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Masters Degrees (Dramatic Writing)

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MA Dramatic Writing is a new course, exploring new models of training for dramatic writers in the UK. The course brings together ten Masters who have led on dramatic writing training in the UK. Read more

Introduction

MA Dramatic Writing is a new course, exploring new models of training for dramatic writers in the UK. The course brings together ten Masters who have led on dramatic writing training in the UK: Ola Animashawun, Stephen Jeffreys, Caroline Jester, Fin Kennedy, Kate Rowland, Philip Shelley, Nina Steiger, Jennifer Tuckett, Steve Winter, and John Yorke. The course offers the best training in craft in the UK, industry commissions, partnerships and mentorship, collaboration with actors, directors, designers and animators, and the opportunity to work on your own major projects. Our aim is to help nurture the next generation of leading writers.

Content

MA Dramatic Writing aspires to be at the forefront of dramatic writing training in the UK.

We attempt to achieve this via exploring how best to train dramatic writers in the UK, by providing:

The best possible training in craft

Industry collaborations, projects and partnerships which supply our students with connections, industry training and experience and access to new and leading ideas

Via collaboration with other Drama Centre courses which give our students with connections to actors, directors, designers and animators in their peer group which we hope they will continue to develop throughout their careers.

The course brings together 10 Masters who have led on the training of Dramatic Writing in the UK and offers regular industry commissions, collaborations and partnerships, offering students a chance to build up connections and experience and to explore and be a part of new ideas developing in the dramatic writing industry.

The course aims to cover all of the skills you will need to pursue a successful and sustainable career as a writer.
In Unit One, students learn craft in all five forms of dramatic writing (theatre, television, film, radio and digital media) and take part in industry commissions and projects.

In Unit Two, you will have the opportunity to pursue your own portfolio of work, exploring and developing your voice and vision as a writer and working in a way which replicates working practices in the industry.
Via this structure, our aim is to provide students with the skills, experience, connections, credits and portfolio of work they need to go on to pursue successful and sustainable careers as writers.

The course is also dedicated to exploring the best possible training of dramatic writers in the UK and staff and changing commissions and projects offer an exciting opportunity to work with the professionals and on the projects who are currently leading the way in the industry.

Our aim is for our graduates to go on to work in and become leaders and/or a part of the dramatic writing industry both in London, regionally and internationally.

Structure

The Course is of 60 weeks in duration, arranged across two academic years that consist of 6 terms of 10 weeks.

MADW is credit rated at 180 credits and is comprised of two Units:

Unit 1 (60 credits) for the first 20 weeks of the Course

Unit 2 (120 credits) that runs for the remaining 40 weeks.

Both units must be passed in order to achieve the MA, but the classification of the award of MA derives from your mark for Unit 2 only.

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The English Language and Creative Writing MA allows you to explore the interconnections between your knowledge of how language is used and produced, and your literary compositions. Read more
The English Language and Creative Writing MA allows you to explore the interconnections between your knowledge of how language is used and produced, and your literary compositions. It will provide you with a thorough understanding of the linguistic features of English from a wide range of perspectives (theoretical and applied, synchronic and diachronic), as well as leading you to explore the writing process across genres and to take the city of London as one of your main sources of inspiration. The MA will equip you with the intellectual perspectives and the scholarly skills that will prepare you to conduct independent research, and will offer you many opportunities to network with other writers, agents, TV producers and performance poets.

Course content

The English Language and Creative Writing MA is suitable for students who have taken English language, literature and/or creative writing modules at undergraduate level, and others with experience in these fields. It is of particular interest to those wishing to pursue further study, and those aiming to apply their knowledge of language and the writing process in their careers.

If pursuing the degree full-time, you will study 180 credits in one academic year; if part-time, you will normally complete 180 credits in two academic years. You will study three or four core modules (including a 60-credit dissertation on a topic of English language or a creative writing project), as well as two modules from the list of options. The core module English Language in Use will help you acquire the scholarly tools necessary for the stylistic interpretation of literary and non-literary texts, while the modules Tales of the City and Conflict and the City invite you to explore the writing process in connection with prose and dramatic texts.

The teaching is mainly through weekly two- or three-hour sessions for each module, which include tutorials, seminars, practical sessions and workshops. There is also independent self-directed study, and you will be prepared for the Dissertation via structured sessions in research methodology. Assessment methods include submitted coursework such as essays, reviews and exercises; there are no formal examinations.

Modules

The following modules are indicative of what you will study on this course.

Core modules
-CONFLICT AND THE CITY (DRAMA)
-DISSERTATION
-ENGLISH LANGUAGE IN LITERARY CONTEXTS
-HOW TO WRITE CREATIVELY: PORTFOLIO
-TALES OF THE CITY (FICTION)
-WRITING PROJECT (YEAR-LONG)

Option modules
-ANALYSING SPOKEN AND WRITTEN DISCOURSE
-CREATIVE PRACTICE
-CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS IN LANGUAGE TEACHING
-INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION
-LANGUAGE AND THE IMAGINATION (POETIC WRITING)
-SOCIOLINGUISTICS
-THE WRITING BUSINESS
-TRANSLATION STUDIES

Teaching and assessment

Teaching is conducted mainly through weekly two or three hour sessions for each module, which include tutorials, seminars, practical sessions and workshops. Teaching will also include visits to selected London institutions to support certain aspects of writing, and you will be encouraged to use various archives, galleries, etc. There is also independent self-directed study, and you will receive one-to-one advice for your dissertation or writing project.

