• Introduction to Screenwriting – online course

    Introduction to Screenwriting courses at Film Oxford. Introduction to Screenwriting Online is a ten-week interactive beginners’ course for up to 10 participants
  • Next course

    Starts Tuesday 22nd September 2020 7pm-8pm for 10 weeks - last session 24th November - Places available

    essen/ticketBOOK NOW!

    Return to course listings


    £120, £108 (early booking discount by 8th September); £86 concessions

Introduction to Screenwriting – online course is a ten week interactive beginners’ course for people planning their first screenplay or wanting to improve their screenwriting skills. It will arm you with the concepts and practices you need to be aware of, before diving in. Runs one hour per week over 10 weeks, for a maximum of 10 learners..

This online course focuses on short film, however many of the skills learned are transferable to longer screenplays, and there will be many pointers for those who want to continue their study of feature screenplay writing beyond the scope of this beginners’ course.

This online course will:

  • Develop your understanding of the basics of the craft and art of screenwriting
  • Give you everything you need to start writing your first script
  • Help you to understand “what makes a good script”!
  • Encourage you to develop a critical self-awareness and an enquiring, analytical and creative approach to your work
  • Give you a framework to develop your screenwriting practice

Who is Introduction to Screenwriting – online course aimed at?

This course is aimed at writers who want to learn the art of screenwriting and filmmakers who want to develop their writing skills (or skills for collaborating with writers). If you haven’t done any creative writing whatsoever (whether amateur or professional), or don’t have any filmmaking skills, then you are unlikely to be able fully benefit from this course. (See below for what you can do next).

Your tutor – Michelle Duffy

Michelle Duffy, Screenwriting Tutor - Film Oxford
Introduction to Screenwriting Online is a ten-week interactive beginners’ course for up to 10 participants

Michelle Duffy is a screenwriter, comedy creator, soap storyliner and author. She is currently developing projects with production companies in the UK and Ireland and is a regular storyliner on the Irish soap Fair City.

Introduction to Screenwriting – online course outline:

Week One: Developing Ideas

  • Where do ideas and inspiration come from?
  • Why is it important to keep generating new ideas?
  • How do you decide which idea is a Short Film idea?

Week Two: Theme, Story, Plot & Narrative

  • How to define the Premise of the film (what it’s about) from the Theme (what it’s really about)
  • Cleaving Story, Plot and Narrative apart and examining how they inform choices in a scene
  • Identifying POV, non-linear structure and other narrative devices

Week Three: Genre

  • Writing from and for Genre
  • Audience expectations
  • Short Film Genre

Week Four: Film Story Structures

  • Classical 3-act Structure and other theories
  • Freedom within structure
  • Alternative short film structures

Week Five: Form, Formatting and Software

  • Professional formatting conventions and why they exist
  • Software options (including some free ones)
  • Evolving industry conventions

Week Six: Character & Characterisation

  • Character development
  • The Character Arc – internal and external
  • How do you reveal character in film?

Week Seven: Evocative Style

  • What do you write when you’re not writing dialogue?
  • Developing your own Evocative Style
  • Binning Screenwriting ‘Rules’

Week Eight: Pitching and Feedback

  • How and Why to verbally pitch your screenplay
  • Giving and receiving constructive feedback
  • Developing pitching documents

Week Nine: Dialogue

  • Creating authentic character voice
  • Dialogue dos and don’ts.
  • Subtext in dialogue

Week Ten: Round up and next steps

  • Opportunities, Networking and Next Steps
  • The rest of this session will be planned around the requests and needs of the class

Early booking discount & concessions

Book early to get 10% reduction on the full price course fee. See the date at top right of this page (usually two weeks before the course start date, but may vary).

Students, NHS workers and people on some means-tested benefits are eligible to claim the concessionary rate. Evidence is required, such as student card, NHS staff card or benefit letter.

Means tested benefits: JSA, Income Support; Working Tax Credit (not child tax credit); Council Tax Benefit (not student/single person/reduction due to disability); Housing Benefit; Pension Credit (guarantee); Unwaged Dependent of these benefits & Universal Credit.

All Film Oxford Courses are subsidised by Oxfordshire Adult Learning 

If you like Introduction to Screenwriting – online course you may also like:

Introduction to Documentary Filmmaking – online course

Free Screenwriting software link

  • Contact

    54 Catherine St, Oxford, OX4 3AH
    Tel: 01865 792731 Email: office@filmoxford.org

    Registered Charity Number: 1041014
    Film Oxford is supported by Oxford City Council

    Oxford Film & Video Makers Ltd, trading as Film Oxford, is a company limited by guarantee.
    Registered in England No 02022892

    Privacy policy

    Other Film Oxford websites:

    Shadowlight Artists


  • Supported by

    Oxford City  Council
    BFI Film Academy UK Network
    Arts Council of England