This programme takes a project-led, practice-based approach to studying for an MA in Film Directing (Documentary) which integrates practical film making with analysis of contemporary film practice. Students choose to make a creative documentary or a non -fiction film which defies genre definition and pushes the boundaries of narrative. We develop these through workshops and tutorials. Our students work within an integrated framework that helps them question the form of their films and enables them to find the right language for their storytelling.
The programme encourages ways of working as a film community that foster the important exchange of ideas, with inspiration from international visiting film makers through Scottish Documentary Institute and support from our team of documentary practicioners. All tutors are top professionals currently working within the industry as directors, producers, editors, cinematographers or sound designers. A newly built Avid edit teaching space, and a new screening space helps us encourage a fresh approach to emerging technologies.
Graduate films do well internationally regularly winning BAFTAs, RTS Awards and awards at international festivals. Over the last five years students have received an Oscar nomination for an MA film made here and an Oscar shortlist for a film made by a recent graduate. We work closely with the Scottish Documentary Institute, the University’s internationally-acclaimed research centre in documentary film making.
The aim of the Film Directing programmes at ECA is to:
This programme is project-led and delivered through workshops and regular individual tutorials. It integrates practical studio work with theoretical and written studies from the Screen cultures course (see separate description) which is run independently from the Film Department.
The first semester, Design Studio is organised round a series of micro-films which lead to a growing awareness of film language and enhancement of technical skills to creatively support filmic vision. Cinematography and sound workshops are delivered by visiting lecturers. Directorial voice is built up also through tutorials in which an idea for a graduating film is developed and evolved. Awareness of current international documentary practice is built through regular seminars and screenings, collaborations with Film Festivals such as Take One Action and also supported by Scottish Documentary Institute. This is also to inspire students to push boundaries in their approach to narrative structure and visual language and not to get locked in conventional approaches. We want to encourage bold work that takes risks. At the end of the first semester all students pitch their films using a trailer or short excerpt from their research material. They also develop a treatment with feedback from tutorials.
Semester two is spent preparing and shooting the graduate film and is backed up with edit tutorials as well as project support from weekly meetings with a tutor. Students also receive seminars in production process including contracts.
Semester three is when the film is edited and finished with input from group crits, tutorials. Students also attend or often volunteer with Edinburgh Film Festival and the Edinburgh Pitch in order to observe and engage with key players from the international documentary world through hearing feedback from commissioning editors.
Alongside the ECA learning structure, students also have a pool of potential collaborators from Screen Academy Napier including the possibility of working with cinematographers, editors and producers.
Our students go on to a wide range of roles, including producer, director, writer, production or location manager, researcher, editor, assistant director, cinematographer, or journalist. Graduates have found work directing for the BBC and making work internationally for top broadcasters and film funds. Related fields include advertising, community films, academia or film development agencies.
MA/MFA Film Directing has been awarded the Creative Skillset Tick, the industry kitemark of quality, following a rigorous assessment process by experts working in the Creative Industries. The Creative Skillset Tick is awarded to practice-based courses which best prepare students for a career in the industry. Screen Academy Scotland is one of only 3 Screen Academies in the UK along with National Film School and London Film School.
Our MA Interior Design course enables you to develop an individual approach to spatial design within a stimulating, creative and supportive environment.
This degree provides you with a launchpad to potential higher level interior design careers within a diverse range of subjects. These include museum and exhibition design, design for film, television and digital games and brand interpretation for retail, leisure or promotional events.
An emphasis on ecological issues and processes is also a prominent aspect of this course, and underpins all aspects of the course.
You'll explore your area of interest to an advanced level, through establishing new spatial paradigms that build on your existing knowledge. Our course, at UCA Canterbury, combines theoretical and practical skills, and encourages engagement with industry at all levels.
In-depth research into design processes and technologies, along with related work placement opportunities, will prepare you for new career directions. Your project work will be supported by ongoing staff research into sustainability, architecture, design-related digital technologies, experiential environments and brand communication.
You'll be taught through tutorials, seminars, self-directed study in relation to your project proposal, work-in-progress reviews and visits or references to sites of local and international interest.
Part-time students are normally taught on a Tuesday but sometimes field trips, study visits or other events take place on other days of the week. You should check before enrolling if you have concerns about the days your course will be taught on.
We've got extensive contacts across the range of interior design disciplines. Live projects, research analysis and feasibility studies will draw on our wide range of contacts and associations.
Connections include specialists in the related fields of audio-visual technologies, lighting design and interactive design.
Recent guest lecturers have included:
-David Callcott, CADA Design, retail and leisure design consultants (London and Hyderabad, India)
-Emma Vane, Production Designer for Atonement, the Harry Potter series, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, and Captain America: The First Avenger
-Finlay White, ModCell, sustainable construction
-Mick Pearce, award-winning international architect (Title: Bio-mimicry and the 3rd industrial revolution)
-Phil Hughes, Ralph Appelbaum Associates, museum and exhibition designers (London, New York, Beijing)
-Uwe R. Brückner, Atelier Brückner, exhibition design (Stuttgart, Germany).
Career opportunities exist within design or architectural consultancies in retail, leisure, exhibition, office, hotel, residential and cruise ship design, as well as in the fields of design management, interior or film-set design.
Our course has a strong ecological focus with opportunities for engaging with both the theoretical and practical aspects of real-world sustainability.
Visit our Postgraduate Virtual Media Space to find out more about our courses, see what it's like to study at UCA and gain access to our campus virtual tours.