Masters degree in History of Film & Photography offer advanced study of the historical, cultural and technological development of filming and photographic practices.
Taught MA degrees are typical for the field, though research oriented MRes and MPhil programmes may also be available at some institutions. Entry requirements normally include an appropriate undergraduate degree such as Media Studies.
Courses in this field allow you to extensively explore the history, political significance and aesthetic qualities of a global range of cinema and photography. They are often largely interdisciplinary, allowing you to combine theoretical concepts form disciplines such as gender studies, cultural theory, anthropology and even computer science.
You will explore a range of genres, artists and audiences from different time periods, tracing the routes from a number of cultural significant backgrounds. Depending on your interests, you may wish to specialise in a range areas, such as the technological development of film or photography, or their roles in artistic practices through history.
Careers may include curation in heritage institutions such as museums and art galleries, participation in film showcases and festivals, or academia.
This distinctive programme allows you to think about the critical and creative relationships between film, photography and the media, while developing your skills to produce projects of your own.
A major independent project sits at the heart of the course, supported by modules that put your practice into the context of contemporary debates. You’ll explore the different critical approaches to the making and consumption of photography and film, allowing them to inform the short film and photography projects you’ll work on.
It’s a flexible programme which allows you to choose from a range of optional modules to focus on topics that suit your own creative and critical interests. You could study cultural policy, international film industries, film and TV writing, feminism in the media and more.
You’ll be taught by leading researchers and practitioners in the field, and our cutting edge research will inform all your teaching.
Our School has a range of fantastic facilities to support your studies. The 58-seat Phil Taylor Cinema is equipped with Dolby Digital sound and high-definition projection facilities, as well as projectors for 16mm and 35mm film.
You can also work on your own projects in our 44 editing suites, equipped with Avid Media Composer editing software and Adobe Creative Cloud. The fully equipped TV studio also has a large green screen area, lighting and photo-flash facilities. We also have a track and dolly, sliders, Glidecam and various cranes, and you’ll have access to a new photographic dark room.
We also run a loans service where you can borrow a range of HD digital camcorders and various Canon stills cameras to help with your project work.
The whole programme is based around a major independent project. You can choose to complete a dissertation and take classes developing your knowledge of research methods to support your work. Alternatively, you can complete a short film or photography project that you’ll exhibit at the end of the programme.
The modules you study throughout the year give you the theoretical and contextual knowledge you need to inform your project, as well as developing your skills in filmmaking and photography.
You’ll study two core modules. One will explore the links between photographic creativity, optical science and the nature of cinema and allow you to work on a short film project. The other will look at the historical development of photographic practice, contemporary issues and debates.
Alongside these modules you’ll choose from a range of options to focus on topics that interest you, from film industries around the world to new media, cultural policy, communication and development, television narrative and more.
If you choose to study part-time, you’ll complete the MA over two years, instead of one, taking fewer modules each year.
These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.
We use learning methods that reflect the diversity of the programme, including workshops, lectures, seminars, group learning, tutorials and film screenings. Independent study is also a vital element of the programme, since it allows you to develop your skills and explore your creativity in practical work.
We also use different methods of assessment, some of which will depend on the modules you choose. These are likely to include portfolios of practical work, group and individual projects and reports, essays, literature reviews, case studies, presentations, scripts and commentaries.
This programme will give you a broad base of knowledge and skills across two important forms of communication. It will also equip you with cultural awareness and advanced skills in research, analysis, interpretation and oral and written communication.
We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.
The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.
Are you passionate about films and all things visual or on screen? Do you want to work in the arts or do you want to find a way to do this? This programme gives you cultural contexts across a range of different genres and history of film to understand why films depicted what they did and how this contributed to the world around us and the way we live. It is well known that film has shaped other disciplines like fashion, the way we think, cultural identity, how we are able to express ourselves or understand something better we previously didn't know about. It is an opportunity to put the record straight on history and get to the root cause and effect of different periods in history through characters. Film is also about getting to the truth in documentary films. Film also follows many other arts disciplines in interpreting them and bringing them to our attention in a way that theatre and performance cannot in terms of scale and reality. Much of what has been successful on the West End Stage, Opera, ballet, the life of a famous painter or other creative is often successfully depicted in film due to its ability to portray several art forms together successfully.
Film isn't the only art form to transform our lives but it probably reaches more people than any other art form around the world. It probably has more of a profound influence in people's lives around the world to change the course of their life in work, interests, style, imitation and more. Different ages of photography have been monumental in transforming our perceptions and getting us closer to reality such as old film and photography of the 19th century, war in the world and celebrities being the first fashion icons of the 50s, without the need for script.
You study and analyse film across the recent past and you look at animation and digital from the days of the Walt Disney team making up each frame to its evolution into digital animation and speed production. You also look at how changing tastes and cultural styles have changed the way in which we view film and by what method, plus you look at living overseas in the context of your own cultural identity. From this you gain useful skills and knowledge to critique contemporary film, curate exhibitions work in museums, become and expert in a specific theme or age of film.
Find out more detail by visiting the programme web page
Find out about fees
*Please be advised that some programmes have different tuition fees from those listed above and that some programmes also have additional costs.
View all funding options on our funding database via the programme page
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The MLitt in Art History is designed to develop and enhance core research and writing skills, to introduce and deepen knowledge of the theoretical and methodological foundations of Art History, and to enable students to explore current critical debates, art media and contextual questions.
The MLitt degree requires two semesters of full-time (or four semesters part-time) coursework, normally equivalent to four modules. Each module has a minimum contact time of 16 hours. The modules are taught as small group discussion seminars, with an average size of four to eight students in each group. Additionally, there may be class trips where relevant to the taught modules.
The assessment for the taught modules is based on coursework including:
The modules in this programme have varying methods of delivery and assessment. For more details of each module, including weekly contact hours, teaching methods and assessment, please see the latest module catalogue which is for the 2017–2018 academic year; some elements may be subject to change for 2018 entry.