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Filmmaking BA(Hons)

Attendance UCAS code Year of entry
3 years full time WP63 2014 and 2015

See the Unistats data for this course


Why choose this course?

This course will enable you to explore the medium of film, developing your own filmmaking practice while acquiring the skills required to work professionally in the sector. It will help you to engage with innovative, ambitious ideas and develop these into successful films, while exploring and critiquing all aspects of filmmaking production.

What will you study?

Filmmaking is a project-based course, responding to a rapidly expanding moving-image sector where there is a need for freelance professionals, independent productions and artist filmmakers. The course is a challenging series of diverse and outward-facing projects, demanding awareness, creativity and versatility, and will prepare you for a range of career options.

In Years 1 and 2, conceptual approaches are encouraged and technical skills are taught intensively in an integrated manner, focusing on all aspects of film. These include directing actors, research enquiry, methods and questions around genre, studio work, running a set, interview technique, location shooting, lighting and cinematography, sound recording and design, film as experimentation, super 8 film (shooting, processing and editing), script and text. While primarily a 'making' course, these practical components are explored and refined alongside a contextual studies element, all taught by practising filmmaking staff in a dynamic working environment. The emphasis throughout is on creative thinking and developing innovative solutions to the imperatives of cinema and moving-image practice. Group work and role-assigned projects are combined with the development of a more individual or specialised practice.

In Year 3, you will be involved in self-directed study supported by tutorial contact and production meetings, negotiating your roles and involvement in a number of film productions that demonstrate your advanced progression into research-informed filmmaking practice. (This does not preclude you working individually on projects as artist filmmakers.) The course culminates in The Degree Show Film – your 'capstone' project – where you will demonstrate your progress and success in gaining an understanding of the medium. Your final film will be presented at the degree show, screening in a dedicated cinema space, both on campus and at an external venue/cinema.

Throughout the course, work placement experience and external-facing opportunities are matched with your needs and interests, ensuring professional development is embedded in your studies. This nourishes creativity, develops employability and ensures that you build a genuine understanding of the breadth of industry practices and film grammar alike. As the course is mainly taught through practical projects focused on individual development and group resourcefulness, you are able to practise working as a production unit, developing dynamic interaction and good studentship, and encouraging individual growth, development and risk-taking.

You will have access to our moving image resources and specialised filmmaking equipment, augmented by excellent technical and academic support. To complete a specific project brief, other materials will also be provided, enabling you to meet the learning outcomes of the course and/or project. However, if you choose to develop your own film options requiring additional resources, then you will have to meet any further costs associated with that. View a full list of our current moving image resources.

Undergraduate open day: Faculty of Art, Design & Architecture

Undergraduate open day: Faculty of Art, Design & Architecture
Wednesday 3 December 2014
Attend an undergraduate open day for 2015 entry for courses in the Faculty of Art, Design & Architecture. This is an excellent opportunity to meet staff and students, and see the Faculty's facilities.

Module listing

Please note that this is an indicative list of modules and is not intended as a definitive list. Those listed here may also be a mixture of core and optional modules.

Year 1

  • The emphasis in this module is on developing a number of short film works in both production units and individually as an integral part of an introduction to the programme and its expectations. You are introduced to a range of approaches to filmmaking, supported by inductions to the key areas of film resources. The module also provides support for the development of research enquiry.

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  • This module will provide you with an intensive technically driven introduction period. It will cover various techniques, film grammar and good working practice, involving a series of filmmaking tasks assessed in terms of your successful technical resolution and enhanced understand of production skills and methods. Inductions and tuition in studio production, working as a film unit and in post-production, are integrated into the module. The emphasis is subsequently towards the development and realisation of original short films, through which you learn about filmmaking practices. There is an integrated approach where skills are primarily taught as part of project work. The aim is to undertake and produce a short film.

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  • The emphasis is towards the development and realisation of original short films involving performers/actors/live presence, through which you learn about directing actors, scripting, running a set and organising larger scale productions. There is an integrated approach where skills are primarily taught as part of project work. The aim is to undertake and produce a number of short films across the year group; with an opportunity for collaboration on more ambitious projects.

