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Major: Creative Writing

Major Details

Creative Writing


Department of English
Faculty of Arts

This major must be completed as part of an award. The general requirements for the award must be satisfied in order to graduate.

Requirements for the Major:

Completion of a minimum of 24 credit points including the following prescribed units:

Credit points

100 level

Approaches to English Literature (3)
Creative Writing 1: An Introduction (3)

200 level

6cp from
Writing: From Manuscript to the Digital Age (3)
Creative Writing 2: Concept and Practice (3)
Editing and Publishing in a Multi-modal World (3)
Screenwriting: An Introduction (3)

300 level

Writing for Production and Publication (3)
9cp from
Narrative and the Novel (3)
Creative Writing 3: Narrative Fiction (3)
Writing Ecologies (3)
Screenwriting: Images, Ideas, Stories (3)


Units marked with a C are Capstone units.
Additional Information
Overview and Aims of the Program The major in Creative Writing enables students to specialise in writing across a range of academic, and Arts and Writing industry relevant genres of writing. Study choices are available across a number of literary and creative writing genres within fields of text-based media. Written communication, creativity, and interpersonal skills are key capabilities developed by the program. Students also analyse the production and publishing contexts in which writing occurs and the cultural, economic and social issues that influence writing in Australia and internationally.

The learning activities and assessment tasks focus on the practice and development of writing skills and knowledge of genres, technologies and industry practices. Students graduate with a broad portfolio of written creative works completed. The program’s learning approach focuses on learner-led activities and assessment tasks.

• lecturers are writers with Arts and Writing industry-relevant skills and knowledge, publications and/or productions
• students publish a final creative work and are supported to publish and/or produce during the program
• the program is a pathway to postgraduate and higher degree study.

The program prepares students for employment in a range of industries including Arts and Media (journalism, print and online editing and content creation, script and creative writing, marketing and publicity, technical and professional writing) and other industries which utilize high-level communication skills, such as the Public Service, Financial and Banking industries.

(Note that discussions are in place for the later inclusion into the major of units from the Department of Linguistics, in the related areas of technical writing and professional editing).
Graduate Capabilities

The Graduate Capabilities Framework articulates the fundamentals that underpin all of Macquarie’s academic programs. It expresses these as follows:

Cognitive capabilities
(K) discipline specific knowledge and skills
(T) critical, analytical and integrative thinking
(P) problem solving and research capability
(I) creative and innovative

Interpersonal or social capabilities
(C) effective communication
(E) engaged and ethical local and global citizens
(A) socially and environmentally active and responsible

Personal capabilities
(J) capable of professional and personal judgement and initiative
(L) commitment to continuous learning

Program Learning Outcomes By the end of this program it is anticipated you should be able to:

1. demonstrate knowledge of the varied practices, genres and techniques engaged in by writing practitioners in fields of a range of text-based media. (K, T, J)
2. demonstrate knowledge of language and form in story, narrative and other literary genres (K, T)
3. recognise the social, cultural and ethical issues, and global perspectives relevant to writing practices (K, T)
4. gain knowledge of career opportunities in the Arts and Media industries (K, J)

5. apply relevant language skills to produce and realise story, narrative and other literary and textual forms in a range of text-based media (K, T, P, I, C)
6. demonstrate the capacity to think creatively, critically, and reflectively to research, develop and evaluate ideas, concepts, problems and processes (K, T, P, I, C)
7. interpret, communicate and present ideas in written language or symbolic representations appropriate to specific readerships or audience contexts (K, T, P, I)
8. work autonomously and collaboratively to research and develop ideas, concepts and practices and to give and receive critical commentary and analysis of creative works (K, T, P, I, C)

9. research, produce and write creative works in a range of genres for text based media publication or production (K, T, P, I, C)
10. apply cultural, social, or global perspectives to writing within the creative arts discipline. (K, P, J)
11. develop a capacity for a skilled practice through drafting, revising, reflection and rewriting of written creative works (K, P, I, C, J).
Learning and Teaching Methods The focus of the program is on the practice of writing, accompanied by the development of research, reading, viewing and analysis activities. Most of the program’s units engage student learning through applied writing practices and collaborative learning in writing workshops as well as knowledge acquisition and analysis of genres in reading exemplary texts. Units without applied writing learning components focus more on requisite conceptual knowledge acquisition, theory, advanced reading and analytical and critical skills. Therefore, students learn through an integration of critical reflection and individual practice.

