The University of Southampton
Courses

ENGL6115 Scriptwriting

Module Overview

This module is an introduction to the basic skills and contexts of script writing. It is not aimed at any one specific medium but will offer introductions to the requirements of theatre and film. You will be expected to engage in some practical drama workshops script. Assessment will be based on the submission of a written script and accompanying critical reflection at the end of the module.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

. provide a supportive learning environment for the development of your skills in writing scripts for either theatre, television or cinema . extend your understanding of the demands of different performance media and venues . introduce a wide range of scriptwriting techniques

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • how to write a script
  • the process of development and revision involved in creating scripts
  • how to achieve originality, linguistic versatility, and form in the handling of dialogue, action, visual effect and overall structural control in your script writing
  • how scripts are developed into performance for different media
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • write fluently in a range of styles
  • present ideas effectively in a script
  • revise and edit creative writing to a professional standard
  • translate text into performance
  • manage deadlines and make effective use of your time
Subject Specific Practical Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • revise and edit your work effectively
  • distinguish your aims as a scriptwriter
  • create the key structures needed for a script
  • explore ways of realising your script in performance
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • handle complex demands of script composition in an analytic manner
  • make literary judgements of scripts in an informed way
  • independently evaluate and apply compositional methods
  • interact effectively with audiences via the performance of a script
  • demonstrate originality through your writing

Syllabus

Classroom activity will be aimed at exploring the interaction of script and performance, as well as devoted to the basic analysis of how scripts work. Differences between the media of various types of theatre, television and cinema will be addressed both in set reading and through exploratory investigation in the seminars.

Special Features

Classroom activity will be aimed at exploring the interaction of script and performance, as well as devoted to the basic analysis of how scripts work. Differences between the media of various types of theatre, television and cinema will be addressed both in set reading and through exploratory investigation in the seminars.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Teaching methods include analysis of cinematic material for group discussion, practical drama work with student works-in-progress alongside exemplar scripts from cinema, television and modern theatre, and seminar discussion of scriptwriting techniques. Learning activities include responding in detail to student scripts and readings, studying published scripts, and writing drafts for performance and seminar discussion. Seminar writing tasks with provide informal, on-module feedback, supported tutorial discussion of works-in- progress.

TypeHours
Teaching20
Independent Study130
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list

Story. 

The Methuen Book of Modern Drama. 

Marius von Mayenburg. The Ugly One. 

David Mamet. Glengarry Glen Ross. 

David Harrower. Blackbird. 

Desperate Housewives by Marc Cherry. television script

Mark Ravenhill. Shopping and F**king. 

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind by Charlie Kaufman. screenplay

Alternative Scriptwriting. 

Mother of Him by Evan Placey. script

Dirty Pretty Things by Steven Knight. screenplay

The Hour by Abi Morgan. television script

Jane Bodie. A Single Act. 

Martin McDonagh. The Beauty Queen of Leenane. 

Laura Wade. Breathing Corpses. 

Banana Boys or Holloway Jones by Evan Placey. plays for young people

Misfits by Howard Overman. television script

Edward Albee. The Goat (or Who is Sylvia. 

Tony Kushner. Angels in America (parts 1 & 2). 

debbie tucker green. Random. 

Joan MacLeod. The Shape of a Girl. 

Jez Butterworth. Jerusalem. 

Caryl Churchill. Top Girls. 

Sarah Kane. Blasted. 

Assessment

Summative

MethodPercentage contribution
Critical commentary  (1000 words) 25%
Written assignment  (20 minutes) 75%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal

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