English and Creative Writing - BA (Hons)

UCAS Code:
Full-time: QW38
Part-time: apply direct to the University
Attendance:
Full Time (3 years), Part Time (6 years)
Starting:
September 2018
Campus:

Clearing 2018

96 points

(or equivalent) is the minimum you will need to be considered for this course in Clearing.

Use the UCAS Tariff Calculator to work out your points.

0121 331 6777

Our Clearing hotline opens at 6am on Thursday 16 August.

Call us now

Social media

Get an offer or ask a question by direct messaging us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

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The BA (Hons) English and Creative Writing programme will support you in developing a rigorous and creative writing practice, while also honing your critical and analytical abilities.

You will develop your writing, close-reading and research skills, and learn to craft different kinds of original writing – from critical argument to fiction. In the School of English, you will be taught by world-leading academics and practitioners offering a diverse range of modules.

You will study literature from various major periods, movements and genres. You will also have the opportunity to produce audio drama, screenplay, short stories and poetry. Your degree will allow you to tailor your studies to your individual interests and career aspirations with both a local and global outlook.       

What's covered in the course?

English and Creative Writing allow you to examine how language and literature engage with societies and cultures past and present, to develop a rigorous, creative and disciplined writing practice, and to express insights into contemporary concerns, effecting the way you and others see the world.

Through workshops with published authors you will hone your writing craft, experimenting with forms including audio drama, screenplay, short fiction, poetry and the novel. You will produce polished pieces of writing using creative and analytical approaches that complement your study of English.

You will benefit from student-focused and research-informed teaching in a friendly, supportive learning environment where you will be taught by world-leading academics and expert practitioners who foster a community of experimentation, innovation and inclusivity.

Our graduates are characterised by their inventiveness, critical thinking and intellectual curiosity, reflected in the skills and abilities that enables them to adapt to a wide range of career paths and employment opportunities. Throughout your studies, you will develop a range of transferable skills valued in the creative industries and beyond.

The School is committed to contributing to the cultural life of Birmingham and the wider West Midlands. We do this through working closely with partner colleges and schools, by maintaining close links with cultural institutions such as the Birmingham and Midland Institute (BMI) and Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery (BMAG), and by working with agencies such as Writing West Midlands. In all of this we seek to widen participation and provide opportunities for the community to engage with the discipline and the University.

Why Choose Us?

  • You’ll be taught by expert practitioners and world-leading academics, who encourage experimentation and innovation. Our courses are interdisciplinary by design, offering opportunities to explore literature, drama, language and creative writing, and collaborate in, for instance, student-led conferences and showcases.
  • Alongside your formal learning, you’ll have the opportunity to meet acclaimed authors and industry specialists as part of the activities of our Institute of Creative and Critical Writing. Recent guests include author Kit de Waal, poetry activist Jo Bell, agent Cathryn Summerhayes, and Writing West Midlands’ CEO, Jonathan Davidson.
  • You’ll be part of a thriving creative community, alive with opportunities to develop your creative and critical skills. We encourage you to seek out ways to collaborate with student actors, radio producers, musicians and illustrators across a Faculty equipped with world-class production facilities and an internationally-acclaimed student radio station.
  • While you’ll develop abilities as an independent researcher and effective communicator, responding imaginatively to briefs and completing research projects, you can also submit work to our annual anthology and discuss your creative career with those working in the industry.
  • We contribute to a thriving literary scene, whether it’s holding informal poetry readings in the pub, hosting the launch of the acclaimed Poetry Review, or interviewing Man Booker Prize shortlisted authors at Birmingham Literary Festival. 

BA Hons Eng Creative Writing overview

Students outside Millennium Point

Open Days

Our next Open Day for this course will take place in Autumn 2018. Register your interest and we'll let you know details as soon as they are available.

Register your interest

To welcome all new home and EU undergraduate degree students starting in 2018 or 2019, we're giving at least £150 worth of credit to spend in a host of ways, on books and a range of learning materials. Even better, it doesn’t have to be repaid. Terms and conditions apply.

Find out more

This course is open to International students

Where our students go

Our students have gone on to work in jobs such as:

  • Authors, writers and translators
  • Marketing associate professionals
  • Primary and nursery education teaching professionals

Entry Requirements

96 points

(or equivalent) is the minimum you will need to be considered for this course in Clearing. Use the UCAS Tariff Calculator to work out your points.

