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  • Publishing with English BA (Hons)

Publishing with English BA (Hons)

Why choose this course?

Do you want to work in either publishing or one of the creative industries? This course allows you to choose from a range of modules which offer both variety and complementary subject combinations, from English, creative writing and journalism.

Specialist tutors from industry will also teach your practical modules, and you'll also have access to practising publishers, literary agents, editors and others through our dissertation mentoring scheme.

You'll get involved with Kingston University Press, a student-run enterprise, which will provide you with hands-on experience of commissioning, design and production, marketing and supply chain, through the project management of home-grown lists. The Press provides a conduit for your writing and enables you to build your own portfolio of accomplishments to prospective employers. It also reflects our entrepreneurial learning environment and emphasis on developing a practical skillset, to help with employability.


Attendance UCAS code Year of entry
3 years full time P5Q3 2020
Location Penrhyn Road

Reasons to choose Kingston

  • Kingston University is ranked top in London for journalism, publishing and public relations (Guardian University Guide league tables 2020).
  • During the course, you'll benefit from a well-structured and supported work placement, not commonly offered on similar courses.
  • You'll get hands-on publishing experience with Kingston University Press and have the opportunity to build up a portfolio of work.
  • Kingston has excellent links with industry, which offer field visits to publishing houses, literary events, book fairs and networking opportunities.

What you will study

Publishing with English is an integrated, interdisciplinary course with varying, focused specialisms, integrating vocational and academic study. You'll develop skills in publishing, writing and creating practical content, management and marketing through Kingston University Press.

This course combines theory and practice, requiring you to analyse and reflect on central issues in contemporary publishing and literature and to test out your understanding by applying it in a variety of contexts.

If you want to make sense of publishing's place in the environment, this course will provide you with the historical, cultural and contemporary contexts.


Each level is made up of four modules each worth 30 credit points. Typically a student must complete 120 credits at each level.

Year 1

Year 2

Optional year

Final year

In the first year, you'll receive a general induction to the subjects covered on the degree, including the main roles and functions within the industry and its legal framework. You'll also learn industry-standard software packages like Adobe InDesign. 

You will cover ethics, authorship, digitisation and diversity.  You'll write and edit academic, popular genre and non-literary forms and study the prose, poetry and drama of London, from the rise of Renaissance theatre culture to its fictional futures.

Core modules

How Publishing Works


How Publishing Works is a skills-based practical module which provides an introduction to the practice of publishing as a creative, collaborative process. You will learn about the key processes and systems within publishing and how these impact on the quality of publishing outputs and the broader publishing landscape.

By working on in-class exercises and assignment tasks you will acquire and apply the basic skills at the core of successful publishing. You will develop an understanding of the impact of effective communication, group dynamics and successful collaboration, and build effective writing, organisational and data analysis skills. You will also gain hands-on experience with industry-standard tools and software packages.

Publishing in Context


This core module offers a critical introduction to the field of publishing in its many forms. At its core are questions central to studying publishing in context. What is publishing in the digital age? What is the role of the publisher? What are the main events in publishing's past and how have they shaped current professional practice? The module begins with a current overview and goes on to examine the evolution of publishing. It adopts a critical approach to examining how key social, economic, political and technological shifts alter the publishing landscape.  Students will be introduced to academic ideas about print and material culture as well as media and communications theory and concepts like filtering and framing. This will enable a critical understanding of how publishing has developed within society as an industry and practice, how current challenges might be met and how future trends might be anticipated. 

Using the primary historical artefact, the book, as a case study, the module examines changes in authorship and reading practices, advances in print and communication technology from industrial to digital and the move from a product-orientated to a market-orientated business. Students are encouraged to critique the role of the book as a material object and examine the role of content in other formats. The module introduces ethical issues around the publisher's role with regard to censorship and copyright.

The module also acts as a more general introduction to the academic strand of the BA Publishing degree - acquainting students with Kingston's personal tutor system and the study skills required to engage with the conventions of critical reading, constructing arguments, persuasive writing and essay writing, Harvard referencing, and critical reflection.

Reading London: Drama, Poetry and Prose

30 credits

This module introduces you to the literature of London, from the rise of Renaissance theatre culture to its fictional futures, and from explorations of its urban heart to its sprawling suburbs. You will investigate how numerous writers have depicted everyday life in the metropolis, as well as social upheaval, crime and injustice. You will consider the emergence of distinct literary cultures in the capital, the ways London's position at the centre of a global empire has shaped its literature, and how writers have in turn represented the experiences of particular groups, for example, social elites, immigrants, women, and children.

The module will also introduce you to some of the most fundamental categories of literature. The module will be organised into three strands: one on drama, one on poetry, and one on prose (fiction and non-fiction). In each strand you will identify the distinctive characteristics of particular forms and genres of literature, and of modes of writing that developed at particular historical moments. Through close study of a range of literary texts we will consider, for instance, what distinguishes tragedy, comedy and realism in drama, how poets have engaged with the sonnet form or the epic, what defines the memoir, and how to explain the differences in narrative style between realist and modernist fiction.

