English Literature and Creative Writing (BA) - Course full
Studying English Literature and Creative Writing (BA) at Warwick will transform your understanding of literature, of yourself, and of the world. It will also fully prepare you to thrive in any profession that values intellectual rigour, creativity, and the ability to communicate a message that matters.
Creative work can happen anywhere, but you can learn the craft of writing and enjoy working with other young writers in a place of energy and new ideas. If you intend to pursue a career as an author, or to work in the creative industries or teaching, this practical course will teach you about the creative writing process and help you become a better reader, with a deeper understanding of literary theories and texts. You will be taught by practising and award-winning writers, bridging the gap between academic and creative approaches to literature.
You will undertake real-world writing tasks and will regularly meet, engage with and learn from industry professionals, including publishers, editors, literary agents, poets and authors. Our graduates leave with advanced communicative, imaginative and critical abilities, plus practical and vocational literary writing skills including composition, interpretation and evaluation. In addition, you will develop argument, analysis and debating skills, and a capacity for independent thought.
Enabling you to follow your passion in the Arts, we are awarding Scholarships of £1,000 to home/UK students who achieve AAA or above, or equivalent qualifications if you start your course in 2020 and you have applied through UCAS, adjustment or clearing.
In your first year you will gain the foundation you need to become a better reader and writer. In Modes of Writing we explore writing in different forms, including poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and writing for performance and new media. Through studying Medieval to Renaissance English Literature you will appreciate the context of contemporary beliefs and social developments. Epic into Novel shows you the building blocks of literary tradition in Europe and beyond. This module will give you an understanding of some of the great texts of classical and modern times. Last, our new module The Written World will introduce you to the outlines of literary theory where we focus on texts that are important as an emerging writer.
As a second year you will progress to Composition and Creative Writing in which you explore and deepen your practice of fiction and nonfiction. You will take a module from before 1900, as well as any module from the English department or another University department.
In your final year you will progress to the Personal Writing Project, your opportunity to work one-to-one with a tutor of your choice on an extensive piece of writing in fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, screenwriting or a genre of your choice. In addition you will select global literature module(s) as well as any module from English Literature, Creative Writing or another University department.
Most core modules in your first year are taught by means of one lecture and one seminar per week in terms one and two. In your second and third years, optional modules are normally taught by means of one seminar per week. Practising writers deliver teaching through workshops and seminars. Also, writers and publishers visit and work with you in our Writers' Room, the first purpose-built space for writers in a UK university.
Working together we will improve your own writing, and your confidence as performers through writing workshops and live performances. You will be encouraged to attend and participate at spoken word events in the local area, including Leamington Spa’s ‘Shoot From the Lip’, Birmingham’s ‘Hit the Ode’ and ‘Bang Said the Gun' in London.
Guided learning of typically eight contact hours per week. Seminars are usually 1.5 hours each.
Targeted teaching with class sizes of 10 - 15 students (on average).
Assessment is a combination of traditional essays and written examinations together with creative projects, portfolios and performance. For example, in our Shakespeare and Selected Dramatists of his Time module, student creative work recently included film and radio adaptations, musical compositions, painting, sculpture and photography inspired by Shakespeare's texts.
As a student on our English degrees, you will have the opportunity to spend your third year at one of our partner institutions in Europe, China or the USA. You will then return to Warwick to complete your fourth and final year of your degree.
You will be able to apply to transfer to the four-year course when you are in your second year at Warwick, subject to availability of places from the University's International Office.
A level: AAA/A*AB to include grade A in English Literature/English Language and Literature (combined). We make differential offers to students in a number of circumstances.
IB: 38 to include 6 at Higher Level in English Literature or combined English Language and Literature.
BTEC: We welcome applications from students taking BTECs alongside A level English Literature/English Language and Literature (combined)
Interviews: We do not typically interview applicants. Offers are made based on your UCAS form which includes predicted and actual grades, your personal statement and school reference.
Additional requirements: You will also need to meet our English Language requirements.
Contextual data and differential offers
Warwick may make differential offers to students in a number of circumstances. These include students participating in the Realising Opportunities programme, or who meet two of the contextual data criteria. Differential offers will be one or two grades below Warwick’s standard offer (to a minimum of BBB).
- Warwick International Foundation Programme (IFP)
All students who successfully complete the Warwick IFP and apply to Warwick through UCAS will receive a guaranteed conditional offer for a related undergraduate programme (selected courses only). For full details of standard offers and conditions visit the IFP website.
- We welcome applications from students with other internationally recognised qualifications. For more information please visit the international entry requirements page.
Taking a gap year
Applications for deferred entry welcomed.
Year One: Core Modules
Modes of Reading
What is a reader? How is our understanding and perception of a text formed? What does it mean to think critically when we read? This module allows you to explore these questions by putting a spotlight on the question of critical thinking in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. By studying a series of literary texts in relation to some of the most influential literary and cultural theorists of the last hundred years, you will take your own position on everything from Marxism, queer and feminist theory to ecocriticism and postcolonial critique.
Medieval to Renaissance English Literature
Taking you from the mythical court of King Arthur to the real world of ambition, intrigue, and danger in the courts of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I, this module introduces you to early literature written in a range of genres (romance, epic, fabliau) and poetic forms. You will study texts like Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, Thomas More’s Utopia, Edmund Spenser’s The Faerie Queene, and Shakespeare’s Sonnets to explore some of the period’s highest ideals—‘trawthe’ or integrity—as well as some of humanity’s darkest impulses: greed, deception, revenge, and desire.
