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Film and Television MA

Course Description

This programme offers an exciting combination of both film-making practice and textual and historical approaches to the study of film and television. As a student on this innovative programme, you will be taught the skills of film production, working intensively in small groups to explore aesthetic possibilities and gain insights into the craft and industry of screen media. You will also engage with critical perspectives and develop high-level research and analysis skills.

Optional units offer the chance to specialise in different areas of practical film-making and to gain a greater understanding of specific areas around the history and aesthetics of film and television. At the dissertation stage, you will have the opportunity to undertake a placement in creative industry, to undertake an in-depth study of film and television by means of a traditional dissertation, or to produce a mixed-mode investigation through film practice, either individually or in a team, supervised by one or more academic advisers.

The University of Bristol has more than 40 years of experience in this field and the programme draws on the expertise of world-leading scholars, expert practitioners and industry professionals. The Department of Film and Television hosts a series of research seminars and industry masterclasses that are targeted to enrich your studies. Facilities include a 200-seat cinema, production studio, animation and edit suites, seminar rooms and sound rooms.

Bristol is an excellent city in which to study film and television, with its varied cinema, television and digital media spaces, such as the Arnolfini, BBC Bristol, The Cube and Watershed Media Centre. Bristol's Harbourside is home to an array of film festivals, including the Encounters Short Film and Animation Festival, the Slapstick Festival, and the Afrika Eye Festival.

Programme structure

The programme has been designed to develop skills and knowledge cumulatively, while allowing you the opportunity to tailor your learning to your specific areas of interest.

In the first semester, you will be taught skills and techniques of formal analysis and practical film-making, providing the foundation for optional units across the year, such as Writing and Directing, Screen Histories, Television Forms and Making Short Fiction. Other options include Translation for Subtitling (Chinese-English), Screen Style and Aesthetics, and Making Short Fiction.

In the second semester, you will gain knowledge of research methods relevant to the dissertation stage, which includes the opportunity to undertake a placement in the film/TV industry, write an extended essay or produce a piece of practice (normally a short film) accompanied by individual written reflection.


Graduates of film and television at Bristol have taken up careers as film-makers, programme researchers, senior academics and broadcasting executives.

Visit the Film and Television MA page on the University of Bristol website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Carolina Martinez Gondra

5254.jpg As a cinephile I often read up about films, directors, producers and screenwriters. One day I read about British director Michael Winterbottom and learnt he studied film at the University of Bristol. I decided to browse through the university’s film programmes and a year later chose to apply to Bristol.

Before I moved here, I knew Bristol was a medium sized city so I was worried it might be dull in contrast with Buenos Aires.

Fortunately, my fears proved to be unfounded. The first night I arrived I walked up Park Street and to my amazement it was full of bustle and life so I felt reassured. In addition, I get to enjoy world renown graffiti artist Banksy’s work on a daily basis.
I came from a background in Media Communication and Psychology. As the MA is a generalist programme it has allowed me to explore and consider the different fields within film such as; cinematography and its ramifications, sound, editing, producing, directing etc. Being on the programme has helped me find my niche within the different film options.

The MA in Film and Television at the University of Bristol is unique in that it allows entry to students from a wide range of academic backgrounds such as; classics, drama, advertising, history, painting, design, business and so on. Roughly half the course is made up of Brits and a little over half is made up of foreign students such as myself. As we come from diverse academic backgrounds and different nationalities and genders I think we are a good blend.There is camaraderie between the students and we help one another. While it can sometimes be frustrating to work in groups at least you never get lonely and it really does make working on projects a more dynamic and interesting experience.


Entry Requirements

An upper second-class honours degree (or international equivalent). Evidence of commitment to (but not necessarily experience in) film and TV production and/or study.

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