Drama and Film BA (Hons)

Full-time undergraduate (3 years, 4 years with foundation year)

Cambridge

September

Overview

Explore film theory and practice from all over the world, as well as different modes of performance by studying a full-time Drama and Film Studies degree in Cambridge, ARU. Choose to study abroad for one semester, attend field trips and productions, and get ongoing support to find work placements. Create your own innovative projects as you prepare for a career as a producer, director or practitioner on the stage or screen.

Full description

Careers

We work with employers to make sure you graduate with the knowledge, skills and abilities they need. They help us review what we teach and how we teach it – and they offer hands-on, practical opportunities to learn through work-based projects, internships or placements.

Find out more about our placements and work experience, or the faculty's employability support.

Our BA (Hons) Drama and Film course will give you a solid understanding of the work of film and drama practitioners, in historical, contemporary and technical contexts. Having used this knowledge to develop your own projects, you’ll possess both the theoretical understanding and practical skills required by institutions and employers in the film, drama, theatre and performance industries.

Many of our previous graduates have taken up roles in film and theatre production, directing, film criticism, festival/events administration and management, film and theatre education, broadcasting, journalism, publishing, advertising and public relations.

Modules & assessment

Level 3 (foundation year)

  • Foundation in Humanities, English, Media, Social Sciences and Education
    This module will provide students with the necessary skills to begin studying at level 4 in courses related to the humanities, social sciences, English, media and education. Students will be introduced to the core skills necessary to succeed in higher education, including thinking critically, researching, and referencing appropriately, demonstrating appropriate numeracy and ICT skills, and communicating effectively verbally and in writing. In addition to these fundamental study skills, Students will be given an introduction to a broad range of disciplines whose skills and theories are widely applicable. Students will study a variety of writing styles in order to recognise, deconstruct and replicate various forms of persuasive, analytical, and informative writing. Students will learn the basics of intercultural studies and how these theories can be applied to real-world problems. Students will consider social perceptions held across western cultures, and the difference between social and self-perception, participating in structured discussion and argument. Students will be introduced to the core principles of psychology and will explore various current applications of psychological theory. Students will also be introduced to ethics and will learn about some of the key theories and thinkers in the development of current ethical considerations in a range of scenarios. This module is made up of the following eight constituent elements: Interactive Learning Skills and Communication (ILSC); Information Communication Technology (ICT); Critical Thinking; Intercultural Studies; Psychology; Composition and Style; Ethics; Social Perceptions.

Year one, core modules

  • Film Language and Concepts
    This module will introduce you to visual film analysis and key concepts of interpretation. You will undertake visual film analysis, looking closely at how cinematography, sound, editing and mise-en-scène work together to produce the emotional and intellectual viewing experience. We will also explore key concepts in film theory, for example, auteurism, genre, star studies, reception studies, feminism, Marxism, psychoanalysis, queer theory, semiotics and critical race theory. This module will enhance your ability to meet professional and employment expectations, such as clear communication, and the ability to work independently and to meet deadlines. It will also address ethical values, encouraging you to address issues of diversity and inclusiveness and learn to read texts critically. Your assessment will consist of a portfolio of written work, including shot analyses and textual analyses (a total of 6,000 words).
  • Creative Moving Image
    This practice-based module will introduce you to film and the moving image through a series of briefs and exercises that investigate a number of principles regarding the language, conventions and aesthetic possibilities of film and the moving image. The range of projects will encompass the investigation of various principles – composition and lighting, shot/reverse-shot sequences, matching on action, graphic matching, continuity editing, synch/non-synch sound, and the rhythmic editing of picture and sound – which are central to many film and moving image practices. The purpose and outcome for each project brief is not necessarily aimed at you perfecting conventions; experimenting and gaining an understanding of how they work are just as significant. In the later part of the module, you will make a film in creative response to codes and conventions explored in the first part of the module. No prior technical experience of filmmaking is required. The module will incorporate inductions in: camera operation, sound recording, editing and the potential of online platforms. Your practical workshops will be complemented by screenings of a range of complementary film and moving image works spanning narrative fiction, documentary and experimental work. In the process of pre-production and planning, you will be encouraged to develop and practise methods of visualising and notating ideas. You will regularly present work in critical forums to get feedback from your peers and tutors. Your first assessment point will involve submitting a portfolio that incorporates a compilation of the exercises you have undertaken in the first half of the module alongside pre-production research for your final film. The second assessment point will involve you presenting and submitting a 3–5 minute video.
  • Studio Performance
    This module will introduce you to effective working methodologies in both performance and production. This will be tested through the production of a studio-based collaborative live performance, which will also explore selected key moments in theatre and performance history through practice. We will begin by considering the historical context of the text chosen for performance, its genre and performance conventions. Your tutors’ expectations of professional discipline in practical work will be set in this introductory module. While they will direct performance and production work, you will be expected to develop your own independence and initiative. You will contribute creatively to performance and production work, to appreciate the importance of collaborative practice on your degree. You may take a variety of roles as a performer or choose to concentrate on the production processes that are essential to effective live performance. You may help to design lighting, sound, projection or video for the performance, working with professional technical staff. You may alternatively work on creating effective set design, choreography, or costume and make-up. One or more student stage-managers will be needed for the whole performance, working in collaboration with all other performance and production roles. You will be expected to actively participate in all the aspects of the rehearsal and production processes that are relevant to your role. You must demonstrate reliability as collaborative performers and production staff by full attendance, punctual arrival at rehearsals and high levels of concentration within sessions. These factors and your creative contribution will inform your mark for the process of rehearsals week by week. This will be 30% of the module mark. The remaining 70% of your mark will be based on the quality of the live performance, whether you appear as a performer or make your contribution in a production role.
  • Staging and Production
    This module will involve you in staging a directed public performance. You will form a company and take on a performance and/or significant backstage role to work alongside your director in the realisation of a contemporary performance text. You will engage in a full rehearsal process, in which you will analyse and explore your chosen text within the context of your wider studies of C20th to contemporary performance and associated theories. Your rehearsal process will involve active participation in the interpreting and staging of your text, requiring you to engage with post dramatic practices such as the adaptation and deconstruction of course materials. This module requires professional discipline, including a willingness to take direction from others and to contribute ideas and work positively towards creative solutions. You will be assessed on the final ensemble performance piece in the moment of live delivery for 70% of your mark. The remaining 30% will reflect your conduct, attendance, contribution and participation in the creative process throughout rehearsals.