Epic into Novel
Tracking the transition from the epics of the ancient world to the novels of modernity, this module introduces you to some of the most influential and formative works of world literature. You will study central texts of the classical world, such as Homer’s Iliad and Virgil’s Aeneid; ancient Indian epic The Mahābhārata; Milton’s Paradise Lost; as well as novels like Henry Fielding’s bawdy comedy Tom Jones and Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o’s novel of decolonising Kenya, A Grain of Wheat. Reading across history and cultures, between languages and genres, you will develop the skills to analyse narrative, character, and style.
The Written World
This module will introduce students on the BA in English Literature and Creative Writing to ideas and theories from literary studies, linguistics, critical theory, translation studies and cultural studies that will underpin more specialised scholarly and creative study in the second and third years.
Year Two: Core Module
Composition and Creative Writing
You will develop your fiction writing through practice of the processes involved, from inception, through drafting and revision, to considerations of audience. You will gain insights into the narrative form, including traditional and experimental methods and the routes of literary production.
Year Two: Optional Modules
European Novel; Romantic and Victorian Poetry; Seventeenth-Century: The First Modern Age of English Literature; Literary and Cultural Theory; The Practice of Poetry; Screenwriting; New Literatures in English; Devolutionary British Fiction; The Global Novel; Literature, Environment, Economy; European Theatre; Twentieth Century US Literature; English Literature and Feminisms 1799-1899; Eighteenth Century Literature; Crime Fiction, Nation and Empire: Britain 1850-1947; Literature and Psychoanalysis; States of Damage; Restoration Drama; Early Modern Drama; Ecopoetics; The Classical Tradition in English Translation: The Renaissance; Alternative Lifeworlds Fiction; Literature and Empire: Britain and the Caribbean to c. 1900; Literature, Theory and Time; Disasters and the British Contemporary; Remaking Shakespeare; Small Press Publishing: History, Theory, Practice; American Horror Story: U.S. Gothic Cultures, 1790-Present; Race, Ethnicity, and Migration in the Americas; On the Road to Collapse; Women and Writing, 1150-1450; Austen in Theory; Modern World Literatures; American Poetry: Modernity, Rupture, Violence; Ancient & Modern; George Eliot and Sociology; Literature and Revolution 1640-1660: Turning the World Upside Down; Yiddish Literature in Translation: A World Beyond Borders; Modes of Reading; Modern World Literatures
Descriptions of these modules are available here.
Year Three: Core Module
Personal Writing Project
The Personal Writing Project is will see you working closely with a practitioner in order to advance your technical and critical skills in the development of a portfolio of work focused on a specific genre. You will gain an appreciation of the research and methodology needed for large-scale creative works and in so doing, gain the maturity and confidence to advance your career as a professional writer.
Year 3: Optional Modules
European Novel; Romantic and Victorian Poetry; Seventeenth-Century: The First Modern Age of English Literature; Literary and Cultural Theory; The Practice of Fiction; Screenwriting; New Literatures in English; Devolutionary British Fiction; The Global Novel; Literature, Environment, Economy; Shakespeare and Selected Dramatists of His Time; European Theatre; Twentieth Century US Literature; Othello; English Literature and Feminisms 1799-1899; Eighteenth Century Literature; Crime Fiction, Nation and Empire: Britain 1850-1947; Literature and Psychoanalysis; States of Damage; Restoration Drama; Early Modern Drama; Ecopoetics; The Classical Tradition in English Translation: The Renaissance; Alternative Lifeworlds Fiction; Literature and Empire: Britain and the Caribbean to c. 1900; Literature, Theory and Time; Disasters and the British Contemporary; Remaking Shakespeare; Small Press Publishing: History, Theory, Practice; American Horror Story: U.S. Gothic Cultures, 1790-Present; Race, Ethnicity, and Migration in the Americas; Advanced Screenwriting; Game Theory: Interactive and Video Game Narratives; On the Road to Collapse; Women and Writing, 1150-1450; Austen in Theory; The Question of the Animal; Ancient & Modern; George Eliot & Sociology; Literature and Revolution 1640-1660: Turning the World Upside Down; Yiddish Literature in Translation: A World Beyond Borders; American Poetry: Modernity, Rupture, Violence
Descriptions of these modules are available here.
Graduates from these courses have gone on to work for employers including: Archant, Barclays, BBC, Bloomsbury, British Council, Channel 4, Civil Service, The Guardian, Hay Festival, Newsquest Media Group, Pan Macmillan, The Poetry Society, Royal Opera House, The Society of Authors, Sunday Times, Teach First and Weber Shandwick.
They have pursued roles such as: advertising accounts managers and creative directors; arts officers, producers and directors; authors, writers and translators; business sales executives; journalists, newspaper and periodical editors; legal associate professionals; management consultants and business analysts; marketing associate professionals; publisher and researchers.
Helping you find the right career
Our department has a dedicated professionally qualified Senior Careers Consultant who works within Student Careers and Skills to help you as an individual. Additionally your Senior Careers Consultant offers impartial advice and guidance together with workshops and events, tailored to our department, throughout the year. Previous examples of workshops and events include:
- Understanding Assessment Centres
- Careers following your English and Comparative Literary Studies Degree
- Discovering Careers in the Creative Industries
- Careers in Publishing and Journalism
- Careers in the Public Sector
- Warwick careers fairs throughout the year
Find out more about our Careers & Skills Services here.
Bachelor of Arts (BA)
3 years full-time
28 September 2020
Location of study
University of Warwick, Coventry
Find out more about fees and funding
Additional course costs
There may be costs associated with other items or services such as academic texts, course notes, and trips associated with your course. Students who choose to complete a work placement will pay reduced tuition fees for their third year.
This information is applicable for 2020 entry.
Given the interval between the publication of courses and enrolment, some of the information may change. It is important to check our website before you apply. Please read our terms and conditions to find out more.
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