Playwriting I: For Beginners - DRAM6190

Looking for a different module?

Module delivery information

This module is not currently running in 2022 to 2023.


Through weekly lectures, seminars and practical workshop sessions, the course will allow students to write scenes and experience the results and effects of their playwriting as performed by others. In the context of on-going discussions about the practice and characteristics of playwriting students will develop an understanding of the importance of revision and development of evolving work as mediated by the constructive criticism of group and convenor response.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 60
Private study hours: 240
Total study hours: 300

Method of assessment

Presentation: Rehearsed reading of a short play or scene (15-20mins) (50%)
Reflective essay (3,000 words) (30%)
Workshop participation (20%)

Indicative reading

Grieg, Noël: Playwriting: A Practical Guide. London and New York: Routledge, 2005.
Edgar, David: How Plays Work. London: Nick Hern, 2009.
Spencer, Stuart, The playwright's guidebook, London and New York: Faber 2002.
Vogler, Christopher: The Writer's Journey: Mythic Structure for Writers. Michael Wiese Productions, Los Angeles, 2007.
Wandor, Michelene, The art of writing drama, London: Methuen 2008
Waters, Steve: The Secret Life of Plays, Nick Hern Books, London 2010.

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

- comprehend practical skills for writing for the stage by means of serial playwriting exercises which are performed and critiqued in workshops so as to give an understanding of the written word as enacted in performance and of the importance of constructive criticism;
- understand and use dramaturgical structures in the completion, editing and revision of exercises in playwriting;
- demonstrate a working familiarity with and understanding of the language and practices of writing for performance;
- develop an ability to analyse and critique the practice of playwriting as evident in the work of the student, their peers and published playwrights.


  1. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  2. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
Back to top

University of Kent makes every effort to ensure that module information is accurate for the relevant academic session and to provide educational services as described. However, courses, services and other matters may be subject to change. Please read our full disclaimer.