Creative Writing

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Academic Year of Entry: 2023/24
Course overview
(Integrated Master in Literature:) Integrated Master in Literature Studies
Creative Writing
University of Essex
University of Essex
Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies
Colchester Campus
Creative Writing


Professional accreditation


Admission criteria

IELTS (International English Language Testing System) code

Course qualifiers


Rules of assessment

Rules of assessment are the rules, principles and frameworks which the University uses to calculate your course progression and final results.

Additional notes


External examiners

Staff photo
Dr Eleanor Perry

Lecturer in Creative Writing (Poetry)

University of Kent

External Examiners provide an independent overview of our courses, offering their expertise and help towards our continual improvement of course content, teaching, learning, and assessment. External Examiners are normally academics from other higher education institutions, but may be from the industry, business or the profession as appropriate for the course. They comment on how well courses align with national standards, and on how well the teaching, learning and assessment methods allow students to develop and demonstrate the relevant knowledge and skills needed to achieve their awards. External Examiners who are responsible for awards are key members of Boards of Examiners. These boards make decisions about student progression within their course and about whether students can receive their final award.

eNROL, the module enrolment system, is now open until Monday 23 October 2023 8:59AM, for students wishing to make changes to their module options.


Core You must take this module.
You must pass this module. No failure can be permitted.
Core with Options You can choose which module to study.
You must pass this module. No failure can be permitted.
Compulsory You must take this module.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.
Compulsory with Options You can choose which module to study.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.
Optional You can choose which module to study.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.

Year 1 - 2023/24

Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Min Credits Max Credits
01  LT705-4-SP-CO  The Humanities Graduate: Future Pathways  Compulsory  15  15 
02  LT111-4-FY-CO  Origins and Transformations in Literature and Drama  Compulsory  30  30 
03  LT191-4-AU-CO  The Writer's Toolkit  Compulsory  15  15 
04  LT182-4-AU-CO  Text Up Close: Reading for Criticism  Compulsory  15  15 
05  LT146-4-SP-CO  Writing for the Radio  Compulsory  15  15 
06  LT143-4-AU-CO  Poetry: A Very Short Introduction  Compulsory  15  15 
07    Spring term option from list  Optional  15  15 

Year 2 - 2024/25

Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Min Credits Max Credits
01  LT204-5-AU-CO  Criticism: Practice and Theory  Compulsory  15  15 
02  LT209-5-AU-CO  Writing Structures  Compulsory  15  15 
03  LT219-5-SP-CO  Writing the Short Story  Compulsory  15  15 
04  LT245-5-FY-CO  Creative Non-Fiction  Compulsory  30  30 
05    LT269-5-SP or option from list  Compulsory with Options  15  15 
06    2nd year Literature or outside option(s) from list  Optional  30  30 

Year 3 - 2025/26

Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Min Credits Max Credits
01    Final year Creative Writing option(s) from list  Optional  30  30 
02    Final year Creative Writing option(s) from list  Optional  30  30 
03    LT831-6-FY or LT832-6-FY  Compulsory with Options  30  30 
04    Final year Literature option(s) from list  Optional  30  30 

Year 4 - 2026/27

Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Min Credits Max Credits
01  LT901-7-FY-CO  Dissertation Preparation: Postgraduate Research and Writing Skills  Core  20  20 
02  LT880-7-FY-CO  Dissertation  Core  40  40 
03    Options from list  Optional  60  60 

Exit awards

A module is given one of the following statuses: 'core' – meaning it must be taken and passed; 'compulsory' – meaning it must be taken; or 'optional' – meaning that students can choose the module from a designated list. The rules of assessment may allow for limited condonement of fails in 'compulsory' or 'optional' modules, but 'core' modules cannot be failed. The status of the module may be different in any exit awards which are available for the course. Exam Boards will consider students' eligibility for an exit award if they fail the main award or do not complete their studies.

Programme aims

The Master of Literary Studies in Creative Writing is a four-year degree that combines elements of undergraduate and postgraduate study. Students will have the opportunity to explore the world of postgraduate creative writing, including specialist writing (in experimental forms or for new media), and receive professional guidance about developing work for publication beyond the university. By offering a shorter dissertation that is competed in the summer term, the MLitSt allows students to move on after just three terms of postgraduate study, with experience of Integrated Masters (level 7) study and a full portfolio of undergraduate work.

