BA (Hons) Film

Undergraduate, Full-time

Film BA (Hons)



One of the top 10 UK universities for Film Production & Photography

The Guardian University Guide 2018

Overview

Become a film-maker, study the art and craft of cinema, and advance your practical and creative skills in our specialist production facilities.

Our BA (Hons) Film degree course provides an in-depth grounding in the technical processes, creative skills and production practices necessary for a career in the media and creative industries. From the outset, you are encouraged to think critically and creatively, developing your skills so that you can convey your ideas through practical work.

You will be taught to a high technical standard through the craft of script writing, producing, directing, documentary film-making, production design, cinematography, editing, sound design and other roles that are instrumental to industrial and independent film-making practices.

Throughout your studies, you will strive towards the goal of being an intelligent, creative and contemporary film-maker. By identifying your strengths and perfecting your craft within established film-making roles, you will increasingly define your own area of study and develop an individual creative practice, so that by graduation you will be capable of producing creative and original works of the highest quality.

Three students filming

Mode of Study:

Full-time

Duration:

4 years

Start date:

Sep

UCAS code:

P303


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Course details

BA (Hons) Film is a full-time programme and takes place at the Merchiston Campus and at our purpose-built post-production facilities at Merchiston Avenue.

We offer fully equipped, specialist film facilities including high-end digital cinema cameras, professional film lighting, Avid Media Composer edit suites, Pro Tools, a professional dubbing theatre and a grading suite.

Alongside the more formal teaching content, there is a significant element of self-directed study and research, both individually and via group work.

Through independent enquiry, students are encouraged to develop and realise project ideas towards briefs that are designed to engage with relevant social, cultural and contextual concerns.

Graduates of the BA Film programme are able to engage and work in the following ways:

  • creatively and imaginatively
  • critically
  • practically and technically
  • professionally and collaboratively.

At the heart of this programme is the aim of equipping students with (1) the skills that are necessary to be employable in an industry that is largely freelance in nature and (2) the ability to go on to further postgraduate study. Therefore, alongside practical film-making skills, you will develop the ability to communicate your ideas effectively; be a purposeful contributor to collaborative practices; be a capable problem solver and be able to work in a self-motivated and responsible way. These are the essential, transferable professional skills that are required for a successful career in the creative industries.

Portfolio and interview

BA (Hons) Film is a popular programme, attracting a large amount of applicants. Short listed applicants will be invited to submit a portfolio of relevant work and attend an individual face-to-face interview with a member of the programme team. Telephone interviews are also available for overseas applicants.

You will be given set exercises for your portfolio and we will be looking for evidence of your understanding of, and engagement with, film. We will be looking for your visual literacy, interpretative skills and critical evaluation. While consideration will be given to technical knowledge, a high level of technical competence is not expected at this stage, although your potential for future development will be assessed. Please note that you will be sent more specific and detailed requirements when a portfolio is requested.

If invited to interview, you will be able to bring other examples of your work and you should include material which you feel best demonstrates your interest in and passion for film-making. The interview is an opportunity for you to present your work, outline the ideas behind your work, and tell us about what influences and inspires you.

  • calendar How you’ll be taught

    You will learn by a variety of teaching methods including lectures, seminars, workshops, independent study and research. Delivery of practical film-making skills is undertaken within an industry focus, and by academics and visiting lecturers who engage in relevant professional practices.

  • note and pen Assessments

    Assessment is continuous throughout the year and is predominantly based upon submission of creative practical work, documentation of research and critical reflection, essay assignments, and oral presentations.

  • briefcase Work placement

    You will undertake a period of work-related learning during Year 3 and again in Year 4, when you will start the process of preparation for your career after graduation. You will have the opportunity to gain industry experience by working on live briefs, on film sets, placements within production companies and television broadcasting studios, or working with charity sector clients.

  • study abroad Study abroad

    You'll have the opportunity to spend one trimester or a full year abroad in Year 3.

    Studying abroad provides a unique opportunity to develop your studies in film while embarking on a rich cultural exchange.

    BA (Hons) Film Students have undertaken exchanges at Deakin University (Melbourne, Australia), Queensland University of Technology (Australia), Ryerson University (Toronto, Canada), San Diego State University (California, USA), San Jose State University (California, USA), Brooklyn College, City University of New York (USA), Drexel University (Philadelphia, USA), Charles University (Prague, Czech Republic) and Stuttgart Media University (Germany).

    Students have also been involved in unique cultural exchange film-making projects with Shanghai Normal University and Beijing Central Academy of Fine Arts.

