Core Module Information
Module title: Writing and Screen Project Development

SCQF level: 11:
SCQF credit value: 20.00
ECTS credit value: 10

Module code: SCA11100
Module leader: Nigel Smith
School School of Arts and Creative Industries
Subject area group: Screen and Performace
Prerequisites

no

Description of module content:

A series of lectures and seminars introduce students to the language, concepts and skills commonly used in the development of projects for the screen whether in film or television, drama or documentary, or any of the various new media and interactive forms.

You will examine the key elements, skills and terminology of dramatic screenwriting (premise, pitch, character, structure, theme, visual style, genre, dialogue, etc) and review the key documents generated in the development and commissioning process (idea, concept, premise, outline, proposal, detailed proposal, treatment, first draft, revised draft, etc.).

There is a critical exploration of the role and importance of research in screen project development – research as it relates to the project content of the project (e.g documentary, adaptation, historical drama) but also research relating to the market potential of the project itself.

The module aims to develop the critical and practical abilities needed in screen project development: an understanding of the language and terminology; personal and interpersonal skills; a critical understanding of the various roles in the creative and industrial process; a sense of the market place across the various forms and formats.

Crucially, the critical, analytical and inter-personal skills required key personnel in the development process (writers, producers, script-editors, developers, and financiers) are examined and then developed and tested in a series of exercises, including the module’s major pieces of assessment – the Story Report and Script Report.

Students also develop an understanding of the various jobs, roles and career opportunities across the film, television and interactive/new media industries. Subject to available resources, students across the Screen Academy programmes may attend a series of talks and seminars given by visiting speakers as part of the Professional Practice programme, e.g. composers, editors, writers, producers, distributors, games developers, literary and casting agents, etc.

Lecture content is interwoven with seminars, workshops, screenings and exercises which encourage students to reflect on how they might practice and apply these tools, concepts and skills to their own work and live projects: this work is carried across into the more practical Script Workshop and Project Workshop modules.

This module is a core element of the MA Screenwriting programme and is offered as an option to MA Film students, encouraging the development of collaborative skills across the creative disciplines and providing an opportunity to form creative teams.

Learning Outcomes for module:

Upon completion of this module you will be able to:
LO1: Critically explore the core concepts, language, documents and terminology used in screenwriting and screen project development
LO2: Demonstrate a systematic understanding of the creative, organisational and institutional processes involved in screenwriting and screen project development
LO3: Demonstrate a critical understanding of the nature of screenwriting and the process of collaboration within project teams and between project teams and external collaborators.
LO4: Critically appraise and test projects in terms of their creative and commercial potential across various forms, formats and markets
LO5: Develop the personal, inter-personal and professional skills required for script-editing and project development
LO6: Create written story and script reports to a professional standard.

Full Details of Teaching and Assessment
2021/2, Trimester 1, Face-to-Face, Edinburgh Napier University
VIEW FULL DETAILS
Occurrence: 001
Primary mode of delivery: Face-to-Face
Location of delivery: MERCHISTON
Partner: Edinburgh Napier University
Member of staff responsible for delivering module: Nigel Smith
Module Organiser:


Learning, Teaching and Assessment (LTA) Approach:
This module uses lectures, seminars, screenings, independent study and two written assessments to provide a variety of learning opportunities for individuals and small groups. The module is supported by WebCT with further lecture content, resources, exercises and materials available to students beyond the weekly face-to-face lectures. Discussion, debate and collaboration are encouraged via the online Discussion Boards.

The two assessments (Story report and Script report) serve both a formative and summative function - as well as embedding some future employability skills as these assessments (and the documents generated) are, in effect, basic elements of industrial practice for script readers and editors in the film and television industries.

Core professional skills developed in this module include: a critical awareness of the language, terminology and practice of screenwriting; pitching/presentation skills; an awareness of the development process across a range of forms and formats; development of the critical, analytical, personal and inter-personal skills required among the various personnel involved in the development of creative and commercial screen projects. Employability skills developed include interpersonal skills, self-direction, team work and communication skills.

Research/teaching linkages are achieved through a variety of staffing, guest lectures and the use of current teaching materials and examples drawn from the internet and contemporary film/TV/interactive industries. The module is supported by VLE (Moodle) where lecture content is backed up and enhanced with links to further content and resources. Discussion and debate is encouraged in class and on the Screen Academy Facebook group.

