Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Writing and Literature (Online)

  • NFQ Level 8
  • Credits 180*
  • Course Code AU930
  • Award Honours Degree Abinitio
  • Duration 3

Course Summary

This full-time undergraduate degree programme in Writing and Literature* is delivered fully online, facilitating wider access to this creative programme. All lectures will be delivered live online and students will be able to fully participate in group work and project work by means of innovative online supports. There is no requirement to attend campus.

This innovative new programme focuses on developing writing skills over the course of three years. The students embark upon a range of writing covering fiction, nonfiction, poetry, screenwriting, playwriting, flash fiction, cultural journalism and other forms of writing.

This is anchored by a detailed study of English Literature, Drama and Film as well as digital media, providing the critical context and the skills required of a writer in the digital age. The programme is delivered through interactive workshops and seminars.

Visiting lecturers will be practitioners such as novelists, poets, screenwriters, playwrights, bloggers, journalists, editors, agents and publishers. Students will develop a portfolio of writing, will collaborate on creative projects including film and performance and will have a strong foundation in English literature preparing them for creative and professional practice.

“This is a milestone for Sligo and the North West,” - Dr Una Mannion, Programme Chair and recent winner of the Hennessy New Irish Writing Prize for poetry.

“We have such a rich cultural and literary legacy in this region. Storytelling is part of who we are, and it is recognised as an invaluable skill, integral to both creative and professional industries."

The programme will be delivered through interactive workshops and seminars . Visiting writers – including novelists, poets, screenwriters, playwrights, bloggers, journalists, as well as editors, agents and publishers – will teach and give seminars and talks. Where students cannot attend on-campus, alternatives will always be provided for online students. 

Students will build a professional portfolio of writing, collaborate on creative projects including film and performance, and will have a strong foundation in English literature preparing them for a range of professional practices.

Students are given a foundation in literature, drama and writing practice, including digital media. The writing and practice modules focus on writing basics and short-form writing. 

Students study film, video production, playwriting and explore the major literary and cultural movements of the 20th century and their impact on the development of narrative forms. 

Students focus on professional practice and building a portfolio of work. They also look at the contemporary Irish literary and publishing scene. Modules include contemporary Irish theatre, writing, the novel and publishing. 

“What makes this programme unique is the support and one-to-one feedback students receive from writing and creative practitioners,” - Tommy Weir teaches digital storytelling and video production on this programme.

“Not only are graduates effective writers, they also have a skill set that readily transfers to other professional disciplines where clear communication and coherent, critical thinking are valued.”

The BA in Writing and Literature will prepare graduates for professional careers in publishing, copyediting, journalism, entertainment, marketing, public relations, communications management, and teaching.

The programme will also build on and link with the existing creative strands at ATU Sligo in areas such as the Performing Arts.

“Our graduates will be collaborators, self-editors and critical thinkers who have had the opportunity to have their work realised on the page and performed on stage and film" - Dr Rhona Trench, Programme Chair of Performing Arts at ATU Sligo.

”The Writing & Literature is applied and will be tailored to the writing interests and developing expertise of each student.”

Key Course Information

AU930 (was SG254)

All applications for entry to the first year of ATU Sligo's full-time undergraduate courses, including online full-time, are made through the Central Applications Office (CAO). Detailed information on how to apply is available at


For Examinations, students may have to attend at the ATU campus through which they completed their studies. For some programmes it may be possible for the Exam to be taken remotely via online proctoring. ATU Students resident in the Republic of Ireland will be invited to attend exams at an exam centre located in Ireland. Students’ resident outside of Ireland or with exceptional circumstances may be eligible to attend remotely via online proctoring, where examinations are taken online and supervised virtually, subject to availability.

Application Closing Date : Year round

Entry Requirements

There is no portfolio requirement to study the BA (Hons) in Writing and Literature (Online)


A minimum of four grade O6/H7 and two grade H5. English or Irish (at O6/H7). Maths is not required. 

QQI FE: Any Major award with a minimum of 3 Distinctions.

Other School Leaving Certificate examinations: Candidates holding alternative examinations such as A Levels or other international qualifications should contact the admissions office at

Mature students: A number of places are reserved for mature candidates who must be 23 years or over in the year of application. For further information contact the admissions office at

Career Opportunities

Graduates will be able to work in publishing, public relations, arts management, film and television, the theatre, marketing, cultural tourism and event promotion, journalism, teaching and facilitation. They can work as writers and will possess transferable skills enabling a wide range of opportunities in communications roles.

Further Study

Graduates will be eligible to progress to a number of postgraduate degrees in Ireland and abroad including MA’s in Creative Writing, Journalism, English Literature, Drama and Theatre Studies, and Publishing. Other potential progression routes might include postgraduate work in Community Arts, Literary Tourism and the Professional Masters in Education.


Hear what some of our students have to say about studying the BA (Hons) in Writing and Literature at ATU Sligo.

"I think it is the only course that focuses on writing in English as a creative process, rather than an academic subject, so for the more artistically inclined people, it stands out. This course gave me great confidence in the field after just one year of study"

Blaithin Ryan, BA (Hons) in Writing & Literature

Did you know?

All ATU, Online students can avail of an array of Learning Supports. We encourage all students to take a free 15 minute online assessment tool, giving immediate feedback on strengths, challenges and support services available before embarking on your learning journey.

Disability Support

Any student with a disability can avail of the Disability Support Service. This service is committed to empowering students to achieve their academic and vocational goals in an inclusive learning environment. This service is free and confidential to all students who choose to register. All students also have access to assistive technology assessment and support through the Assistive Technology Education Specialist.

Academic Writing

The Academic Writing Centre offers support to all online students in the form of online 1:1, small group or class tutorials with a writing tutor. Students can also avail of a comprehensive suite of online supports such as academic writing guides, recorded tutorials and resources. Online students also have complimentary access to Studiosity, an online service providing feedback on students’ writing

Exam Services

The Student Support Officer will assess students and if accommodations are required, to communicate these with  the exams office. Library The library has a wealth of online resources for students and will facilitate online meetings with the student to provide general support in accessing library databases and to provide 1:1/group tutorials on research, referencing skills.


Students have access to our careers office staff who provide support in many areas including job searching, CV writing, further study options, career progression paths etc.


"I think the best thing about the degree is that it covers a wide range of subjects. The opportunity to learn from working professionals with a wealth of experience was also a privilege, picking their brains is a must! The degree is also not heavily exam-focused, which was a bonus. The continual assessment aspect was really beneficial and meant you had the space to experiment with your writing style. I also enjoyed how the degree allowed you to be creative and imaginative throughout your studies.

After completing the BA (Hons) in Writing and Literature at ATU Sligo, I then went on to University of Galway to study a MA in Journalism. I now work as a Fast News Reporter with the Irish Independent."

Seoirse Mulgrew, BA (Hons) in Writing and Literature graduate and now a Journalist with the Irish Independent

"I think it is the only programme that focuses on writing in English as a creative process, rather than an academic subject, so for the more artistically inclined people, it stands out. This programme gave me great confidence in the field after just one year of study"

Blaithin Ryan, BA (Hons) in Writing and Literature graduate

Programme Fees

To help make the payment of fees more manageable for students who are self-funding their studies, tuition fees can be paid through payment instalment plans at ATU Sligo. 

If you are seeking to take your exams online, and you meet the eligibility criteria (overseas students and those with extenuating circumstances), an additional examinations fee will apply. For further information, please visit our Examinations webpage

Note this programme is not yet covered by the Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI).