Department of Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies

Drama and Theatre Studies

Venetian masks

MA Playwriting

Lakeside Theatre

Lakeside Theatre

Our University's Lakeside Theatre runs an exciting programme of plays, music, comedy and workshops, as well as offering voluntary and paid work experience opportunities to our students.

Our MA Playwriting focuses on key aspects of the playwright’s craft, such as dramatic structure, poetic drama, radio writing, and playwriting in the community, and allows you to develop your unique dramatic voice while creating a varied portfolio of works. All MA courses are available on a full or part-time basis.

Our course combines a series of specialist playwriting modules, which prepare you for undertaking a full-length playwriting project supervised by our experienced tutors. Modules include:

You will be taught by award-winning dramatists, including Elizabeth Kuti, Annecy Lax and Jonathan Lichtenstein, whose plays have been produced in London, Edinburgh and Dublin, as well as for broadcast on BBC Radio 3 and 4.

A variety of scholarships and funding are available for postgraduate study.

Other MA courses to consider

  • MA Creative Writing

    If you're interested in other forms of creative writing, our department’s Centre for Creative Writing offers an MA Creative Writing.

  • MA Avant-Gardes

    The Avant-Garde is an artistic movement that has had an impact across various forms of art such as literature, theatre and film, which pushes the boundaries of creativity and challenges the status quo.

    Our MA Avant-Gardes explores the concept of the Avant-Garde and the influence that it had during the inter-war period, and how it continues to influence creative arts today.

    Read the full description on course finder:


On-campus theatre

Our campus is home to the Lakeside Theatre, which runs a diverse and challenging programme of plays, live art and comedy and has a fully equipped 200-seat auditorium and an experimental studio laboratory.

You can develop your creative practice by becoming involved in the Lakeside Theatre Writers group and our Research Laboratory.

Research seminars and events

Throughout the year you can expand your experience beyond what you study on your course by attending our weekly research seminars and film screenings, as well as writers talks as part of our Writers at Essex series.

We also hold major conferences and symposia, and as a postgraduate student, you have the opportunity to be involved in organising and presenting at our annual MA conference.

Languages for All

Reading texts in their original language can be a real advantage for postgraduate research. Our Languages for All scheme allows you to study a language alongside your course at no extra cost.

Fees and scholarships

Fees and scholarships

Find about our fees and scholarships. If you would like any further information or have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Our academic staff

Our academic staff

Our academic staff are internationally recognised for their expertise across literature, film, creative writing and drama. Find out more by reading their staff profiles.

Research excellence

Research excellence

Three-quarters of our research is rated 'world leading' or 'internationally excellent' (REF 2014). We do both creative and critical work across genres and media forms using a distinctly comparative approach.

AHRC funding

PhD student in library

Apply for a PhD studentship for your doctoral study funded by the Consortium for Humanities and the Arts South-East England (CHASE) and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC).