BA

Creative Writing and Fine Art

BA Creative Writing and Fine Art Code WW18 Apply Now Scholarships and Bursaries worth over £15,000 – apply now

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Key Facts

Code WW18
  • Typical A-level offer

    BBB-ABB with B in any English-related A level, and B in Art or appropriate plus satisfactory portfolio

  • Course Length

    3 Years

Further details on entry requirements

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Creative Writing with Fine Art at Aberystwyth University will allow you to develop new or broaden and deepen your skills in painting, printmaking, photography to name a few whilst at the same time discovering and immersing yourself in the words that have our shaped our world. This cross-disciplinary degree will introduce to you an ever-expanding industry, providing you with an advantageous start after graduation. Under the expert guidance of our award-winning writers and experts in Fine Art, you will discover the hidden talents and find out what sort of artist you are. On completion to this degree, you will have not only a portfolio of exceptional creative material, but also the skills and attributes to flourish in any workplace. 

[NSS/DLHE Awards]

Learning that inspires- top 10 in the UK for teaching quality in the subject of English (The Complete University Guide 2018, The Times & Sunday Times 2018)

Department of English and Creative Writing: 97% student satisfaction (NSS 2017)

95.4% of undergraduates from the UK/EU from Aberystwyth University who graduated in 2016 were in professional level jobs or graduate level further study six months after graduating (HESA 2017)

The School of Art is 2nd in the UK for teaching experience and 3rd in the UK for teaching quality (The Good  University Guide, The Times & Sunday Times 2018). 

School of Art: 97% student satisfaction (NSS 2017)

100% of our graduates were in work or further study within 6 months, 7% more than Creative Arts and Design graduates nationally, (HESA 2017)

Overview

Why study Creative Writing with Fine Art at Aberystwyth University? 

  • Benefit from the disciplined acquisition of technical expertise, the formation of creative intelligence, and an historical, critical, theoretical and contemporary aware of Fine Art practice.
  • We are ranked top 10 in the UK for student satisfaction (NSS, 2017).
  • The School of Art at Aberystwyth University has been awarded Accredited Museum Status by Arts Council England. This demonstrates that our collection care and management are at the highest standard. 
  • Explore connections between creative and critical thinking and develop a deep understanding of the relationship between professional practice and imaginative thought.
  • Learn from experienced staff who are internationally renowned artists, authors, curators and art historians.
  • Participate in our study visits within the UK or abroad (destinations have included Madrid, Paris, Rome, Amsterdam, New York, Vienna, Barcelona, Venice, Moscow, St Petersburg, Florence, Budapest and Lisbon).
  • In your final year you will have the opportunity to take part in a writing retreat at a country house in mid Wales - an amazing opportunity to spend time with fellow students and staff, developing your final year projects and dissertations, in a splendid rural setting.
Our Staff

All academic staff in the Department of English and Creative Writing are active scholars and experts in their fields. They are either qualified to PhD level or have commensurate experience. Our Lecturers either hold or are working towards a Higher Education teaching qualification and the majority of academic staff also hold the status of Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Our teaching staff are practicing professionals. As exhibiting artists, publishing researchers and curators, they provide an informed and stimulating learning environment. This ensures that the skills you learn at the School of Art are practice orientated, relevant and applicable.

For further information, visit our individual staff profiles.

Modules

Employability

What career prospects are there for me?

Many of our graduates are successful writers in the fields of:

  • Fiction;
  • Non-fiction;
  • Poetry;
  • Screen-writing;
  • Radio;
  • Theatre.

Some of our graduates have discovered other successful career options:

  • Publishing;
  • Editing;
  • Journalism;
  • Marketing and Communications;
  • Teaching.

As well as establishing careers as practicing artists, some our graduates have become employees within:

  • Design Council;
  • Arts Council;
  • Tate Gallery;
  • Victoria and Albert Museum;
  • Royal Academy of Arts;
  • Carlton Television;
  • The Observer;
  • Saachi Gallery;
  • Damien Hirst;
  • BBC;
  • Viz magazine;
  • Royal Collections Trust.

What career enhancing opportunities are there for me as a student?

Aberystwyth Arts Centre will be woven integrally into your learning opportunities, permitting staff and students to come together with the shared aim of engaging, working and learning in a thriving and dynamic creative culture. Here you may showcase your work, engage and network with others, and develop lifelong skills valuable to employers in the creative industries and beyond.