Our weekly interactive lectures will be complemented by study trips to locations across London, which may include a visit to the Globe Theatre, the London Museum or a walking lecture following the route taken by Mrs Dalloway in Virginia Woolf's novel of the same name.  

Writing that Works

30 credits

This module is designed to familiarise you with a range of rhetorical strategies, aesthetic techniques, redrafting and editing skills, while also providing the opportunity to practise writing and editing in a number of literary and non-literary forms. In "Writing that Works" you are introduced to key techniques for writing effectively and you develop your ability to identify strengths and weaknesses in writing by studying a number of different forms of published texts, both literary and non literary. These abilities are first developed by reading and examining good and bad examples of writing in a variety of forms written for different audiences – from short stories and poems, to newspaper articles, commercial writing, blogs, ads, speeches, emails, informational pamphlets, and business letters.  In addition to the examples offered by tutors, you will be encouraged to source independently further instances of good and bad writing to share with the class in seminars. The next step is for you to practise and obtain tutor and peer feedback on your own writing in these forms and styles. Transferable skills are embedded in the module through the editing and redrafting practice in which you will synthesise the reading, analysis and feedback you have received in order to produce a portfolio of writing that works. The module will make use of the expertise of a number of our Writers in Residence, Distinguished Writers and Creative Writing staff who will present and discuss examples of their own writing that has, and hasn't, worked. 

In your second year, you'll develop technical competence and understanding of commercial markets, learn project management and effective team working, to help with your employability. 

You'll create portfolios across various media and platforms, including promotional videos, an academic journal and a commissioned website. You can develop research skills in publishing, write creatively for target audiences, and examine the relationship between literature and contemporary events such as social mobility and the rise of technology.

Core modules

Developing Content for Digital Delivery


Contemporary Critical Issues in Publishing


Contemporary Critical Issues in Publishing offers the chance to analyse and debate a wide range of key issues and challenges which impact on contemporary publishing. A series of lectures by expert publishing practitioners and commentators will help you get to grips with the topics and provide an opportunity to network with industry professionals.

To communicate your knowledge of specific issues you will learn to use a blogging platform to produce and disseminate a critical post. In the second teaching block you will work as team to plan, edit and produce a scholarly and industry-facing journal which showcases current issues.

Optional modules

Optional Modules


Available options will vary each year depending on staff specialism.

This degree is also available with an optional year in industry. Students selecting this route will be supported by the placements office in finding a suitable work placement.

A placement year is an excellent way to gain valuable work experience in your chosen field of study.

You'll further prepare for employment in the publishing industry through modules on authorship and diversity, challenging the status quo, literature of protest and dissent and children's literature for adult readership.  

As hands-on publishers with KU Press, you'll learn about content creation and digital workflow, business modelling, the supply chain, plus the marketing and business strategies needed to sustain a commercially viable publishing operation.

Core modules

Publishing in Practice


Publishing in Practice is a hands-on, capstone module where you are involved in a live project to create and publish a print or digital product, and undertake a period on work placement. You will be required to spend at least two weeks working within a relevant host organisation in a real publishing environment. Taught sessions post-placement will help you consider what it means to be a reflective practitioner and workshops will look at career development and employability skills as well as jobs in publishing and related areas.

Collaborating in groups, you will produce a real publication for the Kingston University Press, engaging with the project management, editorial and production tasks essential to produce publications across a range of platforms.

Marketing and Communications in Publishing


Marketing and Communications in Publishing introduces marketing theory and will increase your understanding of the various individuals and communities involved in publishing. You will develop knowledge about the function of marketing, communication, delivery and sales within the today's content business. You will practice the skills necessary to communicate effectively with colleagues and stakeholders (including authors), retailers, distributors, purchasers and consumers.

The module will focus on the importance of copywriting, social media, metadata and Search Engine Marketing (SEM) to reach target audiences, increase visibility and discoverability, and build brand and relationships.

Optional modules

Optional Modules


Available options will vary each year depending on staff specialism.

The information above reflects the currently intended course structure and module details. Updates may be made on an annual basis and revised details will be published through Programme Specifications ahead of each academic year. The regulations governing this course are available on our website. If we have insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, this may not be offered.

Entry requirements

112 tariff points

Typical offer

112 UCAS points from Level 3 qualifications, including English Language/Literature or related subject (i.e. A Levels, BTEC Diploma, Access Diploma, IB Diploma, etc).

Additional requirements

Entry on to this course does not require an interview, entrance test, audition or portfolio.


All non-UK applicants must meet our English Language requirements. For this course it is Academic IELTS of 6.5 overall, with no element below 5.5

Teaching and assessment

Teaching is delivered through coursework, practical assessments and short tests.

Guided independent study

When not attending timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. This typically will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking preparing coursework assignments and presentations, and preparing for exams. Your independent learning is supported by a range of excellent facilities including online resources, the library and CANVAS, the online virtual learning platform.

Academic support

Our academic support team here at Kingston University provides help in a range of areas.

