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EducationMaster's and PhD degree programmesLiterary StudiesWriting, Editing and Mediating
Header image Writing, Editing and Mediating

Writing, Editing and Mediating

What makes a text a good or captivating text? How do you recognize repetitions, inconsistencies, faulty logic and other problems in texts? What does it take to guide a text from writer to reader?

Working with texts in a professional setting involves a special set of skills. The Writing, Editing and Mediating Master's track (often abbreviated to WEM), offers students a choice of courses that focus on non-fiction writing for specific audiences, the history of texts in their various forms (from manuscript to digital book), proof-reading and correcting English texts, and producing texts for publication. Topics addressed include censorship, copyright, scholarly editions, critical theory and social issues in contemporary literature.

Students on the course typically have a BA in English or in an Anglophone culture (e.g. American Studies). Some students with other humanities qualifications and a sufficient level of academic English are accepted by the admissions board.

The one-year Master's track in Writing, Editing and Mediating (WEM) is a track within the Master's degree in Literary Studies and is run by the Department of English Language and Culture. It is taught and assessed wholly in English.

Facts & Figures
Degree
MA in Literary Studies
Course type
Master
Duration
12 months (60 ECTS)
Croho code
60813
Language of instruction
English
Start
February, September
Faculty
Arts
Why study this programme in Groningen?
  • Training in writing about literature for non-academic audiences
  • Correcting and editing written English of various kinds
  • Modules that address issues related to modern publishing
  • Teaching in small groups (typically 15-20 students)
  • International staff
Programme
Periods
CoursesCourse Catalog >1234
From Manuscript to Printed Book (WEM 3) (10 EC, optional)
Modern English Language (WEM 2) (10 EC, optional)
Modern Literature and Mediation (WEM 1) (10 EC, optional)
The Digital Text: The Book Past and Future (10 EC, optional)
Interdisciplinary Seminars (Literature) (10 EC, optional)
Masterlanguage Courses (5 EC, optional)
Master's Thesis (WEM) (20 EC)
Translating and Editing (WEM 4) (10 EC, optional)
Work Placement (WEM) (10 EC, optional)

Curriculum

Courses can vary each year. Recent interdisciplinary courses dealt with European modernism, minority literatures, and homosexuality in nineteenth and twentieth-century literature.

For more information about the variety of areas in which students can write their dissertations click the Research tab above.

Placements are optional. These have to be arranged by the student but they are supervised by the programme staff who will also give advice on the kinds of placements that are suitable.

Students can also follow Master language courses. These courses are jointly organized by the English departments of the universities of the Netherlands and courses take place all over the country. More information about the courses can be found on the Master language website: https://masterlanguage.nl/taal/engels/. You may follow Master language courses in consultation with the Board of Examiners of your programme.

Programme options
Master's Honours Programme (honours program)

The Master's Honours Programme is a 15ECTS interdisciplinary course especially for students who want to get more from their studies by focusing on their leadership skills.

More information about this option

Master's placement (specialization)

This master's track includes an optional work placement for which you are awarded ECTS credit points.

It is your responsibility to find a placement yourself, but the Mobility Office can offer help with this where necessary.

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is unaccommodated
Entry requirements

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
language test

Your BA should show that you possess our minimum language requirements of any of the following: TOEFL iBT 110 (min. of 25 on writing skills); IELTS 8 (min. of 7.5 on all items); ERK level C1. If your BA does not certify this, you may have to take an appropriate language test.

previous education

BA in English Language and/or Literature; degree in another literature or culture area taught in English (e.g. American Studies)

Transfer options

Study programmeOrganizationTransition
Engelse Taal en CultuurAll Research universitiesNo additional requirements
Study programmeOrganizationTransition
English Language and CultureUniversity of GroningenNo additional requirements

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
language test

Your BA should show that you possess our minimum language requirements of any of the following: TOEFL iBT 110 (min. of 25 on writing skills); IELTS 8 (min. of 7.5 on all items); ERK level C1. If your BA does not certify this, you may have to take an appropriate language test.

other admission requirements

To assess whether your educational/academic background meets the specific programme requirements, we will consider the level and curriculum of your previous studies and the grades that you have obtained. This evaluation is carried out by our Admissions Office and the Admissions Board.

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students15 August 201901 September 2019
15 January 202001 February 2020
15 August 202001 September 2020
EU/EEA students15 October 201901 February 2020
01 May 202001 September 2020
15 October 202001 February 2021
non-EU/EEA students15 October 201901 February 2020
01 May 202001 September 2020
15 October 202001 February 2021
Tuition fees
NationalityYearFeeProgramme form
EU/EEA2019-2020€ 2083full-time
non-EU/EEA2019-2020€ 12500full-time

Practical information for:

After your studies

Job prospects

The WEM Master's track is an ideal stepping stone towards a career in:

  • Editing
  • Publishing
  • Translation
  • Journalism

Although the course is taught and assessed in English, many of its skills are generic and students have gone on to work in non-Anglophone settings.

