Introduction to Filmmaking
In a nutshell
This is a hands-on degree in which you learn practical filmmaking alongside studying the critical and contextual aspects of film theory. You will be making short films using high-end camera and editing equipment both on location and in our digital media studios in our campus situated in the heart of MediaCityUK.
You will learn key film-making skills such as directing and producing, cinematography and editing, and choose from options in visual effects, audio post production, scriptwriting and production design. You will also learn key theories in film analysis which will help inform, inspire and contextualise your creative output as well as leading to essay writing.
Being based at MediaCityUK, there is a strong emphasis on working with industry, with opportunities for engaging with real world and collaborative projects throughout the course and a core second year module devoted to helping you acquire the professional skills you need to launch your creative career.
The global nature of film production is recognised both in the international content of the course and the opportunities for studying abroad. There will be a strong emphasis on collaborative project work throughout.
- Study at our state-of-the-art digital media campus at MediaCityUK, surrounded by professional film producers and broadcasters
- Learn in a contemporary creative environment on collaborative film projects and live briefs from industry
- Be able to choose from hands-on module options that range from the latest in film VFX and audio post to scriptwriting and directing
This is for you if...
You are passionate about creating film in all its forms
You have a creative and professional mindset
You have a desire to learn key film-making skills such as directing and producing, cinematography and editing
All about the course
In each year of the course you will take film production modules requiring you to work practically in groups, plus craft modules which develop your individual creative skills and finally theory modules which stimulate your critical thinking and ability to analyse and contextualise film forms.
There’s a strong emphasis on getting professional work experience throughout the course and the whole of your final semester is dedicated to enabling you to make a film to showcase you strengths to industry.
In the first year the course provides you with a fast-moving introduction to a broad range of film production techniques. You will collaborate in groups to create films in a range of different styles. You will learn how to develop ideas into compelling stories, how to plan and run shoots, how to direct for single camera on location and multi-camera in the studio, how to get the best out of your camera, sound and lighting kits and how to edit and grade. You’ll also learn key concepts in critical film theory and explore and analyse the evolution of film.
In the second year you build further on your filmmaking skills with longer and more challenging assignments, and have the chance to develop your own creative interests with a choice of options from the techy end of post production and film VFX to the contrasting skills of scriptwriting and working with actors. The optional module in Professional Film Practice encourages you to seek work experience and start developing your professional networks. Learning about the theory of different film genres is combined with practical exercises in production.
In your final year you will develop your chosen specialist interests to advanced level, collaborate and innovate in producing film projects that cross traditional boundaries, apply theoretical knowledge of film distribution to promoting your own outputs and work on a major project of your own choosing to create film that will be your calling card to industry.
In this module you will work in teams and hopefully form a good relationship with the rest of your group. You will learn the craft areas that will help contribute to good film production. There will be class/seminar sessions that involve you working with camera, sound and lighting kits. The aim is to make you all familiar with film making techniques and processes so that regardless of your career aim you will have a strong understanding of the roles and processes involved in film production work.
Introduction to Film Analysis
This module examines 'What is a film? What is cinema?' The module studies various aspects of film elements that engage and communicate with the audience. It introduces the concept of film form and enables you to identify and analyse different elements of film form. As film makers you will begin to engage with wider institutional contexts and audiences. The module will develop your abilities in assessing how the various aspects of film form combine to make meaning and engage an audience.
Introduction to Film Theory
This module will introduce you to a range of theoretical and critical approaches to engaging with film and film cultures. Through this module, you will develop an awareness of different approaches to film making and how social, cultural and political landscapes affect the film maker. You will view and discuss a range of films, directors and practitioners and examine the contemporary usefulness of a range of theoretical approaches to writing about and engaging with film.
Cinematic Practice and Production
This module focuses on building on your single camera film making skills and knowledge from semester one. This module is designed to give you the opportunity to develop and apply your production knowledge to multi- camera unit filming on location and in the studio. The overall aim is to develop and extend knowledge in film production using a variety of devices and technologies. This module will also develop film techniques and creative cinematic practices for your film production work.
