This course will underpin your learning with industry-led insight and expertise, mixing professional knowledge and skills with academic critical thinking about films, audiences and the film industry.
You will enhance your filmmaking skills while developing a range of core skills and expertise in business and production management. These include scriptwriting, lighting and cinematography, directing and post-production, pitching, budgeting and management.
Further your knowledge of key roles in the film industry and the production process by learning about screenwriting and digital film and audio capture. As your studies progress you will develop your own projects under the guidance of our expert staff, with modules covering pre-production and production, equipping you for your final dissertation or individual film project.
You will benefit from the expertise of research groups such as the Cinema and Television History Research Institute (CATHI) and the Institute of Creative Technologies. The specialist skills you will develop are ideal for opening up careers in film, TV and media.
- Tailor your learning towards your career aspirations with your final semester project. Choose between writing a traditional dissertation or submitting an individual film project. This work is an opportunity to demonstrate the skills and knowledge developed on the course and will form the basis of your professional portfolio.
- Access our Creative Technology Studios, equipped with industry-standard video, audio and radio production suites. These studios provide facilities for the acquisition, editing and distribution of video, audio and computer-generated materials, enabling a seamless mixed-media workflow. You will also have access to a range of specialist film production equipment through our audio-visual loans service.
- DMU is home to the Cinema and Television History Research Institute (CATHI) which houses archives from a range of leading UK production companies. In the latest Research Excellence Framework, 100 per cent of CATHI’s research impact was judged to be ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’.
- Enhance your learning and network with professionals at our guest lectures and workshops, featuring speakers from across the industry.
- Meet like-minded people and get hands-on experience by joining our student societies, including our award-winning media society, Demon Media, and Film Debate, who meet weekly to screen movies and debate related topics.
- Prepare for a career in industry or for future study. This MA, with its focus on individual research, provides ideal preparation for progression to a PhD.
Structure and assessment
First semester (September to January)
The first semester involves developing core skills in storytelling, screenwriting, directing, producing, image processing, sound recording and other filmmaking skills. You will take four, 15 credit modules during semester one:
- Key Roles in the Film Industry – you will learn about the current structure of the global film industry and the UK’s place as a production base. We will focus on developing your awareness of the key creative and operational roles in the UK film industry.
- The Production Process – on this module you will learn how to plan and pitch a production, and you will gain a professional understanding of the development process. At the end of the module you will have produced a development portfolio to work on at Pinewood.
- Screenwriting – working with experienced practitioners, on this module you will produce a short script to develop as your major project.
- Realisation – this module focuses on your practical production and camera skills. You will gain professional-level skills in digital film and audio capture, and managing the practical activities required for a live shoot.
Second semester (February to May)
During the second semester, you will finesse your skills in a more diverse range of areas, and continue to develop your own projects under the guidance of our expert staff. You will take two, 30 credit modules, which cover these various areas:
- Pre-Production – you will pitch and develop a proposed production. One – three projects developed during the first and second semesters will be selected to go into pre-production by a panel of industry experts, for production in semester three.
- Fine Skills – you will gain a very broad range of potential areas of expertise, such as art direction, continuity management, script supervision, risk assessment, budgeting, and more.
Third semester (June to September)
During the third semester you will work more independently at DMU to manage and deliver your final film project, with an accompanying reflective commentary. This project will demonstrate the skills and knowledge developed on the course, and will form the basis of your professional portfolio. You also have the option of taking an academic dissertation. In addition to the major project, assessments take the form of practical coursework, written reports and presentations.
Facilities and features
At DMU you will have access to our multi-million pound Creative Technology Studios (CTS), which feature a host of industry-standard video, audio and radio production suites and two fully-equipped recording studios featuring analogue and digital recording systems and surround sound monitoring. The CTS studios provide facilities for the acquisition, editing and distribution of video, audio and computer-generated materials and files can be shared throughout the studios via a fast computer network, enabling a seamless mixed-media workflow. You will also have access to a range of specialist film production equipment through our audio-visual loans service.
Our Learning Zones and the The Greenhouse also provide space for group or individual work and study.
There are 1,600 study places across all library locations, more than 700 computer stations, laptops to borrow, free wi-fi and desktop power outlets.
You can also book rooms with plasma screens, laptops and DVD facilities for group work and presentations, secure an individual study room with adjustable lighting or make use of our assistive technology.
The main Kimberlin Library is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year (other than in exceptional circumstances) and offers a huge range of online resources, all of which can be remotely accessed from anywhere you choose.
The library is run by dedicated staff who offer additional support to students, including help with academic writing, research strategies, literature searching and reference management and assistive technology, and mathematical skills for non-maths students. There is also a Just Ask service for help and advice, available via email or telephone.
Opportunities and careers
Through #DMUglobal, we offer a wide range of opportunities including on-campus and UK activities, overseas study, internships, faculty-led field trips and volunteering, as well as Erasmus+ and international exchanges.
The course is structured around developing skills in production management, development and other skills related to the film production process. Graduates will leave with an enhanced awareness of the specialist skills required in the international film industry, and commensurate skills. These may lead to careers in the media as well as other opportunities.
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