Year two, core modules

  • Classical Hollywood Cinema
    On this module you will focus on the practices, products and institutional frameworks of the classical Hollywood period. You will explore the narrative conventions that continue to shape the majority of mainstream commercial cinema and study the formal and stylistic features of the 'realist' text, the ideologies that inform it and its ideals of normative identities and lifestyles. You will explore coupling and heterosexual romance as a motor of plot development and as an intensely ideological aspect of films made in this period. Similarly, you will consider the significance of the ‘happy ending’ in maintaining or challenging key ideological norms and values. Drawing from some of the theoretical approaches encountered on earlier compulsory modules (Theorizing Spectatorship), you will think about classical Hollywood cinema’s positioning of the spectator, and the implications for the construction of gender and racial identities. Finally, you will also consider the style conventions of different classical Hollywood film genres and debate their significance in helping to align spectators ideologically and emotionally in the narrative action.
  • Making Performance
    This module offers you the opportunity to perform in, design and produce a large-scale public performance, created from a selected source text. While production work will be led by a tutor, students also must agree effective methods of decision-making, show full commitment to rehearsals and production meetings and demonstrate a willingness to participate in all aspects of work on the production. This module is designed to develop your skills in performance and production work to a high level; there will be a variety of roles on-stage and back-stage for your group to manage and deliver effectively. Collaborative production modules require professional conduct from all students; measurements of such conduct will include reliable attendance, punctual arrival at rehearsals, high levels of concentration within sessions and a willingness to take direction from others. You will liaise closely with professional staff at the theatre venue during intensive technical rehearsals and your own developing professionalism will be tested during this time. For assessment, 70% of the mark will be based on the quality of the live performance and 30% on a consideration of attendance, professional discipline and your creative contribution throughout the production process.
  • Theorising Spectatorship
    You'll address issues of spectatorship and representation through a range of theoretical approaches including psychoanalytic theory. You'll also explore the intersection of pleasure and terror in our encounters with the image, considering the ways in which film taps into our unconscious, and the role of the body, the senses, and emotion in shaping our responses to moving image culture. You'll look at the future of film studies by addressing the changing conditions of spectatorship in the age of digital cinema.
  • Community Theatre Performance
    This project-based module will give you direct experience of working as a performer and facilitator within the local community. This will increase your awareness of employability contexts, develop your ability to work with and for vulnerable groups, and hone a wide range of transferable skills. Working as an applied theatre company, you will be set a brief to design and deliver a performance project for an outside organisation, such as a local charity, museum, Sheltered Housing Unit, school or health care provider. Practical workshops and seminar style teaching will introduce you to the given context, the ethical and practical challenges related to it, and a range of performance styles and methodologies appropriate to successfully meeting the project brief. You will then engage in a collaborative process to devise and deliver a performance off-site. This module will offer you direct engagement with the local arts community, such as children’s theatre companies at the Junction, primary or secondary schools, or local charities. The preparation of your project will develop your awareness of the ethical, practical and creative issues that must be considered when making performance for specific target audiences and in off-site locations. You will explore the diverse career opportunities within this field, while gaining real-world experience in Community Theatre.