Learning activities include the reading, viewing and analysis of written and visual texts, and participation in lectures, tutorial and/or seminars. Small and large group discussion and activities, and workshopping of work-in-progress, involving collaborative and interactive learning, are key elements of the classroom practice. Students develop their practice by producing writing in a range of genres. Increasing specialisation is available in specific text based forms and genres in both option sets.

The program is staged from first year through to third year and capstone level: in first-year units, learning in both theory and writing practice is offered, so that by the end of the first year students will have experienced and learned to engage with key learning and teaching methodologies of the program. These include learning advanced reading skills, critical and reflective thinking and analysis, interactive learning and engaging in constructive feedback with peers. Within the first year units, learning is staged in teaching and through progressive assessment tasks. This focus on staged learning continues for learning outcomes, content and expectations of assessment tasks across and within all the required and option set units at 200 to 300 level.

In their learning, students are guided to find and develop original stories, ideas or concepts, and to identify specific contexts for their writing. This occurs throughout the assessment tasks in individual units, culminating in the capstone unit ENGL390 Writing for Production and Publication. The program’s focus throughout is on industry-relevant experiences, with learning and assessment tasks that include writing to a brief, independent work, and independently sourcing subjects and/or interviewees. The program also enhances student knowledge and awareness of cultural, global, ethical and environmental components of textual production and publication, particularly in terms of technological changes.
Assessment There is alignment between unit learning outcomes and the program’s aims, through consistent application of practical and research-based assessment methods and tasks. Assessment is both formative and summative in approach, with formative learning taking place through teacher-student and student peer evaluation tasks and activities. Students are supported to develop independent thought and learning skills, with skill, initiative and creativity recognised in the assessment outcomes. The assessment also aligns with the staged approach to learning in the program.

Specific assessment tasks include:
• written creative works
• critical/research based essays and statements
• reflective statements
• oral presentations by individual students or student groups
• visual presentations by individual students or student groups
• classroom or discussion board participation tasks
• quizzes, short exercises, fieldwork
• context or situation based tasks.
Recognition of Prior Learning

Macquarie University may recognise prior formal, informal and non-formal learning for the purpose of granting credit towards, or admission into, a program. The recognition of these forms of learning is enabled by the University’s Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) Policy (see and its associated Procedures and Guidelines. The RPL pages contain information on how to apply, links to registers, and the approval processes for recognising prior learning for entry or credit. 

Domestic Students
For undergraduate RPL information visit
For domestic postgraduate RPL information visit

International Students
For RPL information visit

Support for Learning

Macquarie University aspires to be an inclusive and supportive community of learners where all students are given the opportunity to meet their academic and personal goals. The University offers a comprehensive range of free and accessible student support services which include academic advice, counselling and psychological services, advocacy services and welfare advice, careers and employment, disability services and academic skills workshops amongst others. There is also a bulk billing medical service located on campus.

Further information can be found at

Campus Wellbeing contact details:
Phone: +61 2 9850 7497

Program Standards and Quality

The program is subject to an ongoing comprehensive process of quality review in accordance with a pre-determined schedule that complies with the Higher Education Standards Framework. The review is overseen by Macquarie University's peak academic governance body, the Academic Senate and takes into account feedback received from students, staff and external stakeholders.

Graduate Destinations and Employability The program prepares students for employment in a range of industries, including Arts and Media:
• text based (print and online) editing and content creation
• script, prose and other creative writing
• marketing and publicity
• public relations
• technical and professional writing and editing
• and other industries which utilise high-level communication skills, such as the Education, Public Sector, Financial and Banking industries.

It enhances studies in English Teaching for Primary and Secondary level teachers.
Assessment Regulations

This program is subject to Macquarie University regulations, including but not limited to those specified in the Assessment Policy, Academic Honesty Policy, the Final Examination Policy and relevant University Rules. For all approved University policies, procedures, guidelines and schedules visit

2017 Unit Information

When offered:
S1 Day
Permission of Executive Dean of Faculty
HSC Chinese, CHN113, CHN148