Creative Writing (Playwriting and Screenwriting) MA

City University London
Course summary
2 years
10,000 GBP
Full time
Next available date: September 2020 - London

Course description

Creative Writing (Playwriting and Screenwriting) MA

Creative Writing (Playwriting and Screenwriting) MA - a City University degree programme

The Creative Writing (Playwriting and Screenwriting) MA builds on creating a stimulating and challenging environment for budding writers and novelists to explore their possibilities in writing and developing their craft.

The course is taught by professional writers and established screenplay writers.

Suitability - Who should attend?

You will usually have an honours degree, in any subject. Successful completion of a certificate course in creative writing, professional qualifications or relevant experience, such as acting or directing may also be acceptable. The prime criteria are proven ability and commitment to completing a play or screenplay.You will be required to submit a writing sample which is a 20 page play, screenplay or radio play extract and to attend an interview as part of the application process (international applicants may be interviewed by telephone).

Other Suitable Qualifications

Mature students are encouraged to apply. If in doubt about your qualifications please contact us before applying.

For students whose first language is not English, an IELTS score of at least 7.0 is required (with 7.0 in the writing component).

Please note that due to changes in the UKVI's list of SELTs we are no longer able to accept TOEFL as evidence of English language for students who require a CAS as of April 2014.

Citizens from states other than Europe/Switzerland are may need to go for entry or visa applications

The way to apply may vary depending on the length of your course; there are different rules for:

  • Students on courses of more than 6 months
  • Students on courses of less than 6 months
  • Students on a pre-sessional English Language course

Please note: Those requiring a Tier 4 student visa for studying in the UK, cannot undertake any City University London courses on a part-time basis.

Outcome / Qualification etc.

MA Creative Writing (Playwriting and Screenwriting) graduates' achievements

  • Brierley Thorpe's MA play won the International Playwriting Competition at Croydon Warehouse and was a runner up in the Bruntwood Playwriting Prize.
  • Lydia Adetunji's MA screenplay was selected for the Brit List, a list of the UK's best unproduced screenplays. Her play The Fixer was produced at the High Tide Festival. Other short plays have been produced by Paines Plough theatre company and the Young Vic.
  • Alexandra Denye was a runner up in the BBC's Alfred Bradley radio playwriting award.
  • Grant Corr's MA play has been produced by Icarus Theatre Company at the Old Red Lion theatre.
  • Heather Taylor co-wrote the screenplay for The Last Thakur, screened at the London Film Festival in 2008.
  • Harry Otto Brunjes has written, directed and produced the feature film La Bella Figura.
  • Kate Hall is a screenwriter on Hollyoaks.

MA Creative Writing (Playwriting and Screenwriting) graduates' work performed


  • Matilda Ibini's play Muscovado is going on a nationwide tour which starts in Theatre 503 London on Feb 24th- 7th March 2015.
  • Graduate Aisha Zia's play No Guts, No Heart, No Glory will be on at the Queen Elizabeth Hall on the Southbank in March 2015 as part of the Women of the World festival
  • Seven of our Graduates are staging a Valentine's Production "The Sexy Seven" at the Etcetera Theatre on "Valentine's Weekend" (13-15 February 2015). It consists of seven short plays on a "sexy" theme and is written by seven City MA graduates.
  • Graduate Raul Molina's play "The Dinner" will be on at The Vault in Waterloo (Feb 25th - March 1st 2015)
  • Graduate Nick Harrison has a play 'The Devil to Pay on Brook Street' is on at 'Handel House' in central London 20th Feb - March 1st 2015.
  • Dianna Hunt's MA graduation play 'Mona's Room' was selected for inclusion in the Arcola Theatre's new writing festival in January 2015.