Our degree will enable you to develop:

  •  the ability to express ideas and communicate information effectively in a broad range of contexts;
  • outstanding skills in creating, forming and manipulating the written word;
  • evidence of your ability to be an effective problem solver;
  • excellent creative thinking, informed by critical rigour;
  •  a proven ability to work both independently and as part of a team;
  • excellent time-management and organisational skills, including the ability to meet deadlines;
  • self-motivation and self-reliance and have the ability to develop appropriate and effective strategies;
  • valuable research skills that are trans-disciplinary and adaptable to any research context.

What work experience opportunities exist whilst studying? 

Click here to find out about the various opportunities that our Aberystwyth University Careers team offer. 

Enhance your employability prospects with GO Wales and YES (Year in Employment Scheme) managed by our Careers department. 

Teaching & Learning

What will I learn?

The breakdown below will provide you with an illustration of what you may study during the three year degree scheme.

This degree is based on our strongly held belief that in order to become a really great writer you need to be a good reader, whilst offering you the flexibility to develop as a writer across a range of creative modes. During your first year you will develop foundational skills in the interpretation and analysis of literary texts, alongside your study of basic writing skills.  Throughout the course you will use your knowledge of literature and textual production in your own creative work, exploring the relationship between creative and critical practice.

 In the first year you will discover:

  • A range of techniques for reading and writing fiction and poetry;
  • Modes of descriptive writing;
  • The importance of plot;
  • Printmaking;
  • Drawing and Painting; 
  • Life Room studies; 
  • Art History; 
  • The use of dialogue;
  • Some key figures from literary history (from Shakespeare to the Brontës);
  • Lesser known texts, and writers who are new-to-you;
  • Interdisciplinary thinking and practice
  • A variety of “ways of reading” and some theoretical approaches to textual analysis;
  • “The critical commentary” and research skills for writers.

In the second year you will explore:

  • The theoretical approaches to, and the practice of, literary criticism;
  • Your own writing style, informed by your reading and research;
  • A programme of tutor-led self-directed practice and research that evidences an experimental approach and gives expression to a personal voice as an artist;
  • A self-critical approach to creative working and professional methods;
  • your art practice within contemporary contexts and historical traditions;
  • A number of specialist topics chosen by you (these might focus on a specific genre (such as crime fiction), historical period (such as the Victorian era), or theme (such as “transpositions”).

Students following this degree programme have the flexibility to take option modules from the departments of Film, Theatre and Television Studies, and Welsh and Celtic studies, both of which offer a number of creative writing modules in areas such as scriptwriting, writing for radio, writing for television and much more.

In the third year you will master:

  • Theory for writers and the application of theoretical perspectives the production and critical evaluation of your own creative work;
  • And produce a body or work that demonstrates conceptual and technical coherence; 
  • The subject and conceptual bases acquired over three years to produce a body of qualitative work for public exhibition;
  • Extended writing and independent research in your final year writing project (chosen and defined by you with the support of a published author);
  • Your own specialisms drawn from a diverse range of option modules taught by writers in those fields. Our option modules include topics such as Elizabethan drama, the ghost story, queer fiction, writing for children, science fiction and fantasy, and much more.

In your final year you will have the opportunity to take part in a writing retreat at a country house in mid Wales - an amazing opportunity to spend time with fellow students and staff, developing your final year projects and dissertations, in a splendid rural setting.

How will I be taught?

Our course is delivered through a range of traditional and non-traditional settings with particular emphasis on workshops and discursive seminars. Lectures are not the norm but are used when it is essential to convey specific, knowledge-centred, material. One-to-one tutorials will also be a regular feature in your timetable, particularly towards the end of your programme of study.

We assess our students through portfolio submissions, essays and, on some modules, traditional examinations and presentations.

Discover More

Typical Entry Requirements

A Levels BBB-ABB with B in any English-related A level, and B in Art or appropriate plus satisfactory portfolio

GCSE requirements (grade C min):
English or Welsh

BTEC National Diploma:
DMM-DDM with specified subject plus satisfactory portfolio

International Students

International Baccalaureate:
30 points overall with 6 points in any English-related subject at Higher Level and with Art or appropriate at Higher Level plus satisfactory portfolio

European Baccalaureate:
65% overall with 70% in specified subject and with Art or appropriate plus satisfactory portfolio

Applicants are considered on their individual merits and offers can vary. For further information, please contact ug-admissions@aber.ac.uk

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