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MA/Pgrad.Dip Screenwriting

The MA in Screenwriting at Huston is distinguished by its intimacy, intensity and a dynamic engagement between film history/theory and today’s film industry. While there are other screenwriting courses, ours is unrivalled in the quality of its instruction, the breath of its content and its sustained focus on writing from day one; preparing graduates for a competitive and rapidly changing world of moving-image storytelling.


What Will You Learn?

The teaching component of the MA is taught over two semesters (Sept-Dec / Jan-April) combining an academic foundation in the history/theory of narrative film and TV with analytical studies in screenwriting and a variety of practical exercises. As an aspiring writer you’ll need to be able to adapt to a range of formats: we recognize this and aim to teach you how.

  • Semester I consists of developing your dramatic writing skills, finding your voice and discovering what types of stories and formats interest you. Alongside foundations in screenplay structure and the history of Hollywood storytelling, you’ll learn about a range of writing practices – including radio drama, adaptation, animation, digital and short formats – from working writers and other industry professionals. You’ll also work with students from the MA in Production and Direction in originating, developing and making a short film, thus ensuring you understand every step of the film-making process. By the end of the term you’ll also have completed your first feature film treatment.


  • In Semester II, you’ll continue with your academic courses in film history – concentrating of non-Hollywood cinemas – alongside the development of your feature film screenplay and a module on writing for TV. You’ll also learn the art of writing a pitch and research an extended essay directly linking film theory with your practice.


  • The Summer period has no classes – this is when you write up your final screenplay project.

At every step you’ll receive direct and focused feedback and have access to Huston’s incredible library of films and NUI Galway’s world-class research facilities.


What Can I Do With It?

By the time you graduate you’ll have assembled not only a set of skills and contacts but a portfolio of writing, from a range of formats (TV, web, short and feature film), rarely covered on other courses. Benefitting from the resources of NUI Galway, you’ll also have an academic foundation in film history combined with rigorous training in research and writing.

Graduates from this course have been successful in various areas of the film and television industry – as writers, directors, producers and script editors. Many have won or been shortlisted for national and international awards or funding, including BBC Northern Ireland’s Tony Doyle Bursary and Irish Film Board short and feature film funding initiatives.


Applications to this programme are made online via The Postgraduate Applications Centre (PAC). [PAC code: GYA38 NUIG code: 1SW3 (MA); 1SW1 (PDip)]

Minimum entry requirements

You should have an honours primary degree (at least Second Class Honours in one subject, or a U.S. GPA 3.0). We also welcome applicants with substantial and relevant professional experience to apply. Such cases may be considered for exemption from the honours degree requirement, subject to appropriate arrangements such as a qualifying examination. These students will be required to register initially for a Postgraduate Diploma.
To supplement your online application you must include:

• one story treatment (max. 1,000 words).
• one short sample of writing for film (including dialogue scenes).
• one short critique (200-400 words) of recent films or television programmes.

*Above all, applicants should be driven by a passion to share their stories in an audio-visual medium. Potential participants may also be invited to attend for interview.


2012-13 E.U. students: €6,005 Non-E.U. students: €13,250* *Subject to ratification
Please note: fees are correct at the time of online publication, but are subject to change (E&EO); non-E.U. fees must be paid in full prior to registration.

Commences: Sept 7th , 2015
Applications accepted from November 1st, 2014
Mode of study: Full-time
Duration: One year
Places available: 15

Programme Director: Sean Crosson
Course Co-Ordinator: Jenny Roche; Tel.: 00 353 91 49 4182

All queries:


Student testimonial