Assessment methods include submitted coursework such as essays, projects, reports or reflective logs. There are no timed written examinations.

Associated careers

The course will enable you to develop sophisticated critical and creative skills and a widely applicable knowledge base that can be adapted to various fields of language use and study, creative practice and writing business. This course is intended to move you to a new level in your career as a writer by developing your skills as a sophisticated critical practitioner, and your knowledge of literature about the city as well as the writing business. You will be encouraged to network with other writers and identify useful opportunities for career development, partly through the wide range of extra-curricular activities, including writers' events and talks, and partly through the workshops organised by the departmental employability coordinator. The critical and practical skills you will acquire by the end of the course will make you a strong candidate in many areas, including arts management, copy editing, education, freelance writing, journalism, media, publishing, research and academia.

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Creative writers express thoughts, feelings and emotions through words and have the ability to inform, provoke, captivate, inspire and move. Read more

Creative writers express thoughts, feelings and emotions through words and have the ability to inform, provoke, captivate, inspire and move. You approach creative writing from a variety of perspectives – including fiction, poetry, screenwriting and drama – to explore how writers operate and how you can become an independent writer.

Course details

Drawing on our pool of talented, published writers and academics, you accumulate credit towards your chosen award at your own pace. This highly successful course also offers the chance to learn how to teach creative writing in schools or in the community.You may also be interested in our MA Creative Writing (Distance Learning)

What you study

One core module lays the foundation for skills and techniques in creative writing, while another addresses writing for career development. Option modules make use of imaginative writing, creative visualisation and commentary elements to cover such topics as writing novels and short stories, working with poetry and lyrics, producing copy for drama and performance, scriptwriting for film and screen, and teaching creative writing. Some modules involve traditional seminars and workshops, but many incorporate a negotiated learning element.

Course structure

Core modules

  • Creative Writing MA Project
  • Creative Writing Skills and Techniques
  • Writing for Personal Development

and three optional modules from a range including

  • Active Screenwriting
  • Forming Fictions
  • Poetry for Publishing and Performance
  • Writing for Professional Development
  • Writing into Dramatic Space

 Modules offered may vary.

Teaching

How you learn

You typically write in a workshop-based environment, with access to the Writer’s Lounge and the resources housed within the Creative Writing Centre. Learning is largely portfolio driven, with twice-weekly timetabled groups and tutorials to support the learning process. As an enterprising, self-motivated student you work both independently and collaboratively with your peers using the extensive resources and facilities available to you. You are encouraged to reflect upon your own learning in the context of career development and the opportunities open to you.

How you are assessed

Your achievement is assessed mainly through project and portfolio work, including evidence of the research and development process as well as the production and presentation of draft work and peer assessment. Other assessment methods include written reports, presentations, oral performances and reflective commentaries.

Employability

Typically graduates go on to roles in freelance writing, teaching, publishing, arts and humanities, media, performance and/or the creative industries.



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This new and unique Masters importantly addresses black writing as a continuum. Its heritage in British culture is considered along a trajectory marked by historical presences as connecting with migratory, indigenous and global perspectives. Read more

This new and unique Masters importantly addresses black writing as a continuum. Its heritage in British culture is considered along a trajectory marked by historical presences as connecting with migratory, indigenous and global perspectives.

Introducing the MA Black British Writing - “It’s a story that hasn’t really been told”

This MA is:

  • World first. Nowhere else in the world can you study this field in such a richly, referenced way - in the actual country where the writing is produced.
  • Cross-disciplinary in teaching, studies, research. Writing as perceived in its broadest form on and off the page and screen.
  • Collaborative. It will be taught by Professor Joan Anim-Addo and Dr Deirdre Osborne, who share its vision and will co-teach the modules.
  • Inclusive. We welcome applications from a broad spectrum of people – those seeking academic careers, professionals who are returning to learning, artists who wish to develop their analytic and critical thinking skills.
  • Connected to local, national and international research streams. Both tutors have well-established research profiles with publications, and track records in convening public events in the field.

Modules & structure

The MA draws upon the expertise of literary, drama and theatre specialists from the Departments of Theatre and Performance and the Centre for Caribbean Studies.

The degree is made up of:

  • two compulsory core modules
  • a dissertation
  • two option modules

Full-time students study both compulsory modules and two options and write their dissertation across one year of study.

Part-time students select one compulsory module and one option per year across two years and write their dissertation in their second year of study.

Core modules

Option modules

You choose two options from those available in the Department of Theatre and Performance and the Department of English and Comparative Literature. 

This could include:

Intermediate exit points

It's possible to exit the programme early with a Postgraduate Diploma or Postgraduate Certificate if specific learning outcomes have been achieved. These options can be discussed with the course convenor.

Skills

You will develop transferable writing and oral skills at a high academic level, demonstrating the ability to think and work in an interdisciplinary manner using a range of methodologies. Your ability to work collaboratively and to facilitate and participate in group discussions will be enhanced. You will also develop skills in identifying the socio-cultural, historical, political and literary issues that shape and impact upon contemporary literary and performance texts.

We are oriented towards serving your individual goals and aspirations for self-development; it will generate an articulable body of transferable knowledge and skills.