Year two, optional modules

  • Principles of Dramatherapy
    This module is an introduction to the theory and practice of dramatherapy, as practised by registered professionals in the UK. It will not train you to be a therapist, but will equip you with knowledge of the field and some introductory skills that will be useful if you are considering dramatherapy as a vocation. You'll be introduced to the clinical field and will learn about the principles of dramatherapy and other related professions, such as work in applied theatre, teaching and nursing. You'll be taught through experiential workshops linked to theoretical seminars, and also a possible field trip. Audio-visual presentations will enable you to view clinical work in process. Through these activities you'll be able to evaluate, develop and analyse your potential in this discipline and explore the application of arts media to therapeutic situations. Your assessment will comprise small group practical work in which you will actively demonstrate an understanding of the use of drama as a therapeutic tool. You'll be individually marked during this task, according to the specified learning outcomes. The knowledge you gain on this module can be applied to other modules. It may involve improvisation, role-play or performance, and can contribute to a basic understanding of groups and how they function.
  • Cinema and Sound
    On this module you'll explore the role played by sound in the development and appreciation of cinema, including: the impact of the introduction of sound, the influence of sound on the perception and experience of the film spectator and the evolving terminology in the field. You'll examine the aesthetics of sound in the cinema with reference to films from the earliest experiments in sound recording, such as W.K.L. Dickson's Experimental Sound Film (1894/5), to early sound films by directors such as Alfred Hitchcock, René Clair and Fritz Lang, and all the way to contemporary cinema, by way of auteurs such as Robert Bresson, Jacques Tati and Andrei Tarkovsky. The theoretical framework for your study will include key texts by a range of critics and theorists who have sought to redress the balance in Film Studies (and culture at large), which often tends to privilege the image.
  • Physical Theatre
    On this module you'll focus on physical theatre techniques as developed by key practitioners and companies. Figures and topics might include Jacques Lecoq at the International Theatre School in Paris; experiments in dance theatre by Pina Bausch; the plays and performances of Complicité or Steven Berkoff; and the techniques taught by Frantic Assembly. In weekly workshop sessions you'll engage practically with physical methodologies for creating original performative work. These methods may include improvisation exercises, development of mime and gestural languages, experiments with neutral and expressive masks, ‘non-human’ movements, multi-role playing, clowning, chair duets, ‘pedestrian’ dance and the analysis of play-texts for their potential transformation into physical theatre performances. The movement of the body through space, and what this might be made to mean, will be a central concern on this module. This is a deceptively simple proposition, but the development of physical precision, rhythm and disciplined ensemble performance is a labour-intensive task. You'll be expected to be self-critical and able to develop your own physical work towards increasing clarity and complexity. Weekly sessions are collaborative in nature and you must be prepared to play a full part in the exercises undertaken. It is essential to wear suitable clothing to these sessions to enable you to ‘play’, according to Lecoq’s meaning of that term, which includes maintaining discipline in your work. You will be asked to work independently in small groups to devise a physical theatre performance for your assessment. You'll be asked to explain the rationale for your piece in advance of performing it, as based on ideas drawn from key contemporary physical theatre practitioners.
  • Practice as Research
    This module will introduce you to a research methodology that treats the live, spatial and embodied nature of performance as a means of generating knowledge and understanding. You'll explore how performance can be designed to test or demonstrate ideas that are not amenable to library research alone, but are practice-led. 'Practice as Research' is a methodology that expands the concept of ‘knowledge derived through doing’ into a research strategy; as such, this module is particularly valuable if you are planning any kind of practical work for your Major Project. Discussion of PAR and more traditional research strategies for the Major Project will be an important aspect of this module. Practice as research will also be useful for all additional performance-based explorations of ideas that you'll encounter at levels 5 and 6. The purpose of this module is to give you strategies that will underpin the research credentials of your future practical work. It will cover both practice-led research and research-led practice. You'll explore how an understanding of ideas can be derived from existing live performance work and how such work can also generate new knowledge. These examples may encompass live art, activist performance, installations and exhibitions, workshops and performance laboratories in acting training. You'll be assessed through your own design of a practical project informed by practice as research principles, which will be performed live, with an introductory (or concluding) rationale for its design, alongside an outline of the ideas with which the performance engages.
  • Documentary Film Theory
    This module acts as a co-requisite for the Level 5 practical Video Documentary module for Film Studies students. Students on other courses may choose to take the practical module as a free standing module. The module will introduce you to many of the critical discussions and debates surrounding the historical, technological, aesthetic and socio-political developments of the documentary approach to film and video-making. As well as paying full regard to the key trends and film-makers to have contributed to the history of this important genre, you will consider the renewed public interest in documentary film and its crossover into the mainstream with recent commercial and critical hits such as "When We Were Kings" (Leon Gast 1996) and "Bowling for Columbine" (Michael Moore 2002). You will focus on the nature, specificity and evolution of the documentary form, and its relationship to cinematic realism, and address the historical and theoretical contexts of the study of documentary film, as well as an engaging with topical debates regarding the relationship between reality and representation, documentary ethics, and the role of cross-cultural documentary and ethnographic film. You will also discuss different modes of address in documentary film-making, the role of the documentary film- maker, and the relationship between film-maker and subject(s), and explore current and future modes of distribution and exhibition for the documentary film, including specialist festivals devoted to documentary. Throughout the module there are opportunities for you to critically analyse key film texts. Your assessment will take the form of a 3000-word critical essay.
