CLOSED GOT A QUESTION
- New South Wales
- Graduate Certificate in Screenwriting Fundamentals
- Postgraduate (AQF Level 8)
- Part Time
- Orientation will take place in the week prior to course commencement.
- 32 Weeks/2 semesters,Start Date:Feb 25 2013
- Nov 5 2012
ATTENDANCE PATTERN: SYDNEY // SEMESTER 1 & 2,
[OFFERED NIGHTS & WEEKENDS]
Learn to write and develop emotionally engaging film and TV stories.
You will investigate storytelling principles, dramatic scene writing, long form structures, script analysis and genre conventions through rigorous practical workshops. You will also learn the specific demands and opportunities of writing for the Australian screen. You will have developed a story for a long form film or TV project by completion of the course.
Offered part-time over a full academic year, the course comprises both theoretical and practical elements, developing both the creative talents and analytical skills required by a professional writer to compose long-form narratives for the screen.
In Understanding Story, students examine why we tell stories, discuss what audiences are seeking, and identify the ways in which dramatic storytellers engage us, including concept, character, premise and structure.
By analysing films and produced screenplays, students will learn to identify and articulate a story’s strengths and weaknesses, and demonstrate their theoretical understanding by writing an industry-standard critical appraisal of an unproduced screenplay, a report known in the business as “coverage”.
Students will be introduced to - and required to illustrate their understanding of, the conventions of some of the more popular film genres, and examine the differences (and similarities) between writing for film and writing for television.
In Scene Writing Fundamentals, students will get the opportunity to apply these storytelling techniques, developing their capacity to engage an audience, escalate conflict and resolve dramatic tension. Through hearing their scenes read out in class and respectfully engaging in critical discussions, students will also develop their ability to receive feedback and to provide constructive criticism to their peers.
In Creating Characters, students more deeply examine what makes for great screen characters, and through a range of imaginative exercises get the chance to conceive protagonists or antagonists that could form the basis of a long form screen narrative.
In the Ideas Incubator subject, students synthesise the threads of their theoretical understanding and take the next step in the development of their professional craft by creating a story for a feature film or TV Series.
Each week, students will be set a specific exercise to help develop their project, and receive feedback from their tutor and their peers in a weekly Writers’ Table setting where they will further develop their critical faculties and problem-solving abilities.
By the end of the Graduate Certificate in Screenwriting Fundamentals, students will have had the opportunity to develop an outline that could form the basis for film or TV screenplay, and in a position to apply for more advanced courses like the Graduate Diploma of Screenwriting.
In line with AFTRS policy, students maintain copyright of all their written work, and may choose to further develop their project after graduation.
1. Demonstrate their understanding of dramatic storytelling principles through their ability to analyse a screenplay and write industry-standard coverage that summarises the script’s story, identifies its strengths and weaknesses, and critically appraises its ability to engage an audience.
2. Display their understanding of dramatic storytelling principles and other screenwriting concepts – including reversals and subtext – through their ability to write emotionally engaging scenes to specific briefs.
3. Through reflection, observation and research, compose three-dimensional, engaging protagonists and antagonists for long-form narrative and / or TV screenplay.
4. Present their film or TV series projects in the manner expected of a professional, industry-aware screenwriter.
5. Illustrate their familiarity with screen industry standards through the use of short-form documents (e.g. loglines, outlines, beatsheets) in the development of their long form narratives, through the professional formatting of their scenes, and through their ability to give and receive critical feedback in Writers’ Table environments.
1. Understanding Story
- This subject explores the theory of dramatic storytelling and the short documents (loglines, outlines, beat sheets) used by industry to distil and develop stories for the screen. Working with existing material (finished films and existing screenplays), students will analyse the four main elements of dramatic storytelling - concept, character, premise and structure - and how they work in conjunction to create emotionally engaging stories for film and TV.
2. Scene Writing Fundamentals
- A practical workshop that examines how the dramatic storytelling elements - character, goal, conflict and stakes - can be used to engage the audience by getting the students to write a series of scenes.
3. Creating Characters
- This subject introduces students to a more sophisticated understanding of character, providing them with the theoretical understanding necessary to create complex, three-dimensional, protagonists and antagonists. It also provides them with a series of practical exercises and workshops to allow them to create engaging characters that could form the basis of their long form narrative project in the later Ideas Incubator subject.
4. Ideas Incubator
- An intensive, practical workshop in which students synthesise all they have learned in the preceding subjects to develop a long form story for film or TV. Through exercises and weekly Writers' Table feedback sessions, students will generate a concept, write a logline, develop character breakdowns, articulate a premise, craft an Act 1 beat sheet and write a story outline. As part of the development process, they will also write a key scene and workshop it with a Graduate Certificate of Directing student and professional actors.
+ Students will be able to demonstrate skills, knowledge and understandings deemed to equate to AQF Level 7.
1. Curriculum Vitae
Supply a full CV, attaching 300 words on the strengths and weaknesses of your creative process and how that is reflected in your work.
2. Referee Questionnaire
The referee questionnaire form is to be completed by someone who can attest to your creative processes and history. The referee must not be a relative or family friend.
Your creative portfolio should demonstrate your talent and potential and illustrate your interest in this course. Be selective; we just want your best work. Submit at least one writing sample that shows the development of an idea into a story. Clearly outline your role on the work submitted in your portfolio.
If submitting DVDs please ensure that: (i) the DVD is separated into chapters that relate to specific projects (ii) in total there is no more than 30 minutes of material (iii) the DVD includes only complete sequences of your work, not cut montages, (iv) it is not region specific, (v) the format is playable from both a laptop and DVD player. If you have questions please contact Student Services for further clarification.
4. Creative task
Please submit a single 2-3 page 'two-hander' scene: two strangers meet, and at least one of them undergoes a substantial emotional or psychological change.
5. Proof of Residency
Submit a certified copy of your birth certificate or passport as detailed on the How to Apply page on the AFTRS website.
+ Evidence of ability to complete complex tasks.
+ Evidence of original creative thinking.