includes advanced classes in Fiction, Poetry, Creative Nonfiction, Playwriting, and Digital Writing, where students can explore their creativity in multiple genres. Students also explore literature in the core English classes and electives, and complete their program with a Senior Portfolio of their creative work. The concentration provides excellent preparation for writing careers or graduate work in Creative Writing or English.

Creative Writing for non-majors: Creative Writing Minor

Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing

Continue your writing journey. The W offers a Low-Residency MFA in Creative Writing. It is a 48-hour program that can be completed in two to three years (or longer if students choose to attend part time). Students take online classes, combined with two types of brief residency classes. Online classes include Graduate Writing Workshops in Fiction, Poetry, Nonfiction, Playwriting, Translation, and Writing for New Media, as well as Literature and Form classes.

MFA Program

close up of man's hands on a laptop keyboard

Eight Semester Degree Plan

English ba, creative writing concentration curriculum.

This information is presented for informational purposes. In the event of a discrepancy between this page and the Undergraduate Bulletin, the Bulletin should always be used.

General Education Curriculum

In keeping with The W's Mission, the General Education Program provides students with the skills, knowledge, and values they need to become independent, productive members of society in our continually changing world.

The W's General Education Program provides a foundation in the liberal arts that includes knowledge in the historical, literary, aesthetic, scientific, and cultural traditions that shape the world, and fosters skills that allow students to become civically responsible life-long learners ready to adapt to new challenges.

All students who complete the Mississippi University for Women general education program will demonstrate:

View General Education Requirements

Bachelor of Arts Requirements

Students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree must include the following courses (or demonstrate equivalent competency) in their academic program:

To fulfill the language requirement for the B.A., students must complete the 202 level or above in a foreign language. For information on foreign language placement, see the Department of Languages, Literature, and Philosophy section in the Bulletin. If, upon entering the University, a student already has sufficient background to be successful in 201-202, he/she does not need to enroll in 101-102. The requirement is in essence six hours credit at the 200-level or above.

Major & Concentration Requirements

*select any two literature survey courses: .

†Select one of the following Early Literature courses: (3 Semester Hours)

‡Select one of the following Diversity courses: 

°Select one of the following Language or Theory courses: (3 Semester Hours)

⁂Select three creative writing courses: (9 Semester Hours) At least one of which must be at the 400 level

⁑Select three English, American, or World Literature electives: (9 Semester Hours) 

En 419 senior portfolio (1 semester hour), en 499 english capstone.

Note: Each course may count for only one requirement within the major, but literature surveys may count for both General Education requirements and major requirements. Of all major courses, at least one must be 300- or 400-level literature courses and one additional course must be a 400-level literature course.

Total Hours Required for a BA in English - Creative Writing: 124 Semester Hours

Literature and Creative Writing

The goal of the Literature and Creative Writing Department is to help students develop a sophisticated understanding of the role literature plays in the human experience through refining their skills as interpreters of literary texts and as writers, either of literary analysis or of their own creative works.

About the Majors

At Hamilton, students may choose to major in literature or creative writing. In either case, their professors will encourage them to explore literature across centuries, nations, and languages. Consulting with advisors, literature majors develop an individualized, and potentially interdisciplinary, course of study. Creative writing majors take courses that balance literary study with poetry and prose workshops. In both majors, the curriculum emphasizes small classes, the exchange and testing of ideas, and the development of superior reading and writing skills.

Literature Students Will Learn to:

Creative Writing Students Will Learn to:

A Sampling of Courses

American ghosts.

Why do we tell ghost stories, and what role do ghosts play in American history and literature? This course will explore the ghost narrative in short fiction, novels and film. We will examine what ghosts express in U.S. literature and culture, how they unearth our understanding of American history, and how ghost stories intersect with gender, race, sexuality and class. We will read works by Shirley Jackson, Toni Morrison, Carmen Maria Machado, Viet Thanh Nguyen, Jesmyn Ward and Louise Erdrich, among others. Students will engage in close reading and textual analysis and will write four full-length essays. (Genre)

Explore these select courses:

Food in literature and film.

Always a necessity and sometimes a luxury, food connects all people to the planet and to one another. This course will explore how authors and filmmakers use food and cooking in their works as a means of exposing complex social relationships, histories, and identities. The list of authors we may read includes Laura Esquivel, Aimee Bender, Isak Dinesen, Franz Kafka, MFK Fisher, Ruth Reichl, and many poets. We will also look at films such as Big Night ; Eat, Drink, Man, Woman ; and Ratatouille .

Finding Identity

Literature: what is it good for.

Debates about the value of literature have long been tied to questions about its use. Literature has been praised—and condemned—as a source of pleasure, a medium for the transmission of knowledge, and a vehicle of personal expression. In order to determine why fiction matters, we will examine works that explore the power of literature to shape moral, social, and political realities, including philosophical manifestos, anti-slavery treatises, self-help manuals, and experimental novels. Works by Rousseau, Cugoano, Wollstonecraft, and George Eliot, as well as the film The Servant (1963).

Creative Non-Fiction Workshop

Seminar: poems in and out of context, meet our faculty, tina may hall .