  • Independent Cinema: US and Beyond
    You’ll focus on the development, features and impact of independent cinema in the US and beyond. Alongside close examination of a number of key films, you'll consider areas such as the financing and promotion of independent film-making, and investigate how and why certain directors choose to work outside the protective infrastructures and high budgets provided by a studio system. You’ll also look at US-based film-makers starting out in the late 1970s and early 1980s, such as John Sayles, Jim Jarmusch and Joel Coen, and how they influenced later international film-makers, such as Quentin Tarantino, Gregg Araki, Vincent Gallo and Lukas Moodysson. You’ll explore how Awards ceremonies and Film Festivals can showcase 'peripheral' cinema, and critically examine the role of independent distribution companies. Your assessment will take the form of a critical essay and an oral seminar presentation on the work of an independent film-maker of your choice.
  • 16mm Filmmaking
    Despite its decline, Kodak's bankruptcy and the end of Fuji 16mm and 35mm production, celluloid is still very much alive. This module will allow you to work directly with film, from shooting, through editing and on to projecting. Your practical work will be underpinned by a critical consideration of the nature of film, its history and its relationship to photography and the digital image. You'll explore the proto-cinematic motion studies of Eadweard Muybridge and Etienne Jules Marey as well as artists like Cindy Sherman and Hiroshi Sugimoto. Some of the films you'll study include works by the Lumière Brothers, Chris Marker and Guy Sherwin.
  • Non-Fiction Filmmaking
    To take this module you must already have taken Introduction to Video. You'll explore the nature and practice of documentary filmmaking, addressing the aesthetics of documentary in relation to expository, poetic, observational, performative, and reflexive modes of practice. You'll consider, reflect and implement appropriate responses to the range of issues that might arise in your work, including the ethical, creative, methodological, theoretical, and technical concerns relating to documentary. To rationalise the subject of non-fiction film and video in terms of forms and conventions of documentary language, you'll examine in detail various examples of contemporary, historical, independent, and mainstream documentary.
  • Performing Shakespeare
    This module will introduce you to the field of contemporary performance theory and practice in relation to Shakespeare. You'll study a range of 20th and 21st century critical and directorial interpretations of plays by Shakespeare, exploring issues like power, sexuality, gender, justice, morality, religion and war. You’ll look at how critics, directors and actors generate meanings from Shakespeare's plays, drawing on details from primary texts, secondary criticism and examples of contemporary creative responses to the plays. For your assessment, you'll select a sequence from one of Shakespeare's plays to stage as an ensemble performance, supported by practical workshops. This performance may include interdisciplinary work involving music, song and a variety of performing styles. You'll also attend seminars that will guide the development of your project proposal, and group tutorials to help you set up your group project. In preparation for the ensemble performance, you'll submit a 1,500-word analysis of how your chosen play has been interpreted in contemporary criticism, and examine a range of creative responses to it in the theatre and on film.
  • Scenes and Shorts
    This module will give you an opportunity to perform in short plays and scene studies that will combine into a substantial themed production. The short play demands intensive work in understanding its variety of forms and often experimental nature, and the technical aspects of such works can also be exacting. Therefore, there are many roles you can take up on this module, including performer, technician, or stage manager, with each team working to facilitate efficient turn-arounds between separate works. You will focus on works that are typically for small casts and of short duration, such as the short plays of Samuel Beckett, Bertolt Brecht, Caryl Churchill, Harold Pinter or Martin Crimp. Alternatively, you might focus on scene extracts from companies such as Forced Entertainment, Complicité, DV8 or Vincent Dance Theatre. You might also use a a performance style such as naturalism, Dadaism, physical theatre, postmodernism, the post-dramatic or performance art to pull together sequences on the module. The nature of scenes and shorts will allow you to work intensively and independently in small groups in rehearsals before coming together to produce a single show featuring all of your work. Your small-group rehearsals will be self-managed, requiring professional discipline and full participation to drive work forward. If you choose a production role, management of the whole show will be a substantial responsibility. You may choose to be assessed in the capacity of performer, producer, technical staff or a combination of these roles. In each weekly rehearsal session you will receive feedback on your developing work, culminating in assessment based on your process work week-by-week as reflected in the final performance.
  • Professional Theatre Practice 1
    Entry to this module requires Course Leader approval. Please be aware that the roles available for professional supervision will vary; you must pick a reserve module in case the role you wish to pursue cannot be offered. This module is designed to accommodate specialist training under professional supervision in defined area of theatre production. The type of work undertaken will be driven by the staffing requirements of a particular theatre or studio placement. Indicative areas of work may include developing technical skills in lighting, sound, video or specialist software, stage design, stage management, wardrobe and make-up, theatre management or marketing. You will work under the supervision of professional staff to understand the demands of each role and to gain practical skills specific to your defined aspect of theatre production. This is a module dependent on experiential learning and you must demonstrate a professional attitude to co-operation with the theatre staff under whose supervision you will work. You will be expected to be flexible in adapting to the jobs assigned to you and be willing to work during the particular hours that may be necessary in your role. Your hours will increase during production weeks; you must demonstrate your professionalism as a responsible, reliable and competent member of the production team at this time. You will be assessed by the quality of your work as visible during a performance event. Where your work is less evident during a performance, such as marketing or theatre administration, a portfolio of work covering your role will be presented. This will be followed by an oral examination, where you will be expected to bring critical thinking to bear on the work experience gained.