0121 331 6777

Our Clearing hotline opens at 6am on Thursday 16 August.

Call us now

Social media

Get an offer or ask a question by direct messaging us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

Message us

Alternative options

If you do not have 96 points, you may like to look at our:

Or explore your options if you don’t have enough points for any of our courses.

We accept a range of qualifications, the most popular of which are detailed below.

Essential Requirements

You must have the minimum of 5 GCSE's at Grade 4 (C) or above which MUST include English Language C+. No other equivalence (including Key Skills) will be considered.

Essential

112 UCAS tariff points from A/AS Level with a minimum of 3 A Levels (or their equivalent).

Typical Offers
UK Qualification Requirements
GCE A Level/ AS Level Grades BBC required. 112 UCAS Tariff points from 3 A level subjects including English at grade C or above. May consider film studies/communication studies/creative writing in lieu of English if applicant submits satisfactory essay set by the department. Remaining points can be made up with AS levels in different subjects. AS level in the same subject of an A level will not be accepted.
Access to Higher Education Diploma Pass with 60 credits, 45 at level 3 and 15 at Level 2 including English at Level 3.  Distinction/merit in 18 credits at Level 3 plus answer set essay question.
BTEC National Diploma (12-units not including early years) D*D* or combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 112 UCAS points
BTEC Extended Diploma (18-units not including early years) DMM (112 UCAS points) in related area (e.g. Media, Performing Arts).
BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/ National Award (6-units not including early years) D* or combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 112 UCAS points
International Baccalaureate Diploma

Obtain a minimum of 28 points overall. Students who do not complete the IB Diploma will be considered on the basis of their IB Certificates if they obtain a total of 14 points  or above from three higher level subjects and alongside other acceptable level 3 qualifications to meet 112 UCAS Tariff Points.

Irish Leaving Certificate Pass the Irish Leaving Certificate with a minimum of 112 tariff points, achieved in four Higher level subjects. This must include English Language taken at either Ordinary level (minimum grade O1-O4 (or A-C/A1-C3)) or Higher level (minimum grade H5/D1). 
Scottish Higher/ Advanced Higher Achieve a minimum of 112 tariff points achieved from either five Highers or a combination of two Highers offered with two Advanced Highers.
Welsh Baccalaureate (core plus options) Pass plus grades CC at A-Level including English (or equivalent qualifications) to achieve a minimum total of 112 UCAS points
Other qualifications
If you have a qualification that is not listed in the table please refer to our full entry requirements on UCAS. Further guidance on tariff points can be found on the UCAS website.
Extra information for EU/International students
Essential
EU/Non-EU (International) Qualifications Requirements
IELTS 6.0 overall with 5.5 minimum in all bands
International Baccalaureate Diploma (or equivalent, including internationally accredited Foundation courses).

In addition to the above, applicants will also need:

English Group A - Grade 4 or above
OR
English Group B and Ab Initio - Grade 5

Country-specific entry requirements and qualifications.

International Students

Entry requirements here

 

International students who cannot meet the direct entry requirements can begin their degree studies at Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC).

Worried about results?

Worried about your results?
Explore your options with Clearing

If you're worried about your exam results, changed your mind about your course choices or haven't applied yet - Clearing is a great time to explore your options. We explain what Clearing is and how it works.

Advice about Clearing 2018

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
BA (Hons) Sep 2018 FT 3 years £9,250 per year
Call Now
PT 6 years See below

International Students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
BA (Hons) Sep 2018 FT 3 years £12,000 per year

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our PDF application form and equal opportunities PDF form instead. The University reserves the right to increase fees in line with inflation based on the Retail Prices Index or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament up to a maximum of five per cent.

Places available to start in September 2018

If you'd like to start this course full-time this September, you can apply through Clearing.


0121 331 6777

Our Clearing hotline opens at 6am on Thursday 16 August.

Call us now

Social media

Get an offer or ask a question by direct messaging us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

Message us

Want to start in September 2019?

You can apply via UCAS from 5 September 2018.

Personal statement

UK / EU students are required to submit a personal statement as part of their application for this course.*

The personal statement gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

Course choice

Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?

Career plans

If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.

Work experience

Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.

School or college experience

Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.

Non-accredited skills or achievement

eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.

You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.

Get more information on writing personal statements.

*Non-EU students are not required to submit a personal statement when applying for this course.

Fees for part time students

If you study this course part-time or via distance learning, you will be charged on a pro-rata basis. This means your fee will be calculated per module.

Additional costs

Our courses include activities such as performance, exhibitions, field trips and production of works or artefacts which may require you to purchase specific equipment, instruments, books, materials, hire of venues and accommodation, or other items. Many of these activities are essential and compulsory parts of your learning experience.

The link below gives you an estimate of the possible costs associated with key activities on your course. Please bear in mind that these are only estimates of costs based on past student experience and feedback. The actual costs could vary considerably (either greater or lower than these estimates) depending on your choices as you progress through the course.

All our students are provided with 100 free pages of printing each year to a maximum total value of £15.

View additional costs for this course

Worried about personal statements?

Worried about personal statements?

If you've got no idea where to start or just want to check you're on the right track, we’ve got expert advice and real examples from our students to help you nail your personal statement. You can even download our ultimate personal statement guide for free.

Get personal statement advice

Loans and Grants

Financial Support

We offer further information on possible undergraduate financial support. This includes the type of loans, grants and scholarships available both from the government and from Birmingham City University.

Year one

Literature, Drama and Origin (semester one)
20 credits

This module introduces you to the study of literature through the examination of authorship, literary history, origins of form, and influence and allusion. You will also learn about the principles of dramaturgy and be encouraged to apply your knowledge in the practical explorations of plays.

Foundations of Language (semester one)
20 credits

This module introduces you to a number of core topics in contemporary language studies, including pragmatics, sociolinguistics, and psycholinguistics. You will also learn about key linguistic concepts and terminology and will develop your skills in critical thinking, analysing data, and identifying and synthesising complex information.

Foundations of Creative Writing (semester one)
20 credits

By experimenting with different ways of gathering source material and generating new writing in response to stimuli, you will shape and craft that writing into prose and poetry. You will develop a rigorous, inventive and sustainable writing practice, in weekly creative writing tasks that will serve as the foundation for your assessment.

Key Critical Concepts (semester two)
20 credits

This module introduces you critical concepts fundamental to undergraduate-level English studies, In order to analyse literary, linguistic, dramatic and media texts. Lectures and seminars will develop your understanding of the key theories of meaning, critical distance and representation, and how these can be applied to texts.

Craft of Writing (semester two)
20 credits

This module introduces you to a range of techniques used in creative writing, such as showing, telling, detail, and description. Through exploring different literary formats, such as screenplay and poetry, you will learn about key elements of effective writing and how to apply these techniques to enhance your own work.

In your second semester you will also have a choice of one of the following modules:

Literature and Conflict (semester two)
20 credits

You will examine the idea of conflict in poetry, the short story and novel. From war and revolution to social class and gender, and also at a psychological level, conflict creates dramatic interest in narrative, and you will consider how a historical understanding of conflict is important in our contemporary world.

Language in Action (semester two)
20 credits

This module further develops your understanding of language studies and covers a variety of topics, including phonetics, grammar, and corpus linguistics. You will learn how to identify and analyse the phonetic and grammatical features of English in context and will develop your ability to critically evaluate data, construct clear arguments and integrate scholarly research into your writing.

Modern Drama (semester two)
20 credits

This module introduces you to dramaturgical styles associated with ‘modernism’ through the exploration of key playwrights and practitioners from the late nineteenth century. You will examine seminal works from this era, both as written texts and in performance, concluding with your own practical interpretation of a chosen play informed by historical and critical research.

Year two

Key Critical Traditions (semester one)
20 credits

This module introduces you to the most influential twentieth-century schools of thought within English. You will employ different critical perspectives for thinking about literature and related art forms, using tools of analysis to reveal the unexpected and exciting possibilities of critical thought. You will explore theoretical works in their own right, and gain insight into how criticism has developed historically.

Writing Short Stories (semester one)
40 credits

This module introduces you to writing short fiction. You will learn from the work of a diverse range of short story writers, exploring the distinctive characteristics of the form, and experimenting with techniques involved in crafting a strong short story. You will identify, practice and apply elements of craft such as narrative structure, voice, diction, dialogue, characterisation and imagery as they relate to the short story form in particular, and experiment with editing and rewriting. You will share your work in progress with other students for constructive criticism, and explore ways of giving effective feedback, as well as reflecting on how to improve your own work.

