Creative Writing (Multidiscipline)
Salford School of Arts, Media and Creative Technology
In a nutshell
This course is full for 2022 entry, the next available start date will be September 2023
Podcaster. Journalist. Novelist. Poet. Screenwriter. Whatever kind of writer you want to be, on this course you’ll gain the tools and training you need to take the first step in your professional writing career.
As you progress through your studies, you’ll have the chance to explore writing in a unique range of contexts, from screenwriting to the gaming industry to experimental visual texts and comic books, as well as the core mediums of poetry and the novel. It’s all geared towards your future writing career.
As an undergraduate creative writing student studying at Salford, you’ll also have access to the creative writing opportunities Manchester has to offer. You’ll be joining a vibrant community of practising creatives with the chance to flourish in our state-of-the-art campuses in MediaCity and Peel Park – both of which designed to nurture talent across the city.
Want to find out more about our creative writing degree courses? Why not sign up to an upcoming Open Day?
You can follow our #EnglishatSalford Instagram, Twitter and Facebook accounts, which are led by our English teaching staff so you can find out how we tell our story through English, Creative Writing and Drama.
- Study on a course which is ranked in the top 10 for Creative Writing in the Guardian University Guide 2023
- Develop a wide range of skillsets designed to open up a world of creative writing careers
- Explore diverse creative writing forms, including experimental writing, playwriting, screenwriting, journalism, poetry and prose fiction
- Graduate with a creative writing portfolio that evidences the skills you've learnt to potential employers, or for further study.
This is for you if...
You want to develop your sense of creativity, and learn how to analyse and refine your own work.
You have a passion for creative writing and are keen to explore a range of writing styles to improve your knowledge of the industry.
You want to launch a professional career in writing and develop a strong portfolio of varied work.
All about the course
What exactly does studying creative writing at university involve? Any good writing course will allow you to develop your skills in the creative pillars of plot, characterisation and narrative. But at the University of Salford, it doesn't end there. Our unique multidiscipline degree is designed to help you skill up for the creative industries and support your writing vocation with work that pays.
The first year of your creative writing course is designed to inspire and nurture your writing talent, while introducing you to key concepts in multimedia production and multimedia journalism. Each module will give you the opportunity to deepen your knowledge of creative writing – whether that be rediscovering your passion for reading, learning how to respond to poetry or developing yourself as a networked journalist.
Moving into the second and third year of your degree, you‘ll shape your studies to focus on the areas of creative writing that interest you most. From comedy writing and performance to screenwriting, radio podcasting and theatre, this is your chance to develop a strong portfolio in your chosen area.
Want to find out more? Read our course breakdown below to learn what you’ll be exploring in each module.
This module will enable you to identify the distinctive qualities of news journalism. You will learn how to source and produce stories, providing you with fundamental editorial and technical skills such as news judgment, interviewing, accuracy, verification, writing and structuring news stories, and working to deadlines.
You will develop as a networked journalist by developing your own blog and exploring the multitude of digital platforms available to source and output journalistic content. You will also learn techniques of immersive storytelling
The module combines both technical and creative aspects of media production as you develop a broad awareness of the range of skills required for a video drama production, including camera, lighting, editing and sound.
You will be introduced to key concepts fundamental to the study of popular fiction, including those critical attitudes which mediate attitudes towards it. The module develops knowledge of the publishing industry and literary genres and provides a focus on crime literature spanning from Conan Doyle’s Adventures of Sherlock Holmes to The No.1 Ladies’ Detective Agency.
The Writer's Practice
Start your writing life by exploring the creative process in a range of mediums: poetry, prose fiction, playwriting and memoir. On this 40 credit module, you will be challenged to define your territory as a writer and inspired by new creative processes. In your first year at Salford, you experiment with all your talents and discover your own writing practice.
Radio Podcasting and Features
Podcast and Radio Feature Production develops and critically reflects upon the creative, technical, and production skills required to record features and short documentaries. The module builds on the student‘s existing recording and editing skills in aiming to deliver broadcast standard audio and enhances the student’s knowledge of subject and contributor research, production planning, scripting and interviewing techniques in order to construct longer form speech based features.
You will learn how to write different types of features for newspapers and magazines in various markets. By the end of this module, you will have gained practical skills in the art of feature writing as well as enhanced your ability to formulate and pitch story ideas to commissioning editors.
Theatre Industry: Critical Writing and Contemporary Debates
This module introduces you to various forms of professional writing, and current debates in theatre and the arts industry today. You will review shows, write articles or blogs on current trends in theatre, and discuss the issues that interest you most in a series of panel discussions.