Year three, core modules

  • Major Project
    The individual Major Project will allow you to undertake a substantial piece of individual research, focused on a topic relevant to your specific course. Your topic will be assessed for suitability to ensure sufficient academic challenge and satisfactory supervision by an academic member of staff. The project will require you to identify/formulate problems and issues, conduct research, evaluate information, process data, and critically appraise and present your findings/creative work. You should arrange and attend regular meetings with your project supervisor, to ensure that your project is closely monitored and steered in the right direction.

or

  • Major Project in Film Practice
    This module will allow you to undertake a self-directed major project in film practice, which should draw on the strengths of your work in the module “Experiments in Film and Moving Image Practice” and your Level 5 film practice modules. This will be an opportunity for you to develop and hone a particular approach to filmmaking, whether in the context of narrative drama, documentary or an experimental mode. You will also be asked to reflect on and discuss the wider context of their practice. The first part of the module will comprise sessions that involve project proposals, the development of pre- production work and the practical testing of creative filmmaking ideas. The middle and latter part of the module will involve you presenting work-in-progress to tutors and your peers and developing a frame of reference for your project. The module concludes with you presenting your finished films, in a professional manner, at a screening that will involve comments and feedback from staff and students from across the Film and Media discipline. In addition to producing a substantial self-directed film project, you will also submit a commentary and evaluation that outlines your intentions, describes the formative features of your work and addresses the context and precedents that situate it.
  • Festival of Performance
    This module aims to consolidate your skills as theatre makers through the curation, programming, marketing and delivery of a festival of performance. You will synthesise and apply the processes of production explored throughout your degree, collaborating with your peers and staff and taking a high level of responsibility and independence in preparing the work created and shown. At the start of the module, you will reflect on your individual learning journey and career aspirations through the creation of professional portfolio materials to support your input to the festival. This will involve advancing your skills in creating professional CVs, show reels, online profiles and critical reflection of their suitability for your chosen career pathway. You will then identify an appropriate role for yourself as part of the festival team and will take responsibility for associated tasks, including the curation or polishing of existing work and working as an ensemble member in the creation new work for presentation at the festival. This will involve a production process, supervised by a member of staff. In the second period of the module, you will develop, rehearse, design, market and realise a piece of performance, which might be based on a published play text or musical theatre book, an adaptation from other source materials or an original devised piece. These works will form the core of the festival and inform the curation of other events, such as workshops, community performance and/or work presented by other students. The festival will be public facing and designed for an external audience. At this stage, you must show self-discipline, professionalism and full commitment to additional rehearsal and production sessions as the festival approaches.

