BA Film Studies and English Language / Course details

Year of entry: 2022

Course description

Our BA Film Studies and English Language course will enable you to study film from a range of historical and theoretical perspectives while delving into the unique human faculty of language. 

You will learn 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 both mainstream and non-mainstream films 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.  

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, encouraging you to develop as an independent critical thinker able to work in a diverse range of assessment scenarios, taking in solo written assignments, presentations and, on certain units, group work and creative projects that enable you to put theory into practice. 

Through your English Language units, you will explore the history of the English language and the variation between English dialects in the UK and further afield. 

English Language at The University of Manchester is unrivalled in its breadth of subject areas and theoretical approaches. 

Our strengths include phonetics and phonology, morphology, syntax (lexical-functional grammar, role and reference grammar, construction grammar, and minimalism), and formal semantics and pragmatics. 

You'll be encouraged to take an active role in funded teaching-enhancement projects. 

For example, some of our students have developed an online atlas of dialect variation in the UK.

Special features

Placement year option

Apply your subject-specific knowledge in a real-world context through a placement year in your third year of study, enabling you to enhance your employment prospects, clarify your career goals and build your external networks.

Study abroad

You may apply to spend one semester studying abroad during Year 2. Exchange partners are offered through the Erasmus Exchange scheme (in Sweden) and the Worldwide Exchange scheme (eg USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Singapore).

Teaching and learning

In Film Studies, you'll attend film screenings, which are designed to enable you to advance your interpretive skills and better understand the distinctive qualities of film as a medium.

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

You will be taught in lectures, seminars, tutorials and practical group projects. Practical work is generally workshop-based, and not all projects culminate in public performance.

In English Language, you'll be taught through a mixture of formal lectures, tutorials and one-to-one supervision.

For every hour spent at university, you will be expected to complete a further two to three hours of independent study, which could be spent reading, producing written work, revising for examinations or working in the University's Language Centre.

Coursework and assessment

In Film Studies, assessment includes:

  • essays
  • seminar presentations and participation
  • exams
  • practical work.

In English Language, assessment includes:

  • written examinations
  • oral presentations
  • different types of coursework.

Coursework may include library research, linguistic fieldwork and data collection, or web-based research.

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

Take three core 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. 

You will also gain a solid grounding in a wide variety of English Language topics.

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
English Word and Sentence Structure LELA10301 20 Mandatory
History and Varieties of English LELA10342 20 Mandatory
Introduction to World Cinema SALC11002 20 Mandatory
Language, Mind and Brain LELA10201 20 Optional
The Sounds of Language LELA10322 20 Optional
Study of Meaning LELA10332 20 Optional
From Text to Linguistic Evidence LELA10401 20 Optional

Course content for year 2

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? 

Choose from a wide range of optional English Language units tapping into academic expertise in several specialist fields.

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
American Film Studies AMER20072 20 Optional
Visual Cultures in China and East Asia CHIN22521 20 Optional
Contemporary British Cinema DRAM20032 20 Optional
Black on Screen DRAM20091 20 Optional
A Score is Born: History and Ideology in Hollywood Film Music DRAM20711 20 Optional
Introduction to Documentary Film Practice DRAM21091 20 Optional
Horror Film: Genre, Periods, Styles DRAM21262 20 Optional
Core Themes in Animated Film and Visual Culture of Postwar Japan JAPA20131 20 Optional
Language, Mind and Brain LELA10201 20 Optional
The Sounds of Language LELA10322 20 Optional
Study of Meaning LELA10332 20 Optional
From Text to Linguistic Evidence LELA10401 20 Optional
Phonology LELA20012 20 Optional
Analysing Grammar LELA20021 20 Optional
Typology LELA20032 20 Optional
Societal Multilingualism LELA20101 20 Optional
Quantitative Methods in Language Sciences LELA20231 20 Optional
Semantics LELA20281 20 Optional
Pragmatics: Meaning, Context, and Interaction LELA20291 20 Optional
The Changing English Language LELA20402 20 Optional
Variationist Sociolinguistics LELA20502 20 Optional
Psycholinguistics LELA20962 20 Optional
Stylistics of English LELA21511 20 Optional
God at the Movies RELT20631 20 Optional
Empire and its Aftermath: The Making of Modern Portugal in Literature, Art and Film SPLA20141 20 Optional
Spanish Linguistics SPLA20772 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 27 course units for year 2

Course content for year 3

You can select from a wide range of Film Studies units covering different countries, genres and issues, as well as English Language units spanning a diverse range of subjects. 

You can also choose to write a dissertation.

Course units for year 3

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
Long Essay in Drama DRAM30000 20 Optional
Docufiction Filmmaking DRAM30062 40 Optional
Dissertation DRAM30990 40 Optional
From Documentary to Mockumentary DRAM31011 20 Optional
Falstaff and Gandalf go to the Movies: Adapting Fantastic Texts to Screen DRAM31042 20 Optional
Screen Acting & Stardom DRAM33301 20 Optional
Screening the Holocaust GERM30482 20 Optional
Phonology LELA20012 20 Optional
Analysing Grammar LELA20021 20 Optional
Typology LELA20032 20 Optional
Societal Multilingualism LELA20101 20 Optional
Quantitative Methods in Language Sciences LELA20231 20 Optional
Semantics LELA20281 20 Optional
Pragmatics: Meaning, Context, and Interaction LELA20291 20 Optional
The Changing English Language LELA20402 20 Optional
Variationist Sociolinguistics LELA20502 20 Optional
Psycholinguistics LELA20962 20 Optional
Stylistics of English LELA21511 20 Optional
Dissertation LELA30000 40 Optional
Topics in the Study of Meaning in English LELA30031 20 Optional
Language Contact LELA30291 20 Optional
The Study of the Speech Community: Manchester English LELA30522 20 Optional
Topics in Language Development LELA30671 20 Optional
Historical Syntax LELA30962 20 Optional
Attitudes to Language in the English-Speaking World LELA31481 20 Optional
Forensic Linguistics in English LELA31632 20 Optional
Romance Linguistics LELA32001 20 Optional
Quantitative Methods in Language Sciences LELA32011 20 Optional
Experimental Phonetics LELA32022 20 Optional
Computational Linguistics LELA32051 20 Optional
Remaking Russia: Constructing and Contesting Identity in Post-Soviet Film and Visual Culture RUSS30812 20 Optional
Spanish Linguistics SPLA20772 20 Optional
Social Issues in Portuguese and Spanish Film SPLA30642 20 Optional
The Supernatural in Latin American Literature and Film SPLA31132 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 34 course units for year 3

What our students say

Except for a few compulsory modules, the course design is really flexible, and you can therefore pick the modules which interest you most, ranging from studying the old English language to the different dialects of English in the UK today.

Alex Flowers, English Language BA

Facilities

Phonetics Lab
Undergraduate students can use the Phonetics Lab under supervision.

Study with us and you'll have exclusive access to award-winning learning resources, including some of the city's key cultural assets such as John Rylands Library, Manchester Museum and the Whitworth.

For Film Studies, the Martin Harris Centre for Music and Drama is a purpose-built creative facility that includes a flexible, fully equipped performance space, workshops, rehearsal rooms and screening rooms, as well as the Lenagan Library - our dedicated performing arts library.

For English Language, you will be able to access various resources to enhance your learning, including an extensive collection of linguistics texts and our psycholinguistics and phonetics laboratories, with facilities for:

  • signal analysis
  • speech synthesis
  • laryngography
  • electropalatography.

Find out more on the Facilities pages for Drama and English Language .

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