Introduction to Producing and Directing
This module is intended to provide you with the opportunity to develop key skills and understanding in developing ideas into a viable production project. This module is designed to enable you to gain an understanding of the requirements and practices associated with the key roles of producer, director and assistant director. The module will focus on developing a critical overview of the role and practices of the roles. The module will provide a range of opportunities for you to apply your knowledge of design, budget skills, camera scripting/blocking and scheduling to the film making process.
Storytelling for Screen
This module will introduce you to the fundamentals of narrative structure, ideas generation, research for writing, development and professional script formatting. This will equip you with the skills and knowledge needed to begin writing engaging, short film scripts. Our main focus will be on short narrative and scriptwriting, giving opportunities to develop deeper knowledge of the importance of characterisation, story structure and descriptive writing techniques.
Film Making Practice
This module is designed to give you a practical and technical understanding of the camera, sound and post production elements. You will learn how to apply good technical and creative standards to production using a variety of equipment in the craft areas of camera, sound, lighting and post production. You will explore the practice and theory of cinematography, use of sound and post production and its impact on film practice in on location and in studio type environments.
Following on from Film Making Practice, this module is designed to give you the opportunity to demonstrate and explore your creative application of cinematic elements, camera, sound and lighting to practical film products. You will explore the practice and theory of cinematography, use of sound and post production and its impact on narrative and audience engagement
Optional modules may include:
Global Cinema 1 and 2
This module will introduce you to different modes of film-making relating to cultural, political and social movements throughout the history of cinema. You will develop an understanding of how industrial, independent and experimental forms of film co-exist.
Professional Film Practice
This module focuses on building confidence and aims to help you develop strong employability skills. You will be able to build a strong portfolio of work experience that will be used to enhance and transform your CV. You will be asked to engage in as much work experience as possible over the next year, this can include live brief work for clients, working for a company/organisation on a short term basis or even teaching practice.
Sound Practice for Production
In this module you will be looking at and exploring sound in film production. Looking at audio acquisition on both location and studio settings. Providing a detailed and practical overview if the sound team and the tools and practices for sound production. You will learn about the range of microphones, and their differing applications, external recorders and the creative scope that is possible within the production of sound for film.
Scriptwriting for Film
This module will examine all fundamental aspects of fictional storytelling including narrative structure, character development, character types, relation of character to plot and the use of subplots. We will foster your practical skills in structure, plotting, character creation and dialogue for dramatic scripts. you'll also examine the use of the three act structure and non-linear storytelling.
This module will equip you with a practical and professional understanding of compositing and VFX techniques and practices, using a range of diverse software applications.
Producing and Directing
In this module, you will focus on one of the following roles; producer, director. By working collaboratively, you will examine a script project during the 12 week semester using organisational and visual skills. In the final three weeks, you will shoot, edit and present a short scene sequence from a screenplay.
Documentary Film: Theory and Practice
You will identify and examine key social, historical and aesthetic developments in the evolution of documentary film, placing current examples of documentary films in their social, historical and aesthetic contexts and explore how these have been realised by the film maker as practitioner.
Production Design: Tools and Processes
This module is designed to enable you to gain an understanding of the requirements and practices associated with the art department in the production of a film. The module will focus on developing a critical overview of the role and practices of the production designer, providing a range of opportunities for you to apply your knowledge of production design to practice within the film making process.
Post Production Sound
On this module, you will develop sound acquisition skills to an advanced level and offer the opportunity to apply them, explore the relationship between sound acquisition and post production; extend your understanding of the principles of the speciality; and explore and manipulate a range of audio post production softwares.
University Wide Language Programme
This module provides the opportunity to learn or develop a language with the University-wide language programme.
Final Film Project
This module is the practiced based application of your final year film product. With the help of your supervising tutor you will negotiate your workload to ensure you take on a major role plus a more minor role in your final trimester. This project is very much about us helping you do what you want. We will ensure that everyone has the opportunity to work on at least two films.
You will select one of the above modules, then you will select optional modules which may include:
Film and Ideology: Contemporary Cinema
This theory based module will introduce you to a variety of critical debates that surround film ideology. The module will provide the opportunities to develop advanced knowledge and analytical tools needed to analyse particular examples of contemporary cinematic forms, styles and genres in relation to realism. The module will examine and analyse common practices as well as the main key differences between contemporary traditions of cinematic realism and explore political concerns of some contemporary cinematic in Europe and beyond.