Year three, optional modules

  • Special Topics in Film Studies
    This module will give you the opportunity to study a topic that will be taught by a member of staff whose particular academic interests and/or research is reflected in that area. You will extend your knowledge and understanding of a specific subject area that you may have encountered earlier in your studies, and in which there is deemed to be scope for more reading, critical commentary, analysis and discussion. Alternatively, this module may be used to introduce you to a topic which is not found elsewhere in the existing degree provision. A topic may be the study of a single filmmaker (e.g., Charlie Chaplin; Claire Denis) or cognate group of filmmakers (e.g., the French New Wave; New Queer Cinema), a genre (e.g. Global Horror; the Teen Movie), or a topic that allows for in-depth discussion and consideration of a defined area in film theory (Cinema & Sexuality; Digital Aesthetics in Contemporary Cinema; Film-Philosophy). The designated topics vary from year to year, and topics will be communicated prior to module choice. There will be no formal lectures - the module will be taught in seminars in which you will take part in group discussions.
  • Professional Practice in Film
    This module will introduce you to key areas of professional practice in film, with a view to preparing you for entry to a specific range of film-related careers. You will identify and reflect on the skills and knowledge you are gaining on your degree, and explore how these map onto careers in film and related industries. Visiting guest lecturers and alumni will give you hands-on guidance and a more detailed working knowledge of industry processes and practices, as well as setting projects for you to undertake. You will also have the opportunity to incorporate a range of ‘live’ projects and work placement opportunities as part of your work on the module. At the end of the semester, you will produce a project portfolio in one of the professional areas introduced on the module, along with a critical reflection on skills development.
  • Experiments in Film and Moving Image
    This module is built around several workshops that will allow you to explore a range of experimental approaches to filmmaking and the moving image. An indicative list of workshops includes: multi-screen filmmaking; the moving image in-situ, live performance with film; single-frame filmmaking; working with found footage and experiments in soundtrack recording. Each workshop will involve a concise, advanced technical induction; an introduction to a range of associated film and video works; a short period of time to undertake the project; and a discussion of the work produced. In the latter part of the module, you will propose, develop and produce a project following the premises and lines of enquiry suggested by one of the earlier workshops. You will show and discuss the development of your project during individual tutorials and wider work-in-progress sessions. You can work individually or in small groups. On completion, you will attend a screening and critique of the work produced. In addition to the film project, you will also submit a commentary and evaluation that outlines your intentions and describes the formative features and processes you undertook in producing the work.
  • Experimental Cinema
    On this module, you'll take an historical approach to the various movements and themes associated with avant-garde film and experimental video. You'll consider these in aesthetic and socio-political contexts, but you’ll also study the work of a number of key film and video-makers in close detail. Throughout the module, you'll consider and reflect upon the history of experimental film and video and its association with other artistic forms, as well as its rebellious relationship with the mainstream. In addition, you'll examine the movement of the avant-garde film between cinema and modern art, while still focusing on it as an independent form of art practice with its own internal logic and aesthetic discourse.
  • TV Drama Production
    This module will develop your skills in acting for the camera by producing short dramatic works adapted for video shooting. The videos produced may form part of a showreel for your use after completing your degree. You will explore the preparation of video material for a variety of new media and accordingly develop basic video production skills. Regular video playback will allow for critical reflection on the work produced and highlight where improvements may be made in performances or choice of shots. You will be expected to participate fully and professionally in all the practical work for this module.
  • Site Specific and Immersive Theatre
    On this module you'll focus on significant developments in contemporary theatre through detailed analysis and exploration of site-specific and immersive practices. You'll be asked to consider place and space as theoretical concepts and explore the influence of performance space on audience reception and on your own creative practices. You'll engage with a range of theoretical perspectives from theatre historians, performance scholars, philosophers and cultural geographers, and with a range of performance practices such as site-specific, promenade, immersive, digital and applied theatre. You'll take part in seminar discussions and reading group sessions, and a number of practice based workshops, off-site visits and theatre trips. These activities will allow you to develop a sophisticated understanding of the contemporary theatre context that you'll be entering after graduation, and working towards the assessment will allow you to imagine your own creative input to that context. You'll be asked to develop and thoroughly research your own idea for a new site-specific or immersive theatre performance. This will be assessed through an oral presentation in which you'll ‘pitch’ your creative idea, demonstrating its originality, thoughtful relationship to place, creative use of space and practical viability. This will allow you to be ambitious and work on a larger budget/scale production than you would usually be able to at this stage in your career. It will also develop a range of highly important transferable skills, such as presenting, budgeting, researching, exploring creative partnerships and fitting your work into the contemporary scene.