20 credit module (semester two)
20 credits

During semester two you will study two 20 credit English modules totalling 40 credits. Choose any two 20 credit modules from the blue button below:

Year 2, 20 credit modules

In your second semester you can choose to complete either the Collaborative Practice option or the Work Placement option (see below).

Collaborative Practice (semester two)
20 credits

The module is an opportunity to learn and critically reflect on the skills of collaboration by enabling you to create an interdisciplinary project with students from complementary disciplines, or with academic staff. Collaboration is a vital employability skill within the Creative Industries and this module allows you to develop these skills, making use of University facilities and with the support of academic staff. Within this module framework, several kinds of collaborative opportunities are available. For example, with the approval of your supervisor, you can determine a project based on your own interests; your supervisor may set you a predetermined project to enable you to work with other students in a way that is appropriate to your subject area; or there may be opportunities for you to collaborate with staff on research projects. In all cases, you must apply your subject skills to an interdisciplinary project which will be agreed in advance with your supervisor.

Work Placement (semester two)
20 credits

The purpose of this module is to enable you to develop professional attributes and subject skills through experience in the work place, and to critically reflect upon your learning in that context. You will normally be expected to arrange your own placement, with support from academic staff and BCU Careers. Typically, the placement duration is 70 hours. This can be achieved in one block, or can be dispersed over a longer period of time, if required. It is also possible to fulfil this module via a shorter placement of 35 hours duration and a linked ‘live’ project set by the employer.

Alternatively, you may choose to take the Study Abroad option which will allow you to achieve all 60 credits needed for semester two:

Study abroad
60 credits

Find out more about studying abroad on our Erasmus page

Year three

Writing the Novel (semester one)
40 credits

This module will provide you with the skills to undertake a sustained, in-depth and research-informed creative project. You will work individually to initiate, develop and shape a substantial piece of fiction, exploring a subject, style and narrative approach that is of personal interest. You will also work in groups with other students to inform and develop work-in-progress and to produce short presentations on elements of writing craft in relation to your practice. You will be offered guidance on content, structure and style. The outcome will take the form of a substantial extract from a novel, along with a fully-developed synopsis and a reflective, critical commentary. You will work independently, but you will also receive one-to-one supervision along with small- and whole-group support. Your learning will typically be supported by workshops, Moodle activities, seminars and advice from established writers.

20 credit module option (semester one)
20 credits

Modules will run in either semester one or semester two and are selected from the list below. While we aim to run the majority of modules please note that availability is dependent on student uptake.

Year 3, 20 credit modules

In your second semester you will also complete one of the major project modules which include: Dissertation, Advanced Poetry, Drama Workshop, and Undergraduate Conference (see below).

Dissertation (semester two)
40 credits

The purpose of the module is to enable you to undertake a sustained, in-depth and theoretically informed research project exploring an area of personal interest. The research outcome is individually negotiated with your supervisor and will take the form of a written piece. Your area of study must be relevant to your programme and you are actively encouraged to choose a topic relevant to their future academic or professional development.

The focus of the module is independent learning, with one to one sessions from a supervisor who is familiar with the selected topic. (In addition, you will be supported by group seminars, workshops and online materials relevant to the discipline.)

Advanced Poetry (semester two)
40 credits

This module will enable you to build upon your current reading and writing of poetry, and to develop your range, technique and sophistication as a contemporary poet and thinker on poetry. As well as cultivating your ability to read poetry sympathetically and critically, you will learn how to nurture the poetic imagination and what Ted Hughes called its ‘psychic disciplines’, with a view to strengthening and emboldening the intuition and sensitivity upon which poetic technique depends. You also will acquire practical knowledge of publishing and performing your own work. In composing, designing and producing a volume of your own poetry, you will initiate, manage and complete an independent creative project, and in writing an author statement to accompany it, you will describe and justify your own ideas concerning poetry, and the relationship between your work and the intellectual and poetic traditions in which it participates.

Drama Workshop (semester two)
40 credits

This module will provide you with the skills to undertake a sustained, in-depth and research-informed practical project as part of a group. You will work collaboratively to identify, stage and perform a play, extracts of more than one play, or alternative type of dramatic text. This task will enable you to explore an area of theatre production or performance that is of personal interest. You will be offered guidance on your choice of text(s) on the basis of the composition and interests of the group, and logistical and technical considerations including performance space. By keeping a production log throughout the rehearsal process, you will record and self-evaluate your developing practice in relation to relevant research. This will enable you to reflect critically on your work, and contextualise it within Drama and English studies.

