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Examine inspiring creative works and develop your own
With a Diploma in Arts (Creative Writing) you will examine great creative works and explore your personal creative approach through poetry, life writing, script writing and fiction.
- Undergraduate, NZQF Level 5
- Auckland, Manawatū
- 1 year(s) full-time. Available part-time.
- Available for international students studying in NZ or via distance learning
Inspiration, communication and vocation are at the heart of Massey’s exciting Diploma in Arts (Creative Writing).
It offers you the chance to develop your writing so that it’s pitch-perfect for a variety of audiences. You’ll enhance your critical thinking. You’ll also master a wide range of transferrable communication skills, all while pursuing your own creative vision.
Choose your canvas
Creative writing offers you flexibility in writing original work in a variety of genres. You’ll learn to write fiction, poetry, creative non-fiction, travel writing and scripts for the stage and screen.
Learn from published authors
Our award-winning teachers are also internationally acclaimed writers who teach from their own first-hand experience in moving from idea to page, polishing their work and sending it off to be published or performed.
Students who have taken our creative writing courses have gone on to publish poems, stories, essays and books as well as winning some of New Zealand’s top writing prizes. Why not join them?
Careers and further study
Gain marketable skills
In a global marketplace, creativity and related skills are more important than ever. Creative writing will prepare you not just for the range of careers that exists today, but also for new roles that will appear in the future. Massey’s Diploma in Arts (Creative Writing) will prepare you to work in the creative world and provide transferable skills for other industries.
The following careers are a natural fit for creative writing graduates:
- writing for television, magazines, social media or the book-publishing industry
- corporate or non-profit freelance writing
- creative arts project coordination
- performance-related writing and production
- writing and advising on government policy.
New Zealand is a great place to study. Massey University’s reputation is supported by our international rankings, accreditations and associations. We are rated five star plus by the QS World University Rankings.
Massey University has small class sizes, and our lecturers and staff are friendly and approachable.
As an international student, there are entry requirements that will apply to you. We recommend that you apply at least three months before your anticipated start date so your application can be processed in time. There are additional steps you will need to take. These include obtaining a visa and travel bookings if your study is to be in New Zealand.
All students must meet university entrance requirements to be admitted to the University.
There are no specific entry requirements for this programme, outside of university admission regulations.
English language requirements
To study this programme you must meet Massey University's English language standards.
Prior learning, credit and exemptions
For information on prior learning, exemptions and transfer of credit or other questions:
- review the Recognition of Prior Learning regulations
- contact us through the Enquire button on this page.
If you do not have the entry requirements
English language and foundation courses
If you need help with your English language skills before you start university, we have courses and programmes that may help.
- English Language Proficiency
- Foundation Certificate in Academic English
- Foundation Certificate in Advanced Academic English
- Full Foundation - Certificate in Foundation Studies
If you need to do a course before you start your programme, there may be options for you in Summer School.
Courses and planning
No endorsement option
- Core courses – 30 credits
- Courses from the Schedule – 60 credits
- Electives – 30 credits
- Core courses – 30 credits
- Courses from one endorsement – 60 credits
- Elective – 30 credits
A specialisation (endorsement) is optional, requiring at least 60 credits from the endorsement, including not more than 30 credits at 100-level.
Ensure across your courses you also have:
- Not more than 75 credits at 100 level
- At least 45 credits at 200 level or above
- Not more than 15 credits above 100-level from outside of the Schedule to the Diploma
- Not more than a total of 30 credits from outside of the Schedule to the Diploma.
Courses for this specialisation
|139123||Creative Writing I||15|
|At least 45 credits from|
|139224||Making Plays for Theatre||15|
|139225||Writing for Children||15|
|139280||Creative Writing II: Creative Nonfiction||15|
|139309||Eco-fictions and Non-fictions||15|
|139329||Advanced Fiction Writing||15|
|139333||Creativity in the Community||15|
|139340||The Publishing Project||15|
|139362||Oceanic Literatures of Aotearoa: Ngā Tuhinga Kōrero o te Moana nui a Kiwa||15|
|139380||Creative Writing III: Starting Your Manuscript||15|
Subject qualification elective courses
|139139||Introduction to English Literature||15|
Planning your programme
Full-time study comprises eight 15-credit courses for a total of 120 credits in one year. We recommend you aim for 60 credits per semester.
If you later proceed to the Bachelor of Arts degree, all of the courses in your Diploma of Arts can be transferred to the Bachelor of Arts.
Fees and scholarships
Fees and finance
Fees, student loans and free fees scheme
Your tuition fees may be different depending on the courses you choose. Your exact fees will show once you have chosen your courses.
There will also be some compulsory non-tuition fees and for some courses, there may also be charges for things such as study resources, software, trips and contact workshops.
