The Best Writing Courses In India



Written By: Hemanth Kumar Gurram

Creative writing has evolved as a distinct academic field with carefully designed course curriculum and practical pedagogy. In India, some colleges and universities offer full-time and distance-learning programs on creative writing, which are not only comprehensive in nature, but are also extremely economical when compared to international courses. The duration of these programs vary from 2 weeks to 1 year, depending on the skill level taught.




What to expect from a creative writing program

Creative writing programs are structured to teach in progressive stages to ensure students’ assimilation of information and nurture their creativity. Periodic writing assignments and constructive feedback from instructors help students to monitor their progress, and discover their area of interest in various forms of writing.

Creative writing curriculum usually comprises of the following aspects:

·         Introduction to writing
·         History and creative inspiration
·         Grammar (punctuation, spelling and syntax)
·         Introduction to literary genres
·         Final written assignment
·         Presentation of work and methods to approach publishers

Colleges offering creative writing courses in India

Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) offers a Diploma in Creative Writing in English (DCE) through its study centers across the country. This program includes training in feature articles, short stories, scripts for TV and radio, and poetry. Their website has the necessary information that applicants need to know before enrolling. Interestingly, IGNOU has a discussion forum and video channel on Youtube, which address students’ doubts related to admission process, curriculum, grading, etc.

Program Details

Program type: Diploma
Mode of delivery: Distance learning
Duration: 1 year
Validity: 4 years
Eligibility: pass marks in 10+2 and aged 20 or older
Admission criterion : First come, first served
Tuition fee: Rs. 2500
Location: N/A

The British Council, Delhi, offers multiple creative writing programs. Students who wish to enroll must take a test (written test, interview, followed by counseling) and based on the result, they are guided by the instructors to join an appropriate program. Because of its short duration (4 to 8 weeks), the program focuses only on fiction (short story, poetry and dialogue) and feature articles.

Program Details

Program type: Certificate course
Mode of delivery: Campus
Duration: 8 weeks (regular program) and 4 weeks (intensive)
Validity: N/A
Eligibility: Applicants aged 16 or older.
Admission procedure: First come, first served
Tuition fee: Rs. 8400 to Rs. 11,700 (depends on the course chosen)
Location: Delhi.

Symbiosis Centre for Distance Learning (SCDL), Pune, is offering a 1 year Diploma in Creative Writing in English (DCWE). Similar to IGNOU’s diploma program, this too is a rigorous course best suited for students seeking a comprehensive overview of the craft. SDCL has a reputation for quality education, so their programs are often costlier than similar programs offered by other institutes.

 Program Details

 Program Type: Diploma course
 Mode of delivery: Distance learning
 Duration: 1 year
 Validity: 2 years
 Eligibility: pass marks in 10+2 with 50% in English
 Admission procedure: First come, first served
 Tuition Fee: Rs. 18,000
 Location: N/A

Xavier Institute of Communications (XIC), Mumbai, runs a certificate program in creative writing, which covers writing exercises, critiquing and practical exercises. The course is apt for beginners seeking quick introduction to professional writing, before embarking on more comprehensive programs.

 Program Details

 Program Type: Certificate course
 Mode of delivery: Campus
 Duration: 6 weeks (6 sessions of 2 hours each on Saturdays)
 Validity: N/A
 Eligibility: Open to all
 Admission procedure: First come, first served
 Tuition Fee: Rs. 4494
 Location: Mumbai.

Sri Aurobindo Centre for Arts and Communication (SACAC), New Delhi, also offers a certificate programme in creative writing in English. This program is offered in two levels: level 1 is apt for beginners and level 2 is apt for advanced learners. Students, depending on their level of writing skill, can seek admission into either or both the courses by qualifying in the entrance test. It is noteworthy that established writers, journalists, and editors instruct this program.  

 Program Details

 Program Type: Certificate course
 Mode of delivery: Campus
 Duration: 3 months (72 hours across 24 sessions; classes on Saturday and Sunday)
 Validity: N/A
 Eligibility: pass marks in 10+2
 Admission criterion: Entrance test (1 hour test for Level 1 and 3 hour test for Level 2)
 Tuition Fee: Level 1 - Rs. 14,500 and Level 2 - Rs. 18,500
 Location: New Delhi

R.K. Film and Media Academy, Delhi, is going to introduce programs in creative writing and content writing from October 2012. At present, the institute is offering only script writing courses and therefore there is little information about the creative program on their website. Students can however call or visit the institute for more details.  

