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Scripting a Television Drama

Duration 10 weekly meetings
Tutor Russ Gascoigne
Course code CRW20A4087B
Fee £170
Concessionary fee £136 (find out about eligibility and funding options)
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Led by an experienced, professional scriptwriter and former BBC Drama script editor, this vibrant and wide-ranging course takes you through the process of writing for TV/film.

It incorporates a comprehensive understanding of how the industry operates as well as covering the technicalities of scriptwriting itself.

Using a variety of screened material and in-class exercises, the course deconstructs and demystifies scriptwriting’s often complex demands through practical demonstrations of its key components and principles to enable you to conceive, plan and write a script in keeping with established techniques and professional criteria. Pre-enrolment is essential as places are limited.

The course is primarily aimed at students who want to write for television/film or learn the fundamentals of scriptwriting.

Russ Gascoigne has written for the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5 and S4C, his credits ranging from soap through to the top rating A Touch of Frost. He is a former BBC Drama script editor who has also worked as a script-reader/consultant for numerous TV/film companies including the Movie Acquisition Corporation and the European Script Fund.

Learning and teaching

This is a 10-credit course, so there will be two-hour meetings once a week (20 contact hours in all) which will include discussions, exercises (optional), craft lectures and DVD extracts. You will also be given handouts as background reading to the course along with script and individual scene samples.

The aim is to ensure that the classes are enjoyable and stimulating for all. You will be expected to write in your own private time, with the guidance of your tutor, while at the same time becoming familiar with the fundamental concepts of scriptwriting.

Coursework and assessment

To award credits we need to have evidence of the knowledge and skills you have gained or improved. Some of this has to be in a form that can be shown to external examiners so that we can be absolutely sure that standards are met across all courses and subjects. There will be no formal examinations. You will be encouraged to write a short script to be completed by the end of the course which shows your understanding of the basics of scriptwriting.

The most important element of assessment is that it should enhance your learning. Our methods are flexible and are designed to increase your confidence and we try very hard to devise ways of assessing you that are enjoyable and suitable for adults with busy lives.

Reading suggestions

Most resources to which your tutor will direct you can be found online.

Library and computing facilities

As a student on this course you are entitled to join and use the University’s library and computing facilities. Find out more about using these facilities.


Our aim is access for all. We aim to provide a confidential advice and support service for any student with a long term medical condition, disability or specific learning difficulty. We are able to offer one-to-one advice about disability, pre-enrolment visits, liaison with tutors and co-ordinating lecturers, material in alternative formats, arrangements for accessible courses, assessment arrangements, loan equipment and dyslexia screening.


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