MA Film Studies
Year of entry: 2020
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- Gain a solid foundation in theoretical and critical film studies.
- Have the opportunity to study areas of film theory, history and culture, as well as aspects of applied practice.
- Learn from teaching and research-active staff who work in close collaboration with cultural partners including Community Arts Northwest, Contact Theatre, Granada Centre for Visual Anthropology and North West Film Archive.
Each year, there are two Open Days for SALC master's programmes: November and May.
The details for the May Open Day will be posted here as soon as they are finalised.
Our open days are designed to enable you to:
Get an overview of both the University as an institution and the School that houses the subject area in which you are interested.
Explore available funding options and find out how to apply.
Discover more about course content through subject specific talks or taster sessions.
Meet academics and current students and find out more about life as a postgraduate student at Manchester.
Find out more about our world-leading research.
For entry in the academic year beginning September 2020, the tuition fees are as follows:
UK/EU students (per annum): £9,500
International students (per annum): £19,000
UK/EU students (per annum): £4,750
Policy on additional costs
All students should normally be able to complete their programme of study without incurring additional study costs over and above the tuition fee for that programme. Any unavoidable additional compulsory costs totalling more than 1% of the annual home undergraduate fee per annum, regardless of whether the programme in question is undergraduate or postgraduate taught, will be made clear to you at the point of application. Further information can be found in the University's Policy on additional costs incurred by students on undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes (PDF document, 91KB).
Each year the School of Arts, Languages and Cultures offer a number of School awards and Subject-specific bursaries (the values of which are usually set at Home/EU fees level), open to both Home/EU and international students. The deadline for these is early February each year. Details of all funding opportunities, including deadlines, eligibility and how to apply, can be found on the School's funding page where you can also find details of the Government Postgraduate Loan Scheme.
See also the University's postgraduate funding database to see if you are eligible for any other funding opportunities.
For University of Manchester graduates, the Manchester Alumni Bursary offers a £3,000 reduction in tuition fees to University of Manchester alumni who achieved a 1st within the last three years and are progressing to a postgraduate taught masters course.
The Manchester Master's Bursary is a University-wide scheme that offers 100 bursaries worth £3,000 in funding for students from underrepresented groups.
Courses in related subject areas
Use the links below to view lists of courses in related subject areas.
Academic entry qualification overview
We normally expect students to have a First or Upper Second class honours degree or its overseas equivalent in a humanities-based subject area.
An overall grade of 7.0 (with a minimum writing score of 7) in IELTS is required or 100+ in the TOEFL iBT with a minimum writing score of 25.
If you have obtained a different qualification, please check our English language requirements to ensure that it is accepted and equivalent to the above requirements.
English language test validity
Application and selection
How to apply
Advice to applicants
You should include a personal statement (no more than 500 words) that demonstrates your understanding of the subject and your motivation for wanting to study the programme.
If your academic background is not directly related to the programme, you should supply an academic-standard writing sample on a subject related to the programme.
If English is not your native language, then you should provide an academic-standard writing sample in English directly related to the subject.
For more advice on the application process, please visit our Applying page.
How your application is considered
Applications are mainly considered on the basis of an assessment of past and predicted academic achievements, the academic reference(s) and any other supplementary evidence that supports the application. Once we have an application that is ready for a decision, the admissions tutor (often the Programme Director) will relay the decision to the admissions team, who will send you this decision.
Please note that your application is usually received by the School 24 to 48 hours after the time you submit it. If you have not provided documentation that allows the admissions tutor to make a decision, we will contact you.
Our MA Film Studies course has been designed to provide considerable opportunities to study film theory, history and culture, as well as aspects of applied practice.
It caters for those who want to enhance their artistic and professional careers, or if you're planning to progress to doctoral study. The course is also suitable if you're relatively new to the subject area and want to establish a solid foundation.
If you want to enhance your employability, it provides an excellent springboard for careers in film, screen media and the creative industries, as well as educational, social and community professions.
The research and teaching strengths of our scholars span film, screen and media studies from form and theory to historical and cultural approaches, and from national cinemas to the politics of identity, gender and sexuality, and film music, as well as film practice.
This considerable breadth of specialism offers a wide range of options. Whether you want to strengthen your academic foundation in this subject area or wish to pursue niche areas of research requiring specific expertise - for example, documentary film-making, audio design or film music composition - you'll find the MA in Film Studies has a considerable amount to offer.
The Applied Film Studies pathway allows you to apply knowledge and experience of film theory and practice to a social and community setting, such as in schools, and community and cultural organisations, including the not-for-profit sector.
This involves acquiring practical skills in addition to theoretical knowledge, such as participatory video, sound design, film curation and programming, which could be applied to education, community and activist contexts.
Discounts at HOME
Receive a membership card for discounts at HOME, Manchester's centre for contemporary theatre, film and art.
Teaching and learning
You will learn through seminars, small group tutorials, workshops and surgeries, offering opportunities for lively and engaged discussions.
One-to-one supervision is offered on all dissertations.
The Programme Director is Dr Felicia Chan ( Felicia.Chan@manchester.ac.uk ).
Coursework and assessment
Written coursework in each taught 30-credit unit comprises a 6,000-word essay or its equivalent, such as essays, log books, evaluation reports, project critiques and practice analysis.
The dissertation is a 15,000-word project on a topic chosen in consultation with the dissertation supervisor.
Course unit details
You will undertake units totalling 180 credits. Core and optional units combine to make 120 credits, with the remaining 60 credits allocated to the dissertation.
Following a mandatory first semester of two core units, you are free to shape your course by choosing from a diverse range of options, including established study options within arts, languages and cultures, a directed reading or practice option (enabling you to pursue a specific area of research with the careful supervision of specialist staff), and a work placement option.
Study options vary from year to year depending on staff availability.
Course unit list
The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.
|Film Theories, Debates and Approaches||DRAM71331||30||Mandatory|
|Film Cultures: Research, Industries and Practice||DRAM71442||30||Mandatory|
|Directed Reading (15)||DRAM70012||15||Optional|
|Falstaff and Gandalf: Adapting Fantastic Texts to Film||DRAM70022||30||Optional|
|Directed Reading (30 credits)||DRAM70051||30||Optional|
|Dissertation by Practice||DRAM70980||60||Optional|
|Films about Film||DRAM71211||30||Optional|
|Queer Cinema and Beyond||ENGL60152||30||Optional|
|Displaying 10 of 17 course units|
|Display all course units|
What our students say
My favourite thing about the MA Film Studies course is the variety of topics on offer. I've been exposed to some amazing cinematic works, as well as fascinating theoretical frameworks week-by-week that not only inspire my existing personal interests, but also introduce me to new ideas.
The chance to do a work placement as part of the course was a particularly exciting prospect; I worked as an Archive Assistant at the North West Film Archive, which I enjoyed immensely.
The Lenagan Library is a small reference library housed in the Martin Harris Centre that includes a range of popular and specialist titles available for students to loan, together with a viewing suite and a spacious work area.
Find out more on the Facilities page.
By teaching and developing a considerable range of transferable skills, this course enables you to keep open a wide range of career options.
Previous MA students have gone on to take up PhD study, with many then progressing to academic and teaching careers in further and higher education institutions.
Other former students have gone on to work for the BBC, independent television production companies and as festival organisers, as well as in film education and other areas of the film and screen media industry.