The module explores the idea of genre as a key critical concept within television studies and enables students to identify the codes and conventions of key television genres such as news, sitcom, reality TV, Soap Operas, heritage TV and talk shows whilst gaining an understanding of genre in relation to television production and audiences.
Comedy Writing and Performance
In this core module you will discuss examples of a range of radio and TV comedy before working in a small group to create an original comedy idea and to develop your own characters within it. You will be encouraged to develop range and flexibility in your vocal, facial and physical skills in order to produce a range of comic personas. You will then perform, record and edit the resultant TV/radio sitcom or sketch show. The module also examines aspects of storytelling‚ theme, narrative structure, character development, comic types, the relationship of character to plot, use of subplots - in relation to the writing of comedy drama and situation comedy. The module explores the writing and devising of comedy for recorded media.
Digital Narrative Technologies
You will learn the theory of storytelling and narrative and apply this knowledge through creative practice to a digital artifact. This process of understanding, applying and bridging traditional narrative from myth and legend, script and screen, to a contemporary immersive manifestation is designed to give you a broader understanding of narrative from a cultural perspective. The themes covered in the module will typically include: The Power, Importance and Origin of Story, Story Structures, The Hero’s Journey, The Power of Myth, Narration and Focalisation, The Art of Characterisation, Environmental Storytelling, Writing a Treatment, Storyboarding Techniques, Narrative and Emergent technologies, Immersion & Interactivity and Spatial Narratives.
This module explores different forms and sub-genres of creative non-fiction, a genre which Lee Gutkind describes as ‘the most important and popular genre in the literary world today.’ You will cover a wide range of creative non-fiction forms, including memoir, biography, literary journalism, autobiographical poetry, travel writing, music writing and nature writing. Practical techniques including voice, structure, dialogue and imagery will be taught via guided writing exercises; reading, feedback and discussion.
Researching and Planning a Novel
This module will equip you with an overview of the state of contemporary fiction. You will meet a broad range of contemporary practice, from literary fiction to experimental fiction and genre fiction, including ‘chick lit’, historical fiction, crime/thrillers, science fiction, and supernatural/fantasy fiction. You will continue to develop your ‘writer’s tool-kit’, adding techniques such as point of view, narrative drive, setting, character and dialogue. You will also receive tuition in how the publishing industry works, and the skills that a professional writer needs to acquire.
Writing Poetry in the 21st Century
This module revisits some traditional forms. The first part of the module involves creative exploration of the Japanese ‘tanka’ (a relative of the haiku), the sonnet and the sestina and invites you to invent your own original poetic form. In the second part of the module you will encounter a range of innovative approaches to poetry: using sound, collage, found text and visual elements in your writing. The format will be largely workshop-based with writing exercises, sharing work with your tutor.
Introduction to Children’s Literature
You will look at the development of literature for children since 1744 and examine how child development determines the content within texts written for children. You will scrutinise the texts from many angles and you may even produce texts for children.
You will learn skills of analysing and writing plays for the stage. The module covers history of playwriting, an introduction to the playwriting industry and the development of skills in areas such as concept, story, structure, characterisation and dialogue. You will have the chance to work with professional playwrights in this course and write a play for your assessment.
Literature, Adaptation and the Screen
On this module, you will study a range of literary texts and their screen counterparts, including Sherlock, Psycho, and Gone Girl. Topics for seminar discussion may include: theories of adaptation and genre; issues of authorship/ auteurship; the integral role of technical arts such as scenography, music, sound production; the importance of context. Students will also be introduced to the writing techniques associated with adaptation: treatments, synopses, step outlines and script writing.
Introduction to Screenwriting
You will examine fundamental aspects of storytelling: narrative structure, character development, character types, relation of character to plot, the use of subplots. You explore differing conceptual and technical approaches in scriptwriting for theatre, TV and film.
This is a double creative writing module that runs throughout your final year. Here you can undertake a self-directed project in the genre(s) of your choosing, while giving and receiving feedback in a supportive workshop environment. By the end of the module you should have 6,000 words (or equivalent) of highly polished creative work.
