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Guide to studying Film Making

If you’re a creative person, a Film Making degree could help you achieve those dreams of making your own silver-screen sensation.

Behind the scene film crew filming movie scene outdoor

CONTENTS

  1. What's Film Making?

  2. Why study Film Making?

  3. What jobs can you get as a Film Making graduate?

  4. What do graduates do and earn?
  5. What qualifications do you need?

  6. What degrees can you study?

  7. How will you be assessed?

  8. What are the postgraduate opportunities?

What's Film Making?

Film Making degrees, as the name suggests, provide you with the necessary skills and experience to help launch a career in the film industry.

Degrees often have a strong focus on practical work, meaning that rather than simply learning how to make a film, you get hands-on experience and an opportunity to apply methods as you learn them.

Among the numerous aspects of such a degree, a typical Film Making course will involve developing your editing, script-writing and production skills.

Why study Film Making?

If you've always dreamed of working in film, but feel as though you lack the technical competency to start your career, a degree in this area could be the perfect solution.

A Film Making degree will harness your passion and teach you how to channel it into a piece of visual art, all the while giving you the creative freedom to produce work that means something to you.

Many universities that offer Film Making courses have contacts and links with professional organisations in the film industry. As such, you could be attending lectures, workshops and work placements with people who have successfully built a career in the field.

Being in charge of many aspects of your own film, such as editing and directing, will improve your overall project management abilities. You'll also be able to self-critique and develop many transferable skills desired by employers in a wide variety of professions, which is useful if you decide to go down a different route after graduating.

Close up of a screenplay

What jobs can you get as a Film Making graduate?

Unsurprisingly, the vast array of job opportunities available to Film Making graduates are in the media, with specific roles including film editor, camera operator and runner. As the industry is so competitive, networking, volunteering and internships are just a few ways to present yourself with more opportunities, as well as showing a determination and passion for Film Making.

Below are just some of the many types of organisation that you could expect to work for:

  • National television broadcasters
  • Advertising agencies
  • Websites
  • Film production companies

What do graduates do and earn?

In the infographic below, the first table shows what graduates of Film Making have gone on to do in the months after their graduation.

The second table shows the average salaries of undergraduate Film Making students entering employment. The three skill levels – high, medium and low – reflect the UK's Standard Occupational Classification's major groups 1–3, 4–6 and 7–9 respectively.

Source: HESA Graduate Outcomes Survey 2017/18

What qualifications do you need? 

Always look at specific entry criteria, as different universities and courses often have different demands.

Students working towards a Film Making bachelor's degree have usually taken a relevant subject such as art, drama or media studies at A Level (or equivalent). Experience in the field is an added bonus for your application, though usually this is not a necessity.

Entry requirements for foundation degrees are usually lower, and by completing one you can vastly improve your chances of being accepted to study for a full honours degree, even if you don't meet other entry criteria.

What degrees can you study?

Degrees in Film Making often come under slightly different names, such as film production, digital film making, or film, media and music. 

Given the range of different focuses of Film Making, types of degree can vary too; if you choose a degree that has an emphasis on the technical side of the process, the degree may be a BSc or a BDes.

Contrastingly, courses that focus on the creative aspects of Film Making are more likely to award a BA, and beyond this, there's a range of foundation degrees and diplomas available to study.

How will you be assessed?

  • Exams 
  • Coursework 
  • Any alternative methods of assessment 

What are the postgraduate opportunities?

There are a number of postgraduate courses available in Film Making, including the opportunity to study more specific subjects such as animation or cinematography. 

As with undergraduate degrees, the type of degree received depends on the focus of the course, with more technically-focused degrees achieving an MSc, and more creatively-oriented courses awarding an MA or MFA.

Aside from this, there are various postgraduate diplomas and certificates available to study.

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