  • Multiplexed: Contemporary Popular Cinema
    On this module you'll explore trends in the aesthetics and production practices of Hollywood movies, and their contexts of distribution and reception, based on a representative selection from the last four decades. You'll discover how the style and output of American popular cinema in this period has responded to changing socio-political, economic and cultural circumstances. Alongside close readings of a number of films (bookended by the box-office record breakers Jaws and Avatar), you'll consider some of the broader tendencies they represent: What lies behind the so-called 'blockbuster syndrome' supposedly initiated by Spielberg's monster movie? What is the impact of new locations or technologies for viewing on the aesthetics of popular cinema? Did the blockbuster destroy or save Hollywood? These are just some of the questions you'll answer over the course of the module.
  • Narrative in Global Cinema
    On this module you will explore the way stories are told in films from around the world. You will study key aspects of cinematic narrative structure, including order, duration, cause-and-effect patterns, and the distinction between fabula (story) and syuzhet (plot). You will also examine how character and voice are handled in film, the function of 'point of view', focalisation, and internal vs external characterisation. You will address theoretical aspects such as narrator and narratee, reception theory, suspense vs surprise, the key 'seven' narrative functions, narrative and genre, and the ideology of 'show vs tell'. You will analyse non-narrative (and anti-narrative) aspects of narratives, such as description, iconic shots, music, and other disruptive elements. You will also be thinking about the different roles of words (dialogue, text, sub-titles) and imagery. You will study all of these narrative topics with regard to global cinemas. You will compare and contrast mainstream commercial Hollywood movies with non-American examples, ask to what extent continuity narrative has become the dominant pattern across the globe, examine narrative structures that do not fit the mainstream model, and analyse the intersection of global narratives with diverse identity formations. You will view films and clips from various European countries and non-Western regions, in addition to co-productions and transnational examples. Your assessment will comprise a narrative analysis (1000 words) and a critical (2000 words).
  • Workshop Facilitation
    This module will encourage you to examine and explore teaching and leading participatory workshops in drama and the performing arts. You'll gain practical experience and skills that can be applied as a practicing professional in educational, professional and community contexts. The module will also equip you with theoretical and methodological knowledge relevant to a workshop leader and enable you to practice and develop confidence in delivering effective and well-prepared sessions. Topic areas may include philosophies of education, the sociological and psychological elements of arts pedagogy and the variety of contexts for drama and performing arts workshop education. You'll be expected to reflect on the responsibilities of leadership in creative contexts and develop enhanced skills for future employability. You'll develop skills in independent learning, research and communication of process and product throughout the module. Your assessment will comprise live workshop facilitation, in which you'll lead aspects of a prepared workshop (approximately 15 minutes) and a 1,000-word critical refection that evaluates and contextualises your workshop facilitation. As part of the module, you might be invited to identify a work placement as a workshop facilitator. This can be undertaken either in ‘sandwich’ mode during the semester or in a ‘block’ during the Easter vacation. The nature of your involvement in the placement should contribute to your ongoing reflection as well as your final, assessed workshop facilitation.
  • Provocations
    On this module you'll explore a range of contemporary performance and live art practices that are challenging, often controversial and sometimes disturbing. You'll examine how the body can be explicitly staged in performance art and the ways in which it can be a vehicle for expressing identity positions that are marginalised within dominant western culture. As such, you'll encounter contemporary performance practices that articulate racial, gender, transgender, queer, disabled and refugee identity positions. You'll consider the ethical implications of this practice, its relationship to its audience and its effectiveness as a strategy of resistance to mainstream stereotypes. Content may include the extremism of live art by Franko B, Ron Athey, Kira O’Reilly and Marina Abramovic; activist interventions by Richard Dedemonici and Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping; representations of race in Brett Bailey’s Exhibit B; queer identities in Split Britches’ Belle Reprieve; transgender performance by Heather Cassils and the representation of disability in dance works by Bill Shannon. In seminars, you'll explore the relationships between performance, the body and identity through a combination of videos, web material, reviews, interviews and critical essays from major theorists in the field. Your assessment will comprise a 3,000-word essay, with advance formative assessment by tutorial appointments to discuss your plans, arguments and case-studies. The practitioners that you'll study may deploy shock-tactics in the delivery of their work - you'll be expected to be intellectually curious, ask questions about this work and be open to new ideas, practices and processes.

Optional modules available in years two and three

  • Anglia Language Programme
    The Anglia Language Programme module will allow you to study a foreign language as part of your course. You may choose to take two language modules in place of options on your course from the second semester of your first year, or in the second or third year. You can choose from the following: Chinese (Mandarin), French, German, Italian, Japanese, or Spanish. In order to experience the learning of a new language, you must select one that you have not learned before.

Assessment

Modules are subject to change and availability.

You’ll show your progress on the course through a combination of essays, reports, critical reflections, presentations, studio and public performances and a major project, which may include practical work.

Where you'll study

Your department and faculty

Using our creative expertise and industry connections in Cambridge and beyond, we create experiences that entertain, educate, inspire and improve lives.

At Cambridge School of Creative Industries, we believe in the importance of experimentation and risk-taking to create experiences that entertain, educate, inspire and improve lives.

Whether writing bestselling fiction, creating challenging documentaries or sharing a piano with people on the autism spectrum, the expertise of our staff goes far beyond teaching. Their research produces significant funding success, leading to important publications and international conferences.

Where can I study?

Cambridge
Lord Ashcroft Building on our Cambridge campus

Our campus is close to the centre of Cambridge, often described as the perfect student city.

Explore our Cambridge campus

Work placements

You’ll take part in self-arranged work placements, and our career-focused modules will encourage you to reflect on what you have learned from them. Our previous students have undertaken placements and commissions with regional and local television, radio and newspapers, MTV and the Cambridge Film Festival, often as part of their assessed work. For many, this has led directly to a paid position with the company.

PDP portfolio

During the course of your studies, you’ll also create a Personal Development Planning portfolio, which will be an invaluable tool throughout your career.

Study abroad options

You can apply to study abroad for one semester in the US, and get funding to help you cover the cost

Field trips

You'll have the chance to broaden your experience on one of our field trips. Past trips have included Venice, Italy

Facilities

For all of your practical work, you’ll have access to our industry-standard facilities, including:

  • Two dedicated drama studios with flexible black-box performance space
  • Super 8 Nizo cameras, 16mm Bolex film cameras, Panasonic and JVC HD cameras
  • Rostrums for traditional animation
  • Macs with Final Cut Pro software for editing and post-production
  • On-campus film and television studios, multimedia studios and screening theatres

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK students starting 2021/22 (per year)

£9,250

International students starting 2021/22 (per year)

£13,900

How do I pay my fees?

Tuition fee loan

UK students (and EU students starting a course before 1 August 2021) can take out a tuition fee loan, which you won’t need to start repaying until after your graduate. Or there's the option to pay your fees upfront.

Loans and fee payments

International students

You can pay your tuition fees upfront, in full or in two instalments. We will also ask you for a deposit of £4,000 or a sponsorship letter. Details will be in your offer letter.

Paying your fees

Scholarships

We offer a fantastic range of ARU scholarships, which provide extra financial support while you’re at university. Some of these cover all or part of your tuition fees.

Explore ARU scholarships

Funding for UK & EU students

Most new undergraduate students can apply for government funding to support their studies and university life. This includes EU students starting a course before 1 August 2021.

Government funding includes Tuition Fee Loans and Maintenance Loans. There are additional grants available for specific groups of students, such as those with disabilities or dependants.

We also offer a range of ARU scholarships, which can provide extra financial support while you’re at university.

Funding for international students

We offer a number of scholarships, as well as an early payment discount. Explore your options:

Entry requirements

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Audition

You will be invited to perform an audition as part of the application process.

For more guidance on how to prepare for this, please visit our creative industries auditions page.


Important additional notes

Whether you're studying entirely online or through a blend of on-campus and online learning from September 2020, you'll need a computer and reliable internet access to successfully engage with your course. A small number of our courses require additional technical specifications or specialist materials. Before starting the course, we recommend that you check our technical requirements for online learning. Our website also has general information for new students about starting university in 2020-21.

Our published entry requirements are a guide only and our decision will be based on your overall suitability for the course as well as whether you meet the minimum entry requirements. Other equivalent qualifications may be accepted for entry to this course, please email answers@anglia.ac.uk for further information.

We don't accept AS level qualifications on their own for entry to our undergraduate degree courses. However for some degree courses a small number of tariff points from AS levels are accepted as long as they're combined with tariff points from A levels or other equivalent level 3 qualifications in other subjects.

International students

We welcome applications from international and EU students, and accept a range of international qualifications.

Whether you're studying entirely online or through a blend of face-to-face and online learning from September 2020, you'll need a computer and reliable internet access to successfully engage with your course. Before starting the course, we recommend that you check our technical requirements for online learning.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you'll need to make sure you meet our English language requirements for undergraduate courses.

Improving your English language skills

If you don't meet our English language requirements, we offer a range of courses which could help you achieve the level required for entry onto a degree course.

We also provide our own English Language Proficiency Test (ELPT) in the UK and overseas. To find out if we are planning to hold an ELPT in your country, contact our country managers.

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