Already know which courses you're going to choose?
If you already know which courses you are going to take, you can use our fees calculator to get an estimate of your fees.
Student loans (StudyLink) and Fees Free scheme
You may be eligible for a student loan to help towards paying your fees.
The New Zealand Government offers fees-free tertiary study for eligible domestic students. Find out more about the scheme and your eligibility on the Fees Free website. To use the site's eligibility checking tool, you will need your National Student Number.
Current and returning Massey students will find their National Student Number on their student homepage.
A good fit if you:
- are seeking opportunities to get creative, get writing and get published
- want practical writing experience in a range of genres
- enjoy critical and creative thinking.
Meet our lecturers
Bryan is the author of three poetry collections, most recently Native Bird; a novel, Late Sonata; a collection of short stories, Ephraim’s Eyes, and two scholarly books, Resistance to Science in Contemporary American Poetry and Poetry and Mindfulness: Interruption to a Journey. He has received writing awards in New Zealand, Australia and the US, a Vice Chancellor’s Award for Teaching Excellence and a national Tertiary Teaching Excellence Award.Professor Bryan Walpert
Distance coordinator: 139.123 Creative Writing, 139.229 Writing Poetry, 139.760 New Directions in Creative Writing
Key information for students
Compare qualifications and academic information across different New Zealand institutions.
Review this important information before you apply for this programme. This gives you full details of the rules and regulations about what you need to study and what you must achieve in order to graduate with this qualification. That includes structure, courses and requirements. These regulations should be read in conjunction with all other Statutes and Regulations of the University including the below.
Applying and enrolling
Applying for the programme
Check you are ready
If you are ready to apply, have a look at our application checklist. It will help you get prepared with what you need. Please also check the entry requirements carefully before you apply.
Choose your programme and click on Apply now
You will apply for the programme using the Apply now button on this page. You’ll also choose your specialisation (major, subject or endorsement) if applicable.
Some programmes have additional requirements such as the submission of a portfolio or CV. Click on Apply now and you will be able to submit those documents as part of the application process.
Receive and accept an Admission Offer of Place
You will receive an Admission Offer of Place when you have been accepted into the programme. You need to accept this before you can enrol in your courses. International students also need to pay their fees at this point.
Enrolling in courses
You’ll then get access to your own student homepage (also known as the student portal). This is where you can enrol in courses. Any updates on your application or enrolments will also be on your student homepage. Make sure you check this regularly.
When you choose courses, ensure you check for any requirements that apply including:
- prerequisites (courses you have to do before the one you are enrolling in)
- corequisites (courses you have to do at the same time as the one you are enrolling in)
- restrictions (courses that you cannot enrol in if you are completing or have completed another identified similar course)
- location – for instance some distance-based courses still have an on-campus element, so double check that the way the course is taught is suitable for your situation.
Each of our courses has its own webpage where you can find this information. You can use our course search to find course pages.
More information on courses is in the ‘Courses for this programme’ section on this page.
You can find information on application due dates and semester dates on the key dates page.
We look forward to welcoming you to Massey!
If you have any questions, contact us through the Enquire button on this page.
What are courses and credits?
What are courses and credits?
Each Massey programme is made up of courses (in some tertiary institutions they are called ‘papers’).
You will have some compulsory courses and some you can choose from.
Each course is worth a certain amount of credits (often 15 credits, but this does vary). You must gain a set number of credits to be able to graduate from this programme.
There may also be some rules about which courses you need to pass to progress to the next year, or stage, of your study (known as progression). There are also courses you must pass to graduate with a specialisation.
- See the ‘Courses for this programme’ section for the list of courses.
- Courses search
Understanding course numbers
The first three digits of our course numbers show you which subject the course is about.
The second three digits show you the level and course ID number. For instance:
- sub-degree courses are '0' (i.e. xxx.0xx)
- undergraduate study begins at 100-level, (i.e. xxx.1xx)
- as you progress through 200- and 300-level courses this number changes to 2 and 3 respectively. The higher the number that starts the second three digits, the higher the level of study
|Subject area||Level||Course ID number|
Electives are courses that are not compulsory. Certain guidelines are usually provided on courses you may take. Elective courses contribute to the programme, but not to your major or specialisation.
Workload and time management
Use this tool to help determine how much time you will need each week to complete your studies.
For returning students, there may be changes to the majors and minors available and the courses you need to take. Go to the section called ‘Transitional Provisions’ in the Regulations to find out more.
In some cases the programme or specialisation you enrolled in may be no longer be taking new enrolments, so may not appear on these web pages. To find information on the regulations for these programmes go to the Massey University Calendar.
Please contact us through the Enquire button on this page if you have any questions.
Scholarships and awards
There are a number of scholarships available for new and current students. They could relate to your situation, achievement or interest.