Popular modules

Year 1

  • Key Concepts in Filmmaking
  • Research and Communication Skills
  • Narrative Construction
  • Essential Elements of Storytelling (plot, character, dialogue and engaging an audience)
  • Editing Sound and Picture
  • Systems of Continuity
  • Screenwriting
  • Film History

Year 2

  • Film Histories and Key Theoretical Film Issues
  • Documentary Filmmaking
  • Cinematic Genres
  • Film Adaptation
Working collaboratively on practical film projects in the roles of:
  • Cinematographer
  • Editor
  • Sound Design
  • Writer
  • Director

Year 3

  • Individually tailored filmmaking projects within specialist roles
  • Work-related learning
  • Critical and analytical abilities required to undertake a research topic
  • Visual Anthropology
  • Screenwriting
  • Documentary Filmmaking
  • Opportunity to study abroad

Year 4

  • Practical project (typically a short film or collaborative roles on a number of short films)
  • Dissertation
  • Professional development skills

Disclaimer

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.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

As part of the selection process suitably qualified applicants will normally be invited to submit a portfolio/attend an interview. This applies to all years of entry.

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.

Mature Applicants

Applications from mature applicants are welcomed and, where appropriate, the minimum entry requirements can be replaced by the recognition of prior learning and experience, such as knowledge and skills gained outside of formal learning situations.

Minimum year 1

SQA Higher

BBBC including English or other literary subject*.

Adjusted Offer Entry Requirement

BCCC including English or other literary subject*.

You may be given an adjusted offer of entry if you meet specific widening participation criteria as outlined in our contextual admissions policy. For further information see our entry requirements and admissions policies.

A Level

CCC including English or other literary subject*.

Irish Leaving Certificate

Pre-2017 Grading System:

B1, B3, B3, B3 at HL including English or other literary subject*

New Grading System:

H2, H3, H3, H3 at HL including English or other literary subject*

HNC

Pass HNC in a related subject with B in the graded unit

BTEC (QCF) Extended Diploma Level 3

Minimum grades MMM (Merit, Merit, Merit) in a related subject

BTEC (QCF) Diploma

Minimum grades D*D (Distinction*, Distinction) in a related subject

International Baccalaureate Diploma

Award of Diploma with 27 points overall with three HL subjects with grades 6,5,4 including Grade 5 in English or other literary subject*

Literary subjects accepted

*Modern Studies, History, Psychology, Sociology, RMPS, Theology, Media Studies, Philosophy, Politics, Sociology, Geography, Latin and Classics.

Minimum year 2

HND

Pass HND in a related subject with Grade B at SCQF Level 8 in all graded units.

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 6.5 overall and no element below 6.0. For guidance on the acceptability of other English Language tests please contact ugadmissions@napier.ac.uk

This may not apply if you have completed all your school qualifications in English. Check our country pages to find out if this applies to you.

International students

We welcome applications from students studying a wide range of international qualifications.
Entry requirements by country

Please note that non-EU international students are unable to enrol onto the following courses:
  • BN Nursing/MN Nursing (Adult, Child, Mental Health or Learning Disability)
  • BM Midwifery/MM Midwifery

Admissions policies

We’re committed to admitting students who have the potential to succeed and benefit from our programmes of study. 

Our admissions policies will help you understand our admissions procedures, and how we use the information you provide us in your application to inform the decisions we make.

Undergraduate admissions policies
Postgraduate admissions policies

Fees & funding

The course fees you'll pay and the funding available to you will depend on a number of factors including your nationality, location, personal circumstances and the course you are studying. We also have a number of bursaries and scholarships available to our students.

Tuition fees
Students from 2018/19 2019/20
Scotland/EU £1,820 £1,820
England Wales and Northern Ireland (RUK) £9,000 £9,250
Overseas £12,350 £12,845
RUK Students starting in 2018/19 will be invoiced the 2018/19 fee for 3 years of their 4 years of study. Students starting in 2019/20 will be invoiced the 2019/20 fee for 3 years of their 4 years of study.


Frequently Asked Questions about Fees
Information of Bursaries and Scholarships

Careers

Film students working on location around the High Street in Edinburgh

Career opportunities

The programme prepares students for a wide range of possible careers in the creative industries sector. Many of our graduates enter the traditional areas of professional film and television production as freelancers in fields such as camera department, sound recording and design, editing, art department, directing, production and documentary film-making.

When you complete the course, you will leave with an in-depth grounding in the technical processes, creative skills and production practices necessary for your career, including opportunities to study abroad and work-related learning.

Where your degree could lead:

  • Screenwriter
  • Researcher
  • Film/Television Director/Producer
  • Production Designer
  • Cinematographer
  • Editor
  • Sound Designer
  • Content Editor
  • Production Manager
  • Multimedia Manager
Film students working on location around the High Street in Edinburgh