You will choose five of the following optional modules:
Sequential Art (Comics and Graphic Novels)
You will study important examples of international comic strips, series and ‘graphic novels’. At a time of proliferating texts inspired by material introduced in comics, a section of the module will look at film and TV adaptations, evaluating the importance of comic-derived material to the modern media landscape. The unique ways in which comics can be said to create meanings will be highlighted, and you will experience creating a narrative with expert guidance. Themes studied may include: Comics and Childhood; The Graphic Novel Era: Comics ‘come of age’; Alan Moore; Comics, Ideology and Form: Case Study of 1970s British Comics; Fandom; Comics and Other Media.
You will study how to teach Creative Writing in classroom and therapeutic contexts. You will gain practical teaching skills, learn how to put together lesson plans and facilitate work by Creative Writing students. You will learn how to supplement your writing career with teaching opportunities.
Journalism and Public Relations
This module will examine the role of the PR industry and its link to journalism and the media. Through a number of practical workshops, you will gain a strong understanding of the principles and practices behind successful PR strategies and campaigns.
British Theatre Post-1950
This module contextualises post-war British theatre in terms of naturalism, the avant-garde and the epic mode. A range of play texts will be explored in relation to form, narrative, action and character while exploring the ways in which they engage with issues of class, sexuality, gender and national identity.
New Departures: Reading and Writing Innovative Poetry
This module combines critical and creative study of some of the most exciting poetry written in the last fifty years. Each seminar-workshop will offer practical exercises in composition in order to aid understanding of the aesthetic and political decisions being made.
Biography: Tradition and Innovation
This module puts theory into practice as we examine the literary history of biography, consider the issues and tensions raised by the post-modern context, and explore them in our own biographical writing. Subsequent sessions will address these questions via a number of themes including the history of biography as a literary practice, historical biography, literary biography, celebrity biography through the ages, theoretical approaches to the practice of biography and innovations within the genre. The researching and writing of your own biographical work will be a key element of the classes.
Writing for Performance
The module offers you the chance to explore the theory and practice of playwriting and writing for performance, covering concept, story, structure, characterisation, dialogue, theatricality, rewriting and revising.
All text is visual but both readers and critics often have difficulty sustaining their awareness of its dual nature. You are encouraged throughout to think in terms of close textual analysis and the creative decisions behind a wide variety of different types of texts. They may explore graffiti, site-specific writing – on a mountain, on the side of a building, a bill board; illustrated and illustrative writing; graphic novels; concrete and shaped text; and text-based animations. You can pursue critical or creative paths in your final submission.
Transmedia Storyworlds– Dissertation Only
The module explores the socio-cultural histories of transmedia franchises and their fictional storyworlds across TV, radio, films, comic books and videogames. Transmedia Storyworlds equips students with an advanced understanding of how industrial forces shape productions of storyworld content across a given transmedia franchise, and explores how adaptations of fictional storyworlds exploit the narrative affordances of a range of different media. The module equips students with an advanced understanding of transnational flows whereby cultures from around the world reimagine globally famous characters and storyworlds so as to establish locally specific meanings, and critically examine the ideological positions of transmedia franchises and their storyworlds.
Through class interaction, individual research and tutor supervision, you are encouraged to develop your own comic voice and persona and to devise and write original ideas toward solo live performance. A visiting professional comedian will be invited in to give feedback on the work before it is performed and/or recorded.
Scriptwriting for TV and Film
Through a professionally geared script development programme, you will create first a premise, then treatment, step outline and first draft for a complete screenplay of at least fifty minutes. In seminars you will discuss ideas for story, character and theme within the group. Treatments, step outlines and the first draft are developed in one-to-one tutorials.
Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.
What will I be doing?
Contextual and written work
As part of your creative writing course, your timetable will include a breakdown of your scheduled lessons, with timeslots for you to explore your independent research interests. Your classes will be based at our Peel Park or MediaCityUK campuses.
Your lectures are fairly formal, with a lecturer addressing a large group of students from a variety of courses across the different disciplines we offer. They’re also a great opportunity to meet fellow students from across your course.
Tutorials are more informal, consisting of small group teaching that is often student-led.
Seminars are also informal and tend to be a mixture of tutor-led and student-led discussions.
Practical workshops give you the chance to demonstrate new skills. Outside speakers are sometimes invited to share their experiences in industry and give advice.
Creative writing workshops
In creative writing workshops, you’ll be given one-to-one support, including feedback from your tutors on your work. A valuable opportunity to focus on your individual practice.
Practice-based creative projects
Practice-based creative projects are directed by students. They are also where you’ll be given your assigned projects and deadlines.
An important part of your creative writing degree is the opportunity to showcase your academic strengths in a variety of different ways. Your production and creative writing modules are typically assessed through creative work, with others evaluated through essays. There are no exams as part of this course.