Research

Student Dissertations & Staff Expertise

English Department Research
English Department Research

Research in the Department covers all areas of English literature and linguistics. Our particular strengths lie in modernism, premodern culture, and language development, and we publish widely on such topics as critical theory, visual culture, travel literature, women's writing, medieval learning, or language acquisition and loss. Our staff members run or participate in a number of international research projects, including the Language Attrition project and the Hakluyt Editorial Project.

Dissertations in the Writing, Editing and Mediating track should reflect the nature of the WEM courses. Possible topics include:

  • the function of literary works in their social contexts;
  • an edition of a text;
  • theoretical reflection on an aspect of the history of the methods used in writing, editing, translating and mediating texts;
  • an examination of the ways in which literary texts are mediated to a particular social group or groups (e.g. reading groups, book-reviews, school syllabi, censorship);
  • any aspect of Book History;
  • institutions and practices associated with literary texts (e.g. libraries, copyright, literary prizes);
  • ways of disseminating texts involving historical or modern technologies (e.g. internet platforms, e-books).

Dissertations may be supervised by any appropriate member of staff. The following list indicates some of the areas in which dissertations can be written.

Dr Kees Dekker: textual editing; manuscript studies; Old English literature and language; Middle English literature and language.

Dr John Flood: Renaissance/Early-Modern literature; Romantic and Victorian literature; Christianity and literature; modern Irish literature; science-fiction; J.R.R. Tolkien; literature and war (especially World War I); twentieth-century British, Irish and American poetry; history of the book; textual editing; philosophy and literature.

Dr Corey Gibson: Marxist literary theory; working-class literature; political ideology and literature; the vernacular; modernism; fairy tales; ballads and folklore; prison literature; postmodern literatures; conceptions of authorship; the historical novel; nationalism and literature; Cold War literature; Scottish literature (eighteenth century to the present).

Dr Ann Hoag: women’s writing; travel literature; contemporary American fiction; modernism.

Dr Hans Jansen: translation; textual correction and editing; Shakespeare, English drama.

Prof. Richard Lansdown: Nineteenth-century English Literature, Romanticism, Lord Byron, Jane Austen, William Wordsworth, John Ruskin, Western Ideas of the Pacific, Literary Criticism and Theory, History of Ideas.

Dr Tekla Mecsnober: typography; modernist writing (especially James Joyce, modernist magazines and experiments with language); eighteenth- and nineteenth-century British fiction; Gerard Manley Hopkins; Victorian poetry.

Dr Karin Olsen: Anglo-Saxon literature and culture; comparative studies in Anglo-Saxon, Old Norse and early Irish literature and culture; Middle English literature.

Prof. Sebastian Sobecki: textual and manuscript studies; digital humanities; Middle English and early Tudor literature; law, politics, and multilingualism; maritime literature.

Dr Irene Visser: postcolonial literature and theory; American literature; contemporary literature; young adult fiction; dystopian and post-apocalyptic fiction; trauma theory and trauma fiction; post-9/11 literature; Maori Literature; Chicano Literature; South African literature; William Faulkner.

Dr Kees de Vries: literary theory; nineteenth-century literature; Oscar Wilde; humour and literature; music and literature.

Here are some sample topics of WEM dissertations recently supervised in the English Department.

  • Covering Arthurian Novels: Cover Design as an Integral Part of Book Marketing.
  • Tolerance as Cultural Difference: Ian Buruma’s Murder in Amsterdam.
  • Chicanas Write Back: Gender and Homosexuality in Gloria Anzaldúa, Estela Portillo Trambley, and Ana Castillo
  • Constructing and Deconstructing Paradise: Robinsonades and British Imperialism.
  • Victorian and Contemporary Criminality in Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes Narratives and BBC’s Sherlock.
  • The Fall of the Romish Church: An Edition of a Reformist Pamphlet.
  • An edition of The Diary of John Lewis: Thoughts of an 18th-Century Minister.
  • A Semi-Diplomatic Edition of Jane Anger Her Protection for Women.
  • From Chest to Window: The Literary Digital Archive and its Mediations.
  • Entertaining Educational Ideals: Children’s Adaptations of Robinson Crusoe and Don Quixote in Eighteenth-Century England.
  • The Agenda of Early AIDS Theatre: As Is and The Normal Heart as Works of Authoritarian Fiction.
  • Recently Built and Remodelled Public Libraries: The Design of Today’s Public Library Buildings.

For general information about the research in the department see the Research Page and the People page of the Department of English Language and Culture.

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Contact

If you want to know more about the programme Writing, Editing and Mediating, please contact:

  • 
						Testimonial of Master Ambassador Becky Evans

    Being one of the only Masters programs that specialised in publishing, while offering such flexibility, the decision to enrol at the University of Groningen was an easy one

    – Master Ambassador Becky Evans
    Read more

    I chose this programme because it provides students with the knowledge and skills required for working as editors and publishers, and combines this practicality with academia maintaining familiarity with literary texts. The interdisciplinary courses, which aid in broadening students' knowledge over a range of different fields, help to strengthen research skills in preparation for writing the thesis. Being one of the only Masters programs that specialised in publishing, while offering such flexibility, the decision to enrol at the University of Groningen was an easy one.