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  • This module introduces the various contexts in which the contemporary practices of art, photography and independent filmmaking are defined, debated and displayed. Designed to support your first steps as practitioners within the wider field of the visual arts in the 21st century, through lectures, discussions, screenings and exhibition visits, you will be introduced to the historical framework of modernity and post-modernity in order to understand the development and contemporary situation of their own discipline.

    The module is organised as discrete but related teaching blocks that progress from broader questions of cultural practice to the more specific debates that have framed the historical development of the related practices of fine art, independent film and photography. In the first block, emphasis is placed on the notion of practice in the visual arts by addressing the historical, theoretical, social and political factors that have affected our understanding of its function. In the second block, you will pursue programme-specific strands that focus on the key debates, theoretical questions and changing contexts of each discipline. Throughout there is an emphasis on the introduction of key analytical, critical and research skills, and through close engagement with visual sources, historical texts and contemporary critical writing you will begin to develop the tools necessary to discuss, conceptualise and reflect on your own emerging practice.

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Year 2

  • The emphasis here is on thinking of the studio as a tool with which to create challenging, experimental content. However content is not restricted to studio-based production, but encompasses substantial work on location as well. You will be encouraged to experiment with styles and techniques, and to embrace both location and studio production as part of the creative toolkit available to you as innovative filmmakers and designers of the future.

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  • This module will provide you with an enhanced understanding of documentary filmmaking practices, together with introducing a thorough grounding in related research and development methods and production skills. You will initiate and produce a documentary film work, working in small production units to achieve this.

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  • This module offers you specialised practical development along with supporting professional development studies. You will work on short films involving performers, scripts and dialogue.

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  • Building on the thematic and historical context introduced at Level 4 (Year 1), this module enables you to create a theoretical framework within which to investigate and understand some of the critical issues affecting the practice and interpretation of contemporary filmmaking. With a close focus on analysis of key case studies, a series of lectures, seminars, workshops, tutorials, and group and individual screenings inform and support your own emerging research interests and the development of independent visual and academic research skills common to both the historical and theoretical study of film and practice of filmmaking. With reference to important concepts and primary texts that have informed the development of film theory, you will acquire the knowledge and analytical skills to build a framework within which to engage with the critical contexts in which filmmaking operates today. You will also develop research methods appropriate to the study and practice of your discipline, propose an area of research for development at Level 6 (Year 3), and begin to contextualise and make sense of the concerns emerging in your own practice.

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Year 3

  • This module is informed by the Advanced Research and Development module and involves the realisation of independent films. The module enables you to develop films either individually or as production units. It encourages the development of films that are both ambitious and build on the learning, successes and strengths gained during your Level 5 (Year 2) work.

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  • Informing the work produced on the Independent Film and Degree Show Film modules respectively, this advanced research module considers your progress in approaching research methods, development and understanding of a film's constituents.

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  • This module is informed by the Advanced Research and Development module and involves the realisation of the your final degree show film(s) and degree show, known as the 'capstone' project. A capstone project is designed to be a culminating educational experience for undergraduates. It aims to summarise and synthesise all or part of a your academic career at university. Capstone projects help you to reflect on the knowledge and skills that you have acquired during your degree and learn how to present them to a wider audience including future employers.

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  • Building on the links between research and practice embedded at Level 5, this module focuses on in-depth research, critical enquiry and reflection on questions and critical issues emerging in your own practice, and pertinent to the practice of your own discipline.

    During the module, you will initiate and develop an individual research topic; identify and evaluate appropriate archives, bodies of critical literature, visual/material sources and research methods; manage their study time; engage with and respond to tutorial dialogue and peer feedback, and apply critical and analytical skills to produce a 6,000-word written dissertation, supported by a series of lectures, seminars and tutorials.

    Following the submission of the dissertation, and to support the realisation of studio capstone projects, you will be assisted with the conception and development of an individual statement that enables self-reflection and locates students within the contemporary contexts of their discipline. Consolidating the research, reflexive and critical skills acquired throughout students' programme of study, the statement engages and applies learning undertaken within previous modules to studio practice, supporting your self-presentation at Degree Show, in future postgraduate study, and/or professional practice in a variety of art and design contexts.

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You will have the opportunity to study a foreign language, free of charge, during your time at the University on a not-for-credit basis as part of the Kingston Language Scheme. Options currently include: Arabic, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

Most of our undergraduate courses support studying or working abroad through the University's study abroad programme or Erasmus programme.

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