New Zealand Diploma in Writing for Creative Industries (Level 5)

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About this programme

Anyone considering a career in writing should consider this programme as it provides skills, techniques and critical understanding to apply to the composition of original texts. This qualification is ideal for people who wish to work independently as writers, for those already working in the creative industries who wish to enhance/upgrade their skills, and for those working in other industries who wish to improve their writing skills to allow higher-level employment.

NorthTec offers qualifications up to level 7 in applied writing:

What you will learn

The purpose of this qualification is to provide Aotearoa New Zealand with graduates who have broad theoretical and technical knowledge and skills relevant to creative and applied writing that will enable them to work independently or as part of a team in, particularly, the writing sector, in relation to publishing, broadcasting, performance and digital platforms, and other businesses and organisations.

Graduates will be able to:

  • Select and apply writing principles and processes (planning, analysis, research, drafting, editing and rewriting) to produce original outputs for specific audiences (print, broadcasting, performance and digital platforms) in the creative industries, and other businesses and organisations.

  • Apply professional, legal and ethical principles in a socially responsible manner to writing practice.

  • Work independently or as part of a team to fulfil customer requirements, meet deadlines, work to a brief and solve problems in order to develop and complete writing projects.

Courses in this programme

Compulsory Courses Level Credits
5001 - Writing in New Zealand 5 15
5002 - Storytelling 5 15
5003 - Short Fiction 5 15
5004 - Short Non-Fiction 5 15
5005 - Long Texts 5 15
5006 - Poetry 5 15
5007 - Short Scripts 5 15
5008 - Project Management 5 15

Employment pathway

Graduates of this qualification are likely to work as freelance writers, or be employed as technical writers, scriptwriters, writers of website content, educational writers, speech writers, museum writers, newsletter writers and writers of other professional content, and/or as book reviewers.

Admission information

Applicants under the age of 20

  • An example of the applicant’s original creative writing.

  • A minimum of 42 credits at NCEA Level 3 including at least 14 credits in an English-rich subject (e.g. English, history, art history, classics, geography) or equivalent; or

  • Successful completion of a recognised writing foundation programme or equivalent, for example the New Zealand Certificate in Creative Writing (Level 4).

Applicants aged 20 years and over

Evidence that the applicant can successfully achieve the qualification graduate outcomes.

English language requirements

All applicants must have a level of English sufficient to be able to study at this level. Those students whose first language is not English should have:

  • An international English Language Testing System (IELTS) overall academic score of at least 6.0 (with at least 5.5 in each band), or an accepted international equivalence.

Special Entry

In exceptional circumstances, an applicant who does not meet the full entry requirements may be granted admission to the Programme on the approval of the Head of Department or delegate if he/she is confident of the applicant’s ability to successfully undertake the Diploma with a reasonable likelihood of success.

Qualification gained

New Zealand Diploma in Writing for Creative Industries (Level 5)

Courses and programmes may be cancelled, postponed or have their content or configuration changed from time to time (including during the academic year) at the discretion of NorthTec. Fees are an indication, include GST and apply to domestic students only. View terms and conditions

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Applied Writing Tutors
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Susan Pointon

Susan is a film-maker and writer with over thirty years experience in film, theatre and television.




Full time/Part time


1 year full time

Start Dates

Online: February

Cost Incl. GST (Approx):

Domestic: $6,102.37

International: Programme not open to international students

Programme Code


Phone 0800 162 100
Enquire about this programme
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