Master of Arts (Writing and Literature)

Postgraduate coursework

Craft your literary and creative writing skills into a masterful talent through a postgrad course, the Master of Arts (Writing and Literature), at Deakin.

Key facts

English language requirements

IELTS overall score of 6.5 (with no band score less than 6) or equivalent

Duration

Depending on your professional experience and previous qualifications, the Master of Arts (Writing and Literature) is typically 1, 1.5 or 2 years duration.

  • 1 year full time (2 years part time) - 8 credit points
  • 1.5 ; years full time (3 years part time) - 12 credit points
  • 2 years full time (4 years part time) - 16 credit points

Please see the entry pathways section for more information.

Current Deakin Students

To access your official course details for the year you started your degree, please visit the handbook

Course information

Hone your expertise in writing and literature and gain practical tools in critical analysis, editing and research. Whether you want to develop the skills to analyse literary works, build your creative writing practice, or craft publishable pieces of professional writing, the Master of Arts (Writing and Literature) will help fulfil your career aspirations.

Want to see where a mastery of the written word can take your career?

If you want to turn your lifelong passion for writing and literature into a professional career, this course gives you the practical experience to make your goals a reality. Equally, if you’re already working in the industry and looking to take the next step – whether that be in a new role or finally breaking through as a published author – we provide a high performing environment that allows your creativity to reach its full potential. Ultimately, the Master of Arts (Writing and Literature) aims to inspire you, so you can inspire audiences of your own.

Choose from four study specialisations to create a unique degree that matches your interests:

Our specialisations cater for many writing and literature professionals – from marketing professionals looking to boost sales through carefully crafted copy, to aspiring authors hoping to turn their book idea into a reality, and teachers wanting to add a new level of depth and rigour to their classroom. Alternatively, you may wish to study cross-disciplinary units that provide a broader spread of learning topics. With this option, you’ll gain a deep understanding of the conventions of professional non-fiction writing, as well as the theory and craft stemming from traditional literature, all in the one degree.

Importantly, the course provides more than just writing expertise. The projects and assessment tasks you work on train you in transferable skills, including critical analysis, communication, problem solving and research – incredibly valuable in every field of work. You’ll also debate literature, creativity and modern writing challenges with like-minded people from different corners of business and life. This exposure to new ways of thinking helps you grow as a writer and shows you how literature can be used to make sense of different aspects of culture, place and history.

For many students, a desired outcome of the course is to produce a published piece of work. Our academic staff are published authors and leading international scholars, so they know the process inside out, from first draft all the way to hitting the shelves. Draw upon their experience and utilise their extensive network of writers, editors and publishers to get a foot in the door. Your thesis project, a highlight of the course, pairs you with one of our brilliant teachers. Your thesis might provide commentary on a classic piece of literature, or it could be an original piece of work. We’ll find you the ideal mentor based on your goals, interests and the writing you’re working on.

The course provides lots of exposure to industry work, trends and opportunities, better preparing you for the current and future needs of the field. Many students take advantage of our industry partnerships to secure internships at well-known publications. Verandah Journal, an annual student-run publication, showcases the best work of emerging writers and artists while giving students the chance to develop expertise in selecting, editing and proofreading submissions for publication. Better still, our academics are actively involved with a number of prominent writing festivals, ensuring we’ve got our finger on the pulse of emerging writing trends and industry needs.

Read More

Course structure

To qualify for the Master of Arts (Writing and Literature), a student must successfully complete 16 credit points of study comprising:
6 credit points of study in either of the following configurations:

Option 1

  • 6 credit points from one of the specialisation options (Children's Literature, Creative Writing, Literary Studies, Professional Writing);

Plus

  • 4 credit points of capstone units (Capstone A)
  • 6 credit points of electives

or

  • 6 credit points of capstone units (Capstone B)
  • 4 credit points of elective units

Or

Option 2

  • 6 credit points of cross-disciplinary study comprising ALW740, ALL743, 2 credit points of Literature units (Children's Literature and/or Literary Studies), and 2 credit points of units of Writing units (Creative Writing and/or Professional Writing)

Plus

  • 4 credit points of capstone units (Capstone A)
  • 6 credit points of electives

or

  • 6 credit points of capstone units (Capstone B)
  • 4 credit points of elective units

All students must also complete: AAI018 Academic Integrity (0-credit-point compulsory unit)

Capstone Units

Capstone A

  • Critical and Creative Research Methods
  • Minor Research Project
  • Masters Research Literary Theory
  • Plus 2 electives

    Or

    Capstone B (Minimum 70% WAM and subject to course director approval)

  • Critical and Creative Research Methods
  • Masters Research Project A
  • Masters Research Project B
  • Masters Research Project C
  • Masters Research Project D
  • Masters Research Literary Theory
  • Electives

    Electives are to be chosen from units within the specialisations of the Master of Arts (Writing and Literature) or the Master of Communication or the core or electives of the Master of Creative Arts.