Undergraduate Conference (semester two)
40 credits

This module will provide you with the knowledge and skills to undertake a sustained, in-depth and theoretically informed independent research project while working collaboratively with other students to stage an undergraduate conference. As a group you will be given a broad theme (for example, ‘Contemporary Identities’, ‘Making History’ or ‘Modern Myths’) decided by your module tutor in advance. You will interpret that theme to produce a focused, 10 minute, oral research paper in one of the following areas: language, literature, drama or creative writing.

You will examine different ways of interpreting the brief based on subject discipline and practice the skills necessary to work collaboratively with others in the running of an academic conference. You will be able to identify a relevant topic and develop it to produce an evaluative and theoretically or creatively-informed response to the initial brief. The conference itself will be supported by a micro-site and twitter feed. Here you will have to create a professional online presence and participate in the marketing and effective communication of the conference proceedings and publicity.

20 credit module option (semester two)
20 credits

Modules will run in either semester one or semester two and are selected from the list below. While we aim to run the majority of modules please note that availability is dependent on student uptake.

Year 3, 20 credit modules

Course Structure

In Year one you explore core subjects in English Literature, Drama, Language and Creative Writing through a combination of face-to-face lectures, seminars, field trips, workshops, online tasks, group work and – crucially – independent research and practice. You will build on these theory and practice-based elements in the second half of Year one, deepening your understanding and practice of elements of writing craft across a range of forms and genres (such as audio drama, memoir and screenplay), along with other disciplines of your choice.

In Year two, you have the opportunity to specialise further. Depending on the modules you choose, project work in creative writing might include writing screenplays and pitches for short films, crafting short story collections, poetry pamphlets, or writing and producing audio drama. You will complete either a collaborative project or work placement, or you may choose to spend your second semester studying abroad. You also have the opportunity to draw on the full range of English modules which will help you develop your skills in critical analysis, investigative enquiry and synthesising ideas from a range of sources – all skills highly valued in the workplace.

In Year three, you can keep exploring new fields of study, while also deepening your understanding in your chosen specialisms. This might include exploring new forms, for instance, by researching and writing creative nonfiction (which includes travel writing, autobiography and literary journalism), or by specialising further as a poet or screenwriter. You will also choose options from the full suite of English modules available. Alongside your studies, we advise you to attend face to face sessions with literary agents and other industry professionals visiting our Institute of Creative and Critical Writing. You will complete a major independent project, such as a substantial extract of a novel, enabling you to showcase all the skills you’ve learned during your degree. 


Hours in the classroom

In your first year, you will spend a cumulative total of 216 hours in taught class time. In your second year, you will spend a cumulative total of 180 hours in taught class time. In your final year, you will spend a cumulative total of 144 hours in taught class time. The exact pattern of this will vary depending on which modules you select and when these modules run.

Overall, you will usually spend 8 to 10 hours per week in the classroom.

Teaching breakdown

valuelabelcolor
37 Time in lectures, seminars and similar MidnightBlue
63 Time in independent study RoyalBlue

Assessment breakdown

valuelabelcolor
8 Written exams DarkOrange
89 Coursework FireBrick
3 Practical exams #fece5a

Teaching and learning activities

Teaching and learning activities may include lectures, seminars, practical workshops and guided independent study. You will also have access to a wide range of extracurricular opportunities, including theatre trips, seminars by prestigious guest speakers and published authors and a programme of scholarly and creative events. Online facilities, such as the University’s Virtual Learning Environment Moodle, are used to guide, support and enhance your learning experience.

You will benefit from tutorial support and spoken or written feedback on your learning and preliminary work to help you in preparing for and reflecting on your assignments. A wide range of assessment methods are used in the programme, including essays, presentations, performances, conferences and creative portfolios, giving you the opportunity to develop a wide range of skills.

77 per cent of research undertaken by lecturers from the School of English, classed as world-leading or internationally excellent.
The Research Excellence Framework (REF2014)


Links

The School maintains close links with cultural institutions such as the Birmingham and Midland Institute (BMI) and Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery (BMAG) and works with agencies such as Writing West Midlands.

View more examples of student work...

Overseas Opportunities  

We encourage you to consider taking the opportunity provided by the Erasmus scheme during your time with us. Recent graduate, Charlotte Keogh, studied for a semester in Austria as part of her undergraduate degree.