Dedicated personal tutor

When you arrive, we'll introduce you to your personal tutor. This is the member of academic staff who will provide academic guidance, be a support throughout your time at Kingston and who will show you how to make the best use of all the help and resources that we offer at Kingston University.

Your workload

Type of teaching and learning

Placement: 75 hours

Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 1
  • Scheduled teaching
  • Guided independent study
Year 2
  • Scheduled teaching
  • Guided independent study
Year 3
  • Scheduled teaching
  • Guided independent study

How you will be assessed

Assessment typically comprises exams (eg test or exam), practical (eg presentations, performance) and coursework (eg essays, reports, self-assessment, portfolios and dissertation). The approximate percentage for how you will be assessed on this course is as follows, though depends to some extent on the optional modules you choose:

Type of assessment

Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 1
  • Coursework
  • Practical
Year 2
  • Coursework
  • Practical
Year 3
  • Coursework
  • Practical

Feedback summary

We aim to provide feedback on assessments within 20 working days.

Your timetable

Your individualised timetable is normally available to students within 48 hours of enrolment. Whilst we make every effort to ensure timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week between 9.00am and 6.00pm. For undergraduate students Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities, but there may be occasions when this is not possible. Timetables for part-time students will depend on the modules selected.

Class sizes

To give you an indication of class sizes, this course normally attracts 15 students and lecture sizes are normally 15 - 30 students. However this can vary by module and academic year.

After you graduate

Graduates from the Publishing with English BA (Hons) programme will be in a good position to seek employment in publishing and the broader worlds of the creative and communications industries.

Understanding the fit of writing and publishing within wider society will enable students to direct their skillset in the direction of a wide range of employment opportunities eg. journalism, public relations, advocacy and campaigning, professional writing (including creative writing), advertising and marketing, reviewing and literary criticism, events and festival marketing; organisations supporting the development of literacy.

In terms of practice, adaptability and employability, it will equip students with the cutting-edge commercial, technical and creative skills required for delivery of content across diverse media, sectors and markets.

Who teaches this course?

The academic staff team is made up of publishing practitioners, published authors and scholars of English literature who have worked at and been published by a range of publishers and related content providers, and who, with their wide experience of all aspects of the industry, embody a creative and entrepreneurial approach to publishing education.  

The lecturers combine teaching and research with their own professional work and writing, enabling them to bring the experience of contemporary publishing into the classroom.

Course fees and funding

2019/20 fees for this course

The tuition fee you pay depends on whether you are assessed as a 'Home' (UK or EU), 'Islands' or International' student. In 2019/20 the fees for this course are:

 Fee category  Amount
Home (UK and EU students) £9,250*
International Year 1 (2019/20): £12,700 or £14,200**
Year 2 (2020/21): £13,100 or £14,600**
Year 3 (2021/22): £13,400 or £15,000**
Islands (Channel Islands and Isle of Man) To be confirmed by the Island Authorities

* These fees are annual and may increase in line with inflation each year subject to the results of the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF). 

** The international fee rate charged will depend upon the course combination chosen.

Eligible UK and EU students can apply to the Government for a tuition loan, which is paid direct to the University. This has a low interest-rate which is charged from the time the first part of the loan is paid to the University until you have repaid it.

Additional costs

Depending on the programme of study, there may be extra costs which are not covered by tuition fees, which students will need to consider when planning their studies.

Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching, assessment and operating University facilities such as the library, IT equipment and other support services. Accommodation and living costs are not included in our fees. 

Where a course has additional expenses, we make every effort to highlight them. These may include optional field trips, materials (e.g. art, design, engineering), security checks such as DBS, uniforms, specialist clothing or professional memberships.

Text books

Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. You may prefer to, or be required to, buy your own copy of key textbooks.

Computer equipment

There are open-access networked computers available across the University, plus laptops available to loan. You may find it useful to have your own PC, laptop or tablet which you can use around campus and in halls of residences.

Free WiFi is available on each of the campuses.


In the majority of cases coursework can be submitted online. There may be instances when you will be required to submit work in a printed format. Printing and photocopying costs are not included in your tuition fees.


Travel costs are not included but we do have a free intersite bus service which links the campuses and halls of residence.

Note for EU students: UK withdrawal from the European Union

EU students starting a programme in the 2019/20 academic year will be charged the same fees as those who began in 2018/19 (subject to any annual increase in accordance with the applicable terms and conditions and the Kingston University fees schedule).

They will also be able to access the same financial support for the duration of their course as students who began in 2018/19, even if their degree concludes after the UK's exit from the EU.

No assurances have yet been made regarding 2020/21 and beyond. Updates will be published here as soon as they become available.


The campus at Penrhyn Road is a hive of activity, housing the main student restaurant, the learning resources centre (LRC), and a host of teaching rooms and lecture theatres. 

At the heart of the campus is the John Galsworthy building, a six-storey complex that brings together lecture theatres, flexible teaching space and information technology suites around a landscaped courtyard.

Key information set

The scrolling banner(s) below display some key factual data about this course (including different course combinations or delivery modes of this course where relevant).

Undergraduate study
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