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Bath Spa University


The MA in Scriptwriting is a professional training course for working writers. Most scriptwriters work across several media, and the course reflects this. All our tutors are working writers. We aim to turn out writers who understand the structure and craft of drama, have a finished script they can use as a calling card, know the industry in all its variety, and can pitch and sell their work. The course is taught at our beautiful Corsham Court campus where we are developing performance, capture and editing facilities. We also work closely with the School of Music and Performing Arts, and their students will have the opportunity to help act in and produce our work.
Duration 1 year Full Time 2 years Part Time
Level MA
Cost UK Home/EU Tuition Fees 2012/13: £4,565. International Tuition Fees 2012/13: £10,030 Bath Spa University has the following AHRC studentships available for 2012-13 under the AHRC Block Grant: Capacity Building Scheme. All are for full studentships covering tuition fees (paid to the university) and maintenance allowance (paid to the student in non-taxable quarterly instalments). 2 x MA Creative Writing or MA Writing for Young People or MA Scriptwriting.
The final assessment is based on three things. The most important is this script. The second is a 3,000 word essay explaining exactly where in the market it is aimed and how it is shaped to fit that niche. The third is a cold pitch for this script. When we speak of the market, we are thinking quite broadly. Some students will want to write for Hollywood, British independent films, soap operas, or theatre. Others will want to write radio plays, documentaries, puppet shows, theatre in education, training videos or school plays. The emphasis is, however, always on getting your work to a produceable form. All courses will be taught by intensive workshops. Over the years we have found this is far and away the most productive way of teaching writing. It is particularly suited to scriptwriting, which is very much a social and collective art.
Most students accepted onto the course will have either a first degree or a thorough professional training in acting, theatre, television, or film. Some students, however, will be accepted on the basis of equivalent life experience. Applicants are asked to submit one or two pieces of creative writing with their application form, about twenty pages in all. This can be part of a novel, short stories, poems, or script. Do not assume it has to be drama. Submit your best work rather than your best script.
The course is full-time from October to September, or part-time over two years, and is taught in modules. The first trimester runs from October to January and there are two modules, each delivered in three intensive weekends. One is the module on Dramatic Structure. This aims to give you an understanding of the full range of ways that plays and scripts can work. You are introduced to dialogue, character, genre, and the different media. The other module in the first trimester is a workshop in Writing Theatre and Radio. All of the time is devoted to the students' own work, and much of the time we work on our feet. At the end of the trimester each student finishes a 45 to 60 minute play or radio script, and a 3,000 word essay that explains the structure of that script. The second trimester, from February to June, also has two modules. One is Professional Skills, again over three intensive weekends. You learn to be able to pitch, and to talk intelligently and flexibly about your own work and others'. One of our tutors facilitates this module, and various industry professionals come in for a day each to inform, rehearse and challenge you. The other module this trimester is Workshop in Screenwriting, also over three weekends. Here you write a script for film or television. We pay particular attention to genre, to the visual and time requirements of the screen, and to writing for particular markets. At the end of this trimester each student finishes 50 to 60 minutes of TV, or a short film script, or a treatment for a full-length film plus at least 45 minutes of polished script. The third trimester runs from June to the end of September. Here there is only one double module, the Final Script Workshop. The workshops meet over five intensive Saturdays. In this module each student writes a full length play, a full length film script, or the equivalent in television or radio.
Contact Information
Institution Bath Spa University
School of Humanities and Cultural Industries, Bath Spa University,
Newton Park Campus, Newton St Loe,

Tel: (01225) 876358
Fax: (01225) 875605.
Department: School of Humanities and Cultural Industries
Contact Name: Course Director: Ursula Rani Sarma
Contact Email: