Diploma in Writing and Publishing

There's more to writing and publishing than you think. This two-year diploma blends study in English, creative writing, editing, and communications theory with applied technical skills in graphic design, typography, coding, and book publishing.


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  • Kelowna
  • Vernon
View schedule and campus details
  • Full program offered
  • Partial program offered



Delivery options

Full-Time, Part-Time

  • International students eligible

Tuition and fees

2024-25: $5,228.06 per year

Program details

The publishing industry has been transformed by an unprecedented surge of activity as individuals and organizations share text and post images as never before. This has led to exciting changes and challenges in the way writers and publishers look at publishing. Graduates of this two-year diploma program will have the technical skills and wide range of experience crucial to navigating this industry.

Our applied and academic courses take students through the first stages of the writing process to the final post-production stages of publishing in a variety of formats. Our goals are to foster students' writerly personae, to hone their critical voices, and to teach them how to write professionally for multiple audiences. From creative writing workshops to web publishing labs to book design studios to professional editing classes, our courses help students acquire the skills necessary to ensure their work resonates on both page and screen.

We teach our students using industry-standard software, beginning on the first day of class and carrying through each semester of the program. Students can also take advantage of unique hands-on opportunities to put their skills into practice. Okanagan College features a working letterpress print shop, as well as other in-house elements such as Kalamalka Press and Ryga: A Journal of Provocations. These are only some of the opportunities for students to build the sort of portfolio that demonstrates to prospective employers how lessons learned in the classroom contribute to the broad skill set of a qualified professional.

Graduates of the program have a variety of options. Some may pursue employment in a range of traditional and new media outlets, from independent presses to commercial publishing houses. Others may choose to continue their studies in fields such as creative writing, journalism, marketing and media studies.

Transfer options for graduates of this diploma include:

  • Athabasca University, Bachelor of Professional Arts, Communication Studies

  • University of the Fraser Valley, Bachelor of Arts

  • Vancouver Island University, Bachelor of Arts, English

Career options available after transfer and additional study include:

  • Graphic Designer
  • Web Designer
  • Professional Writer
  • Book and Magazine Editor
  • Publisher
  • Art Editor
  • Literary Agent
  • Publicist

This diploma can only be completed in full at the Vernon campus. A selection of courses is offered at the Kelowna, Penticton and Salmon Arm campuses but a number of specialized courses and second year courses are only offered at the Vernon campus. 

For more information, book an appointment with an Education Advisor.

Campus Start date Schedule
Kelowna Jan. 08, 2024
Vernon Jan. 08, 2024
Vernon Sep. 04, 2024
Vernon Jan. 06, 2025

Admission requirements

Regular Applicants:

A regular applicant will be a secondary graduate or a secondary school student, or its equivalent, who has or who will complete the requirements for senior secondary graduation, or its equivalent, not less than one month prior to commencement of classes for the semester to which admission is sought - either fall or winter. The following minimum entrance requirements will apply to regular applicants:

  • B.C. secondary graduation, or equivalent.

  • English 12 with minimum 60% or alternatives.

Students with a passing grade of less than 60% in English 12, English 12 First Peoples or TPC 12 will be admissible to the first year of the program, subject to the following conditions:

  1. Registration is restricted to courses for which the student satisfies the prerequisites. Registration in first-year English courses is, therefore, prohibited.

  2. Successful completion of the English entrance requirements within the first year of studies. This may be done in one of the following ways:

    • Successful completion of English 12, English 12 First Peoples or TPC 12 or an equivalent course with a minimum grade of 60%. This may be done concurrently through the College's Adult Basic Education Program or by completing an equivalent course through a distance education program.

Mature Applicants:

A mature applicant will be at least 19 years of age and will not have attended secondary school on a full-time basis for a minimum period of one year.

Secondary graduation is waived for mature applicants. The English entrance requirements, as stated above, must be satisfied prior to admission. Admission may be granted on the condition that the entrance requirements will be completed prior to the commencement of classes for the semester to which admission is sought - either fall or winter.

Program outline

Year 1

Two of the following first-year English literature courses:
ENGL 150 - Critical Writing and Reading: Poetry and Drama
ENGL 151 - Critical Writing and Reading: Short Fiction and the Novel
ENGL 153 - Critical Writing and Reading: Narrative
Two first-year creative writing courses:
CRWR 116 - Introduction to Creative Writing I
CRWR 126 - Introduction to Creative Writing II
Two first-year publishing courses:
FINA 170 - Applied Publishing Skills
FINA 171 - Design Foundations
Two of the following first-year communications courses:
CMNS 100 - Introduction to Communications
CMNS 110 - Introduction to Mass Communication
CMNS 120 - Journalism Fundamentals
CMNS 130 - Introduction to Digital Media
The following first-year marketing course:
BUAD 116 - Marketing
One elective course.

Year 2

Two publication design courses:
FINA 201 - Introduction to Publication Design
FINA 202 - Advanced Publication Design
Two intermediate applied English courses:
ENGL 204 - Small Press Publishing in Canada from Curation to Production
ENGL 205 - Applied Publishing Studies: Introduction to Book Arts
One intermediate English literature course:
ENGL 210 - Women in Literature
ENGL 211 - Survey of English Literature I
ENGL 212 - Studies in Children's Literature
ENGL 213 - Studies in British Literature
ENGL 220 - Studies in the Theory and Practice of Creative Writing
ENGL 221 - Survey of English Literature II
ENGL 222 - Studies in International Literature in English
ENGL 223 - Studies in Canadian Literature
ENGL 230 - Topics in Women's Literature
ENGL 231 - Studies in Popular Narrative
ENGL 233 - Studies in American Literature
ENGL 236 - Studies in Indigenous Literature in Canada
ENGL 237 - Studies in Nature Writing
One publishing course focusing on the production process:
ENGL 206 - Pre-production for Publishing
One web design course:
ENGL 207 - Web Development for Publishing
One professional editing course:
ENGL 209 - Studies in Professional Editing
Two intermediate creative writing courses:
CRWR 216 - Intermediate Workshop in Creative Writing - Poetry
CRWR 217 - Intermediate Workshop in Creative Writing - Fiction
CRWR 218 - Intermediate Workshop in Creative Writing - Drama
CRWR 219 - Intermediate Workshop in Creative Writing - Creative Non-Fiction
CRWR 281 - Intermediate Workshop in Creative Writing-Screenwriting

The Diploma in Writing and Publishing may be granted for the successful completion of 60 credits of Okanagan College courses including at least 30 credits of 200-level courses as outlined. Only 30 credits of courses can be from a single discipline.

Additional information

View the official Calendar details and policies
Learn more about the department
View the Tuition and fees page


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