Course information

Entry requirements

UCAS code

Q3W8

Entry requirements

A-level: BBB
BTEC: DDM
IB: 33 points overall with Three HL subjects at 655

Length

3 years full-time or 4-6 years part-time

Course overview

Combine the study of literature with the practice of creative writing. You’ll graduate with the ability to be curious about literature, and the imagination to turn that curiosity into creativity.

Why study BA English with Creative Writing at Goldsmiths?

  • You’ll read key literary texts, and experiment with writing prose and poetry. By the end of the course you’ll have uncovered your written style and developed an extensive portfolio of creative work.
  • We’re based in London, a city that’s full of literary inspiration. Take a look at English student Samantha’s favourite places to write.
  • Our alumni have gone on to win prestigious awards including the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature, the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year, the European Union Prize for Literature, and the Dylan Thomas Prize. One of our alumni, Sophie Collins, was awarded a Fellowship by the Royal Society of Literature as part of its inaugural 40 Under 40 scheme in 2018.
  • We’re regularly visited by literary guest speakers. Recent visitors have included Ali Smith, Nikesh Shukla, Michael Rosen, Eimear McBride and Howard Jacobson.
  • We host an annual literary award – the Goldsmiths Prize – that celebrates work that pushes the boundaries of the novel.

Contact the department

If you have specific questions about the degree, contact Jack Underwood

What you'll study

Each level of the degree includes a single year-long creative writing module taught by creative writing practitioners and active researchers. Each of these modules must be passed in order to progress to the next level and (in the case of the final module) for you to be awarded the degree. 

Year 1 (credit level 4)

You take five compulsory modules:

Year 1 compulsory modules Module title Credits
  Explorations in Literature 30 credits
  Approaches to Text 30 credits
  Foundation Workshop in Creative Writing 30 credits
  Introduction to Literature of the Victorian Period 15 credits
  Introduction to Poetry 15 credits

Year 2 (credit level 5)

You take one compulsory module:

Module title Credits
  Creative Writing Workshop 30 credits

You also choose three modules (totalling 90 credits) from a range characterised by wide literary, historical and contextual scope, of which at least one must encompass pre-1800 literature.

Modules may vary from year to year, but recent examples have included:

Year 2 option modules Module title Credits
  Drama and Transgression: From Prometheus to Faust 30 credits
  European Cinema 30 credits
  Hollywood Cinema 30 credits
  Inventing the Nation: American Literature in the mid-19th Century 30 credits
  Literary London 30 credits
  Literature of the English Renaissance 30 credits
  Literature of the Later Middle Ages: Society and the Individual 30 credits
  Moderns 30 credits
  Old English 30 credits
  Post-Victorian English Literature 30 credits
  Restoration and 18th-Century Literature 30 credits
  Sensibility and Romanticism: Revolutions in Writing and Society 30 credits
  Shakespeare 30 credits
  Varieties of English 30 credits
  Aspects of the Novel 15 credits
  Contemporary Arab Migrant Writing 15 credits
  Work Placement (English) 15 credits

Year 3 (credit level 6)

You take one compulsory creative-writing module:

Project Development (30 credits)
This focuses on the development of your own writing skills in the context of a critical awareness of recent writing, recent literary concerns and cultural theory, and knowledge about writing and publishing issues. You are encouraged to interact within a community of writers supportive of the development of your work, small-group work in the first term leading into one-to-one surgeries to address concerns of writing practice as you prepare your portfolio of work in the second term.

You also choose modules (worth a total of 90 credits) from the full range offered by the Department. In addition, a rotation of single-term, 15-credit modules are also available.