Learning outcomes and learning, teaching and assessment methods

On successful completion of the programme a graduate should demonstrate knowledge and skills as follows:

A: Knowledge and understanding

A101: Specialist knowledge of the dissertation subject.

A102: Advanced knowledge of taught module topics assessed at FHEQ Level 7.

A103: Novel contributions to the field of study in the form of coursework essays and creative projects.

A104: Understanding of research culture and research skills.

A105: Understanding of academic pathways beyond undergraduate study and pathways to academic publication.

Learning methods

A101 – Research and writing of final project or dissertation undertaken with very small group and individual supervision allowing for as broad a range of access requirements as possible.

A102 – Small group seminars delivered by subject experts across topics relevant to the MLitSt disciplines.

A103 – Students have the opportunity to work with module supervisors in writing their coursework pieces, which also build on small group seminar discussion. Essays and final pieces are a pedagogic tool as well as a means of assessment.

A104 – Students will attend specialized research skills modules to help them understand the research culture in which they are participating and to equip them to succeed.

A105 – Through working closely with academic staff in small groups, and through LT 901 and LT 905, students will learn about ways to participate in a research and publication culture beyond the university.

Assessment methods

A101 – Through dissertation marking.

A102 – Through participation marks, included as standard in all LiFTS modules.

A103 – Assessment of written coursework.

A104 – These modules include a coursework portfolio.

A105 – Through student engagement across the course, assessed by all aspects of coursework.

B: Intellectual and cognitive skills

B101: Advanced written communication.

B102: Advanced verbal reasoning and discursive skills.

B103: Advanced independent research skills.

B104: Deeper understanding of the field of literary studies.

Learning methods

B101 – There is a written coursework component to all modules. Students have access to one-on-one writing support in addition to small group seminars making the process maximally inclusive.

B102 – Small group seminars are workshop and discussion led, meaning that learning is directed and sustained by student participation.

B103 – Students will work one-on-one with a member of academic staff to compose and original dissertation.

B104 – Students take a range of taught modules enabling them to see their discipline from a number of different perspectives.

Assessment methods

B101 – Coursework marking including dissertation/ final project.

B102 – Student participation in small-group seminars will influence the nuance and scope of their coursework.

B103 – LT 901/ LT 905 coursework portfolio and final dissertation/ project.

B104 – The holistic mark for the MLitSt will demonstrate the students’ understanding of the field.

C: Practical skills

C101: Ability to express oneself in a clear, argumentative and rigorous way.

C102: Ability to search for, and then abstract and synthesise relevant information from a range of sources, using books, journal articles, library and internet resources.

C103: Ability to select own topic and structure a substantial piece of independent study.

Learning methods

C101 – Students will generate a portfolio of creative work, with critical discussion in seminars and critical commentaries, that builds their argumentative, evidential and expressive communication.

C102 – Students will use a broad range of research methods in undertaking creative work as a research practice..

C103 – All students will design and complete a final project at 10,000 words length.

Assessment methods

C101 – Coursework assessment.

C102 – Coursework assessment.

C103 – Assessed by final project.

D: Key skills

D101: Clear, focused, relevant and effective written expression and oral communication developed through seminar participation and written coursework.

D102: Use appropriate IT to research and present materials.

D103: Management of projects and timetables. Finding, understanding and organising information.

D104: Ability to "read" an argument in seminar discussion; ability to respond effectively; ability to work in a variety of group contexts

D105: Receptivity to feedback in the form of written comments on coursework and oral communications.

Learning methods

The five relevant key skills are implicit throughout the degree, and are supported in their development by seminar work, feedback on essays, and key skills packages.

Assessment methods

All relevant key skills are assessed through coursework and dissertations; D4 is additionally assessed through a participation mark.


The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its programme specification is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to courses, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include a change of law or regulatory requirements, industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key personnel, change in government policy, or withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to courses may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications.

The full Procedures, Rules and Regulations of the University governing how it operates are set out in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.


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