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The award
MA

How long you will study
1 year

Domestic course fees
7195

How you will study
full-time

Course starts
October

International course fees
find out

All study options

About Scriptwriting at Bath Spa University

An intensive, practical course designed to produce professional writers and compelling scripts.

  • Weekend workshops at Corsham Court campus.
  • Taught by acclaimed industry professionals - working practitioners who continue to love what they do.
  • Practical project leading to a showcase presentation.

Take your writing to the highest level, and develop clear strategies for professional success. With a combination of expert guidance and peer-group workshopping, we encourage you to develop your unique voice while meeting the demands of a highly competitive industry.

We cover all media, including theatre, radio, film and television, and offer extensive training in professional skills. By the end of the course, you'll have a comprehensive portfolio of original work, a finished script to professional standards, industry connections and a fully realised showcase presentation.

'I finished three full scripts during my MA, and have seen my work performed in an international theatre festival, in regional theatres, in a pub cellar, and online.'

Kirsten Stoddart, MA Scriptwriting 2013

What you'll learn

Overview

You'll hone your writing for performance skills, while also acquiring the necessary professional knowledge needed to negotiate the industry.

Alongside completing a minimum of three polished scripts for theatre, radio and TV/film, you'll meet scriptwriting agents and industry specialists and learn how best to pitch your work in a highly competitive field.

We recognise the importance of equipping you, as a scriptwriter, with the knowledge of how to produce your work. You'll have the opportunity to record your own radio plays, stage your theatre pieces and shoot and edit your TV/Film projects within our supportive environment. 

Modules

Craft
The key components, including structure, characterisation, visual storytelling and dialogue.

Writing for Theatre and Radio
A comprehensive guide to writing for these important media. You'll prepare a script for each.

Professional Skills
Develop your professional writing career. Learn to prepare proposal documents, to pitch ideas, and to make connections in the industry.

Screenwriting
An in-depth course in writing for film and television. You'll prepare a single script for either medium.

Showcase Presentation
Write and produce a finished 15 minute piece in any narrative media (radio, short film, theatre), for public presentation.

Final Script
Prepare a calling card script in the medium of your choice, taken to the highest professional standard.

How will I be assessed?

You'll be assessed by coursework and practical presentation. In the first two trimesters work will be assessed as work in progress. Your final assessment is based on three assignments: a final script (60%); a practical realisation of your work (30%); and a pitch (10%).

How will I be taught?

The course is modular and can be undertaken as either full or part-time study. Part-time students take the Dramatic Structure and Writing for the Screen modules in their first year and Theatre and Radio, Professional Skills and Final Script in their second year.

Modules are taught over three weekends of intensive tutor-led workshops.

In the Professional Skills module, a tutor will guide you through the workshops while also introducing a range of visiting guest speakers, script editors, producers and agents.

Opportunities

Careers

Many of our graduates succeed with their career goals. Some have careers as professional Scriptwriters while others work in script editing, theatre and film criticism or education.

Our students have gone on to have their work produced and some have even managed to do this while still completing their MA. Others have found work within the script departments of TV/film and theatre companies while others work as script readers, theatre/film reviewers and as creative writing tutors.

Success stories

Cannes Film Festival
Brittany McComas's short film was accepted for the Cannes Film Festival 2016.

Plymouth Theatre Royal
Oliver Gamblin had his short play 'Gone Fishing', selected to be produced as part of Plymouth Fringe Festival.

New Venture Theatre
Stephen Connolly was one of eight winners of the New Ventures 10 minute play competition.

Channel 4
Tom Parfitt was selected as one of 12 successful writers now included in a young writer's 'pool' at Hollyoaks.

Edinburgh Fringe
Richard Sheridan's play 'Odd Shaped Balls' received 5 star reviews and was placed in 18th place in the ranking of over 1200 shows at the fringe in 2014.

Glastonbury Five Day Film Challenge
Rachel Whitelock a graduate in MA Scriptwriting won Best Film, Best Script and People's Choice in the Glastonbury Five Day Film Challenge. Rachel wrote and directed the short film 'Toast'.

Lecture series

You'll be able to attend relevant seminars and lectures at Corsham Court and Newton Park. The 2015/16 lecture series included presentations by Lord Puttnam and leading story developers from Pixar and the BBC.

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

The course is taught across weekend seminars in Corsham Court.

Resources

You'll have access to:

  • technical facilities at Newton Park including cameras, lighting and sound equipment, studio and post production;
  • theatre Lab - a monthly opportunity to share your work with actors.

Study options for this course

  • The award How you will study How long you will study Course starts Domestic course fees International course fees
  • The awardMAHow you will studyFull-timeHow long you will study1 year
    Course startsOctoberDomestic course fees 7195International course fees find out
  • The awardMAHow you will studyPart-timeHow long you will study2 years
    Course startsOctoberDomestic course fees 7195International course fees find out

Notes about fees for this course

Fees

UK and EU students full time

Course fees

2018/19 entry £7,195 2019/20 entry Published Jan 2019 2020/21 entry Published Jan 2020

UK and EU students part time

Fees shown below are for part time study over two years, although some courses may be available over longer periods.