Charlotte said: "Going to live and study in Austria was the single most terrifying and tremendous experience of my life. I left England with a self-taught basic knowledge of German (meaning I could say “hello”, “goodbye” and “can I have a glass of water please?”) and left being able to hold conversations with the gorgeous old ladies who shared my tram journeys through the city every morning."

Read Charlotte's story

Further Study

After completing your undergraduate degree, you might want to progress to our  MA in Creative Writing or any one of a multitude of postgraduate programmes, including PGCEs for teacher training, programmes in digital marketing, journalism and public relations or conversion courses such as the Graduate Diploma in Law programmes.

Trips and Visits

Novelist Jim Crace conducted a workshop that was held over three consecutive days in which time he imparted his professional knowledge to the participating School of English students. Jim covered his own personal approach to writing and making your own novel marketable. The students took part in writing activities and shared their work with the group to spark their discussion of creative writing.

Enhancing Employability Skills

Employability is embedded across our programme, from sector- and industry-specific skills in creative writing, drama, linguistics and literature, through to transferable skills that hold real value regardless of your employment direction, including literacy and numeracy, time management and organisation, oral and written communication, team work, initiative and enterprise, creative and analytical thinking, self-direction and discipline, independence, information gathering and interpersonal skills.

You will have multiple opportunities to engage in problem solving and problem-based learning, particularly through individual assessments and collaborative practice modules, and to reflect on your own career development needs through participating in the Graduate+ scheme and other employability schemes over the course of your degree.

95 per cent of our English graduates are in work or continuing their studies.
(2015/16 DLHE statistics)

Placements

The School is committed to developing strong links with employers in Birmingham and the West Midlands. Several language and Creative Writing modules have explicit employer and industry engagement, where you work in collaboration with employer and external partners over the course of the semester and are encouraged to adopt industry-standard practices to facilitate connections and links independently with external partners.

In the case of the Work Placement module, you will have the opportunity to develop skills and abilities in a sector-specific context, while ensuring that academic aims and objectives are met as part of your wider learning journey.

OpportUNIty

OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.

Links to Industry

We regularly seek out opportunities to build further links with partner organisations in the region, including Creative Black Country, Birmingham Literary Festival, Birmingham Museums Trust (including Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery), Black Country Museum Trust, Arvon Creative Writing Foundation, Flatpack Film Festival, West Midlands Screenwriters' Forum, and other Schools within the University, in addition to publishers, charities, third sector organisations, and more, in Birmingham and beyond.


Learn from industry experts 

The school regularly organises talks and visits that will provide you with the chance to learn from industry experts with guest masterclasses and visiting authors.

Novelist Jim Crace delivered a series of workshops with students, giving feedback on their work and an insight into the world of professional writing and the publishing industry. Student Nabiyah Saddique said: "It was beneficial to students like me who want to write and be an author by career, to see how his experiences have shaped him and how he has created such beautiful pieces of work from these experiences."

Jim also enjoyed the chance to work with the students: "Everybody tried their hands at pitching an idea, writing the opening paragraphs of a novel, and line editing. It was testing and daunting but nobody fell short. The level of commitment and ability was astounding. London publishers should be beating a path to the School of English; it houses writing talent in abundance."

Firewalking

BCU Graduate+

Through our courses we give you the skills and experience needed to get a head start when applying for jobs. But we offer something extra too – Graduate+.

Our unique programme gives you the chance to develop valuable skills outside of the more formal classroom learning. We award points for Graduate+ activities (including firewalking!) and these can be put towards a final Graduate+ award.

More about Graduate+

Graduate Jobs

Our graduates are characterised by their extensive subject knowledge, critical thinking and intellectual curiosity, reflected in the skills and abilities that will enable them to adapt to a wide range of career paths, employment opportunities, or further study at Master’s or PhD level.

Graduates go on to careers in teaching, librarianship, marketing, journalism and public relations.

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

The UK remains one of the world's leading study destinations

The UK remains one of the world's leading study destinations for international students.

The first-class experience offered by universities are reflected in the world’s largest survey of international students. International students are more likely to recommend the UK than any other leading English-language study destination.

Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC)

International students who have a serious interest in studying with us but who perhaps cannot meet the direct entry requirements, academic or English, or who have been out of education for some time, can enter Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC) and begin their degree studies.

BCUIC

BCUIC is part of the global Navitas Group, an internationally recognised education provider, and the partnership allows students to access the University’s facilities and services and move seamlessly through to achieving a Bachelor’s degree from Birmingham City University.

