The New School Continuing Education


The New School awards a certificate in screenwriting for successful completion of a sequence of approved courses. Upon completing the core sequence of screenwriting courses, students have a comprehensive grounding in story, character, theme, action, visuals, and dialogue, as they have been carefully guided through the entire screenplay writing process by our distinguished faculty. The certificate program is open to the committed student with any level of experience.

-Anne Balsamo, Dean, School of Media Studies
-Melissa Friedling, Director of Undergraduate Studies


Certificate in Screenwriting
The Certificate in Screenwriting curriculum consists of six approved courses. Upon completion, participants should have a professional screenplay ready for the marketplace.

Four courses are required and must be taken in the following order:

  • Script Analysis
  • Screenwriting 1: Fundamentals
  • Screenwriting 2: Writing the Screenplay (permission required)
  • Screenwriting 3: Finishing the First Draft (permission required)

Students select two elective courses from the Film Studies curriculum to complete the screenwriting certificate program. The program can be finished in as little as a year, but a longer course of study is acceptable. Certificate approval is based on attendance and participation, comprehension of theories and techniques, and final projects. See a list of recommended elective courses.

Early registration is strongly advised. In order to ensure the quality of each course, enrollment is limited. If a desired course is full, call 212.229.8903 to find out about additional classes that might still be open or to be placed on the waiting list.

Individual Courses
In addition to the certificate study option, all screenwriting courses may be taken individually for undergraduate credit or on a noncredit basis.

Visit the continuing education registration website for a list of current Screenwriting courses.

Studying Online

All four required courses and selected electives are offered online, so that students can now complete the Certificate in Screenwriting entirely online or combine on-campus and online study. Visit the New School Online website for more information about our distance learning environment.


There is no formal admission process for the screenwriting certificate, but students need the written permission of the instructor or the Department of Media Studies and Film to register for Screenwriting 2 and 3. While completing the program, certificate students have access to a number of departmental special events, including guest lectures, special screenings, and optional internships.

For more information and program advising, call 212.229.8903 or email the Screenwriting Certificate Advisor. (International students must call 212.229.5150 or 800.292.3040 for important admission information.)

New School Bachelor's Program students can complete the certificate concurrently with their degree if they complete all the required courses with grades of B or better in order to apply the courses toward the certificate. Bachelor's Program students interested in earning the Certificate in Screenwriting or in taking screenwriting courses as part of their self-designed curriculum of study should visit the Bachelor's Program website for more information.

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