2018/19 Entry

Course fees

Year 1 £3,600 Year 2 Published Jan 2019

2019/20 Entry

Course fees

Year 1 Published Jan 2019 Year 2 Published Jan 2020

2020/21 Entry

Course fees

Year 1 Published Jan 2020 Year 2 Published Jan 2021

International students full time

Course fees

2018/19 entry £13,900 2019/20 entry Published Jan 2019 2020/21 entry Published Jan 2020

Entry requirements

What we look for in potential students

We're looking for individuals with either a good first degree or a thorough professional training in acting, theatre, television, or film. We do accept individuals on the basis of equivalent life experience.

What students think about Bath Spa University

    Yasmina Van De Peer, BA (Hons) English Literature and Film Studies, Spain

    Where to start with this year? There have been so many new friends, a new life-style with freedom and no muYasmina Van De Peerm bossing me around. My year has not been easy but I would do it all again, life challenges you in many ways and this experience definitively has.

    When I arrived in September, I felt like a lost girl trying to find something that I could grasp and change my life forever. My first year in a foreign country was fantastic and thanks to the creative writing department, I will never forget my second year as I have the privilege of studying in Chicago for a full academic year! However, this has no real connection with why I chose Bath Spa University.

    I worked as an ambassador for this University and a lot parents have asked the same question, why did I choose it? After 50 parents it gets tiring- especially when I was unsure. As everyone else I want to succeed in life. I have dreamt about going to Oxford, Harvard or any well known University. But the one thing that I have learnt in life is that you can be successful and come from the smallest place in the world. The key to success requires determination to reach your goal.

    Bath Spa just felt right and it allowed me to combine my subjects [English Literature and Film Studies], be myself and it also has an inspiring and picturesque scenery. For me it was perfect.

    Johannes Gerdes, BA Business and Management, Germany

    I chose BA Business and Management as I have always been inspired by my dad who runs a world leading business. The opportunity to work for him during holidays gave me a chance to look inside a company and to experience what management, leadership and communication is all about. I wanted to widen my knowledge and hence started my Business & Management career here at Bath Spa.
    My parents always wanted to give me the opportunity to study abroad. My old school, near Bristol, where I stayed as a boarding student for the last two years, helped me to discover where most of my interests lie. In addition, friends of mine started studying here at Bath Spa.

    I would describe Bath Spa in three words as: Cultural, Wonderful, Friendly.

    In the future I hope I will be working together with my dad and widen the market to countries which haven't been discovered yet.


    Don't be afraid of university life. University is the best time in your life. You meet so many new people from different nationalities and all come together! You will settle down easily. You make friends so fast and there is always someone around to help you! Even language barriers can be fixed with a perfect Writing and Learning Centre [the English Language Unit (ELU) is also available for all international students to access where English is not their first language] here at Bath Spa. Come to Bath and experience the whole range of activities they offer and be open to new things!

    Nassos Polyzoidis, MMus Songwriting, Greece

    Even though I live in Greece, I'm familiar with many British Universities, as I work for some English Examination Boards for Music and I've attended some Summer Schools in UK over the years. Bath Spa University's reputation in Songwriting and Commercial Music was known to me for a long time. Being a guitarist and working for the RGT at the same time, I have heard stories about Bath being the birthplace of guitar magazines and other music and artistic events. I was accepted to study Commercial Music as an undergraduate student about 4 years ago, but due to some sudden accidents I have to decline my offer. After this unfortunate event, I decided to become better Musician and Songwriter, so that I can return as a postgraduate applicant. When I noticed that there was a distance learning degree, MMus Songwriting, I knew I had to do this. Meanwhile, I did my research, which only lead me to ensure my initial decision to study at Bath Spa University.


    I was attracted to this course as I was already familiar with Bath Spa University's reputation in this field. In addition to that, Songwriting isn't taught in my home county at all. I knew that only few Institutes offer Songwriting as a postgraduate degree, so I did my research over the last 3 years. During this time, I was only ensuring myself that I have to apply for this course. I really want to become a successful songwriter, and also, probably one of the first songwriting teachers in Greece, so I know that this course is best for me. I knew that the course will help me become more confident and enhance my professional skills in the field. Finally, being mainly inspired by British Songwriters, it was really important that my songwriting skills would develop a lot lyrically, which can help me open the door to an international market.


    I would describe Bath Spa University in three words as: Innovative, modern, artistic.


    Once I have my degree, I am really hoping to become a successful songwriter. Being inspired mainly by British Songwriters, I would really like to write songs for the UK and international market. In addition, I will probably become one of the first songwriting teachers in Greece. Last, but not least, as I'm already collaborating with several English musicians, I'm considering in my future plans to apply for a PhD and probably seek for more collaborations in UK, which might extend my visits there.


    My advice I would you give to other international students who want to study in the UK would depend on the ethics and societal context of each county. So, a general advice I would give is "Do not be afraid of failure, do your best and apply to the courses that you really like!"

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