PgCert Screenwriting

Postgraduate, Distance Learning

Work at your own pace to develop a portfolio of short scripts, craft skills in screenwriting and knowledge of the current film and television industries.

  • Napier code:


  • Course type:

    Distance Learning

  • Duration:

    2 trimesters

  • Award:


  • Location:

    Distance learning

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Course introduction

The Postgraduate Certificate in Screenwriting is a seven-month course which combines online learning, guided script development and two live group workshops in Edinburgh.

One of these takes place in mid-June and you'll be given a free student pass to the Edinburgh International Film Festival where you can attend ten days’ worth of screenings, master-classes, workshops and industry events.

Further details of course content and past students can be found on Screen Academy Scotland’s website.

screen writing

The online element of the course combines video lectures, tutorials and writing exercises and, over two trimesters, you'll develop a substantial portfolio of projects - scripts, outlines, treatments and industry documents such as script reports.

The first workshop takes place in February and introduces you to your tutors, classmates and guides you through the online materials. The second workshop takes place in June. Here you'll get personal feedback on your work from your tutors.

Teaching staff are working screenwriters and producers and you have the chance to meet industry professionals at the live workshop in June and Edinburgh International Film Festival.

Subjects include

  • Writing and screen project development (craft skills and industry context)
  • Script workshop 1 and 2 (portfolio of short scripts and 30' fiction script)

Study modules mentioned above are indicative only. Some changes may occur between now and the time that you study.

Full information on this is available in our disclaimer.

Our students have gone on to success in various competitions, winning the PAGE International Screenwriting Award for five years. Former graduates work as self-employed wrtiers or have gone on to further study at MA level and beyond. Others are working professionally in script development and production.

The entry requirement for this course is a UK Honours degree at 2:2 or above.  We look for applicants to have a background in creative writing, journalism, filmmaking or drama in order to be eligible for the programme, however all backgrounds will be considered.

We may also consider lesser qualifications if you have sufficient relevant work experience within the industry. 

You will also be required to attend an interview, and/or be asked to show evidence of an aptitude for the course, appropriate experience, and an indication of how you might benefit from the course.

As part of the application process you will need to submit the following with your application:

  • A personal statement outlining why you want to write for the screen (maximum 300 words)
  • An outline for a feature film or single television drama (maximum one page)
  • A writing sample - this may be a short film script or an excerpt from a feature film script or television drama (maximum 10 pages)

English language requirements

If your first language isn't English, you'll normally need to undertake an approved English language test.  The English Language requirements for this programme are IELTS (Academic) with an overall score of 7.0 with no individual component score of less than 6.5.  For guidance on the acceptability of other English Language tests please contact

This may not apply if you have completed all your school qualifications in English, or your undergraduate degree was taught and examined in English (within two years of starting your postgraduate course). Check our country pages to find out if this applies to you.

Our entry requirements indicate the minimum qualifications with which we normally accept students. Competition for places varies from year to year and you aren't guaranteed a place if you meet the minimum qualifications.

International students

If your qualifications aren't listed above, visit our country pages to get entry requirements for your country.

Please note that non-EU international students are unable to enrol onto the following courses:

BN Nursing/MN Nursing (Adult, Child, Mental Health or Learning Disability)

BM Midwifery/MM Midwifery

Admissions policies

We are committed to being as accessible as possible to anyone who wants to achieve higher education.

Our admissions policies will help you understand our admissions procedures and how decisions are made.

Tuition fees
Students from 2017/18 2018/19
Home/EU £1,700 £2,660
Overseas £5,679 £5,850

Frequently Asked Questions about Fees
Information of Bursaries and Scholarships