Modules may vary from year to year, but recent examples have included:

Year 3 option modules Module title Credits
  Caribbean Women Writers 30 credits
  Decadence 30 credits
  The Emergence of Modern America: American Literature 1890–1940 30 credits
  Approaches to Language and the Media 15 credits
  Modern American Fiction 30 credits
  Modern Poetry 30 credits
  Modernism & Drama (1880-1930) 30 credits
  The Art of the Novel 30 credits
  Oedipus: Myths, Tragedies and Theories 30 credits
  Postcolonial Literatures in English 30 credits
  Studies in Literature and Film 30 credits
  How to Read in Translation 15 credits
  Literature of the English Renaissance 30 credits
  Narratives of the Great War (1923-1933) 15 credits
  Work Placement (English) 15 credits

Teaching style

This programme is mainly taught through scheduled learning - a mixture of lectures, seminars and workshops. You’ll also be expected to undertake a significant amount of independent study. This includes carrying out required and additional reading, preparing topics for discussion, and producing essays or project work.

The following information gives an indication of the typical proportions of learning and teaching for each year of this programme*:

  • Year 1 - 15% scheduled learning, 85% independent learning
  • Year 2 - 13% scheduled learning, 87% independent learning
  • Year 3 - 12% scheduled learning, 88% independent learning

How you’ll be assessed

You’ll be assessed by a variety of methods, depending on your module choices. These include portfolios of original creative writing and critical commentaries on your work for each of the workshops, coursework portfolios, long essays and examinations (various timescales and formats).

The following information gives an indication of how you can typically expect to be assessed on each year of this programme*:

  • Year 1 - 62% coursework, 38% written exam
  • Year 2 - 85% coursework, 15% written exam
  • Year 3 - 100% coursework

*Please note that these are averages are based on enrolments for 2017/18. Each student’s time in teaching, learning and assessment activities will differ based on individual module choices. Find out more about how this information is calculated.

Credits and levels of learning

An undergraduate honours degree is made up of 360 credits – 120 at Level 4, 120 at Level 5 and 120 at Level 6. If you are a full-time student, you will usually take Level 4 modules in the first year, Level 5 in the second, and Level 6 modules in your final year. A standard module is worth 30 credits. Some programmes also contain 15-credit half modules or can be made up of higher-value parts, such as a dissertation or a Major Project.

Download the programme specification, for the 2018-19 intake. If you would like an earlier version of the programme specification, please contact the Quality Office.

Please note that due to staff research commitments not all of these modules may be available every year.

Entry requirements

We accept the following qualifications:

A-level: BBB
BTEC: DDM
International Baccalaureate: 33 points overall with Three HL subjects at 655
Access: Pass with 45 Level 3 credits including 30 Distinctions and a number of merits/passes in subject-specific modules
Scottish qualifications: BBBBC (Higher) or BBC (Advanced Higher)
European Baccalaureate: 75%, preferably including English.
Irish Leaving Certificate: H2 H2 H2 H2

Additional requirements

You'll also need:

  • A selection of recent written work
  • Grade B in A-level English Literature (or Language and Literature) - A-level General Studies is not accepted.

International qualifications

We also accept a wide range of international qualifications. Find out more about the qualifications we accept from around the world.

If English isn’t your first language, you will need an IELTS score (or equivalent English language qualification) of 6.5 with a 6.5 in writing and no element lower than 6.0 to study this programme. If you need assistance with your English language, we offer a range of courses that can help prepare you for degree-level study.

Fees & funding

Careers

The skills you'll develop

Our degrees open up a wide range of careers by developing critical and analytical skills, proficiency in assessing evidence, the clear expression of ideas, and the ability to bring together insights from a range of subjects – all of which are attractive to a variety of employers. You will learn to solve problems, to think critically and creatively, and to communicate with clarity.

You can also choose to take a work placement module as one of your option modules in your second or third year. This module allows you to undertake a work placement which will benefit your studies, your skillset and your CV. 

Careers

Our graduates have a good employment record: professions include publishing, journalism, PR, teaching, advertising, civil service, business and industry, European Union private sector management and personnel work, and the media. You can read more about potential career options after graduation on our Department of English careers page.

Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths