Film Studies

Hone your communication and analytical skills with this exciting course. In the first year you will increase your awareness of film form by exploring how mise-en-scene, performance, cinematography, editing and sound go together to create meaning in film. The course will encourage you to develop a keen awareness of the role of the audience in making meanings from film, in particular reflecting on their own role as spectators. You will also investigate film as a business, looking closely at production, distribution and marketing strategies, including an examination of the role of stars in the promotion of films. You will demonstrate your knowledge and understanding through practical and written tasks. In the second year, you can undertake further study of films by researching a topic of your choice along with a creative project. You will extend your knowledge of world cinema and explore some key styles of film and issues such as how popular films elicit emotional responses from an audience.

What skills will I develop?

You will develop your analytical skills, in particular your ability to identify and justify the use of key technical features in film.

You will learn a more sophisticated way of writing, including expressing your personal voice and applying a range of critical perspectives in your analysis of Film.

You will gain technical skills with industry standard hardware and software (if you choose to create a film production in the coursework units).

What topics will I study?

Component 1 – Coursework: Exploring Film Form (Portfolio of production and written work - 2250 words– 20%)

  • Section A: A written analysis of the use of micro elements within a film sequence. (1500 words)
  • Section B: A creative project consisting of a storyboard, step outline, film sequence or a short film.
  • Section C: A written reflective analysis justifying the use of micro elements in the creative project. (750 words)

Component 2 – Examination: British and American Film (2 hours, 30 minutes  - 30%)

  • Section A: Consider the relationship between producers and audiences, by responding to unseen material in the exam, and applying existing knowledge.
  • Section B: A Social – Political Study of how ‘Living With Crime’ is presented in British Film.
  • Section C: A comparative study of two American films.

Component 3 – Coursework: Film Research and Creative Project (Portfolio of production and written work 3500 words– 25%)

  • Section A: An small-scale research project (2500 words)
  • Section B: A creative project consisting of a film extract, short film, screenplay or step outline. A written reflective analysis (1000 words) of the creative product and the production process.

Component 4 – Examination: Varieties of Film Experience – Issues and Debates (2 hours, 45 minutes  - 25%)

  • Section A: World Cinema.
  • Section B: Spectatorship Topics.
  • Section C: A Critical Study of a single film.

Where does the course lead?

Film Studies will prepare you for degrees and careers which require good communication and analytical ability as well as a future in writing, publishing, film journalism, and television or film personnel.

Please note: this course is due to be updated for 2017 entry. Outlined above is the current specification. This is likely to change for the new qualification. Check back frequently for updated information.

Exam Board


Head of Department

Lorna Herdman

Entry Requirements

Five A*- C grades (or equivalent 4+) including at least a grade 4 in English Language.

Grade C or above in Media Studies is desirable but not essential.

Assessment Breakdown

Coursework = 45%, Examination = 55%