Short course

Overview

Some lucky people seem to have endless ideas for programmes. The rest of us usually struggle, believing that we’re not an ‘ideas person’. But the ability to find documentary stories isn’t a gift you’re born with - it’s a muscle that gets stronger with exercise.

This one-day course explains where ideas really come from and how you can learn to have more of them. You’ll learn some basic techniques about how to dig out interesting real world stories that have the potential to become documentaries. And you’ll learn how to develop and refine them.

By the end of the day we hope you’ll have the beginnings of your own ‘slate’.

This intensive, practical course covers:

• understanding what a documentary idea is
• how to practice having ideas
• how to settle on the ‘right’ idea
• how to develop and refine your ideas

This course is led by Peter Dale, who produced and directed documentaries for the BBC for 18 years before going to Channel 4 as Head of Documentaries. In 2005 he conceived and launched More4, Channel 4’s third digital channel.

His own independent production company Rare Day produces quality documentary and drama for broadcasters and other distributors. He’s now the Head of Documentary at the NFTS, as well as Executive Producer on a number of high-profile documentaries.

The course is aimed at producers at all levels including Development Producers, Edit Producers, Series Producers, Producer Directors, Assistant Producers, and anyone who wants to know more about developing ideas for documentaries.

What you will study

Please apply by completing the application form and sending a copy of your CV to scotland@nfts.co.uk.

Fees and funding options

Fees for this course are as follows:

Freelance Rate: £230
Corporate Rate: £375

Bursaries, supported by the Scottish Government, are also available for those who are eligible.

BURSARY INFORMATION

If you wish to apply for a bursary to contribute to the costs of your course, please read the bursary guidelines below carefully to confirm your eligibility. Please do not apply to a course unless you are sure you meet the bursary eligibility criteria or are able to pay for the course. 

Once you have submitted your course application, your bursary application should be submitted to scotland@nfts.co.uk

NFTS Scotland Bursary Guidelines

NFTS Scotland Bursary Application Form

If you are not eligible for an NFTS Scotland bursary, please also read our Alternative Funding Avenues document which points you in the direction of a few other places which may be able to help.

How to apply

Application deadline:

This course is not currently open for applications. Please register your interest to be advised of future dates once they are available.