Department Chair, the Christian A. Johnson Excellence in Teaching Professor of Literature and Creative Writing

[email protected]

creative writing, 20th-century literature, experimental women's writing, and postmodern gothic

Stephanie Bahr 

Assistant Professor of Literature

[email protected]

Naomi Guttman 

Jane D. and Ellis E. Bradford ’45 Distinguished Writing Chair

[email protected]

poetry and poetics; food writing; contemplative pedagogy; environmental and feminist literary study

Doran Larson 

Edward North Chair of Greek and Greek Literature and Professor of Literature and Creative Writing, Director of American Studies

[email protected]

20th-century American literature; the history of the Anglo-American novel; fiction writing; nonfiction writing and prison writing of the U.S., South Africa, and Ireland

Hoa Ngo 

Visiting Assistant Professor of Literature and Creative Writing

[email protected]

Vincent Odamtten 

Professor of Literature and Africana Studies

[email protected]

African literature with a focus of Ghanaian and women's literature; 20th-century Caribbean literature; African-American literature; science fiction; literary criticism; use of digital technology in the study of literature

Onno Oerlemans 

Elizabeth J. McCormack Professor of Literature

[email protected]

Romantic period literature; animals in literature; animal rights; nature writing – literature and environmentalism; cultural and political history of the Adirondack Park

Jane Springer 

James L. Ferguson Professor of Literature and Creative Writing

[email protected]

poems, poetics, nonfiction and Southern literature

Pavitra Sundar 

Associate Professor of Literature, Director of Cinema and Media Studies

[email protected]

cultural politics of voice; postcolonial studies; sound studies; South Asian film and media studies; feminist theory, especially women-of-color and transnational feminisms

Suzanne Taylor 

[email protected]

Katherine Terrell 

Professor of Literature

[email protected]

Old English, Middle English, and Middle Scots language and literature

Margaret Thickstun 

Jane Watson Irwin Professor of Literature, Director of Medieval and Renaissance Studies

[email protected]

literature in 17th-century England and Colonial America, particularly by women and by people writing on religious subjects

Anne Valente 

Assistant Professor of Literature and Creative Writing

[email protected]

creative writing, novels and short stories, creative non-fiction, and 20th century American literature

Benjamin Widiss 

Associate Professor of Literature

[email protected]

20th-century and contemporary American literature, literary theory, autobiography, film

Steven Yao 

Edmund A. LeFevre Professor of English

[email protected]

20th-century American and British literature; literary translation; Ezra Pound; comparative literature; Asian American literature, especially poetry; global literary modernisms; Asian diasoporas; transpacific literature

Christian Goodwillie

Lecturer in History, Lecturer in Literature and Creative Writing

[email protected]

Thomas Knauer 

Lecturer in Literature and Creative Writing

[email protected]

Phil Memmer

[email protected]

Nhora Lucía Serrano 

[email protected]

Technology Enhanced Learning & Educational Innovation, Digital Humanities, History of Book History/Print Culture, Visual Studies (Graphic Narratives and Editorial Cartoons & Comics), Latin America/Latinx, and Medieval And Renaissance Studies

Explore Hamilton Stories

Tina Hall Appointed as Next Associate Dean of Faculty 

Dean of Faculty Ngoni Munemo has announced that Tina Hall, the Christian A. Johnson Excellence in Teaching Professor of Literature and Creative Writing, will serve as the next associate dean of faculty.

Fighting Censorship Through Books Unbanned 

President and CEO of the Brooklyn Public Library Linda Johnson ’80 discusses Books Unbanned, a new program designed to combat the growing nationwide effort to remove books from library shelves.

Schneck ’23 Research Examines Prison System Injustices 

Lena Schneck ’23 is looking into American prisons, specifically in relation to inadequate healthcare treatment, through a Levitt Center-funded project.

Careers After Hamilton

Hamilton graduates who concentrated in literature and creative writing are pursuing careers in a variety of fields, including:

Explore Our Spaces

List Hall houses the offices for faculty members in literature and creative writing. The recently renovated space has 16 faculty offices, eight classrooms, several collaborative spaces for students, and a new landscaped entrance.

Take a Virtual Tour of Hamilton 

Department Name

Literature and Creative Writing Department

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Students looking at books at Cheetham Library

Develop your writing skills alongside the study of literature past and present.

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Discover more about this subject area

BA English Literature with Creative Writing / Overview

Year of entry: 2023

AAA with A in English Literature or English Language and Literature (i.e. not English Language alone), plus a creative writing portfolio.

AAB, including A in English Literature, or English Language and Literature (ie. not English Language alone), plus creative writing portfolio

36 points overall. 6,6,6 in Higher Level subjects to include 6 in English Literature, or English Language & Literature (ie. not English Language alone) and a Creative Writing Portfolio.

Full entry requirements

Course overview

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We are pleased to announce that we are returning to hosting on-campus open days in the summer and autumn.

Please see open days for the dates, registration, and other information.

If you're a prospective student, you can also find out more about student life by chatting with our student ambassadors at a time that suits you, and ask any questions you may have about life at Manchester. 

Please check our Coronavirus FAQs for the most up to date information regarding events. 

You can also look at our virtual open day content to help you learn more about the University.

Tuition fees for home students commencing their studies in September 2023 will be £9,250 per annum. Tuition fees for international students will be £23,000 per annum. For general information please see the undergraduate finance pages.

Policy on additional costs

All students should normally be able to complete their programme of study without incurring additional study costs over and above the tuition fee for that programme. Any unavoidable additional compulsory costs totalling more than 1% of the annual home undergraduate fee per annum, regardless of whether the programme in question is undergraduate or postgraduate taught, will be made clear to you at the point of application. Further information can be found in the University's Policy on additional costs incurred by students on undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes (PDF document, 91KB).

Contact details

See: About us

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Courses in related subject areas

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Regulated by the office for students.

The University of Manchester is regulated by the Office for Students (OfS). The OfS aims to help students succeed in Higher Education by ensuring they receive excellent information and guidance, get high quality education that prepares them for the future and by protecting their interests. More information can be found at the OfS website .

You can find regulations and policies relating to student life at The University of Manchester, including our Degree Regulations and Complaints Procedure, on our regulations website .

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