    After nine months of living here, I have certainly fallen for this charming city for so many reasons: a vibrant and communal student life; plenty of social-and-literary-related events; a famously vibrant nightlife with an array of lively (but cheap) cafes and bars; fun social events arranged by ESN where you can meet international students; beautiful parks to relax during the spring summer days; cheap membership at the student fitness centre; every place is accessible by bicycle; and (for the international students) fifty hours of free Dutch classes!

    Close
  • 
						Testimonial of Laura Baeten

    “It's the combination of academic and practical perspectives that helps you prepare for a job.” – Laura Baeten

    – Laura Baeten
    Read more

    People used to ask me whether I wanted to become a teacher or a translator when I told them I studied English. “Neither,” was my response. I studied English because I wanted to become an editor, which is why the Master's track in Writing, Editing and Mediating was the logical next step.

    Right after graduation, two freelance opportunities came my way, so I decided to register my own freelance editing business, EditUp. Clients included Noordhoff Uitgevers, Audi and SEAT.

    Considering the unpredictable nature of being a freelance editor, I also had a part-time job as a content editor at a start-up. After a year, I decided to hand in my notice to embark on a new, full-time adventure. Little did I know that this would become a rollercoaster of experiences!

    From being a desk editor at SVH (an educational publisher for the hospitality industry) to being a content coordinator at an instructional design agency to being an editor of English translations at a translation agency, I am happy to be back at being a desk editor at SVH. As a desk editor, my responsibilities extend far beyond the text, and it’s this combination of project management, collaborating with people from various disciplines and editing that makes me look forward to each new workday.

    And each workday I notice that the skills and knowledge I’ve acquired during my MA are incredibly useful. Even though I was taught in English, I can transfer these skills to the Dutch language. I learned how to think about language, how to think as an editor, and how to substantiate all my editing decisions. This practical approach is what I think makes this programme so valuable, even more so when you take the opportunity to do an internship. It’s this combination of academic and practical perspectives that helps you prepare for a job, which in my view is the strength of the Master's track in Writing, Editing and Mediating.

    Close
  • 
						Testimonial of Katrin Kugler

    In fact, this master track made me realise what potential I have and the University of Groningen itself is an amazing university with which I can really identify myself. I am proud and very glad to be studying here.

    – Katrin Kugler
    Read more

    My name is Katrin Kugler, I’m 22 years old and come from Munich, Germany. This is where I did my bachelor in English studies. I now chose to study the MA in Writing, Editing and Mediating at the University of Groningen, because I wanted to specialise more in the field of creative writing and the process of producing literature. The WEM master track here is the perfect opportunity to do so because it offers a good range of fascinating seminars. Although the workload is sometimes more than I had expected, I enjoy the courses a lot and all of them are taught by excellent lecturers.

    Inspiring, Challenging, Creative

    Of course, this master track requires me to do a lot of self-study but at the same time, it allows me to develop and extend my knowledge and also to interact with other students during group assignments too. In general, Groningen is a vibrant student-city. Studying the WEM master at the University of Groningen was the best decision I could have made and I can only recommend it. If I had to summarize the WEM master in three words, I would say it is inspiring, challenging and creative. In fact, this master track made me realise what potential I have and the University of Groningen itself is an amazing university with which I can really identify myself. I am proud and very glad to be studying here.

    Close

University of Groningen OTS/Talent Grant Faculty of Arts

Are you a non-EU/EEA student from Mexico, Russia, China, India, or Indonesia, starting a Master's programme at the Faculty of Arts? If so, you could qualify for the University of Groningen OTS/Talent Grant, Faculty of Arts, a partial scholarship which helps you to finance your studies.

Read more about the OTS/Talent Grant Faculty of Arts


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Study associations

NUTS

NUTS has been the study association of the English department in Groningen for over 40 years, and we are still going strong. We make studying English a lot of fun by organising all sorts of activities throughout the year.
Our diverse events include: drinks, high-teas, pub crawls, pub quizzes, book clubs, game nights and career events. As a NUTS-member, you benefit from a discount on your study books at Studystore (via our website) and free entrance to most of our events. Besides this, NUTS annually organizes a trip to the UK or Ireland.
https://svnuts.com/
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Student profile

You are a graduate with a degree in literary studies and a proven ability to operate in English who wants to develop knowledge and skills related to the circulation and editing of English-language texts.

Study support

If you have any questions or doubts about your studies, you can always contact the study advisor. She knows all the ins and outs of the programme. Study advisors are impartial and everything that is discussed is treated confidentially. They can also help you find the right place to direct queries about registration, grades and other administrative questions.