 Program Details

 Program Type: Certificate
 Mode of delivery: Full-time
 Duration: 3 months (weekly 2 sessions of 2 hours each)
 Validity: N/A
 Eligibility: pass marks in 10+2
 Admission procedure: first come, first served
 Tuition Fee: Rs. Rs. 25,000 (plus application fee Rs. 700)
 Location: Campus.

Center for Research in Art and Film & Television (CRAFT), Delhi, runs creative programs of  3 months, 6 months and 1 year duration.

 Program Details

 Program Type: Certificate
 Mode of delivery: Full-time and distance learning
 Duration: 3 months, 6 months (distance learning), and 1 year full-time
 Validity: N/A
 Eligibility: Open to all with fair English language skills
 Admission procedure: Interview
 Tuition Fee: Rs. 30,000 (for 3 months program), Rs. 20,000 (for distance learning), and Rs. 55,000 (1 year program and if paid in installments Rs. 60,000)
 Location: Delhi and distance learning

Krishna Kanta Handiqui State Open University (KKHSOU), Guwahati, is offering Diploma in Creative Writing in English (DCWE). The university came into existence only in the year 2008 so the study centers of this university, at present, are limited to north-east India. This program is  therefore apt for students residing in that area.  

 Program Details

 Program Type: Diploma course
 Mode of delivery: Distance learning
 Duration: 1 year
 Validity: 4 years
 Eligibility: pass marks in 10+2
 Admission procedure: first come, first served
 Tuition Fee: Rs. 3400
 Location: N/A

Other institutes offering Creative Writing courses in India

Given below is a list of institutes offering creative writing programs, but there is only little course-related information on their websites. Students can obtain more information by phone (numbers are available on their websites) or by visiting the institute.

Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Delhi, is offering Advanced English and Creative Writing program.   
Central Institute of Indian languages, Mysore, is offering a program in creative writing in English. Students can contact the admissions coordinator on 0821 - 2345000 or 2515820.
Karnataka State Open University (KSOU), Mysore, is offering Diploma in Functional English (DFE). Students should speak with the helpdesk and request program information.
Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi, is offering creative writing as an optional paper in Master of Arts (M.A.) in English. This program covers the aspects of Master of Arts and creative writing in a single program but the duration is 2 years.

A word of caution for eager minds

As you are aware by now, each creative writing program is unique in scope, duration, cost, delivery, and pedagogy. Therefore, students must thoroughly understand all the aspects of a program and carefully choose an appropriate one.

Contrary to the popular insistence that the art of creative writing can neither be taught nor learned, students must, at all times, bear in mind that creative writing is solely an individual pursuit and that talent can be developed and nurtured with discipline, perseverance and inspiration. A good writing program will guide them in this literary pursuit.

Still confused about taking up a writing course? Read this post to make up your mind.


Hemanth writes feature articles, short stories, and business content. To know more about his writing please visit www.hemanthkumar.in. Besides writing, he loves  movies and aspires to write movie scripts in future.


15 comments:

  1. Goon noon sir
    Iam interested in doing creative writing course.being a engineering graduate ,i want to do it as part time .what are ways that i can reach through the program and which college would be preferable and iam located in chennai.

    looking forward to hear from you.

    THANKS AND REGARDS
    R.KARTHIKEYAN

    ReplyDelete
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  5. An extremely helpful post.

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  6. ..An insightful post.

    I have been wanting to design and write instruction manuals for machinery, equipment, consumer durables and other such products.

    Being a mechanical engineer and a product designer I have a good understanding of things technical. I also possess good vocabulary and an attitude to research before writing.

    Please let me know if there are courses for instruction manual design.

    ReplyDelete
  7. If I do the course from ignou which is a distance learning programme will it be a worth? Will it give me proper learning opportunities?

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  8. Hello, this absolutely clear and fatastic information provided in a crisp manner. kudos to your efforts and thanks so much. regards

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  10. Hi, thats an interesting compilation. Wondering though, how effective really is a distance learning program? I believe the interaction and feedback that are available in a classroom, besides motivation, are also important growing tools.
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  11. Your post is really helpful but I am curious what does the validity of a course mean?

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