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Course content

The MA Creative Writing is an intensive course which treats your ambition as a writer seriously. Our students come from a range of backgrounds including the arts, teaching, law, journalism, history and writing. The course is for anyone with an interest in or ambition towards writing.

Some of our most successful students include best-selling author of A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian, Marina Lewycka, T.S. Eliot short-listed poet Frances Leviston and Radio 4 and BBC TV script writer Sharon Oakes.

Our internationally-acclaimed team of published writers teach in all areas of contemporary literary practice. They include

  • Chris Jones – Forward Prize nominee
  • Conor O'Callaghan – poet and novelist
  • Maurice Riordan – poet, former editor of Poetry London and The Poetry Review
  • Julianne Pachico – short story writer and novelist
  • Harriet Tarlo – environmental poet, editor and critic

The E.A Markham Award

The E.A Markham Award means that one student each year will study the course for free. The award covers the full-time study fees and is awarded solely on merit and potential. It is offered in memory of Professor E.A Markham, a respected tutor here who worked to shape the development of this course.

Download the E.A Markham award guidance for more information.

Short course – single modules

If you are not able to commit to the whole course, you can apply to take a single module. Choose a genre from the optional modules listed in the course content and apply as normal. Your portfolio needs to include examples of writing in your chosen genre. The credit you gain for completing one module will count towards the full MA should you choose to pursue this at a later date.

Publications and prizes

The Ictus Prize in Poetry is awarded to the best poetry collection – this consists of a small pamphlet publication. Every year, we publish Matter, a stylish anthology, edited and designed by students, and sold and promoted in bookshops. If you would like to receive a sample copy of this, email the course leader

Course structure

Core modules

  • The contemporary writer
  • The craft: poetry and short story
  • The craft: novel and script
  • The workshop
  • Writing up


Submission of written work to specified word lengths with accompanying critical commentaries.


By enhancing your skills in writing, literary revision and reflection, you are preparing for a number of roles where knowledge of writing and the processes of writing are important such as

  • writers of fiction, poetry, script, children's writing and memoir
  • editing anthologies and journals online and in print
  • teaching creative writing at all levels including schools community groups adult education FE, HE and professional training
  • going on to further research at PhD and postdoctoral level at Hallam and elsewhere
  • writing for online forums writing blogs
  • taking up writers in residence posts
  • theatre in education
  • copyediting, proofreading, ghost-writing
  • organising literary festivals and events
  • scripting advertisements
  • reviewing online and in print

Visit the Creative Writing MA page on the Sheffield Hallam University website for more details!




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