Besides developing your knowledge of best current research methods and of facts and concepts specific to the featured field of study, the proposed programme will offer training in:

  • discerning vital literary and dramatic roots
  • recognising how the dynamics of creative and cultural movements interrelate
  • exchanging information effectively within a variety of intellectual, creative arts, and local communities

Careers

The MA’s design allows for a diverse range of applications of its contents to careers including education, counselling, community arts, arts practice, social services, cultural organisations, or towards research degrees (MPhil; PhD).

Our courses consolidate the influential presence of contemporary Black British writing. It is recognised as both intrinsic to conceptions of British cultural heritage but also distinctive within the body of British writing.

Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths



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The Master of Writing for Performance focuses on developing the skills and emerging aesthetic of the individual and collaborative writer for diverse forms of contemporary live performance. Read more

The Master of Writing for Performance focuses on developing the skills and emerging aesthetic of the individual and collaborative writer for diverse forms of contemporary live performance. It is unique in Australian theatre culture, focusing on the diversity of voices and cultures present in contemporary writing in Australia and overseas.

Through a combination of writing workshops, critical seminars and discussions you develop skills in writing for diverse contexts and live performance while gaining an understanding of the relationship between the playwright and the cultural contexts in which they write.

The program focuses on the development of a full length play, as well as four other smaller performance writing projects including: writing from improvisation with acting and directing students; writing for digital mediums; adaptation of existing texts; and writing for live art projects. The projects are supported by an analysis of dramaturgical principles and play structures based in character, dramatic action, conflict, dialogue, action and causal logic, as well as more experimental, non-linear writing based on post-dramatic concepts. At the end of the year, each writer presents a rehearsed presentation of a full-length play to industry and public.

The program welcomes applications from: writers, actors, directors, animateurs, theatre makers, designers and dramaturges, with moderate to extensive experience in performance writing.

LEARNING OUTCOMES:

  • Be able to conceptualise, realise and present original writing for performance and/or performance oriented projects in diverse form
  • Evaluate, discriminate and make informed choices as part of writing practice within aesthetic domains
  • Collaborate with other theatre artists and diverse communities
  • Develop the skills of articulating the ideas and processes inherent in your creative work within the context of relevant artistic discourse and research.


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Do you want to develop your own original writing whilst engaging with the best contemporary work being published? You’ll refine your craft with guidance from the award-winning writers who teach on this workshop-based MA, as well as from visiting writers. Read more
Do you want to develop your own original writing whilst engaging with the best contemporary work being published? You’ll refine your craft with guidance from the award-winning writers who teach on this workshop-based MA, as well as from visiting writers. Make the most of an opportunity to produce a substantial written project in a nurturing, creative environment. The writing skills you’ll develop will help ensure that, upon graduating, your work is ready for submission to publishers and agents.

Key features

-Develop your confidence and writing skills in an environment supportive of creative work.
-Produce a substantial writing project which you can submit to publishers and agents.
-Benefit from the depth of experience and knowledge shared by our staff, including several award-winning writers, and visiting writers.
-Expand your own writing experience through submitting work to student publications such as Ink, and the University press published literary journal, Short Fiction.
-Increase your critical self-awareness on a programme designed to round you as a writer.
-Enrich your learning experience through workshop-based seminars that allow you to explore the diverse strands of creative writing, from stories to screenplays.

Course details

You’ll attend four workshop-based seminars, detailed below. Throughout the term you’ll submit your best work in an environment dedicated to writing success. Writing is complemented by the reading of established authors in order to give you that all-important sense of literary context. Experienced tutors lead small seminars exploring the nuances of craft and the compositional process. We believe that all kinds of writing can inform each other, and ensure you study fiction, poetry, creative non-fiction, and dramatic writing (for stage and screen), before settling down to write your dissertation in a singular mode. Your dissertation will comprise a collection of poems, a stage or screen-play, or 20,000 words of prose from a story collection, novel or creative non-fiction. The ultimate goal is to help you to take your private writings to the public sphere. Full-time students take two modules per term, while part-time students take one module per term.

Core modules
-CWMA705 Creative Writing Dissertation
-CWMA703 Dramatic Writing: Stage and Screen
-CWMA704 The Business of Writing: Before and After Dissertation
-CWMA701 Fiction: Stories and Novels
-CWMA702 Poetry and Creative Non-Fiction

Every postgraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the programme aims, the programme structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

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The MA and MFA Writing for Stage and Broadcast Media offers students vocational training in writing drama across a range of different media contexts. Read more

ABOUT THE MA/MFA WRITING FOR STAGE AND BROADCAST MEDIA

The MA and MFA Writing for Stage and Broadcast Media offers students vocational training in writing drama across a range of different media contexts. Although the primary focus is on writing for television, film, theatre and radio, Central also runs
optional units in writing for new music theatre and, in collaboration with MA Applied Theatre, writing with and for communities. The course provides the opportunity for students to develop the core competencies and skills of the dramatist to explore their own ‘voice’ and develop their confidence as dramatists, and to appreciate the specific media contexts within which professional writers work.

Key features are: practice-based enquiry into techniques and processes for writing for stage and screen; a series of writing projects to engage with different styles and formats of production; associated study of writing techniques and issues of
performance in relation to theatre, cinema, television and other relevant contexts.The MA and MFA are taught in group sessions and through individual tutorials. During these sessions participants will consider the fundamentals of dramatic writing. Indicatively, these will include structure, narrative, dramatic action, genre, character, dialogue and rhetorical effect.