  • Graduate Aisha Zia's play 'No Guts, No Heart, No Glory' won the 2014 Scotsman Fringe First at the Edinburgh Festival, was shortlisted for the Amnesty Prize, and has been performed at the Commonwealth Theatre in Manchester. It has just been published by Oberon books, and Aisha Zia has been invited on to Radio 4 a number of times to talk about it.
  • Second year student Ness Lyons had a play she wrote for the MA performed at the Arcola Theatre in Nov 2014, and her play 'Charity Reality' has been published by Amazon in an E-book anthology.
  • Graduate Nick Myles' MA play "Tom and Jerry, a love story" was performed at the Drayton Arms in November 2014, and his show "Mistaken: A Quartet of Plays for One Actor" was performed at the Etcetera Theatre.
  • Graduate Tracy Mathewson's play "Teenage Dirtbag" was premiered at the 2014 Edinburgh Festival.
  • Student Kiran Benawra had her play "Mates"performed at the 2014 Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
  • Graduate Joy Gharoro-Akpojotor's play "Sunday" was on at the Theatre Royal Stratford East in June 2014.
  • Graduate Lorraine Mullaney had her university graduation play "Unclouded Moon" performed at the Brighton Fringe festival in May 2014.
  • Graduates Nazish Kahn and Sophie Foster had their plays "Pole Factor" and "Project Lolita" performed at the Vault Festival in Waterloo in Feb 2014.


  • Graduate Aisha Zia was one of the co-writers of "Our Glass House" which was performed in Camden in Now 2013.
  • Student Mark Hibbert was nominated for the "Best Comedy" and "New Writing" awards at the Buxton Fringe Awards in Nov 2013.
  • Graduate Hannah Rodger's play "Happy Never After" was one of nine plays by City graduates and students performed in the 2013 Edinburgh festival. The others included Tracy Mathewson "Broadway Baby", Aisha Zia "Our Glass House" (winner of the Amnesty Award), Henry Carr "Luke and Harry's Journey to Sex Colony", Nazish Kahn "Pole Factor", Sophie Foster "Project Lolita", Mark Hibbert "Total Hero Team", and Tracy McFall "Synergy"
  • Graduate Raul Molina's play The Last Hour of Antigone was on at the Camden People's Theatre in May 2013.


  • Mudlarks by Vickie Donoghue (class of 2009)
    Bush Theatre, 18 September - 20 October 2012
  • Labalaba by Joy Gharoro-Akpojotor (class of 2009, co-writer and producer)
    Wazobia Lounge at Africa Village, 30 July 2012
  • Front by Vickie Donoghue (class of 2009)
    John Gielgud Theatre, 7 July 2012
  • MEAT by Brian Eley (class of 2010)
    Theatre 503, 25 June 2012
  • Mudlarks by Vickie Donoghue (class of 2009)
    Theatre 503, 29 May - 2 June 2012
  • Across Kenya by Chris Howarth (class of 2007)
    Roxy Bar & Grill, 27 May 2012
  • The Art of Concealment by Giles Cole (class of 2011)
    Riverside Studios, 1 - 20 May 2012
  • Canasta by Nick Myles (class of 2010)
    REDfest at Red Lion Theatre, 17 April - 12 May 2012
  • Our Glass House by Aisha Zia (class of 2010)
    Commonwealth Theatre, 18 - 29 April 2012

Training Course Content

In the first year you acquire a critical understanding of classic and contemporary plays and films from the writer's point of view, and an in-depth practical knowledge of playwriting and screenwriting.There are also specialist sessions on writing for radio and television drama.Modules:
  • Dramatic Writing
  • Writing Workshop
  • Storytelling
  • The Production Business
  • Own Play or Script

Read the full 2014 programme specification.

Teaching is based around a mix of practical workshops, seminars and lectures. All this is supported by one-to-one tutorials and by independent study: notably reading and preparing presentations on set texts and performing set writing exercises. As the course progresses, the emphasis shifts to independent study and is supported by workshops and one-to-one tutorials.


The cost of the programme is:

  • Full-time EU: £5,500*
  • Full-time Non EU: £7,500*


  • Students on this course are eligible to apply for the BAFTA Scholarship Programme. Successful applicants receive £10,000, a BAFTA industry mentor and free access to UK BAFTA events for a year, plus a paid work placement at Warner Bros.
  • Scholarship opportunities will be available for UK/EU and international students looking to study postgraduate courses in the School of Arts & Social Sciences starting in September 2015.
  • Graduate Loyalty Discount: The School of Arts & Social Sciences offer a 10% discount on tuition fees for all City graduates.

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City University London

City University London

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