    Note: The internship unit

  • Communication and Creative Arts Internship
  • is also available.

    Units

    Either;

    6 credit points from one of the specialisation options (Children's Literature, Creative Writing, Literary Studies, Professional Writing)

    Or

    6 credit points of cross-disciplinary study comprising of -

  • Foundations in Professional and Creative Writing
  • Foundations in Narrative Theory
  • Plus 2 credit points of Literature units (Children's Literature and/or Literary Studies)

    Plus 2 credit points of Writing units (Creative Writing and/or Professional Writing)

    Specialisations

    Children's Literature

    Literary Studies

    Professional Writing 

    Creative Writing

    Key information

    Award granted
    Master of Arts (Writing and Literature)
    Year

    2021 course information

    Deakin code
    A764
    CRICOS code?
    083999E
    Level
    Higher Degree Coursework (Masters and Doctorates)
    Approval status
    This course is approved by the University under the Higher Education Standards Framework.
    Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) recognition
    The award conferred upon completion is recognised in the Australian Qualifications Framework at Level 9.

    Campuses by intake

    Campus availability varies per trimester. This means that a course offered in Trimester 1 may not be offered in the same location for Trimester 2 or 3. Read more to learn where this course will be offered throughout the year.

    Trimester 1 - March

    • Start date: March
    • Available at:
      • Burwood (Melbourne)
      • Cloud Campus

    Trimester 2 - July

    • Start date: July
    • Available at:
      • Burwood (Melbourne)
      • Cloud Campus

    Additional course information

    Course duration - additional information

    Course duration may be affected by delays in completing course requirements, such as accessing or completing work placements.

    Mandatory student checks

    Any unit which contains work integrated learning, a community placement or interaction with the community may require a police check, Working with Children Check or other check.

    Participation requirements

    Reasonable adjustments to participation and other course requirements will be made for students with a disability. Click here for more information.

    Work experience

    Elective units may provide the opportunity for Work Integrated Learning experiences.

     

    Entry requirements

    Entry information

    Deakin University offers admission to postgraduate courses through a number of Admission categories. To be eligible for admission to this program, applicants must meet the course requirements.

    All applicants must meet the minimum English language requirements.

    Please note that meeting the minimum admission requirements does not guarantee selection, which is based on merit, likelihood of success and availability of places in the course.

    For more information on the Admission Criteria and Selection (Higher Education Courses) Policy visit the Deakin Policy Library

    Entry will be based on performance in:

    • a Bachelor degree or other qualification at a higher AQF level in any discipline

    OR

    • other evidence of academic capability judged to be equivalent

    IELTS / English language requirements 

    Please note that English language requirements exist for entry to this course and you will be required to meet the English language level requirement that is applicable in the year of your commencement of studies.

    It is the students’ responsibility to ensure that she/he has the required IELTS score to register with any external accredited courses. (more details)

    Cloud studies

    Deakin offers many courses which can be studied by distance education overseas.

    However, international students living in Australia on a student visa, in each compulsory trimester (that is, Trimesters 1 and 2), must enrol in at least one unit that is offered as a Campus located unit and can, in addition enrol in units offered via Cloud (online). International students may undertake a maximum of up to one third (or equivalent) of their study as Cloud (online) study. Please note enrolment in one face to face unit in compulsory study periods is only allowed if the student is completing their final unit of study and will not exceed maximum one third (or equivalent) online requirement.

    Recognition of prior learning

    If you have completed previous studies which you believe may reduce the number of units you have to complete at Deakin, indicate in the appropriate section on your application that you wish to be considered for credit transfer. You will need to provide a certified copy of your previous course details so your credit can be determined. If you are eligible, your offer letter will then contain information about your credit transfer. Your credit transfer is formally approved prior to your enrolment at Deakin during the Enrolment and Orientation Program. You must bring original documents relating to your previous study so that this approval can occur.

    You can also refer to the Recognition of Prior Learning System which outlines the credit that may be granted towards a Deakin University degree.

    Fees and scholarships

    Fee information

    Estimated tuition fee - full-fee paying place

    The 'Estimated tuition fee' is provided as a guide only based on a typical enrolment of students completing the first year of this course. The cost will vary depending on the units you choose, your study load, the length of your course and any approved Recognition of Prior Learning.

    One year full-time study load is typically represented by eight credit points of study. Each unit you enrol in has a credit point value. The 'Estimated tuition fee' is calculated by adding together eight credit points of a typical combination of units for your course.

    You can find the credit point value of each unit under the Unit Description by searching for the unit in the Handbook.

    Learn more about tuition fees.

    Scholarship options

    A Deakin scholarship might change your life. If you've got something special to offer Deakin – or you just need the financial help to get you here – we may have a scholarship opportunity for you.

    Search or browse through our scholarships

    Postgraduate bursary

    If you’re a Deakin alumnus commencing a postgraduate award course, you may be eligible to receive a 15% reduction per unit on your enrolment fees. Your Immediate Family Members may also be eligible to apply for this bursary.

    Learn more about Deakin’s 15% postgraduate bursary

    Apply now

    How to apply

    Apply through Deakin

    Applications can be made directly to the University through StudyLink Connect - Deakin University's International Student Application Service. For information on the application process and closing dates, see the How to apply web page. Please note that closing dates may vary for individual courses.

    Deakin International office or Deakin representative

    Fill out the application form and submit to a Deakin International office or take your application form to a Deakin representative for assistance

    Need more information on how to apply?

    For information on the application process and closing dates, see the How to apply webpage
    If you’re still having problems, please contact Deakin International for assistance.

    Research Information

    Students will undertake 7 credit points of research units consisting of research methods, theory and research-based project units where they will be required to complete a thesis comprising a creative production AND exegesis of 8000 words OR a written dissertation of 18000-20000 words.

    Why choose Deakin

    Career outcomes

    You’ll graduate from this course with more than just advanced writing skills. You’ll also have expertise in communication, problem solving, critical thinking and research – the kind of skills employers across all industries value.

    This puts you in a strong position to explore a range of career pathways including:
    • author
    • editor
    • literary critic
    • publisher
    • advertising executive
    • communications specialist
    • copywriter
    • journalist
    • public relations practitioner
    • English teacher (combined with an initial teaching qualification).

    For more information go to 'DeakinTALENT

    Course learning outcomes

    Deakin's graduate learning outcomes describe the knowledge and capabilities graduates can demonstrate at the completion of their course. These outcomes mean that regardless of the Deakin course you undertake, you can rest assured your degree will teach you the skills and professional attributes that employers value. They'll set you up to learn and work effectively in the future.

    Deakin Graduate Learning Outcomes

    Course Learning Outcomes

    Discipline specific knowledge and capabilities

    Acquire an integrated knowledge of a range of relevant writing and literature theories, concepts, and approaches to the critical analysis, creation and/or production of texts.

    Acquire advanced understanding of the cultural, historical, professional and/or stylistic differences and contexts of the domains of writing and literature, which include Creative Writing, Children’s Literature, Professional Writing and/or Literary Studies.

    Communication

    Demonstrate specialised command of the technical and aesthetic elements of different forms of writing, including proficient use of critical, theoretical and professional vocabularies and language to create, define, interpret, argue and fluently transmit ideas in scholarly, professional and/or creative texts produced for a variety of audiences and contexts. 

    Digital literacy

    Master generic, academic, bibliographic and industry-specific digital communication technologies to research, produce and present scholarly and creative works. Use judgement and discrimination in the identification and selection of relevant and credible information sources and with regard for their ethical use. 

    Critical thinking

    Produce creative and critical works which address complex issues and ideas with rigor in the conduct of supporting research and presentation of evidence;

    Use mature critical judgment in the synthesis and application of theory; and mastery of the critical, technical and creative skills required to generate and evaluate texts produced by self and others.

    Problem solving

    Employ expert knowledge and skills in the use of specialist theoretical, historical and contemporary analytical and creative approaches to writing and literature that is reflected in the design and execution of creative and scholarly solutions to a range of technical, professional, aesthetic, critical and/or ideological problems. 

    Self-management

    Demonstrate high-level initiative and independence, responsibility, accountability and a continued commitment to learning and skill development in writing and literature and as a reflective learner and practitioner in scholarly, industry and/or professional contexts. 

    Teamwork

    Demonstrate commitment to ethical and collaborative participation in scholarly, learning and/or industry settings and active contribution to the accomplishment of mutual learning and professional goals. 

    Global citizenship

    Develop and informed knowledge of the ethics of writing and interpreting textual representations of diverse groups, and insight into the influence of changing social, cultural and ideological factors on the production and consumption of creative, critical and professional texts.

    Use the highest standards of ethical conduct and social responsibility when engaging in scholarly, creative and/or professional practice in the local, national and international community.

    Approved by Faculty Board November 2018