MA/Postgraduate (Screenwriting)

College of Arts, Social Sciences, & Celtic Studies

Course overview

This programme offers training in screenplay writing, integrated with courses in film theory and analysis, supported by regular film screenings and workshops. The ethos of the programme is ‘reflective practice’— that is, understanding screenwriting as a process informed by narrative analysis, cinematic traditions and creative discussion. The programme offers thorough discussion of narrative theory and structure. There will also be the opportunity to review draft scripts with individual students.

Students on the MA in Screenwriting course have participated in Imaginative Storm—a highly popular, residential creative workshop conducted annually in the autumn by US writers Allegra Huston and James Nave. Other successful industry-led workshops have included TV Drama, Writing for Soaps, Short Filmmaking, Writing Animation and Script Editing.


Huston School of Film and Digital Media

The Huston School of Film and Digital Media was established in 2003 under the active patronage of the (John) Huston family. The School offers a dynamic approach to film and digital media training, with a strong emphasis on critical studies. As well as offering postgraduate programmes, the Huston School also hosts a range of guest seminars during the year with academics and practitioners of film. Visitors have included Gabriel Byrne, Seamus McGarvey, Lenny Abrahamson, Mark O’Halloran, James Cromwell, John Boorman, Roddy Doyle, Colin MacCabe, Laura Mulvey and Mike Figgis.


Key facts

Entry requirements

NQAI Level 8 degree or equivalent H2.2. GPA 3.0 or international qualification. IELTS score of 6.5 or equivalent if applicable. Students who do not meet the honours degree requirement but have a level 7 (Merit 2) degree may be admitted to the PDip course, with the possibility of progressing to the MA if they receive a minimum of 60% in their coursework during the year.

Duration: 1 year, full-time

Next start date: September 2015

ECTS weighting: MA—90, PG Dip—60

Average intake: 15

Closing date: You are advised to apply early, which may result in an early offer; see the offer round dates

Mode of study: Taught

Course outline

The year is divided into two teaching semesters. During the first semester, you will develop your story idea to treatment stage. During this time, you will also study American film history. These classes involve regular screenings, discussion and analysis.

The second semester focuses on the writing of your first draft and a choice of optional film theory related modules including Film History since 1945, Screening Irish America, Gender Sexuality and Cinema, and Imagined Irelands. The summer period is given over to writing the final draft of your feature length screenplay.

The course is a full-time programme taken over a twelve-month period (September to August). The year is divided into two teaching semesters (September to December and January to April). The summer period will be used to complete a final script.

Applications and selections

Applications are made online via The Postgraduate Applications Centre (PAC). Relevant PAC application code(s) above.

Who teaches this course?

  • Dr. Seán Crosson, M.Phil, PhD
  • Dr. Niamh Doheny, M.A., PhD
  • Dr. Mary Watson Seoighe, PhD
  • Jenny Roche, MA
  • Tony Tracy, MA

Requirements and assessment

Students will be assessed on the various modules by essay and exam. Students will also be required to complete a feature length script as their final assessment, to be submitted in early August.

Find out more

Jenny Roche | Dee Quinn
T: 353 91 494 182 | +353 91 495 076
E: |

PAC code


Fees for this course

EU (Total): €6,015 p.a. 2015/16
 - Tuition: €5,791 p.a. 2015/16
 - Student levy: €224 p.a. 2015/16
Non-EU (Total): €13,250 p.a. 2015/16

M.A. EU Full time programme:  €6,015; P.Dip. EU Full time programme:  €5,965.

Postgraduate students in receipt of a SUSI grant – please note an F4 grant is where SUSI will pay €2,000 towards your tuition.  You will be liable for the remainder of the total fee.  An F5 grant is where SUSI will pay TUITION up to a maximum of €6,270.  SUSI will not cover the student levy of €224.

Postgraduate fee breakdown = tuition (EU or NON EU) + student levy as outlined above.


Graduate profile

Tom Conway

Tom Conway (2011) 

“What I found to be most helpful and rewarding, is continuous, constructive feedback of your work from talented and experienced people who have worked in the industry…The intimate and friendly settings of the Huston School made it a very comfortable, pleasurable and constructive year.”


Past students

William Collins

William Collins graduated from the Huston School of Film & Digital Media with an MA. in Screenwriting in 2006. In 2007 he won the Stella Artois Pitching Award at the Galway Film Fleadh for his feature film script  'My Brothers' , currently in post-production; directed by Paul Fraser (A Room for Romeo Brass, Heartlands, Somerstown) and produced by Treasure Entertainment (I Went Down, The Eclipse). William is also currently working on 'Song of the Sea' an animated feature film for Cartoon Saloon (The Secret of Kells) and various other projects.

"For me, the Huston is a place where passion for the medium of film and storytelling is nurtured and encouraged in a warm intimate environment.  Without it, I know I would not be working as a screenwriter today.  There, I was handed to tools which help create a screenplay and my cinematic horizon was broadened. It also serves a more important role, it creates a community of like-minded people. They are the people sitting next to you who share your love and encourage you long after the term has ended.  The Huston School is a wonderful place to study".