Students will study different approaches to writing including individual authorship, group writing and writing to specific briefs. Students will attend masterclasses, seminars and workshops that focus on particular modes of writing for different production contexts, and will be part of a writers’ group, providing peer support in developing their writing. Their vocational work is complemented by individual research and appropriate theoretical discussion and enquiry. Students will address historical, theoretical and critical contexts within which traditions of dramatic writing have evolved.

Students will engage in a range of projects that test and develop their skills as a writer of drama. Indicatively, these will include forming a team of writers to evolve a television series, writing a short play script for a staged reading, writing a short
film script, writing a radio play and developing and writing a complete dramatic script for production in a particular medium (stage, radio, television, music theatre, or film).

ASSESSMENT

This is through peer assessment, practical assignments, essays, scheme of research, presentations, and the submission of a practitioner portfolio, including personal insights, research, the student’s own scripted material and a plan for professional
development.

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Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study Creative Writing at Swansea University - 'Welsh University of the Year 2017' (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017). Read more

Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study Creative Writing at Swansea University - 'Welsh University of the Year 2017' (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017).

The MA in Creative Writing is a unique programme that offers integrated training in the writing of literary and media text. The MA in Creative Writing is taught by prize-winning writers of fiction, poetry and drama who provide core training and individual pathways in the major genres of contemporary literary and media writing. Modules on the Creative Writing programme are taught through workshop sessions, group work and one-to-one mentoring between students and a tutor. Courses include the writing of prose fiction, poetry, drama, screenwriting and creative nonfiction. Writers and representatives from the arts world and the publishing industry are invited to address the MA Creative Writing group about creative work and publishing. We have strong links with Swansea’s Dylan Thomas Centre, which offers a lively programme of events throughout the year.

Key Features of the MA in Creative Writing

- The MA in Creative Writing is taught by experienced writers and offers a wide range of writing genres including fiction, short story, poetry, drama, screenwriting and creative non-fiction.

- Drama writing is a particular strength, including the relatively new and unexplored field of Dramaturgy.

- Regular play readings and students' dramatic writing is often performed by professional actors in the Rough Diamonds mini-festival in the summer.

- Creative Writers have a close relationship with National Theatre Wales and also open-mic poetry events at local venues such as the Dylan Thomas Centre and Howl.

- There is scope for work experience with local publishers.

- The writing programme has an online journal, The Swansea Review, and students write for The Siren, a student-run online journal, and The Waterfront student newspaper.

- Creative Writing students have free membership of Literature Wales, the national literature promotion agency.

- Students are involved in the annual Writers’ Day at the Dylan Thomas Centre, where they meet editors, agents, publishers and writers to discuss the ins and outs of publication and the craft of writing.

- Students are part of a vibrant community of writers and artists – Swansea, the birthplace of Dylan Thomas, having a fair claim to being Wales’s city of culture.

- The programme has connection with and experience of the unique literary culture of Wales, home to possibly the oldest (but still vibrant) bardic tradition in Europe.

Modules

Modules on the MA in Creative Writing typically include:

• Writing Fiction

• Writing Poetry

• Genre: Writing for Stage

• Creative Non-Fiction and Travel Writing

• Nature Writing

• Screenwriting

• Writing Radio Drama

• The Art of Short Story

• Writing the Self

• International Dramaturgy

Who should Apply?

Students or Professionals interested in Creative and Professional Writing. Students interested in preparation for postgraduate research, MPhil or PhD.

MA in Creative Writing Aims

- To offer students the chance to belong to a warmly supportive community of writers, passionate about their art.

- To give students the opportunity to discuss literary matters with agents, editors and publishers.

- To provide active participation in Swansea’s burgeoning literary scene and have students’ dramatic writing performed by professional actors at the Dylan Thomas Literature Centre.

- To offer research seminars presented by eminent creative writers and academics.

- To develop study and research skills in Creative Writing research and practice methodologies.

Career Prospects

Career expectations are excellent for Creative Writing graduates. MA degree holders enter careers in professional and creative writing, publishing, education, global marketing and advertising, media, business, heritage and tourism, and performing arts. Some graduates go on to pursue further postgraduate study leading to a PhD and a career in Academia.

Student Quote

"Since graduating with an MA with Distinction in Creative Writing from Swansea University, I have published three collections of poetry, founded Grievous Jones Press, and begun lecturing in Creative Writing. In the near future I will finish my PhD in Creative Writing and have books forthcoming with Blackheath Books and Seren Books. The training, experience, and rigour of the Swansea MA in Creative Writing was invaluable for launching my career as a writer and publisher. Without the inspiration, guidance, and critique of the excellent faculty and peers, my own writing would not have grown and my flame for creation might have faltered."

David Oprava, Creative Writing, MA



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Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study Creative Writing (Extended) at Swansea University - 'Welsh University of the Year 2017' (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017). Read more

Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study Creative Writing (Extended) at Swansea University - 'Welsh University of the Year 2017' (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017).