The module is internationalised at the content level - screenings, examples and discussion topics are drawn from international cinema. Core aspects of narrative and story-telling are examined in British, European and International contexts.

Formative Assessment:
The University is currently undertaking work to improve the quality of information provided on methods of assessment and feedback. Please refer to the section on Learning and Teaching Approaches above for further information about this module’s learning, teaching and assessment practices, including formative and summative approaches.

Summative Assessment:
The University is currently undertaking work to improve the quality of information provided on methods of assessment and feedback. Please refer to the section on Learning and Teaching Approaches above for further information about this module’s learning, teaching and assessment practices, including formative and summative approaches.

Student Activity (Notional Equivalent Study Hours (NESH))
Mode of activityLearning & Teaching ActivityNESH (Study Hours)
Face To Face Lecture 24
Independent Learning Guided independent study 164
Face To Face Seminar 12
Total Study Hours200
Expected Total Study Hours for Module200


Assessment
Type of Assessment Weighting % LOs covered Week due Length in Hours/Words
Report 50 1-3 5 HOURS= 0, WORDS= 2000
Report 50 4,5,6 10 HOURS= 0, WORDS= 2000
Component 1 subtotal: 50
Component 2 subtotal: 50
Module subtotal: 100
2021/2, Trimester 2, Face-to-Face, Edinburgh Napier University
VIEW FULL DETAILS
Occurrence: 002
Primary mode of delivery: Face-to-Face
Location of delivery: MERCHISTON
Partner: Edinburgh Napier University
Member of staff responsible for delivering module: Nigel Smith
Module Organiser:


Learning, Teaching and Assessment (LTA) Approach:
Learning and Teaching Methods including alignment to LOs

The module is delivered as a series of three-hour weekly sessions combining lectures, seminars and group work. Lectures introduce the theoretical material and develop key ideas, terminology and concepts. Seminar activity encourages students to assess and evaluate the material in terms of their own experience , critical and creative practice. Tutor-led group work helps develop the learning and encourages student learning, discussion and peer review. The module is supported by webCT where lecture content is backed up and enhanced with links to further content and resources. Discussion and debate is encouraged in class and on webCT and the Screen Academy facebook group. Individual learning activities include reading and research into the theory and practices of script development across a variety of industrial practice. This learning is then carried across into the more practice-based project-led workshop modules.


Embedding of employability/PDP/scholarship skills

The module promotes written skills (story and script reports), together with creative and critical thinking, oral communication skills, team work and problem based learning. The two assessments are 'real-world' assignments giving students direct experience of the kind of written reports generated in script development practice.

Assessment (formative and summative)

There are two assessments. The script report develops critical and analytical skills in the preparation and presentation of a written report on a feature film screenplay. Students use the template used by Scottish Screen's professional script readers. The assessment brief and criteria are discussed in class. Formative feedback is given in class with the chance for peer review. Feedback sheets give written individual feedback and a summative grade.

Research/Teaching linkages

Team members are active creative practitioners which ensures that content is relevant and curre

Formative Assessment:
The University is currently undertaking work to improve the quality of information provided on methods of assessment and feedback. Please refer to the section on Learning and Teaching Approaches above for further information about this module’s learning, teaching and assessment practices, including formative and summative approaches.

Summative Assessment:
The University is currently undertaking work to improve the quality of information provided on methods of assessment and feedback. Please refer to the section on Learning and Teaching Approaches above for further information about this module’s learning, teaching and assessment practices, including formative and summative approaches.

Student Activity (Notional Equivalent Study Hours (NESH))
Mode of activityLearning & Teaching ActivityNESH (Study Hours)
Face To Face Lecture 24
Independent Learning Guided independent study 164
Face To Face Seminar 12
Total Study Hours200
Expected Total Study Hours for Module200


Assessment
Type of Assessment Weighting % LOs covered Week due Length in Hours/Words
Report 50 1-3 5 HOURS= 0, WORDS= 2000
Report 50 4-6 10 HOURS= 0, WORDS= 2000
Component 1 subtotal: 50
Component 2 subtotal: 50
Module subtotal: 100

Indicative References and Reading List - URL:
Contact your module leader