Screenwriting Minor


Combining theory and practice, the Screenwriting Minor prepares students to develop original stories, scripts, and screenplays for production as works of moving-image art. In keeping with the interdisciplinary spirit of the Film Studies Program, this minor integrates creative practice with critical study. In addition to developing skills for writing for the screen in a variety of forms—fictional narrative film, experimental film, documentary, animation, television, and/or new media—students will garner a foundational understanding of film history and theory and of storytelling conventions across media. Through this in-depth study of the art of screenwriting, students will be able to hone their own distinct voices, gaining crucial professional experience for careers in film and television writing. Administered by the Film Studies Program, the Screenwriting Minor is comprised of its courses and courses from ACCAD, English, Film Studies, and Theatre.

The minor in screenwriting requires the completion of 18 credit hours spread across: 1 introduction to film studies course, 1 introductory course in the history or practice of storytelling, 1 advanced film studies course, 1 course in story development, 1 course introducing students to screenwriting, and 1 course in the business of screenwriting and more advanced techniques. Students interested in the minor should meet with the Film Studies Program Coordinator to map out curricular options. Once the course work has been planned, students may declare the minor in the college/school office. Once the Minor curriculum has been completed students must file a minor form with the Film Studies Program Office. For further information about the screenwriting minor, contact the Film Studies Program,

Introduction to Film Studies 3 CH

Choose 1 course from this area, which explores the critical world of film studies at an introductory level. Courses in the area focus on critical engagement with the cinema, the history of film, and understanding film as a cultural phenomenon.

Introduction to Storytelling 3 CH

Choose 1 course from this area to begin developing skills as a writer. Students should choose a course that will help them explore writing styles that will aid them in the creation of specific types of screenplays. Options include exploring classic writing styles, writing fiction, or pursuing digital media composition.

Advanced Film Studies 3 CH

Choose 1 course from this area to explore a specific type of film at an advanced level. Students should choose a course that will allow them to study a mode of film production, the style of a specific director, or a regional cinema.

Screenwriting Concentration 9 CH

Choose 3 courses from this area, which allows students to gain in-depth experience in the screenwriting process. This section of the minor is meant to let students move through the multiple stages of screenwriting from developing a story, creating a cinematic world, writing a short film script, understanding the business of being a screenwriter and writing a feature length screenplay.

Minor Form

Once the minor program has been completed, students must file a Checklist for Minor [.doc] form with the Film Studies Program office. For further information about the minor program, or if you need a disability accessible format, please email the Film Studies Program or contact the office at 150 Hagerty Hall.

General Information on Minor Programs

  • Minor programs are not required for graduation.
  • A student may not take a major and a minor in the same subject.
  • Courses used on the minor may not be used for the major.
  • Where appropriate, overlap between the GE and a minor is permissible unless specifically disallowed for an individual minor.
  • All minors require a minimum of 12 credit hours; some require more.
  • Transfer credit hours allowed. No more than one half of the credit hours required on the minor.
  • No Film Studies minor course can be repeated without preapproval from the Film Studies Program office.
  • When students complete more than one minor, each minor must contain a minimum of 12 unique hours.
  • No grade below a C- will be permitted in courses comprising the minor; the minimum of 12 unique hours.
  • Courses taken on a Pass/Non-Pass basis may not be applied to the minor.
  • Some minors need individual approval by a faculty member; others do not.
  • Students need not file their minor programs until they file their graduation applications.
  • Once a minor program is on file in the college/school office, any changes must be discussed with the faculty adviser and/or the college/school counselor.

*If you began the minor before autumn 2016, please contact an advisor.

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