The MA in Creative Writing is a unique programme that offers integrated training in the writing of literary and media text. The MA in Creative Writing is taught by prize-winning writers of fiction, poetry and drama who provide core training and individual pathways in the major genres of contemporary literary and media writing. Modules on the Creative Writing programme are taught through workshop sessions, group work and one-to-one mentoring between students and a tutor. Courses include the writing of prose fiction, poetry, drama, screenwriting and creative nonfiction. Writers and representatives from the arts world and the publishing industry are invited to address the MA Creative Writing group about creative work and publishing. We have strong links with Swansea’s Dylan Thomas Centre, which offers a lively programme of events throughout the year.

The Extended MA (EMA) in Creative Writing is a 240-credit postgraduate qualification that is equivalent to 120 ECTS (European Credit Transfer System) and is thus a recognised Masters qualification throughout the European Union. The EMA is a standard UK MA plus an additional 60 credits (30 ECTS) and this additional coursework is undertaken in one semester at a partner institution overseas. The EMA is therefore not only an EU recognised postgraduate qualification it also adds a study abroad experience thus enhancing the qualification’s employability credentials.

Key Features of the MA in Creative Writing

- The MA in Creative Writing is taught by experienced writers and offers a wide range of writing genres including fiction, short story, poetry, drama, screenwriting and creative non-fiction.

- Drama writing is a particular strength, including the relatively new and unexplored field of Dramaturgy.

- Regular play readings and students' dramatic writing is often performed by professional actors in the Rough Diamonds mini-festival in the summer.

- Creative Writers have a close relationship with National Theatre Wales and also open-mic poetry events at local venues such as the Dylan Thomas Centre and Howl.

- There is scope for work experience with local publishers.

- The writing programme has an online journal, The Swansea Review, and students write for The Siren, a student-run online journal, and The Waterfront student newspaper.

- Creative Writing students have free membership of Literature Wales, the national literature promotion agency.

- Students are involved in the annual Writers’ Day at the Dylan Thomas Centre, where they meet editors, agents, publishers and writers to discuss the ins and outs of publication and the craft of writing.

- Students are part of a vibrant community of writers and artists – Swansea, the birthplace of Dylan Thomas, having a fair claim to being Wales’s city of culture.

- The programme has connection with and experience of the unique literary culture of Wales, home to possibly the oldest (but still vibrant) bardic tradition in Europe.

Modules

Modules on the MA in Creative Writing typically include:

• Writing Fiction

• Writing Poetry

• Genre: Writing for Stage

• Creative Non-Fiction and Travel Writing

• Nature Writing

• Screenwriting

• Writing Radio Drama

• The Art of Short Story

• Writing the Self

• International Dramaturgy

Who should Apply?

Students or Professionals interested in Creative and Professional Writing. Students interested in preparation for postgraduate research, MPhil or PhD.

MA in Creative Writing Aims

- To offer students the chance to belong to a warmly supportive community of writers, passionate about their art.

- To give students the opportunity to discuss literary matters with agents, editors and publishers.

- To provide active participation in Swansea’s burgeoning literary scene and have students’ dramatic writing performed by professional actors at the Dylan Thomas Literature Centre.

- To offer research seminars presented by eminent creative writers and academics.

- To develop study and research skills in Creative Writing research and practice methodologies.

Career Prospects

Career expectations are excellent for Creative Writing graduates. MA degree holders enter careers in professional and creative writing, publishing, education, global marketing and advertising, media, business, heritage and tourism, and performing arts. Some graduates go on to pursue further postgraduate study leading to a PhD and a career in Academia.

Student Quote

"Since graduating with an MA with Distinction in Creative Writing from Swansea University, I have published three collections of poetry, founded Grievous Jones Press, and begun lecturing in Creative Writing. In the near future I will finish my PhD in Creative Writing and have books forthcoming with Blackheath Books and Seren Books. The training, experience, and rigour of the Swansea MA in Creative Writing was invaluable for launching my career as a writer and publisher. Without the inspiration, guidance, and critique of the excellent faculty and peers, my own writing would not have grown and my flame for creation might have faltered."

David Oprava, Creative Writing, MA



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This highly successful programme offers specialist pathways in . Playwriting.  and . Dramaturgy. We concentrate on the process of writing for live performance, together with an ongoing evaluation of the work in process. Read more

This highly successful programme offers specialist pathways in Playwriting and Dramaturgy. We concentrate on the process of writing for live performance, together with an ongoing evaluation of the work in process. Through practice and reflection, we enable you to establish a distinctive, individual approach as both a writer and dramaturge. Projects include site-specific work, writing for a specific audience, verbatim theatre and interdisciplinary collaboration.

We support the development of texts for performance, alongside intellectual understanding of the diverse forms and contexts in which live performance can be made and the writer/dramaturge’s role in this. We examine texts from a wide range of periods and cultures. We engage with work that is innovative, or which challenges established notions of practice.

Opportunities to collaborate

Dramaturgs and playwrights study side by side, and examine creative and dramaturgical issues from various perspectives as writers, spectators and creative collaborators. There are opportunities to collaborate on an Interdisciplinary Project with MA Performance Makers and composers from the Department of Music. Final project texts, performed and directed by industry professionals, are presented at the Soho Theatre in London, attended by key industry representatives. Graduates are highly successful in obtaining commissions, dramaturgy posts and artistic directorships. Recent successes include:

  • Tena Štivičić (Three Winters National Theatre 2015)
  • Finn Kennedy (Artistic Director, Tamasha Theatre Company 2015)
  • Melissa Bubnic (Beached at Soho Theatre 2015)

All students receive Professional Orientation and support towards career development.