Final Film Project: Preparation
This module focuses on preparing you for your final year individual and group tasks. You will develop an evidence based portfolio consisting of research for your production contribution, the aim of this module is to encourage in depth research into your chosen subject matter and practices for film production in order to undertake the responsibilities of a major role in your second trimester team film product. There will be a written report associated with your work, we will try and help you make this closely related to your practice.
British TV Fictions
Exploring the wide and varied history of drama on British television, the module will impart a sophisticated understanding of contemporary British TV fictions via their historical development; analyse the changing production contexts of British television drama; and, provide students with the advanced skills required to undertake close textual analysis of TV fictions. The module provides an opportunity for students to contextualise particular examples of TV drama in terms of production, format and audience.
Lighting for Camera
This module is designed to help you develop your understanding of camera and lighting for a variety of professional applications. You will develop lighting and director of photography skills to a high technical level. You will develop a strong knowledge of lighting principles and practices. By examining and understanding the theories and concepts of lighting, you will be able to apply these principles to practice through appropriate lighting design for a variety of genres. You will focus on formulating an understanding of light properties and how these properties can be manipulated to bring about appropriate lighting solutions to production design.
This will let students explore key (transitional) representations of men and masculinity throughout Hollywood history. Beginning with an examination of the pre-code ‘mob men’, moving to representations of men (and dangerous women) in film noir and 1980's muscular hero action pics, among other key masculine characterisations, the module will analyse how the representation of Hollywood’s leading men has always been an altering document, drawn and redrawn to meet the demands of the day. Critical skills concerning gender, identity and representation theories will come to bear on one of the burgeoning, most hotly-debated areas of the film discipline.
Production Design: Design for Narrative
Film and Theory
Building upon work undertaken in Year One and Two, this module will provide you with the intellectual tools to undertake a detailed theoretical analysis of film.
The module explores the socio-cultural histories of transmedia franchises and their fictional storyworlds across TV, radio, films, comic books and videogames. Transmedia Storyworlds equips students with an advanced understanding of how industrial forces shape productions of storyworld content across a given transmedia franchise, and explores how adaptations of fictional storyworlds exploit the narrative affordances of a range of different media. The module equips students with an advanced understanding of transnational flows whereby cultures from around the world reimagine globally famous characters and storyworlds so as to establish locally specific meanings, and critically examine the ideological positions of transmedia franchises and their storyworlds.
Advanced Sound Design
This module focuses on helping you extend your sound design skills and develop sound acquisition and sound manipulation skills and knowledge to an advanced level. You will develop an understanding on how sound elements are combined to assist the narrative in creating an emotional impact on the audience. You will utilise a range of equipment and post production sound facilities to create sound to a professional standard.
Film Marketing, Distribution and Exhibition
This module allows you to explore the fields of film marketing, distribution and exhibition. You will develop a critical understanding of the field of marketing and distribution and understand its role in the process of film making. As a film maker/producer you will be able to critically understand the field of exhibition and its importance to the film maker. You will also develop an understanding of the role of film festivals within the film industry and examine the importance of the process of marketing, distribution and exhibition of films in a digital age.
Directing for Fiction
This module will focus on helping you develop strong director leadership qualities to an advanced level. You will explore the relationship between director, actors, crew and other creative industry specialists in order to develop an in depth understanding of the role of the director. By the end of the module you will have extended your management, interpersonal and logistical skills specific to the role of director work in drama.
21st Century Factual TV
The module provides a framework for understanding contemporary factual television using a range of perspectives including historical, cultural, industrial, and technological. Areas of study will include television documentary (e.g. ob docs, docu-soaps), the emergence of reality TV and its ongoing impact on factual television forms and genres, transformational television (e.g. lifestyle & makeover programming), and youth TV (factual programming aimed at the 16-25 year audience demographic). The module draws on examples from British and US factual television.
This module will develop to an advanced level your knowledge of contemporary factual television, and will provide you with the opportunity to conduct specialised academic research into a factual television genre/programme of your choosing.
This module is intended to expand on post-production technologies and software applications that were introduced in Year Two. Opportunities to work on live industry briefs will also enable you to further refine your editing techniques.
University Wide Language Programme
This module provides the opportunity to learn or develop a language with the University-wide language programme.
Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.
What will I be doing?
Teaching is delivered through:
- Practical seminars
- Demonstration workshops
- Discussion seminars
- Large group lectures
- Small group supervision
- Personal tutorials
- Online learning
The tutors on this course are largely industry experienced or industry active or leaders in their field of academic theory.
Assessment is through practical course work and formal written essays. There are no exams on this course.
You will work both individually and in groups to create a range of projects for assessment.
School of Arts and Media
The School of Arts and Media is the largest School at the University of Salford with more than 4,000 creative students. Across sites at MediaCityUK and the University's Peel Park campus, we offer a huge variety of courses, from fashion image making and styling, television and radio, creative writing and music to journalism, animation, design and performance.
This broad range of disciplines offers enhanced opportunities for specialist and interdisciplinary study, including collaborative work across subject areas.
This course benefits from the state-of-the-art facilities at MediaCityUK. These include a 5-camera HD TV studio, a 3-camera HD TV studio and a digital performance studio with full green screen capability. There are two radio/audio recording studios, and 5.1 surround sound audio post production theatre, with foley booth. Audition v3 audio editing and Final Cut Pro and Avid software-enabled suites are available throughout the building.
What about after uni?
Graduates from this course will be well qualified to seek work in the film industry for entry level roles in different aspects of film production, direction, camera, audio and post-production.
You will also have valuable technical and creative skills that will serve you in other areas of broadcast and on-line media and the digital creative sector more widely.
Transferable skills acquired on the course will also benefit you if you are seeking roles in advertising, public relations, marketing and the entertainment industry.
Our location at the heart of MediaCityUK means that we are ideally placed to foster links with film, TV and other creative digital media companies. You will have the opportunity to work on creative projects with media production companies, and may be offered work placements with our industry partners.
What you need to know
As part of the application process for this course, we will need to see some examples of your work. This would normally require the submission of a full portfolio – however, we recognise that during the current situation you may not have full access to your entire collection of work, e.g. projects you might have completed as part of your current studies. If you don’t have access to your full portfolio, please provide us with any pieces of work you do have, and they’ll be taken into consideration as part of your application.
These are some of the things to talk about in your personal statement (although you do not have to cover each one):
- Why film production – what qualities would you bring to the programme/degree?
- What and who are your favourite films/directors and why?
- Your experience in production or film and media studies – what kit, what films/products have you worked on and in what capacity.
- What are your career aspirations?
- Your personal strengths and how that prepares you for a job in film.
- Any work experience and what you did in that work experience.
ENGLISH LANGUAGE REQUIREMENTS
International applicants will be required to show a proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.0, with no element below 5.5, is proof of this.
Please note: The entry criteria below are related to entry onto this course in the 2020/2021 academic year. If you’re interested in a future intake year, please check the course entry on UCAS.
English Language and Maths at grade C/level 4 or above (or equivalent).
You must fulfil our GCSE entry requirements as well as one of the requirements listed below.
UCAS tariff points
112-128. Applicants not taking Media or Film will need to demonstrate commitment to study in this area through their personal statement.
BTEC National Diploma
DDM including Film and TV Production
BTEC Extended Diploma
Access to HE
Pass Level 3 Acess to HE Diploma with 128 points in Media and Cultural Studies
128 AAAA Media/Film studies = Highly Desirable
Irish Leaving Certificate
128 Media/Film Studies = Highly Desirable
Pass in Diploma of at least 60%
Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)
We welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. Once we have received your application we will assess it and recommend it for SAES if you are an eligible candidate.
There are two different routes through the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme and applicants will be directed to the one appropriate for their course. Assessment will either be through a review of prior learning or through a formal test.
|Type of study||Year||Fees|
|Full-time home/EU||2020/21||£9,250per year|
|Full-time international||2020/21||£15,240per year|
You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.
Scholarships for international students 2020/21
If you are a high-achieving international student, you may be eligible for one of our international scholarships worth up to £5,000. Our international scholarships include the Salford International Excellence Scholarship.
For more information go to International Scholarships.
All set? Let's apply
Course ID W435
Start this course in September. Call 0300 555 5030 to apply through Clearing.
Our phone lines are open 09:00 - 17:00 Monday to Thursday and 10:00 - 16:00 Friday.