BA Music and Drama / Course details
Year of entry: 2020
Course unit details:
Video Project 2 - Docufiction
|Unit level||Level 3|
|Teaching period(s)||Semester 2|
|Available as a free choice unit?||No|
The course is designed to teach students different dramatic styles by integrating theory and analysis with practical work. In addition to attending seminars and screenings, the students will develop video production techniques and post-production skills to discover how different narrative forms are achieved with industry level camera equipment and editing software. Smaller production groups will be formed to devise a short dramatic film using documentary film techniques, which will then go into production, overseen by the tutor. The students will conduct research, develop a working script and learn how to cast and direct non-professional actors on location and through improvised acting. Each student will be required to carry out a variety of functions which could include: director, camera-person, sound-person, editor, production assistant and researcher.
Any L1 Drama Study or Practical core option
Any L2 Drama Study core option - Practitioners in Context 1; Practitioners in Context 2; Screen, Culture and Society
At least one 20 credit L2 Drama practical course
Drama Dissertation/Research Essay
· To give students an opportunity to explore different approaches to video production conducted in the borderland between fact and fiction, and to test those strategies through undertaking practical work on docufiction preproduction, production and postproduction.
· To conduct practice-based research on docufiction film by drawing on docufiction history and theory.
To develop a critical understanding of media objectivism in historical and contemporary media by understand how the an artifice of authenticity can be devised in media productions.
Indicative syllabus (representative only – all of the topics listed below may not be covered every year):
Week 1: Course introduction, docufiction theory and camera workshop
Week 2: Lighting, audio, shooting and production workshop
Week 3: Preproduction: Workshops on project proposals, copy right, ethics, health and safety
Week 4: Workshop on narrative, working script, casting and directing non-professional actors.
Week 5: Production and shooting
Week 6: Shooting and presentation on Documentary Dramas and Ethnofictions
Week 7: Shooting and presentation on Mockumentaries and Hoaxes
Week 8: Shooting and presentation of Hand-held Horror and Docu Science Fiction. Introduction to
logging, paper edit and the reflective essay
Week 9: Editing: workshop and rough cut
Week 10: Editing: fine cut and poster design
Week 11: Editing: final cut
Week 12: Media career workshop, workshop on distribution, reflective assessment essay,
Appraisal and final screening.
Teaching and learning methods
The course is taught via:
· Training workshops, focusing on camera work, shooting, managing light and sound, storyboarding and editing
· Discussion and group exercises engaging with course readings/materials
The course unit will be complemented by a Blackboard site that conforms to minimum requirements including a course handbook, weekly course breakdown, provision of reading material, reading lists. Supplementary material from workshops will be added as appropriate. The blackboard site will be prepared and available to students at least one week prior to the beginning of the first teaching week each semester.
Knowledge and understanding
Demonstrate a critical and systematic understanding and knowledge of:
· the artifice of authenticity
· docufiction history and theory
film production processes
Demonstrate critical understanding and ability to use -
· critical film analysis
· reflective practice
· editing skills
- in order to develop, create and produce short films of industry standard or approaching industry standard.
Demonstrate advanced practical skills in -
· preproduction of docufiction film
· production of docufiction film
postproduction of docufiction film
Transferable skills and personal qualities
· Advanced interpersonal communication and team-working skills
· Critical thinking skills and creative group-work practice skills (problem-solving, thinking innovatively, drawing on creative approaches of others, evaluating arguments, giving and receiving feedback, time-keeping)
· Using effective leadership and group-work skills to solve complex problems
Performing with confidence and precision for specific audiences/contexts, making use of diverse creative approaches and media
- Group/team working
- Ability to work independently and as part of a group to conceive, plan, undertake and evaluate original, well-developed projects that involve complex and unpredictable scenarios; Ability to work independently and as part of a group to solve problems arising from engaging with challenging and unpredictable scenarios
- Advanced skills in group-work, leadership, reflexivity, planning and project management
- Understanding of and adherence to industry-level professional and ethical standards in practical work; Ability to develop informed critique of professional practice (own and others), drawing on understanding of high quality standards; Development of a professional identity and skills/knowledge base to inform further professional practice, training and learning
Formative or Summative
Weighting within unit (if summative)
Production of a project proposal, working script and a docufiction film.
Docufiction film (10-15 min), project proposal (2000-2500 words) and working script (length n/a).
Ongoing feedback during workshops –peer to peer and tutor to student
Full written feedback on all assessments
Hight, C. & Roscoe, J. 2001. Faking It: Mock-Documentary and the
Subversion of Factuality
Millerson, G. 2001. Video Production Handbook
Murch, W. 2001. In the blink of an eye
Rabiger, M. 1992. Directing the Documentary
Rhodes, GD. and JP Springer. (eds.) 2006. Docufictions: essays on the intersection of documentary and fictional filmmaking
Rosenthal, A. 2002. Writing, Directing, and Producing Documentary Films and
Ward, P. 2005. Documentary: The Margins of Reality
|Scheduled activity hours|
|Practical classes & workshops||165|
|Independent study hours|
|Johannes Sjoberg||Unit coordinator|
Open to Drama students (Single and Joint Honours).
If you are not a student on a Drama programme but have considerable experience and interest in video production, please get in contact with Course Unit Director Dr Johannes Sjoberg AND Programme Director for Drama Dr Rachel Clements to request a place on the course: email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org
Technical Support: Karl Spencer will hand out the equipment for your projects. Make sure you return the equipment to him promptly at the agreed times. He is available for background technical advice and his office is F11.
Additional Video Screenings: In order to screen recommended films additional times in preparation for the assessment essay, you can arrange a booking to view available videos and DVDs in a screening booth in the Lenagan Library.
For further information please visit http://www.centreforscreenstudies.manchester.ac.uk
Timetable for 2016/17: TBC