Modules & structure

Autumn term 

All students take the Writing Projects module: you will work on three diverse, short playwriting projects. Each addresses particular generic issues that relate to writing for live performance, and you will engage with the specific challenges and demands of differing circumstances of text development and production. These will vary from year to year, but they are likely to be selected from the following:

  • Theatre as Event – site-specific performance
  • Authenticity and Live Performance – verbatim theatre
  • Writing for Specific Audiences – children’s/young person’s theatre project
  • Creative Collaboration – multimedia collaboration with MA Performance Making and Studio Composition students from the Department of Music

You will also take the Dramaturgy module, which has two main elements: analysis of dramatic text (these will include classics and modern classics, as well as new plays); and analysis of live performance seen by the group (including some visual, environmental or non-text-based work). During the module you will assemble a portfolio of critical analyses and creative writing projects for assessment.

You will also take one contextual module alongside students from other Masters programmes, to be selected from a list of options that will vary from session to session.

Spring term 

You will develop your work on Dramaturgy with the term-long practical workshop module Creative Intervention in Text. This will examine: translation; adaptation of work from other media for live performance; and the re-writing and/or adaptation of extant plays; planning and curating seasons of performance work. You will assemble a portfolio of creative projects for assessment.

You also start work on your Final Project the personal Dissertation-equivalent project that will be the core of your work for the next six months). Weekly seminars and workshops will examine themes relevant to the range of projects chosen, and a first draft or outline will be produced. Each project will be the focus of individual tutorials, and then a class workshop led by a guest dramaturg, director or playwright as appropriate. You will then plan the next phase of the research or development of your project.

You also take another option from the list of contextual modules shared with students from other Masters programmes.

Summer term 

You will present the second draft of your project for another phase of tutorials and group workshops.

Playwriting projects will then be prepared for some form of public rehearsed reading or scratch performance, in extract form – with the writers involved in all aspects of the work.

Dramaturgy projects will be given practical support of an appropriate, equivalent kind. You will further develop your work, with tutorials and workshops and public presentation of work as appropriate, before writing and submitting the finished project.

Throughout the year, various seminars and workshops will examine diverse issues that affect writers today, and these will be led by visiting professionals as appropriate.

Assessment

We deploy a range of assessment approaches, each appropriate to the module taken. Students taking Writing Projects will submit three short playtexts for assessment. Dramaturgy is assessed by a portfolio of analytic reviews, and Creative Intervention in Text by a series of short creative writing projects and writing exercises. Each of the contextual option modules is assessed by a 4,000 word essay. Final Project leads to the production of a playtext (Playwriting), or a Dissertation or equivalent practical project (Dramaturgy). 

Careers

Numerous playwrights completing this programme receive high-level professional development opportunities, commissions, awards and full-scale productions of their work at major new writing centres in the UK, USA and in continental Europe. Many also work for at least part of the time in the fields of script development (for theatre and television), and in theatre publication.

Recent playwriting alumni include:

  • Ben Musgrave, whose Pretend You Have Big Buildings won the Bruntwood Prize (2006) and received a main house production at the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester
  • Allia V Oswald, whose Dirty Water won the Alfred Fagon Award (2007) and was given a rehearsed reading at the Royal Court Theatre
  • Adam Brace, whose play Stovepipe was a High Tide Festival winner (2008), and was staged recently by the National Theatre and published by Faber

In each of these cases the award-winning play was the writer’s Final Project from this programme.

Dramaturgy alumni work in professional literary management for mainstream and fringe building-based companies, as well as on freelance script development programmes in the UK and internationally. These include:

  • David Lane, who now has an extremely busy career as a freelance dramaturg, teacher and playwright
  • Francesca Malfrin, who is currently developing translation projects of Italian plays with a range of agencies, including the National Theatre Studio


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The MPhil/PhD in Creative Writing is for writers who want to embark on a course of sustained study and research at a high level of academic and creative achievement. Read more
The MPhil/PhD in Creative Writing is for writers who want to embark on a course of sustained study and research at a high level of academic and creative achievement.

Your studies will consist of research into a specific subject area relevant to your chosen field of creative endeavour and a substantial work of creative writing, consisting of a collection of poems, a prose work or a dramatic script for stage, screen or radio.

The subject of your academic study and your creative writing submission will be agreed with your tutor during the process of your application. It is expected that your final creative writing submission, and the process of its development, will be of a professional standard.

Available Projects

Examples of projects include a study of ‘victimhood’ in the novel in parallel with writing a novel involving victims, a study of metaphor in poetry as a means of helping people either as clients or therapists in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), war poetry and the poetry of confession.

Students embarking on creative writing PhDs tend to have developed particular areas of interest as part of an MA in Creative Writing from Bolton or elsewhere. For example, you may have a particular fascination with a creative or formal problem in your art or an interest in how writing can help in the community. There are many possibilities and it is worth discussing your ideas with us.

For more information please visit http://www.bolton.ac.uk/postgrad

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Offering an unprecedented 11 genres for potential study, students work in a learner-centered, workshop-driven program which offers an exciting breadth of choices, award-winning faculty and a setting in one of the world’s most beautiful and livable cities. Read more
Offering an unprecedented 11 genres for potential study, students work in a learner-centered, workshop-driven program which offers an exciting breadth of choices, award-winning faculty and a setting in one of the world’s most beautiful and livable cities.

