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Screen studies symposium at The University of Manchester
BA Film Studies and German
Study film and media alongside German language and culture.

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BA Film Studies and German / Course details

Year of entry: 2019

Course description

BA Film Studies and German aims to develop your understanding and awareness of the rich possibilities of this creative medium and encourages you to approach the study of film from a range of historical and theoretical perspectives.

You will also develop a firm grounding the German language, and the opportunity to explore German culture, linguistics, history and literature. You will be equipped with the skills and expertise needed to thrive in a German-speaking environment.

Film Studies

  • You will expand your experience of film through taught units and screenings that focus on both classical and contemporary films, covering a wide range of film cultures from around the world. 
  • You will study mainstream and non-mainstream films in order to broaden your understanding of the history of film, as well as the debates and issues that are informing and generated by current practice in film and shaping its future.
  • As you enhance your skills of close analysis, you will also develop an understanding of how film engages with socio-cultural and political concerns, placing the films you study in their historical context as well as thinking about current debates and future challenges for cinema as a medium.
  • The course emphasises historical and theoretical approaches to studying film rather than practical production. 

German

  • Our core German language courses (at post A-Level or beginners' level) are complemented by a variety of other subject areas, including linguistics, and a wide range of cultural and historical units that use German-language sources to improve your core language competence, as well as your wider knowledge ofGerman-speaking countries.
  • Specialisms in German include historical and contemporary linguistics, literary studies, screen studies, gender and sexuality, modern cultural history, minority cultures and Holocaust studies.
  • Our teaching, praised in the Teaching Quality Assessment and by external examiners, is backed up by an innovative Independent Language Learning Programme, enabling you to take control of your own learning experience.
  • Enjoy strong links with the Goethe Institute and the Austrian Cultural Forum, which sponsor a varied programme of cultural events.

Special features

  • We're ranked 2nd in the UK for drama research (Research Excellence Framework 2014).
  • Your year abroad will offer the opportunity to gain first-hand experience of life in a German-speaking country, and further develop your language skills.
  • Join The University of Manchester Filmmaking Society, which exists to provide a platform for aspiring filmmakers attending the university to meet, exchange ideas and create their own cinematic productions.
  • Join The University of Manchester Drama Society, which is for anyone with an interest in drama, be that acting, directing, writing, filmmaking, costume, set building, stage managing or just watching. One of the largest in the Student Union, the society has links with many of Manchester's award-winning theatrical venues, including the Contact Theatre and the Royal Exchange Theatre. Each summer the society showcases at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Teaching and learning

You will learn through lectures, seminars, tutorials and practical group projects.

There's emphasis on attending film screenings, which are compulsory and designed to enable you to better understand the distinctive qualities of film as a medium.

There's also emphasis on close analysis which is designed to enable you to learn to interpret films and their discursive surround, including relevant paratexts (eg promotional material such as trailers and posters).

You will spend approximately 12 hours a week in formal study sessions. For every hour spent at University, you will be expected to complete a further two to three hours of independent study. You will also need to study during the holiday periods.

The individual study component could be spent reading, producing written work, revising for examinations or working in the University's Language Centre.

Coursework and assessment

You will be assessed in various ways, including:

  • written and oral examinations;
  • coursework essays;
  • research reports;
  • practical tests;
  • learning logs;
  • web contributions;
  • small-scale practical assignments;
  • seminar presentations and participation;
  • library research, linguistic fieldwork and data collection.

Many course units are assessed through a mixture of techniques.

In your final year, you can choose to write a dissertation.

Course content for year 1

The Joint Honours in Film Studies provide you with a thorough grounding in film history and key theoretical approaches to studying film as well as the opportunity to develop specialist areas of interest.

In your first year, you will take three compulsory course units that establish the conceptual `building blocks' of studying film as well as providing you with a thorough grounding in major developments in early and classical cinema before progressing into the various `new wave' movements and developments in contemporary cinema.

The Art of Film covers the core concepts and terminology in studying film. The unit addresses the distinctive properties of film as a medium and engages with debates about film's status as an art. Major tendencies in editing and cinematography are explored before the unit focuses on mise-en-scene and shot composition, classical and anti-classical approaches to narrative, major forms of genre, authorship and the role of the director, the importance of music, stars and the process of adaptation.

Introduction to Early and Classical Cinema covers the origins of cinema up to the 1950s. As well as pioneering figures and distinctive movements such as German Expressionism and Surrealist cinema, the course considers key technological innovations in sound and colour.

Introduction to World Cinema covers a range of film cultures from different countries with an initial emphasis on the various `new wave' movements which began to emerge around the world in the 1950s and 1960s. The unit addresses significant post-Second World War developments in the cinema of countries such as France and Japan.

This is alongside the core and optional course units to be studied in your chosen language subject.

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
The Art of Film DRAM10031 20 Mandatory
Introduction to Early and Classical Cinema DRAM13331 20 Mandatory
Introduction to German Linguistics GERM10040 20 Mandatory
Revolution and Reaction in German Culture GERM10350 20 Mandatory
German Language 1 GERM51011 20 Mandatory
German Language 2 GERM51022 20 Mandatory
German Language 3 GERM51030 20 Mandatory
Introduction to World Cinema SALC11002 20 Mandatory

Course content for year 2

In your second year you take one compulsory unit - Screen, Culture and Society - which covers more advanced theoretical debates about the relationship between film and society. You will be able to select from a range of specialist study options on specific issues in Film Studies and focus on aspects of American, British, Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Russian or Spanish and Portuguese language cinema with a particular interest in questions of identity and representation. How have films perpetuated or subverted notions of gender, sexuality, national identity, ethnicity and class?

This is alongside the core and optional course units to be studied in your chosen language subject.

Course units for year 2

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Screen, Culture and Society DRAM20041 20 Mandatory
German Language 3 GERM51030 20 Mandatory
American Film Studies AMER20071 20 Optional
Transnational Chinese Cinemas DRAM20021 20 Optional
Contemporary British Cinema DRAM20031 20 Optional
Black on Screen DRAM20092 20 Optional
French Cinema to 1980 FREN20142 20 Optional
The German Language Today GERM20221 20 Optional
Weimar Culture? Art, Film and Politics in Germany, 1918-33 GERM20262 20 Optional
From Frankenstein to the Matrix HSTM20802 20 Optional
Core Themes in Animation and Visual Culture of Postwar Japan JAPA20131 20 Optional
Hispanic Cinemas SPLA20841 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 12 course units for year 2

Course content for year 3

Your third year of study will be completed in a host University in a German speaking country. You will have the opportunity to gain advanced language skills and an in-depth knowledge of German culture.

Find out more about international study .

Course content for year 4

Your remaining units in your final year are all optional and you can select from a wide range of units covering different countries, genres and issues. You can also choose to write a dissertation.

This is alongside the core and optional course units to be studied in your chosen language subject.

Facilities

Our comprehensive facilities include the Martin Harris Centre - home to 150-seater The John Thaw Studio and our main `lab' for exploring performance - and workshops and rehearsal rooms fully equipped with state-of-the-art sound-editing and video editing suites. Manchester also has the 2 nd highest concentration of theatres in the UK.

As well as making use of the wider University library network, you will have access to the University Language Centre, a modern open learning facility where you can study independently and make use of a library and audio-visual resources. There are also language laboratories and multimedia facilities.

Learn more on the Facilities page.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: dass@manchester.ac.uk