Learn more about BCUIC

Parkside and Curzon Buildings

Our Facilities

When you join Birmingham City University, the first thing you will notice is the high standard of our campuses. With an investment of £260 million across our buildings and facilities, we are committed to giving you the very best learning environment to help shape your experience.

The Curzon Building

Our School of English is housed in the Curzon Building, a £63 million development, located on our City Centre campus, in the vibrant second city that is Birmingham.

Discover your bright and open learning spaces, your 24 hour (during term time) library, drama, media and radio studios, along with state of the art lecture theatres, and a variety of sociable break-out areas, all adding to your unique learning experience.

The Curzon Building
Curzon Building entrance
Lecture theatre in The Curzon Building.
ADM English Discussions
ADM English Discussions 2
Curzon Building - Social space
Entrance to Curzon Library, which is open 24 hours a day during term time.
A selection of books in our six storey library.
English Drama Workshop 3
English Drama Workshop 1
English Drama Workshop 2
English Drama Workshop 4
Drama room controls 1
Drama room controls 2
The ASK desk – your first point of contact for all queries related to university life.
The light filled atrium leads into the café and restaurant.
The restaurant has a diverse menu with affordable and high quality food.
Curzon Building - Eagle and Ball bar
Eastside Park

Our Staff

As you have a great deal of choice throughout your degree, it’s likely you’ll come into contact with many of our inspiring, research-active staff, including Anna Lawrence, Subject Leader for Creative Writing and a novelist and poet, whose interests include collisions between the magical and the industrial, Andy Conway, specialist in screenwriting and founder of Digital Film Studio and talent development hub, BFilm Micro, and Rhoda Greaves, award-winning short story writer.

Dr Gregory Leadbetter

Director of the MA in Creative Writing, Director of the Institute of Creative and Critical Writing

Gregory is a poet and critic, with research interests in English Romanticism, poetry and creative writing. His poetry collections include The Fetch (Nine Arches Press, 2016) and The Body in the Well (HappenStance Press, 2007). A regular contributor to The Poetry Review, and his work is published widely in journals and anthologies. He has written radio drama for the BBC, and was awarded a Hawthornden Fellowship in 2013. Gregory's book on Coleridge’ s poetry, the transnatural, and the dilemmas of creativity, Coleridge and the Daemonic Imagination (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011) won the University English (formerly CCUE) Book Prize 2012.

As well as his work on Coleridge, he has published book chapters and articles on Wordsworth, Lamb, Keats and Ted Hughes. As Director of the Institute of Creative and Critical Writing in the School of English, he leads our programme of guest seminars and masterclasses with authors, editors and agents for our students, together with a programme of public literary events every year, including readings, book launches, seminars and writing workshops.

Gregory is currently supervising doctoral theses on representations of the domestic uncanny in contemporary short fiction, fictional autobiography and the fragmentary novel, and disability poetics.

Read Gregory's full profile

Anna Lawrence

Deputy Director of the Institute of Creative and Critical Writing

Anna writes prose and poetry. She is particularly interested in the interaction of the magical and the mundane, and her first novel, Ruby’s Spoon (Chatto & Windus, 2010), is set in a fictional Black Country town where witches and mermaids may (or may not) reside: Susan Hill wrote that this was “one of the best first novels I’ve ever read”. Her critical writing on Margaret Mahy and prize-winning poetry explores similar territory.

Before coming to Birmingham City University, and after leaving her job as a trainee prison governor, she facilitated community writing workshops and site-specific writing projects. Anna gained a first class degree from the University of Oxford.

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Andy Conway

Lecturer in Creative Writing

Andy is a prolific screenwriter and novelist with 30 years’ experience of the writing industry. He’s worked as a screenwriter on many films, both produced and lost in development hell, for over 20 years, and runs the Shooting People Screenwriters’ Network, with 11,000 worldwide members. He also co-founded the West Midlands Screenwriters’ Forum, and the new independent publishing collective, New Street Authors.

His feature film, Arjun & Alison, a campus revenge thriller set in Birmingham, toured film festivals around the world and was released in UK cinemas in spring 2014. He currently divides his time between the three feature films he has in pre-production, writing his series of historical fantasy novels, Touchstone, co-writing a guide to the world of self-publishing, and lecturing in Screenwriting at Birmingham City University.

Read Andy's full profile