We provide a two-year studio course of resident (on-campus) study in which apprentice writers are offered instruction by faculty who work in a variety of literary and dramatic forms.

The UBC Advantage

A Focus on Writing

We emphasize the creation and critical discussion of original writing rather than the study of literature or literary criticism. Readings are assigned or suggested by instructors where appropriate, but there is not a significant reading or criticism component to the degree.

Eleven Genres of Study

More than any other Creative Writing Program in the world. Study fiction, non-fiction, poetry, screenwriting, playwriting, radio drama, writing for children, lyric & libretto, graphic novel, new media writing and translation. Students work in at least three separate genres during the course of their degree – literary cross-training that makes our graduates more well-rounded writers and opens more doors for teaching and publication.

Award-winning Faculty

Our faculty members are all working writers, with multiple awards, international publication and production records to their names.

Quick Facts

- Degree: Master of Fine Arts
- Specialization: Creative Writing
- Subject: Creative and Performing Arts
- Mode of delivery: On campus
- Program components: Coursework + Thesis required
- Faculty: Faculty of Arts

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This course is designed to equip students of exceptional talent with the skills necessary to pursue a career in theatre and related industries through the development of skills, professional practices and creative approaches to writing for performance. Read more
This course is designed to equip students of exceptional talent with the skills necessary to pursue a career in theatre and related industries through the development of skills, professional practices and creative approaches to writing for performance.

It encourages a self-reflexive approach to learning with a view to developing independent thinking practitioners of theatre. Through a series of skills-based writing workshops and tutorials with professional playwrights, directors and a dramaturge the individual voice of the student writer will be nurtured and developed. Classes in dramaturgy and contemporary theatre practice will supplement the training. The course will culminate in the writing of a performance for the student’s chosen medium that will benefit from staged readings, rehearsals, staging or recording.

Students on the course will work in a dedicated space for writers in The Lir building. In addition to the core classes and workshops, individual tuition from The Lir’s dramaturge will be a key feature of the training. In addition, master classes by visiting practitioners will supplement the student experience. Students can opt to take this course either part-time (24 months) or full-time (12 months).

Master in Fine Art Playwriting

Full-time and part-time students will take three concurrent modules in the first two semesters. The fourth module will be taught in the third semester and subsequent summer months (for full-time students) or in the second year of the course (for part-time students). The fourth module will be supplemented by an ongoing series of masterclasses from professional writers and script editors.

Contemporary Theatre Practice

This module will introduce students to a range of contemporary theatre practices as evidenced in the theatres of Dublin. The principal aim of the course is to enable students to become conversant in the styles, forms, theories and practices that constitute contemporary theatre making in Ireland. In addition, students will be introduced to a range of dramatic production in related media (radio, television and film) whose styles and forms will be analysed in this module. The Contemporary Theatre Practice module is shared by all Master in Fine Art students (directors, designers and playwrights).

Dramaturgy

This module will be taught by a professional dramaturge. Its aim is to introduce students to a range of dramatic texts for the theatre or related media with an emphasis on the dramaturgical composition of those texts. An understanding of the contexts within which those dramaturgical strategies were produced will also be fostered. This seminar-based module requires students to examine key problems related to the creation and structure of scripts for performance. Students will consider a variety of theories regarding dramatic structure, consider the research requirements of script creation, explore different approaches to script development and learn to apply a dramaturgical vocabulary to a number of case studies.

Writing Workshop

The overall aim of the module is to prepare students for the writing of a play for performance in Module 4. Students will share their creative writing in a workshop format, and will receive both group feedback and individual tuition in the development of their craft. The module includes: creative workshops; developing an awareness of the professional writing context; developing an explicit, personal aesthetic; and offers the possibilities for writing in numerous professional contexts (theatre, education, community), and for various media (theatre and recorded media). This module also outlines career development and group or self critique; it introduces research skills, rehearsal etiquette and re-drafting.

Play

This module will be taught through individual supervision of the writing of a student’s full-length play (of between 45 and 90 minutes performing time). The play will be submitted for examination along with a reflective journal of the student’s practice. The development of the script will be aided by the involvement of professional actors and directors in the redrafting process. The module will culminate in a rehearsed reading of a selection of students’ work in a semi-staged showcase to an invited audience of theatre professionals. This showcase, which does not form part of the assessment, is designed to bridge the gap between training and the theatre and related industries.

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Gain a rich understanding of the variety and interconnections of American writing, exploring major poetic, fictional, non-fictional and dramatic works. Read more
Gain a rich understanding of the variety and interconnections of American writing, exploring major poetic, fictional, non-fictional and dramatic works. American literature is topical and contemporary; Author Junot Díaz’s book The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao was declared the best novel of the 21st century (so far!). This is just one of the novels that you will have the opportunity to study on this course.

At Essex, we challenge the study of the United States as a territorially bound space by embracing an expanded conception of ‘America’, which explores the richness of U.S. and Caribbean literatures in dialogue. This allows you to formulate sophisticated analyses of the role of space and place in the production of American writing and identities.

You explore how cultural geography may be integrated into literary history, concentrating on American literatures topics including:
-How violence and conflict have shaped writing across the American tropics
-The difference between reality and the “American Dream”
-Caribbean modernities and post-colonialism
-US nationalism and regionalism in literature
-African American literature

Our department is ranked Top 20 in the UK (Guardian University Guide 2015) and in the Top 200 worldwide (QS World University Rankings), and three-quarters of our research is rated ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ (REF 2014).

