The Creative and Professional Writing Programme of the Hong Kong Baptist University is the first UGC-funded undergraduate programme in Hong Kong tertiary institutions dedicated to creative and professional writing learning in both Chinese and English languages. Apart from cultivating students to write in creative and professional fields, the Creative and Professional Writing Programme also aims to nurture students’ academic potential, cultural dimensions and sense of creativity, and to enhance their professional value.
The Creative and Professional Writing Programme incorporates two distinct characteristics
- Bilingual Teaching and Learning. Students will read, write and speak in Chinese as well as English, developing their skills in both languages. Bilingual ability enables students to respond to Hong Kong’s specific linguistic environment.
- Interdisciplinarity. All the Creative and Professional Writing courses are designed to ensure that students are exposed to the writing demands and strategies of diverse disciplines, including art criticism, language, literature, history, philosophy, media studies, business and science.
Aims of the Creative and Professional Writing Programme
- Provide students with a vigorous curriculum to develop creative and professional writing skills in Chinese and English Languages
- Develop students' abilities when writing professionally in different genres and contexts to enhance students' career opportunities
- Cultivate students to produce original works of fiction, poetry, or nonfiction
- Enhance students' cultural literacy which would act as a solid basis for their creative and professional writing
- Build up their knowledge for self-directed and life-long learning in the world of professional writing and publishing
The Characteristics of the Curriculum
The 60 major units of the Programme consist of 42 units of Required Courses and 18 units of courses from the two Major Electives of English and Chinese writing. The Required Courses provide fundamental learning in writing and concepts in aesthetics, theories and ideas in creativity, and cultural differences, in order to enhance students’ intellectual cognition and skills. Each of the two Major Electives consists of two Modules—one in creative writing and one in professional writing. There are four Modules altogether. Students are required to select at least one course from each of the four Modules, so that they will be trained both in Chinese writing and English writing, and be skilled both in creative and professional writing.
Some of the Required Courses are:
- Writing Seminar: Workshop in Creative Writing
- Professional Writing Practicum: Essentials of the Craft of Writing
- Creativity: Theory and Practice
- Biography Writing
- Editing and Publishing
- Artistic Creativity and Aesthetics Awareness
- Writing Internship
- Writing for New Media
- Food, Wine and Travel Writing for the Leisure Industry
Examples of the Major Elective Courses include:
- Creative Writing in Children’s Literature in English
- Drama Translation
- Chinese Song Lyric Writing
- Writing Diaspora in a Global World
- Writing for Science
- Advertisement Copywriting
- Reading Masterpieces and Writing Your Own
- Modern Chinese Fiction Writing
- Creative Writing: Modern Chinese Poetry
- Special Topic in Creative Writing
The HMW Department is an active participant in the university overseas exchange programme. The Department exchange co-ordinator communicates very well with the International Office to promote this event among HMW students. Over the past few years, the Department had more than 15 students going on exchange every year, which is one of the highest at HKBU. Students went to countries such as U.S.A., Australia, France, Finland, Taiwan, Sweden, Norway, Japan, Korea and the Mainland.
The Creative and Professional Writing Programme has designed a required course “Writing Internship” to create opportunities for students to learn by participating in real-life experiences and working for different institutes. The potential internship opportunities include literary agencies, magazine or book publishers, theatre or film groups, non-profit arts organizations, book reviewers, advertising agencies, websites, etc.
Students of the Creative and Professional Writing Programme can compete for prestigious scholarships provided by the University and other organizations. These include, amongst others, the Sir Edward Youde Memorial Scholarship, HSBC Overseas Scholarship, Li Po Chun Charitable Trust Fund Scholarships, and Providence Foundation Combined Scholarships and Bursaries.
Not everyone can become a great creative writer, but professional writing always includes a significant creative component. Our society urgently needs writers of all kinds. The professional writing portion of the curriculum, with good infusion of the creative side, can prepare students to work for a great variety of future careers. It goes without saying that graduates with excellent writing skills, both in English and Chinese are of great demand. The Programme not only meets the demand of the market in creative industry, news media, publishing houses, editorship of journals, government offices, non-profit and charity organizations, education sector, etc., but also in the business, industrial, and financial sectors. There would be a strong demand for the graduates of this Programme from the education sector, which increasingly emphasizes a writing education. The interdisciplinary approach would also build a solid foundation for students to pursue postgraduate studies.
Employers are likely to choose someone who graduated with a creative mind and good language and writing skills, because the graduate with a proficiency in languages will take years to cultivate, and a creative mind is in high demand.
CPW unleashed my creative potentials
Ng Chun Yin, Marco (2019), Major in Creative and Professional Writing
"CPW granted me confidence in writing my fancy ideas. Supported with a friendly environment, I am exposed to a broad range of inspiring creative works. CPW unleashed my creative potentials and made my college life extraordinary, very different from a typical one just brimming with a thesis and essays."