MFA Advanced Film Practice

Postgraduate, Full-Time

This course gives you the chance to develop, produce and complete a short cinema film to professional standards.

  • Napier code:


  • Course type:


  • Duration:

    1 year

  • Award:


  • Location:

    Merchiston campus

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Course introduction

Develop your creative and professional skills through practical exercises and masterclasses with leading industry practitioners.

This course ideal for ambitious directors, producers or writers looking to make the leap to professional filmmaking, or seasoned professionals looking to work on the big screen.

We offer great scope for collaboration, with more than 200 students engaged in film activities – from cinematography and editing to documentary and animation.

In addition to acquiring practical skills, you’ll also create projects that form the basis of your portfolio.


Develop your existing skills to a near-professional level, collaborating with students and working practitioners alike to create a fully funded short film, documentary, feature film script or similar finished creative product.

Your qualification carries Screen Academy status, the only film qualification in Scotland to offer this, and one of only a few throughout the UK.

On entry into this course, you will already have demonstrated advanced skills in production, direction or screenwriting. By graduation, you will have honed these skills and added to them. You’ll learn techniques to further develop your creative voice, plus the production skills necessary to bring a film project to completion.

Subjects include

  • Project Development and Pre-production
  • Project Production and Post-production

Study modules mentioned above are indicative only. Some changes may occur between now and the time that you study.

Full information on this is available in our disclaimer.

This course maximises your chances of success in a tough industry. Your qualification carries Creative Skillset Film Academy status – giving us and our graduates credibility in the industry.

You will meet and work with industry practitioners, building contacts and networks that will help form the basis of a potential career.

Our graduates’ films have screened at festivals throughout the world including Edinburgh, Venice and Kolkata and many of our alumni go on to pick up prestigious awards and commissions.

The entry requirement for this course is a Master's Degree in Film in order to be eligible for this course.

All applicants must submit a portfolio of work that best shows their abilities as a screenwriter, producer or director. including:

  • A full CV and personal statement highlighting what you consider to be your most significant experience and achievements in education, work and life, why you want to undertake the course and what you hope to achieve in your career in film (maximum two pages).
  • Tangible evidence of your achievements:
    • for writers, a completed short or feature film script. Preferably of a film that has been produced (in which case, please include a copy of the film) together with short extracts from other scripts (maximum additional 20 pages in total)
    • for producers, a show reel of projects already produced plus a two-page summary of projects in production/development
    • for directors, one DVD (or VHS tape) of a completed (preferably short) film and showreel of other work
  • A proposal outlining the type of projects that you envisage writing, producing or directing if your application is successful (maximum two pages).
  • Please identify a writer / producer / director whose work you particularly admire and tell us why.

List your strengths and weaknesses as writer/director/producer and identify which aspect of your discipline you want to develop and improve during the programme.

English Language requirements 

If your first language isn't English, you'll normally need to undertake an approved English language test.  The English Language requirements for this programme are IELTS (Academic) with 6.0 with no individual component score less than 6.0.  For guidance on the acceptability of other English Language tests please contact

This may not apply if you have completed all your school qualifications in English, or your undergraduate degree was taught and examined in English (within two years of starting your postgraduate course). Check our country pages to find out if this applies to you.

Our entry requirements indicate the minimum qualifications with which we normally accept students. Competition for places varies from year to year and you aren't guaranteed a place if you meet the minimum qualifications.

International students

If your qualifications aren't listed above, visit our country pages to get entry requirements for your country.

Please note that non-EU international students are unable to enrol on our nursing courses.

Admissions policies

We are committed to being as accessible as possible to anyone who wants to achieve higher education.

Our admissions policies will help you understand our admissions procedures and how decisions are made.

Tuition fees
Students from 2016/17 2017/18
All students £15,000 £15,000

Frequently Asked Questions about Fees
Information of Bursaries and Scholarships