This course is also available on a part-time basis.

Our expert staff

At Essex, we have an impressive literary legacy. Our history comprises staff (and students) who have shaped writing as we know it and has included Nobel Prize winners, Booker Prize winners, and Pulitzer Prize winners.

This course reflects our longstanding strengths in the literatures and cultures of the Americas, particularly the US South and Caribbean regions. You are taught by leading area specialists who have researched and published extensively on Caribbean and US literatures:
-Professor Maria Cristina Fumagalli has published widely on Caribbean literature and culture, including her recent book On the Edge: Writing the Border between Haiti and the Dominican Republic
-Dr Owen Robinson is a US literature specialist with particular interests in William Faulkner and the US South; forthcoming publications include Myriad City: Towards a Literary Geography of New Orleans
-Dr Jak Peake has broad interests across Caribbean and US writing, with particular expertise in Trinidadian literature; forthcoming publications include Between the Bocas: A Literary Geography of Western Trinidad

We are an interdisciplinary department and our academic staff have expertise in literature, film theory and practice, drama, creative writing and journalism.

Specialist facilities

-Meet fellow readers at the student-run Literature Society or at our department’s Myth Reading Group
-Write for our student magazine Albert or host a Red Radio show
-View classic films at weekly film screenings in our dedicated 120-seat film theatre
-Learn from leading writers and literature specialists at weekly research seminars
-Our on-campus Lakeside Theatre has been established as a major venue for good drama, staging both productions by professional touring companies and a wealth of new work written, produced and directed by our own staff and students
-Improve your playwriting and performance skills at our Lakeside Theatre Workshops
-Our Research Laboratory allows you to collaborate with professionals, improvising and experimenting with new work which is being tried and tested

Your future

A good literature degree opens many doors.

We offer supervision for PhD, MPhil and MA by dissertation in different literatures and various approaches to literature, covering most aspects of early modern and modern writing in English, plus a number of other languages.

Our University is one of only 11 AHRC-accredited Doctoral Training Centres in the UK. This means that we offer funded PhD studentships which also provide a range of research and training opportunities. A number of our Department of Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies graduates have gone on to undertake successful careers as writers, and others are now established as scholars, university lecturers, teachers, publishers, publishers’ editors, journalists, arts administrators, theatre artistic directors, drama advisers, and translators.

We work with our Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

Postgraduate study is the chance to take your education to the next level. The combination of compulsory and optional modules means our courses help you develop extensive knowledge in your chosen discipline, whilst providing plenty of freedom to pursue your own interests. Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field, therefore to ensure your course is as relevant and up-to-date as possible your core module structure may be subject to change.

MA American Literartures
-Research Methods in Literary and Cultural Analysis
-War, Violence & Conflict in the American Tropics
-US Nationalism and Regionalism
-"There is a Continent Outside My Window" : United States and Caribbean Literatures in Dialogue
-Dissertation
-The New Nature Writing (optional)
-Writing the Novel (optional)
-Memory Maps: Practices in Psychogeography (optional)
-Dramatic Structure (optional)
-Literature and Performance in the Modern City
-Early Modern to Eighteenth Century Literature
-Georgian and Romantic Literature and Drama
-Adaptation
-Documentary and the Avant-garde: Film, Video, Digital
-Film and Video Production Workshop
-Advanced Film and Industry: Production and Industry
-African American Literature (optional)
-Sea of Lentils: Modernity, Literature, and Film in the Caribbean
-Writing Magic (optional)
-Literature and the Environmental Imagination: 19th to 21st Century Poetry and Prose (optional)

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Offering you the flexibility to pursue a generalist or specialist degree pathway, our Creative Writing MA (Modular) is taught by prize-winning, practising writers and is part of the longest-established Creative Writing scheme in the country. Read more

Offering you the flexibility to pursue a generalist or specialist degree pathway, our Creative Writing MA (Modular) is taught by prize-winning, practising writers and is part of the longest-established Creative Writing scheme in the country. You will be part of a vibrant literary community, honing your critical and creative skills whilst engaging with visiting writers and publishing professionals.

The generalist pathway offers a free choice of modules in prose fiction, poetry, creative non-fiction and dramatic forms, whilst the specialist pathway in Poetry, Prose Fiction or Creative Non-Fiction sees two of four modules, and a creative project, focusing on your chosen specialism. All students deliver a research-based talk at our annual MA Showcase - previous events have been held in partnership with Lancaster LitFest and the Dukes theatre.

Your core modules are Research Methods and Professional Practice, which examine the professional and ethical issues around creative writing and help you to develop your reflective practice skills. Elective modules explore a wide range of literary fields and genres, including psychogeographies, short fiction, poetry, landscape writing, the lyric essay, and radio drama. Each module features readings, practical presentations on form, genre and technique, peer feedback (verbal and written), and tutor recommendations on how to develop your own work.

Your postgraduate degree equips you with a portfolio of work and prepares you for PhD research as well as careers in journalism, publishing, literature and reading development, community arts and public relations. Many of our students have gone on to publish works of fiction, poetry and creative non-fiction. The critical, analytical, close reading and editing skills developed through your studies will also enhance your employability.

Part time and full time study options are available.



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