Diploma in Arts: Creative Writing in our Digital Age

  • Overview
  • Course Content
  • Structure
  • Career Opportunities
  • Fees
  • Next Steps



Click here to view provisional February 2019 timetable.

“Creative Writing” and other forms of contemporary writing practice have become central to cultural consumption in the age of ubiquitous digital technology. This course provides a critical and practical guide to the wide variety of genres, forms, traditions, and outlets available to the modern creative writer and offers students a closely supported introduction to the art of research and writing in the digital age. Taught by fully qualified and experienced writing tutors, it is a primarily activity-based course that develops creativity and practical know-how but also works to sponsor critical and intellectually informed discussion of the formal, cultural and personal issues surrounding creative writing in the digital age. The diploma itself is open to a limited number of participants so places should be booked early to avoid disappointment.

Programme Aims and Objectives

The course is designed to facilitate those with an interest in creative writing and its many modern and emerging forms. The course aims to serve the needs of the complete beginner or the more experienced writer in search of information, ideas, or inspiration. The overall objectives of the course are to equip students with key research and writing skills, to acquaint them with the demands of writing in different forms and for different publications, and to thereby set them on the path to becoming confident, self-directed and successful writers in the future.

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  • Discuss and judge pieces of contemporary creative writing with knowledge and sensitivity, including writing they themselves have produced during the course.

  • Demonstrate understanding of the processes and methods involved in their creation.

  • Produce appropriately constructed and formulated pieces of creative writing in two different forms or genres.


To meet the requirements of the Diploma in Arts students will be required to actively participate in weekly workshops and class exercises (20% of total final mark) and to produce two pieces of written work for possible publication in the course printed book (40% each) and course website.

Please note this programme is not on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ).

Course Content

Classes will be interactive and will incorporate a variety of approaches and activities— lectures, in-class instruction, close critical readings, guest lecturers, and a weekly series of writing workshops. The directed workshops are the core of the course and provide a forum for students to experience a variety of creative writing forms and to work towards the honing and perfection of any two pieces of creative writing. The content of classes will be partly directed by the interests and project ideas students bring to the course, but will be governed by the following general pattern:

Course Introduction

What is creative writing. The history of writing. The history and current state of creative writing.

The Modern Writer and The Modern World

Reading; research; form and content. Orality and literacy, forms of modern literacy.

The story and the storyteller

Stories and structure. The writer as storyteller. Traditional story structures.

Creative Non-Fiction

Non-Fiction writing, exploring contemporary ideas about non-fiction and factual writing.


Traditional poetic forms. Poetry and technology. Poems and Media.

The storyteller and the screen.

Story structures for screens. Types of screen and types of screen based writing. The literary and the ludic.


Traditional and evolving literary forms.

Digital literature

Definitions; variations; contexts; research.

The contemporary writer and creative communications.

Personal websites; blogging; social media presence for the writer

Editing and Submitting       

Proofing and re-writing for publication; competitions; magazines; finding publishers; self-publishing.

Course conclusion  

Publication of DBS Creative Writing Book and Companion website.


The course is delivered in a series of 10 weekly three hour classes. In the first part of the course students work to deadlines to produce a variety of short pieces to be submitted in advance of classes; later they work on the development any two selected pieces under close guidance from lecturers, and in response to feedback from fellow learners. Towards the end of the course, and under the direction of the course lecturer, the class forms an editorial board for the selection and final editing of the best writing produced by the class for inclusion in a course book to be published.  A further selection of these can then be put forward for consideration by other publications and venues.


Career Opportunities 

The course will be of particular value and interest to those already engaged in or seeking an entry into creative writing, blogging, script-writing as a career. It also provides a useful study for those interested in contemporary, literary or digital culture. The course is also an accessible experience of creative arts education for those seeking a route into advanced level study.  

The fees for this programme are €1,080.

  • Arts
  • Part-Time
  • Professional Evening Diplomas

Course overview


Schedule: Tuesday evenings, 6.15pm - 8.30pm
Intake: February
Duration: 10 weeks




    Contact Us

    We are now accepting applications for programmes taking place in 2020. Contact our admissions team for more information

    Email: admissions@dbs.ie
    Phone: 01 417 7500
    Opening times:
    Monday to Friday
    8:45am to 5:15pm