Applicants should hold a good, Upper Second Class Honours degree, or its overseas equivalent.
Months of entry
Application closing date: August 10, 2018.
The only course of its kind offered by a Russell Group University, our MA in Screenwriting is an intensive one-year training programme designed to professionalise writers and present a genuine gateway into the film and television industries. Over the course of the year, students will work with leading industry practitioners to develop their screenwriting, pitching and story-breaking skills. By the end of the programme, each student will have developed a full length feature film screenplay, a pilot TV episode and two short films. Like all courses at the Centre for New Writing, this programme is taught by practitioners and as such it is vocationally-oriented and industry-focused. Students will have access to individual career guidance and training in how to navigate entry-level work in both the television and film industries.
The course includes regular speakers from the industry which last year included Beth Pattinson BBC Films ( Brooklyn, We Need to Talk About Kevin, Philomena ), Chris Chibnall (writer and creator of Broadchurch) and Pete Czernin, producer of In Bruges and Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (1 and 2).
The course runs across two twelve week long semesters, during which students will attend weekly writing workshops in which they will study the very best of contemporary screenwriting, including shows such as Breaking Bad, True Detective, The Killing, Broadchurch, This is England, Rev, Transparency and The Sopranos. They will also cover British and American examples of charismatic film screenwriting from Goodfellas to The King's Speech via Alien .
In the second semester there will be a London industry day based at BAFTA with talks from agents, producers, and writers as well as a meeting with the BFI.
Students will study story design, visual story-telling and character arcs in both long-running television series and feature films. They will develop the tools to be able to analyse and critique screenwriting craft, and learn how to disseminate their own work. There will be weekly film screenings, and students will have access to an excellent lending library of films to watch at home. Through the duration of the course students will develop a broad and eclectic knowledge of cinema and television.
We intend to keep learning as specific to individual study as possible and study groups will be intentionally small in scale. The course capacity is limited to twelve students each year and you will be taught through a mixture of screenings, lectures and group discussion. Our `writers' room' ethos ensures an environment that encourages collaboration, sharing and creative risk-taking.
Importantly, each summer, we offer students a two week `hands-on' industry placement at a renowned film or TV production company either in London or the North West. Current partners include Film4 ( Room. Ex_Machina, The Lobster) , Wildgaze (Brooklyn) , Number 9 Films (Carol) , Left Bank (The Crown), Warp (This is England) , Red Productions ( Happy Valley, Scott and Bailey ), and Hammer Films ( The Woman in Black , Let Me In ). These placements are an excellent opportunity for students to make useful contacts, and to develop a practical and direct understanding of the professional context within which screenwriters ply their trade.
Information for international students
An overall grade of 7.0 (with a minimum writing score of 7) in IELTS is required or 100+ in the TOEFL iBT with a minimum writing score of 25.
If you have obtained a different qualification, please check our English language requirements to ensure that it is accepted and equivalent to the above requirements.
We accept a range of qualifications from different countries. For these and general requirements including English language see entry requirements from your country .
Fees and funding
Each year, the School offers a number of bursaries set at Home/EU fees level, open to both Home/EU and international students. Details of the funding process can be found on the School's funding page where you can also check details of subject specific bursaries.
The Manchester Alumni Scholarship offers a £3,000 reduction in tuition fees to University of Manchester alumni who achieved a 1st within the last three years and are progressing to a postgraduate taught masters course for September 2018 entry.
See also the University's postgraduate funding database for more funding opportunities, including the latest information on the new Government Postgraduate Loan Scheme.
Qualification and course duration
Course contact details
- School of Arts, Languages and Cultures
- +44 (0) 161 275 0322