Birkbeck, University of London
Theatre Studies and Creative Writing with Foundation Year BA (Hons)
Birkbeck, University of London

Course modalities offered

Key Course Facts

Course Description

Do you want to see your stories on stage? Are you fascinated by live performance and the written word? Are you eager to study in central London, at the heart of London's vibrant theatre and literary culture?

If so, the new BA Theatre Studies and Creative Writing with Foundation Year at Birkbeck is ideal for you. In a building that was once home to Virginia Woolf and the Bloomsbury Group, you will study with leading academics, theatremakers and celebrated published authors across the fields of fiction, poetry and drama.

You will investigate theatre and creative writing in all their aspects: as text, in performance, in their historical contexts, and through a range of techniques and ideas that have informed creative practice in different times and places.

You will get to grips with the craft of writing:

  • drama

  • poetry

  • fiction

  • screenwriting.

Before proceeding to the main degree, you will spend your Foundation Year preparing yourself for a degree in the arts by improving your study and research skills and gaining arts-related knowledge and understanding. You will also have the opportunity to take a language module as part of the Foundation Year.

Upon successful completion of the Foundation Year, you can automatically progress on to our three-year, full-time, evening study BA Theatre Studies and Creative Writing.

Our part-time Foundation Year degrees allow you to spread out your Foundation Year studies over two years. As the 'Foundation Year' is made up of 120 credits, as a part-time student you can take 60 credits in each of your first and second years before starting the main four-year BA Theatre Studies and Creative Writing. This means that you can take six years to complete the part-time degree with Foundation Year.


  • Our Foundation Year programmes will fully prepare you for undergraduate study. They are ideal if you are returning to study after a gap, if you have not previously studied the relevant subjects, or if you did not achieve the grades you needed for a place on your chosen undergraduate degree.

  • Birkbeck is located in the heart of literary London - in Bloomsbury, WC1 - and writers and academics maintain strong links with publishers, broadcasters and the creative industries. You could be studying in a building that was once home to Virginia Woolf and frequented by members of the Bloomsbury Group - now home to our School of Arts - and be taught by leading dramatists and artists. The building houses our own creative hub which includes the Peltz Gallery, the Gordon Square Cinema and a theatre and performance space.

  • You will be eligible to submit work to the annual Birkbeck creative writing journal, the Mechanics’ Institute Review, the Scratch Night as part of Birkbeck Arts Week, and to attend public events and performances curated by Birkbeck Centre for Contemporary Theatre.

  • In the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF), English Language and Literature at Birkbeck achieved 100% for a research environment conducive to producing research of the highest quality.

  • The School of Arts is an official partner of the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) in London. Opportunities for students have included a year’s free membership of the ICA, private views, discounts on all talks and events, free members' screenings and £3 cinema tickets on Tuesdays, up to 25% off ICA Artists' Editions and a monthly e-newsletter.

What You Will Learn

Programme content: As a student of Theatre Studies and Creative Writing with Foundation Year, BA (Hons) you will study the following course modules.


Assessment methods include: research essays and exercises, creative writing exercises and portfolios, group presentations, performance presentations, group and individual vivas, and written portfolios.

Entry Requirements / Admissions

Requirements for international students / English requirements

IELTS academic test score (similar tests may be accepted as well)

    • 6.5
    • Mphil / PhD

If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-

Get advice on which foundation courses are best for you to still study Theatre Studies and Creative Writing with Foundation Year, BA (Hons), if you do not meet the minimum requirements in terms of UCAS score, A levels, or English language requirements.


Tuition Fees Theatre Studies and Creative Writing with Foundation Year BA (Hons)

England UK £4625 year 1
Northern Ireland £4625 year 1
Scotland £4625 year 1
Wales £4625 year 1
International £7280 year 1

Additional fee information

Part-time home students, Year 3+: £6935 pa
Part-time international students, Year 3+: £10920 pa

Students are charged a tuition fee in each year of their programme. Tuition fees for students continuing on their programme in following years may be subject to annual inflationary increases.

Average student cost of living in London

Rent £518
Water, gas electricity, internet (at home) £50
Supermarket shopping £81
Clothing £35
Eating out £33
Alcohol £27
Takeaways / food deliveries £30
Going out / entertainment (excl.alcohol, food) £24
Holidays and weekend trips £78
Transport within city £17
Self-care / sports £20
Stationary / books £13
Mobile phone / internet £13
Cable TV / streaming £7
Insurance £51
Other £95
Average student cost of living £1092

London costs approx 34% more than average, mainly due to rent being 67% higher than average of other cities. For students staying in student halls, costs of water, gas, electricity, wifi are generally included in the rental. Students in smaller cities where accommodation is in walking/biking distance transport costs tend to be significantly smaller.

How to apply

Application deadline:

January 1, 2024

This is the deadline for applications to be completed and sent for this course. If the university or college still has places available you can apply after this date, but your application is not guaranteed to be considered.

Possible Entry Points:

  • Foundation

University Rankings

Positions of Birkbeck, University of London in top UK and global rankings.

See all 17 university rankings of Birkbeck, University of London

About Birkbeck, University of London

Birkbeck, University of London (BBK) was established in 1823, and takes a different stance towards admissions than many other universities. Applicants are encouraged by BKK to apply even if they don’t possess the traditional qualifications normally required, as applications here are also considered based on an assessment of your knowledge on the subject, and any work experience you might have. Being located in the very centre of London, students will have all the advantages of the city’s public transport connections, as well as the chance to live in such a diverse and vibrant city with all that it offers.

Student composition of Birkbeck, University of London

Students by level of study Academic year 2020/21 - Full-time equivalent student enrollments published by Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) on 10 February 2022
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Where is this programme taught

Main Site - Malet Street
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