BE A PART OF A CREATIVE, SUPPORTIVE COMMUNITY
All our English courses are delivered by the Salford School of Arts, Media, and Creative Technology. Our focus is to ensure that you have the skills you need to pursue your dreams, and we encourage our students, past and present, to collaborate with each other and achieve great things.
Each year - through the Create Student Awards – our School rewards the incredible achievements and successes of our final year and postgraduate students.
Whatever you choose to study with us, you’ll be mentored and supported by experts. And once you graduate, it won’t end there. You’ll join a thriving alumni network across Greater Manchester and beyond, meaning you’ll be supported professionally and personally whenever you need it.
Whatever platform or medium you choose to explore we’ll support you. On this Creative Writing degree, you'll have access to our:
- Excellent live performance spaces, including a 350-seat theatre.
- Broadcast standard TV acting and presenting studios (including green screen);
- A radio drama studio;
- Post production video and audio facilities;
- And more.
Our students, staff and industry also regularly perform shows using the New Adelphi Theatre to public audiences.
You'll have access to our library which is equipped with a vast collection of books and computers suites you can use during your studies.
MEET THE ENGLISH TEACHING STAFF
Are you looking to learn more about the background of our English tutors and demonstrators, or put a face to a name?
Find out who'll work with you throughout your academic journey at the University of Salford.
What about after uni?
There’s never been a better time to begin your career as a professional writer. While a creative writing degree is a good course to choose if you’re a budding author, playwright or poet, the possibilities don’t end there. Creative writing careers include roles in related industries, such as publishing, editing or teaching, but also commercial opportunities in marketing, journalism and public relations. What’s more, you’ll be well equipped with a portfolio of work that you can use to evidence your writing skills and establish your reputation as a writer.
Graduates showing strong academic and research skills can pursue a further postgraduate path through our Postgraduate programmes on a full-time or part-time basis subject to a satisfactory proposal.
We’ve developed this creative writing course to meet the needs of the creative industries. That’s why you’ll work on your creative talent and subject expertise. Salford has close associations with a range of literary, academic and professional bodies across Manchester, such as:
- The BBC
- Red Telephone Press
- Conville&Walsh Literary Agency
- Legend Press
- Erbacce Press
- If not P then Q Press
- Knives Forks and Spoons Press
- The Theatre Royal, Hyde
- British Isles North West section of Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators
- Old Vic Theatre New Voices Company
- The Biographers' Club
- National Association of Writers in Education
- Carcanet Press
- HOME Manchester
What you need to know
Dream of seeing your words in print? Want to bring your ideas to life on stage? Looking to build on your creative writing skills by learning about production and multimedia? If so, our BA (Hons) Creative Writing course is the right option for you. Offering you the chance to focus on a range of disciplines within writing, you will also develop skills in key creative technologies including audio and visual digital equipment. So, alongside being a skilled writer, you’ll also have the confidence to run creative projects from beginning to end.
Employers in the creative industries are increasingly seeking candidates with a grounding in production techniques for a range of media. That’s why this degree is designed to explore these methods within the context of film, radio, television and printed media. This means that as you’re writing your masterpiece, you’ll also be developing the skills needed to compete as a creative professional.
English Language at grade C/level 4 or above (or equivalent). Maths at grade C/4 or above (or equivalent) is preferred but not essential.
You must fulfil our GCSE entry requirements as well as one of the requirements listed below.
UCAS Tariff Points
BTEC National Diploma
104-120 points. Creative writing, English language, English literature, English language/literature preferred but not essential. General studies accepted.
Irish Leaving Certificate
104-120 points. Creative writing, English language, English literature, English language/literature preferred but not essential. General studies accepted.
Pass Diploma with 71% overall.
We accept qualifications from all around the world. Find your country to see a full list of entry requirements.
If you are an international student and not from a majority English speaking country, you will need IELTS 6.0 with no element below 5.5.
Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)
We welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. Once we have received your application we will assess it and recommend it for SAES if you are an eligible candidate.
There are two different routes through the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme and applicants will be directed to the one appropriate for their course. Assessment will either be through a review of prior learning or through a formal test.
|Type of study||Year||Fees|
|Full-time home||2023/24||£9,250per year|
|Full-time international||2023/24||£16,380per year|
You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.
Scholarships for international students
If you are a high-achieving international student, you may be eligible for one of our scholarships. Explore our international scholarships.
All set? Let's apply
Course ID Q321