Do you want to push the boundaries of comedy writing to its limits? Are you on a mission to interrogate big ideas like sex, politics, religion and family through comedy? Or do you just want to write a show that’s unashamedly stupid?
Whether your preferred comedy genre is sitcom, comedy drama or sketch shows, the world is in a state right now and we all need a laugh. And crucially, it’s your unique and hilarious interpretation of the world that’s required.
With the dramatic rise in subscription-based video content – think Amazon, Netflix and Apple - alongside a renaissance in audio comedy courtesy of podcasts – broadcast comedy is in huge demand. There are lots of opportunities right now and a great need for new comedy writers.
At Falmouth University, we want to equip new and emergent comedy writers with the skills, tools and industry-focus which will push their projects to the top of the commissioning editor's pile and see their scripts green-lit. This online MA has been developed by award-winning comedy producer and executive producer Simon Nicholls. Simon has 20 years' comedy industry experience, developing and selling comedies in the UK and US.
On this MA, you’ll study the work of renowned writers and directors, reflect on professional trends and learn how to seize market opportunities. You’ll develop a comedy scriptwriting portfolio which will act as a calling card with which to approach comedy producers, comedy commissioners and get agent representation. Who knows, you could see yourself on the way to the BAFTAs, Oscars or Golden Globes with the next Fleabag, VEEP, Modern Family or Father Ted.
This MA is designed to help students find success as professional comedy writers, no matter where they stand in their current career path.
You may be a recent graduate looking to gain specialist skills, or a writer hoping to learn how to adapt existing work for screen. You might be a comedy practitioner with experience elsewhere in the industry who’s keen to develop a career in comedy writing. Regardless, this course can help you realise your ambitions.
Our modules are created to equip you with the real-world capabilities needed to not only write and collaborate on comedy projects – but also to gain agency representation, secure commissions, and find employment.
Graduates of the MA will be well-positioned to work professionally as comedy writers across a range of different arenas – including radio, television, online platforms, and video games.
Careers and employability service
With Falmouth Flexible, you access your course content, interactions with other students and tutors, and learning resources, through Canvas, an easy-to-use online platform. You can access the course wherever you are in the world, and you can stop, pause and rewind lectures whenever you want.
Engaging learning activities will help you apply theory to practice. They could include:
All assessments are taken and submitted online.
Assessment methods for the MA Comedy Writing can typically include:
• Written assignments (no examinations)
• Combination of visual, verbal and written works, tailored specifically to each module.
An honours degree or Level 6 equivalent qualification.
To submit up to five pages of a script for either radio, TV or film. It's your choice, but it must be a comedy script, not any other genre, that best shows off your comedy writing. Please also submit a 300-word piece of writing considering an old sitcom, which is no longer running. The piece of writing should clearly tell us why you've picked this show for reinvention now. Please describe how you'll modernise and reinvent the show to be a relevant must-watch for today's audience. You should give consideration as to who will star in this production, and your vision for the show.
If your first language is not English, you'll need to take one of the following tests to verify your proficiency:
We also accept a range of equivalent recognised English language qualifications. Candidates without a degree or formal qualification are still encouraged to apply
You will need to complete four 30-credit modules and one 60-credit project (180 credits in total). All modules on the course are compulsory and must be passed in order to complete the award.
Module one Comic Storytelling for Screen and Audio (30 credits)
Module two Screen Industries: Professional Development in Comedy (30 credits)
Module three Individual Comedy Script Development (30 credits)
Module four Comedy Writers' Room: Collaborative Script Development (30 credits)
Final Major Project (60 credits)
£11,795 total fee (incl. acceptance fee) - 2 years part time - MA/MSc course